In just 10 days, you'll discover Uganda and Rwanda's rich culture and abundant wildlife, starting with a city tour and cooking class in Kampala. The journey continues in Murchison Falls National Park, where an early morning game drive and boat cruise await. Fly to Kigali next for a guided tour of the capital and a transfer to Volcanoes National Park to track mountain gorillas through the forest. End back in Entebbe for a day trip to see the shoebill storks of Mabamba Swamp.


  • Learn about Uganda's rich history on a guided city tour
  • Admire rare white rhinos in their natural habitat Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary
  • Look for the Big Five on safari in Murchison Falls National Park
  • Trek up Mount Kigali for panoramic views of the cityscape

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Entebbe (Uganda), Transfer to Kampala, City Tour Kampala
Day 2 Transfer to Murchison Falls, Rhino Sanctuary, Game Drive Murchison Falls National Park
Day 3 Dawn Game Drive, Murchison Falls River Cruise & Hike Murchison Falls National Park
Day 4 Transfer to Kampala, Self-Guided City Tour Kampala
Day 5 Visit the Entanda Initiative, Fly to Kigali (Rwanda) Kigali
Day 6 Transfer to Volcanoes National Park, Relax at Leisure Volcanoes National Park
Day 7 Gorilla Trek in Volcanoes National Park Volcanoes National Park
Day 8 Transfer to Kigali, Half-Day City Tour Kigali
Day 9 Fly to Entebbe, Cruise Through Mabamba Swamp Entebbe
Day 10 Guided Walking Tour of Entebbe, Depart  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Entebbe (Uganda), Transfer to Kampala, City Tour

Kamala's Nakasero Market is piled high with bags of sugar, rice, and beans, among the fresh produce

Welcome to Uganda! You'll arrive at Entebbe International Airport, ready to meet your driver, and set off on a one-hour transfer to the capital city of Kampala. It's a great opportunity to admire the surrounding countryside and the serene Lake Victoria, Africa's largest lake. When you arrive, refresh at your hotel, then set off on a guided tour of the city, starting at the Uganda Museum. Step inside to discover the diverse collection of traditional artifacts, archaeological exhibits, and ethnographic displays providing insight into Ugandan customs, beliefs, and practices. 

Then, head to the Nakasero Market to browse the stalls full of fresh produce, local delights, and handmade goods. Hopefully, you've worked up an appetite by now, as your next stop is a visit to a street food vendor who'll teach you how to cook some of Kampala's favorite snacks, such as mandazi (a deep-fried doughnut-like pastry dusted with powdered sugar) or kabalagala, (crispy banana pancakes). You'll also have the chance to sample rolex, (a beloved chapati roll filled with eggs, tomatoes, and onions.)

After lunch, the tour continues at Kabaka's Palace, the official residence of the Buganda tribe's king since 1885. Although you can't enter the opulent building, your guide will share stories of the royal family as you admire the opulent gates, lush gardens, and traditional thatched roofs. Your final stop is the Ndere Cultural Center, where you can immerse yourself in the country's rich culture and witness spirited dances, rhythmic drumming, and colorful costumes. Pair the performance with a delicious local meal before returning to your hotel after an action-packed first day.

Day 2: Transfer to Murchison Falls, Rhino Sanctuary, Game Drive

Visit Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary to see endangered white rhinos up close

After a restful night in Kampala, set off on a four-hour transfer to Murchison Falls National Park, the oldest and largest national park in the country. On the way, stop at Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary, the only place in Uganda where you can see the white rhino up close in their natural habitat. Follow your knowledgeable guide on a walking safari through the sanctuary and learn about its conservation efforts. When you find the rhinos, observe them from afar before sitting down for a delicious lunch at Amuka Lodge, nestled within the sanctuary's lush surroundings.

After eating, jump back in the car and continue your drive to Paraa Safari Lodge, a luxury lodge set within the park and overlooking the Nile River. You'll have time to relax and cool off in the large swimming pool before this evening's game drive. When it's time, hop in a safari vehicle with your guide and go in search of the nocturnal wildlife that comes out to play. You may also see lions start to stir as they set off on their nightly prowl for food. After a few hours exploring the park, you'll return to your lodge in time for dinner. 

Day 3: Dawn Game Drive, Murchison Falls River Cruise & Hike

Board a boat to Murchison Falls, then trek to the top to see the cascade from every angle

Today, you'll wake up just before dawn to set off on a game drive, which starts with the compelling sight of the sun rising over the park. The cooler morning temperatures bring heightened activity, so it's a great time to keep an eye out for the Big Five—lions, elephants, buffaloes, leopards, and rhinos. Don't forget to look up, as you may spot some of the park's 451 bird species flying overhead. You'll also get to witness the magnificent Murchison Falls, where the cascades plunge 147 feet (45 m) into the Nile.

This afternoon's river cruise takes you back to the falls for a closer look. Board your boat and keep your eyes peeled for hippos and crocodiles basking on the shore as you make your way to the bottom of the cascade. Disembark, and after a 1.5-hour hike to the summit, you'll be rewarded with sweeping views of the waterfall and a welcome cool mist. After an action-packed day and early start, you'll return to the lodge, where you can relax on your veranda with a sundowner. 

Day 4: Transfer to Kampala, Self-Guided City Tour

End the night with a drink at one of the rooftop bars in Kololo

Wave goodbye to the park this morning and return to Kampala on a four-hour transfer. There's plenty to see as you wind through the lush countryside and pass rural settlements and villagers on their daily routines. Eventually, you'll see the bustling capital emerge on the horizon. Check into your hotel and enjoy its amenities for the rest of the day, or venture out to explore the area on your own. A good place to start is the UNESCO-listed Kasubi Royal Tombs, housing the remains of four Buganda kings.

The tombs are an architectural masterpiece, showcasing traditional Ganda craftsmanship and a great way to learn more about the burial practices and ceremonies of the Buganda people. When you're done, hop on a boda-boda, a bicycle or motorcycle taxi, to weave through the traffic and return to the center to explore the Bagala Craft Market. Browse the stalls brimming with traditional crafts, cultural artifacts, and colorful art, and in the evening, head to the Kololo district, an upscale area known for its diverse dining options and vibrant nightlife, for dinner. 

Day 5: Visit the Entanda Initiative, Fly to Kigali (Rwanda)

Entanda Initiative
Sit down for a traditional lunch of luwombo at the Entanda Initiative
Plan your trip to Uganda
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.

Leave the city behind for the day as you transfer 1.5 hours west to Mityana, home to the Entanda Initiative, a community-based project focused on sustainable development and empowerment of local communities. When you arrive, engage in various activities that showcase the initiative's commitment to education, agriculture, and community well-being, starting with music and dancing. Watch a captivating performance featuring dynamic drumming, rhythmic dances, and melodious singing paired with captivating notes from a sekitulege (a musical bow.)

After a musical morning, you'll get involved in community life and discover the history, making, and usage of bark cloth, and how local herbs are used to treat ailments. Then, you'll be invited to help prepare luwombo, a traditional dish of meat, peanuts, and beans wrapped and steamed in a banana leaf. You'll find no cutlery in this village, so lunch here is eaten with your hands and washed down with a medicinal wine made from herbs and tree bark. 

You'll conclude your visit with an energetic soccer match, an archery lesson, and a demonstration of traditional wrestling, an ancient pastime of the Buganda people. If you're brave enough to give it a go, you'll have the opportunity to try your luck against the initiative's oldest member! After a rewarding day, you'll say your farewells and head to the airport for a 50-minute flight to Rwanda. You'll land in Kigali, the country's capital, where your driver will transfer you to your international hotel. 

Day 6: Transfer to Volcanoes National Park, Relax at Leisure

Boat across Lake Burera and admire panoramic views of the Virunga Mountains

Trade the city for the countryside this morning as you set off on a 2.5-hour transfer to Volcanoes National Park, renowned for its high concentration of mountain gorillas. Settle into your accommodation, Tiloreza Volcanoes Ecolodge, and enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure. You could relax by the pool, set off on a hike through the park, or visit the nearby twin lakes of Burera and Ruhondo. When you arrive, admire the crystal-clear waters surrounded by lush hills and terraced slopes.

Then, hop in a boat and cruise across the lake for a stunning view of the Virunga Mountains. After the boat tour, wander through the small fishing villages dotting the shores to catch a glimpse of local life and traditional fishing practices. When you're ready, return to your lodge to enjoy a delicious dinner al fresco surrounded by the sounds of the forest, then unwind by the firepit as you gaze up at the sky full of stars, uninterrupted by city lights.

Day 7: Gorilla Trek in Volcanoes National Park

 Watch mountain gorillas in action at Volcanoes National Park

Since Volcanoes National Park is renowned for its population of mountain gorillas, you can't leave without going on a trek to see them. Meet your guide, learn about trekking etiquette and the park's conservation efforts, and then set off down the muddy path through the dense forest to look for a family of gorillas. The trek's duration varies, from a few hours to most of the day, depending on how long it takes to find these majestic creatures.

When you finally spot them, stand back and watch them go about their daily lives—feeding, playing, and resting—in their natural habitat. Conservation protocols allow you to spend one hour with these incredible creatures, so when it's time, return to the park's entrance along the same path. After a day in the forest, return to the lodge to relax by the pool and enjoy another delicious dinner al fresco.

Day 8: Transfer to Kigali, Half-Day City Tour

Climb Mount Kigali for panoramic views of the surrounding cityscape

After meeting the residents of Volcanoes National Park, return to Kigali on a 2.5-hour transfer. Refresh at your hotel, then set off on a six-hour city tour, starting in the Nyamirambo neighborhood, known as a melting pot of cultures, ethnicities, and religions. Follow your guide through the bustling streets lined with colorful buildings, stopping at local markets to taste exotic fruits and shop for handmade souvenirs. Then, meet a local artist who will take you on a walk to admire the neighborhood's colorful murals and street art.

Walk up the nearby Mount Kigali next. Despite it's name, the mountain is more of a hill, so it's an easy climb. When you reach the summit, you'll be rewarded with panoramic views of the cityscape below and the lush countryside. Rwanda is known for producing high-quality coffee, so you can take a break after the hike in a local café to try a cup for yourself. End the tour at the Kigali Genocide Memorial, a somber reminder of the one million Tutsi people that were slaughtered here by the Hutu majority in 1994. Pay your respects to the victims, then head back to your hotel.

Day 9: Fly to Entebbe, Cruise Through Mabamba Swamp

Take a boat ride through Mabamba Swamp to look for the elusive shoebill

Your penultimate day in Africa takes you back to Entebbe on a 50-minute flight. Meet your driver outside the airport and transfer to your resort to refresh. Then, venture out to Mabamba Swamp, just a short ferry ride and 20-minute drive away. When you arrive, jump in a motorized wooden boat and glide through the winding water channels to look for the area's most popular and mysterious resident—the shoebill stork. If you don't spot any shoebills on the shores or in the skies, don't worry. There are plenty of other birds to see, such as the African fish eagle, African jacana, or malachite kingfisher.

Don't forget to look in the water as well, as you may spot otters, mongoose, Nile monitors, and water snakes. After an afternoon of bird-watching and wildlife spotting, return to your resort to relax and enjoy its amenities. Lie by the pool, play a round of golf, or get a massage in the on-site spa. When you've worked up an appetite, head to the restaurant overlooking Lake Victoria and enjoy a delicious dinner while you watch the sun slowly set.

Day 10: Guided Walking Tour of Entebbe, Depart

Wander through Entebbe Botanical Gardens, looking out for the resident monkeys

Spend your last few hours in Africa on a walking tour around Entebbe, starting at the Entebbe Crafts Village, where you can watch local artisans craft handmade goods, such as wooden sculptures, woven textiles, intricate jewelry, and colorful paintings. Head to a local market next to try traditional dishes, tropical fruits, or Ugandan coffee. Continue to St. John's Church, an Anglican church built in the 19th century. Admire the Gothic-inspired exterior and stained glass windows, then step inside for a moment of quiet reflection and contemplation.

Leave the village behind in the afternoon to wander through the picturesque Entebbe Botanical Gardens, home to a diverse range of exotic plant species. Follow the manicured path through the garden and keep an eye out for the playful monkeys or colorful birds that call this sanctuary home. End your tour at a nearby public beach overlooking Lake Victoria. Sit on the sand and look out at local fishermen casting their nets before returning to the hotel to grab your bags and meet your driver to transfer to the airport for your flight home. Safe travels!

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Map of Highlights of Uganda & Rwanda: Culture, Wildlife & Nature - 10 Days
Map of Highlights of Uganda & Rwanda: Culture, Wildlife & Nature - 10 Days