- Track mountain gorillas through the forest
- Visit the home of the famed tree-climbing lions
- Safari by land and by boat for a richer wildlife experience
|Day 1||Welcome to Uganda!||Entebbe|
|Day 2||Queen Elizabeth National Park||Queen Elizabeth National Park|
|Day 3||Boat safari on the Kazinga Channel||Kasenyi|
|Day 4||Bwindi Impenetrable National Park||Buhoma|
|Day 5||Gorilla tracking||Buhoma|
Day 1: Welcome to Uganda!
Arrive in Entebbe, meet your guide, and make your way to the luxury resort where you'll spend your first night in Uganda resting after your long journey. The hotel features a restaurant, spa, and fitness center. And a location on the lake means you'll close the day with beautiful views.
Day 2: Queen Elizabeth National Park
Rise with the bright, beautiful Ugandan sun and depart for Fort Portal at the foot of the Rwenzori Mountains — a gorgeous haven of nature and wildlife. If you have time, make a stop at the world-famous Ruwenzori Mountain Sculpture Foundation before continuing on to Queen Elizabeth National Park on the floor of the Rift Valley. The landscape here is one of craters carved into gently rolling hills dotted with large mammals such as elephants, hippos, and buffalo, as well as over 600 species of birds (more than any other national park in the country).
Day 3: Boat Safari on the Kazinga Channel
On your third day in Uganda, grab a coffee (or tea), ask the hotel for a packed breakfast, and get ready for an early-morning game drive. Wind your way through the Kasenyi Sector — well-known for its lions and Uganda Kob (antelope). If you're lucky, you might even spot a giant forest hog — Africa's largest pig — or an elusive leopard.
After your first safari, head back to the lodge for a rest by the pool and a hearty lunch. Then take to the water for a second safari by boat! Following the Kazinga Channel at Mweya, which connects Lake Edward to Lake George, keep your eyes peeled for birds (over 100 species live along this channel) like the African skimmer, great white pelican, spoonbill, and bee-eaters. Hippos wallow at the edges of the water, Nile crocodiles bask in the sun on the shores, and elephants often come to the water for a drink. Don't forget your camera — this is one of the most photo-rich opportunities of the trip!
Day 4: Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
Start your day with a drive through Ishasha — the remote, southern section of Queen Elizabeth National Park where the famous tree-climbing lions live! Keep your eyes on the large low-limbed fig trees and keep your camera handy. From there, continue on to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest — a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the richest biological and botanical regions in the world. Located on the southwestern edge of the Rift Valley, Bwindi's vast expanse is home to approximately 400 mountain gorillas — about half the world's population of these gentle apes. Spend your afternoon ambling around the village of Buhoma (your home for the next two nights), visiting handicraft shops, or meeting the Batwa — an ancient, forest-dwelling tribe.
Day 5: Gorilla Tracking
Spend your fifth day in Uganda tracking the mountain gorillas the park is known for! Start by registering at the Uganda Wildlife Authority ranger station first thing, briefing with the rangers, and then heading into the forest. Be prepared for some hiking (and bring good shoes) — these treks typically take three to six hours.
Once you find a gorilla family, leave your things to one side and approach these gentle giants with just your camera (staying about 22 feet away for the gorillas' safety). Listen closely to your guide, who will interpret the habituated gorillas' behavior for you as they feed, play, and interact. Spend an hour in their company before heading back to base.
Day 6: Departure
Bid Uganda a fond farewell as you board the van and head back toward Entebbe and the airport. Before you head home, stop for a picnic lunch and a fun photo opp at the Equator, followed by a farewell dinner in Entebbe. Bon voyage!