Classic Uganda Safari in Luxury
Classic Uganda Safari in Luxury 14 Days
This fantastic comprehensive and in-depth itinerary will allow you to discover all of Uganda’s wildlife highlights in ultimate comfort. Travelling via 4wd Land Cruiser in the company of an expert driver and guide, you will visit 6 of Uganda’s finest destinations, including 5 national parks, to enjoy some of Africa’s most impressive wildlife experiences. From up-close encounters with the famous mountain gorillas to chimpanzee tracking and thrilling game drives, this truly wonderful itinerary will showcase to you all that this remarkably diverse country has to offer.
Prices shown are per person, based on 2 people sharing in superior accommodation. The same itinerary in budget (from $5349) or mid-range (from $6460) accommodation options is available.
Prices do not include international flights but these can be arranged as part of your package.
Please note: The gorilla tracking experience will require a walk of between 2 and 8 hours through sometimes muddy conditions, and so participants will require an average level of fitness.
Namibia Birding and Photography GuideAn accomplished and experienced Namibia birding and photographic guide, Toni holds a Namibia Academy for Tourism and Hospitality Level 3 qualification (the highest level attainable in Namibia) and is widely renowned for her extensive knowledge of the cultures, ornithology, flora, astronomy and wildlife of the country. Read more >
Falklands Expert & GuideBorn in Chartres in the West Falklands, Jenny grew up on the family farm where her love for animals was nurtured by the25,000 sheep, horses and cows that lived alongside her. Forever a nature, conservation and wildlife enthusiast Jenny has travelled extensively throughout the Falkland Islands, visiting each and every wildlife island at least once, and even travelling around some by yacht. Read more >
- Visit 5 of Uganda’s finest National Parks
- Thrilling and unforgettable Mountain gorilla and chimpanzee tracking experiences
- Discover a huge variety of other wildlife including lions, leopards, elephants and buffalo
- Abundant birdlife
- Exciting daytime and nighttime game drives and bush walks
- Spectacular scenery at every turn
- Travel in comfort in the company of an expert English-speaking driver and guide
- Luxury accommodation throughout
- The most comprehensive Uganda itinerary available
- All accommodation and meals as described in the itinerary
- Permit for chimp tracking in Kibale Forest and Kyambura Gorge
- Gorilla permit for Bwindi National Park and gorilla tracking experience
- Transport to/from the starting point for gorilla tracking
- Airport transfer to/from Entebbe Airport
- Private transportation in a 4WD safari vehicle (Land Cruiser)
- English speaking guide and driver
- Activities and excursions as outlined in the itinerary
- National Park entrance fees and ranger fees
- AMREF Flying Doctors Insurance
ITINERARY13 Nights 14 Days
- Day 1 | Kampala
- Day 2 | Kampala to Murchison Falls NP
- Day 3 | Murchison Falls National Park
- Day 4 | Murchison Falls to Kibale Forest NP
- Day 5 | Chimpanzee Tracking & Bigodi Swamp Walk
- Day 6 | Kibale to Queen Elizabeth NP
- Day 7 | Queen Elizabeth NP
- Day 8 | Queen Elizabeth NP to Bwindi NP
- Day 9 | Mountain Gorilla Trekking in Bwindi NP
- Days 10 - 11 | Lake Bunyonyi
- Day 12 | Lake Mburo National Park
- Days 13 - 14 | Lake Mburo NP to Kampala
Welcome to Uganda, the “pearl of Africa”! Upon arrival at Entebbe International Airport a representative will be waiting for you to drive you to Uganda’s capital city of Kampala for your included stay at the Lake Victoria Serena Hotel. Enjoy a comfortable night’s sleep in this majestic hotel overlooking Lake Victoria in preparation for the adventures that lie ahead.
Overnight stay at the Lake Victoria Serena Hotel with breakfast included.
Budget and standard accommodation option: Cassia Lodge
Kampala to Murchison Falls NP
Today your adventure truly begins and after an early breakfast at your hotel you will be collected by your English speaking driver and guide to begin your journey through some of Uganda’s most remarkable National Parks. Travelling in a comfortable 4wd safari land cruiser your 350km journey to your first stopover, Murchison Falls National Park, will begin. The journey is likely to take in the region of 7 hours but the spectacular scenery along the way is sure to keep you more than occupied.
Along the way we will stop for lunch before reaching Murchison Falls, the most beautiful protected area in Uganda. If time permits we hope to make a visit to the top of the falls for your first view of these magnificent waterfalls, before checking in to the exclusive Baker’s Lodge and enjoying a delicious welcome dinner.
2 nights accommodation at Baker’s Lodge with breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Budget accommodation option: Fort Murchison
Standard accommodation option: Murchison River Lodge
Murchison Falls National Park
Murchison Falls National Park is the largest and most beautiful protected area in Uganda and its most striking feature is the electrifying sight of the waterfall after which the park is named. Yet it’s not just the waterfall that attracts visitors to this remarkable area. With a diverse landscape of dense woodlands in the south and green grasslands in the north, the park harbours one of the most varied wildlife populations in East Africa. Wildlife you can expect to see here includes lions, leopards, elephants, giraffes, hartebeests, oribis and Uganda kob, whilst the part of the park which lies alongside the River Nile is thronged with hippos, crocodiles, waterbucks and buffaloes. The park is also a premier site for birdwatchers.
Today we will have the chance to experience all of this for ourselves as we awaken early for breakfast before setting off on a half-day game drive along the northern bank of the Nile in search of the area’s fantastic wildlife encounter opportunities. After lunch back at the lodge we will enjoy a Nile cruise to get even closer to the remarkable animals that reside here.
Murchison Falls to Kibale Forest NP
After breakfast this morning your driver will collect you for your journey to Kibale Forest National Park. The journey is likely to take in the region of 10 hours but the spectacular scenery along the way is sure to keep you more than occupied.
Along the way we will stop at Fort Portal for lunch. Fort Portal rests in the shadow of the fabled “Mountains of the Moon” and is famous for its many tea plantations and you will have time for some photo opportunities before continuing on to Kibale. Kibale Forest is home to the greatest variety and concentration of primates found anywhere in East Africa, including over 1000 chimpanzees. Tomorrow you will have the chance to get up-close to these intriguing animals so after a delicious dinner at the lodge a good night’s rest is in order in preparation for a new day of adventure.
2 nights accommodation at Kibale Primate Lodge in a luxury cottage with breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Budget accommodation option: Kibale Forest Camp
Standard accommodation option: Kibale Primate Lodge standard cottage
Chimpanzee Tracking & Bigodi Swamp Walk
Today it’s time for one of the highlights of your trip as we take the short walk into the forest to begin your chimpanzee tracking experience! Kibale Forest is home to the greatest variety and highest concentration of primates in East Africa, and is renowned as being the best place to see chimpanzees in their natural habitat. After a pre-tracking briefing you will begin your hike into the forest to visit a large habituated family of chimps that consists of over 120 individuals. Along the way you are likely to spot some of the forest’s fascinating residents including other primates and bird species such as the blue breasted Kingfisher, black billed Turaco, Pied Hornbill, Chestnut winged Starlings, and your informative guide will tell you all there is to know about this beautiful forest and its unique flora and fauna.
Upon sighting the chimpanzees you will have an hour to observe them, soaking up their captivating behaviour as they climb through the trees, groom, growl, feed, and take care of their young. An unforgettable experience that will no doubt leave a lasting impression.
After your exciting morning tracking the chimpanzees you will head back to the lodge for lunch before travelling to the nearby Bigodi Swamp for a very different nature experience. Here you can enjoy a guided swamp walk, an initiative of the local community, to discover the area’s rich diversity of birds and primates. The 4km walk is likely to take in the region of 3 to 4 hours and gumboots are recommended as the paths and board walks may be slippy and muddy underfoot. All proceeds from this eco-tourism initiative go back into the local community so this is a very worthwhile activity. In the early evening we return to the lodge for dinner and a well-deserved rest.
Kibale to Queen Elizabeth NP
After breakfast at the lodge you will set off for the next stop on your itinerary, Queen Elizabeth National Park. Your journey will take in the region of 3 hours across the majestic foothills of the Rwenzori Mountains, also known as the “Mountains of the Moon”. En route we will enjoy some time exploring the scenic crater lakes region that surrounds the dense forest of Kibale National Park before reaching the exceptionally beautiful Queen Elizabeth National Park.
This remarkably scenic national park’s landscape is as diverse as its abundant wildlife population, with its green savannah plains with small acacia and euphorbia trees giving way to sunken crater lakes and swamps, bounded by the snow-covered peaks of the Rwenzori Mountains. Home to 95 different species of mammals including lions, elephants, Uganda Kobs, elephants, hippos and crocodiles, the area also has the highest number of bird species found in any national park in Africa with over 600 having been recorded.
Upon arrival at the beautiful Mweya Safari Lodge you can enjoy a welcoming dinner before settling into your luxury tent for the evening.
2 nights accommodation at Mweya Safari Lodge in a luxury tent with breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Budget accommodation option: Simba Safari Camp
Standard accommodation option: Queen Elizabeth Bush Lodge
Queen Elizabeth NP
This morning we begin bright and early and head into the park for an exciting game drive experience to the mating ground of the Uganda Kobs. As we drive through this scenic park you will be on the lookout for lions, elephants, buffaloes and other wild animals in their natural habitat.
After an adventurous morning we will take a relaxing afternoon boat cruise along the Kazinga Channel, a natural channel between Lake Edward and Lake George, to enjoy sightings of the world’s highest concentration of hippopotamus, Nile crocodiles, buffaloes, elephants and a multitude of birds. This 2 hour boat ride with snacks and beverages included will take us along a 14km stretch of the channel before we return to the lodge to enjoy a delicious dinner and some relaxation after what will have been an adventure-filled and memorable day.
Queen Elizabeth NP to Bwindi NP
This morning you can choose to go for a hike in the Kyambura Wildlife Reserve in search of the chimpanzees that are frequently seen here. It is a beautiful walk through the river valley, completely covered with tropical rainforest.
In the afternoon it will be time to pack up your things and start your journey to our next destination, the remarkable Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park, home of the endangered mountain gorillas. Bwindi is home to almost half of the world’s mountain gorilla population and is quite simply the best place to observe these gentle giants at a close distance. The park is also home to 9 other primates and features spectacular scenery of trails, rivers and waterfalls.
The journey to Bwindi will take approximately 5 hours and upon arriving at the luxury Mahogany Springs Lodge you can enjoy a delightful welcome dinner before settling into your luxury “banda” which features 2 double beds, an en-suite bathroom and a private terrace with panoramic views of the forest and surrounding land. Set back on the pristine waters of the Munyanga River, Mahogany Springs is located just 2 minutes drive from the Bwindi National Park headquarters where we will be heading to tomorrow for our gorilla tracking experience.
2 nights accommodation at Mahogany Springs Lodge with breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Budget accommodation option: Buhoma Haven Lodge
Standard accommodation option: Silverback Lodge
Mountain Gorilla Trekking in Bwindi NP
Get ready for the experience of a lifetime! After an early breakfast you will join your transfer to the offices of the National Park where upon arrival you will be allocated a gorilla family, an 8-person group and a gorilla trekking guide. After a briefing into what lies ahead, including safety precautions and an introduction to the behaviour of the gorillas, you will be driven to the trailhead for the start of your thrilling adventure.
Depending on the gorilla family that you have been allocated the trek to see them can take anywhere from 15 minutes to 6 hours so patience and an average fitness level are required. The terrain can be muddy, and rainy weather is likely, but as you trek through the jungle the anticipation of seeing these gentle giants in the wild, along with the spectacular views and likely bird sightings on offer, is likely to be more than enough distraction from that. And we can almost guarantee that when you come face to face with these majestic animals the trek will soon become a distant memory!
Upon sighting the gorillas your group will be allowed one hour with them to watch them as they go about their daily lives; feeding, moving, playing, wrestling and feeding their young – this will be a totally unique and unforgettable experience!
Gorilla trekking experiences in Bwindi have been designed to ensure that numbers are kept to a minimum whilst still offering the experience of seeing these animals in the wild so that more can be done to protect them and ensure the species’ ongoing survival. The vast majority of your gorilla permit cost goes to protecting these vulnerable animals and ensuring that their population thrives. Thanks to these conservation efforts, in the last few years the mountain gorillas population in Bwindi NP alone has increased from 300 to 400! Without tourist visits there would be substantially less funds available to do this. Each of the habituated families of mountain gorillas are only allowed to be visited by one group of eight people per day, and only 72 visitors are allowed each day.
After your thrilling experience of witnessing the famous mountain gorillas up-close, your guide will lead you back to base where you will be transferred back to the lodge for a delicious dinner and the chance to reflect on what may well have been the greatest wildlife experience of your life.
After an exhilarating but strenuous time in Bwindi it’s time for some relaxation as we head to the Lake Bunyonyi area for 2 days of tranquillity along the shores of Africa’s deepest lake. The drive to Lake Bunyonyi will take approximately 4 hours and upon arrival at the fantastic Bird Nest Resort you can enjoy lunch on the terrace and some time at leisure to do what you please. Many will choose to simply wind down for a couple of days lazing by the pool, but if you’re itching for more adventure there are many options available for canoeing, birding, nature walks and swimming.
2 nights accommodation at Bird Nest Resort in a deluxe room with breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Budget accommodation option: Bunyonyi Overland Camp (cottage)
Standard accommodation option: Arcadia Cottages
Lake Mburo National Park
After breakfast this morning we will make our way to the final national park of our tour as you jump back into the land cruiser and head towards the beautiful Lake Mburo National Park. The 250km journey to Lake Mburo will take approximately 3 hours. A relaxing game drive through this beautiful park will take us to Mihingo Lodge and you are likely to see lots of wildlife including impalas, topis, warthogs, zebras and buffaloes along the way. After lunch you can enjoy a boat ride on the lake to discover the area’s rich birdlife and see the hippos cooling off along the shores.
After a tasty evening meal you will have the opportunity to partake in an included night-time game drive. Lake Mburo is the smallest of the Ugandan national parks but it certainly packs a punch in terms of dramatic scenery and fascinating wildlife, and it is also one of the few parks in Uganda where you can watch wildlife after the sun has set.
An exciting night game drive offers an unusual twist on regular game drives and allows you to search for a variety of animals that you would not easily see during the day, such as bush pigs, genet cats and white tailed mongoose. The elusive leopards and spotted hyenas are also best seen at night and with some luck you will be able to spot the one male lion in the park who resides down by Lake Mburo!
Overnight stay at Mihingo Lodge with breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Budget accommodation option: Rwakobo Rock
Standard accommodation option: Mantana Tented Camp
Lake Mburo NP to Kampala
As your truly memorable luxury Uganda safari comes to an end there’s time for one last adventure as you enjoy an early morning guided bush walk. Lake Mburo National Park is home to a wide variety of wildlife including impalas, zebras, gigantic elands and giraffes. There are also excellent birding opportunities here, with over 315 species having been recorded in the area. Experiencing a safari on foot will allow you to notice the smaller, often overlooked details and usually brings you much closer to the wildlife than when in a car.
After returning to the lodge for breakfast your driver will be waiting to take you back to Kampala. The journey back to Kampala will take approximately 5 hours and as you relax and soak up the surrounding scenery filled with memories of your unforgettable experiences, make sure to keep an eye out for the black-and-white colobus monkeys that will be hiding along the road. En-route we will make a stop at the Uganda Equator for lunch, some souvenir shopping and some photo opportunities before arriving back at the Lake Victoria Serena Hotel for your last night in Uganda. The following morning your included transfer will take you to the airport for your homeward or onward flights.
Overnight stay at the Lake Victoria Serena Hotel with breakfast included.
Budget and standard accommodation option: Cassia Lodge
Your Itinerary Accommodation
Mahogany Springs Safari Lodge
This outstanding lodge set back on the pristine waters of the Munyanga River offers the ultimate in comfort and luxury. Located within a spectacular setting just 2 minutes drive from the Bwindi National Park headquarters, this is the perfect place in which to relax after the mountain gorilla experiences that Bwindi holds. A marvel of expert interior design throughout, Mahogany Springs offers eight individual luxurious and spacious “bandas” which comprise of 2 double beds, a beautifully designed en-suite bathroom and a fantastic private terrace with panoramic views of the forest and surrounding land. Upgraded suites with two bedrooms and a spacious living area are also available.
The main area of the lodge has been designed to offer the highest levels of comfort and features a beautiful and relaxing lounge area with fireplace and a book, games and DVD library. The large bar area is stocked with a great selection of wines and beverages and the welcoming restaurant allows guests to enjoy delicious a-la-carte meals either by the cosy glowing fire or outside on the terrace surrounded by the delightful sights and sounds of nature. Weekly BBQ nights are held on the terrace and a tasty afternoon tea filled with sweet treats and yummy pastries is available free of charge every day. The huge panoramic terrace that stretches all around the front of the building finishes off in style one of the most luxurious accommodation options available in all of East Africa.
Primate Lodge, Kibale
This fantastic lodge located in the heart of Kibale Forest National Park offers the chance to experience the world renowned Ugandan hospitality amidst unrivalled nature and serenity in Uganda’s primate paradise. Located right beside the starting point for incredible chimpanzee trekking experiences of the park, Primate Lodge offers a wide range of accommodation options to suit all budgets. Amongst these accommodation options are the nine spacious Luxury Cottages which feature large comfortable beds, sitting areas and en-suite bedrooms. Nestled privately within the forest, each cottage also features a large verandah allowing you to relax and soak up the unique sights and sounds of the surrounding nature.
There are also seven mid-range private Forest Cottages which also offer large comfortable beds, en-suite bathrooms and private verandahs overlooking the rainforest, but which offer a little less space than the luxury cottages. There is also a double storied ‘Elephant Banda’ which has an upstairs bedroom with giant king-size bed, a large downstairs living area, and an extensive elevated verandah which seems to stretch right into the forest. This option is very popular with honeymooners and those seeking a romantic escape. For the more adventurous a unique “tree-house” is available and for the more budget-conscious there is also an adjacent camp site.
The main lodge area features a spacious dining terrace where delicious home-cooked meals are served, a well-stocked bar, a cosy lounge, evening camp fire and regular visits from the numerous primates that abound in the park as well as forest elephants!
Mihingo Lodge, Lake Mburo
This beautiful, environmentally-friendly lodge has been perfectly designed to effortlessly blend into its fragile and scenic surroundings. A luxurious and family-owned lodge which features spectacular views over the savannah, Mihingo offers comfort, relaxation and the feeling of truly being at one with nature. Situated in a magical setting adjacent to Lake Mburo National Park, one of the many highlights here includes the delightful infinity pool which overlooks the valley below where an abundance of wildlife gather at the waterhole including buffalo, zebras and impalas.
You may be very likely to encounter even more wildlife from the private balcony of your luxury tented room which offers a supreme level of comfort. With its own unique charm and character your spacious tent will provide everything you will need for a thoroughly enjoyable and relaxing stay, including a large en-suite bathroom and sumptuous furnishings.
Delicious meals will be served in the spacious, thatched dining area which boasts spectacular views over the park and a busy waterhole, whilst the beautiful bar and the newly-constructed lounge tower with 360-degree views provide the perfect spots to relax after a long day of game viewing and activities.
Lake Victoria Serena Hotel, Kampala
The elegant and luxurious Lake Victoria Serena Golf Resort & Spa is located in Kigo, between Entebbe airport and Uganda’s capital Kampala. A vision of charming Mediterranean architecture, this 5-star hotel offers the ultimate in relaxation and comfort. The hotel’s spectacular surroundings play host to a beautiful outdoor swimming pool, the premier PGA golf course in Uganda, a fantastic spa and a delightful restaurant which overlooks the harbour and provides a superb range of food and beverages.
Accommodation is provided in 112 Deluxe Guest Rooms, eight Executive Suites and two Presidential Suites, all of which have been sumptuously furnished and tastefully designed in keeping with the resort’s Tuscan-inspired landscape. Bright, spacious and beautiful, all rooms feature large comfortable beds, seating areas, lavish marble bathrooms with walk-in showers, complimentary high-speed Internet, flat-screen televisions with satellite channels, and private balconies with lake views.
Baker's Lodge, Murchison Falls
Beautifully situated on the South bank of the mighty Nile River which transects Murchison Falls National Park this luxury safari-styled lodge offers the ultimate in exclusive accommodation. With exceptional views of the river, and direct river access, visitors to this stylish lodge are likely to encounter great sightings of wildlife and birdlife including pods of hippos, bathing elephants and nesting egret birds. The beautiful and spacious thatched safari suites feature private decks and have been raised off the ground to emphasise the delightful views over the river. Every suite has been thoughtfully furnished and decorated and features everything you will need for a thoroughly enjoyable stay including ceiling fans, mosquito nets and large en-suite bathrooms with solar hot water showers. Many suites also feature a bathtub with a view!
In the main area of the lodge you will find a welcoming swimming pool, ideal for a refreshing dip after a long day of game viewing, and an on-site curio shop. The thatched central lounge consists of a beautiful bar and restaurant with 180 degree river views and a great selection of beverages and food choices.
Mweya Safari Lodge, Queen Elizabeth NP
A striking beautiful lodge with a prime location on a peninsula within the heart of the Queen Elizabeth National Park, Mweya Safari Lodge offers an unrivalled level of service and comfort. With panoramic views of the magnificent Kazinga Channel and situated amongst the wildest of surroundings, the lodge’s stunning situation is matched only by its tremendous accommodation options. From standard bedrooms to presidential cottages, each and every part of this lodge has been carefully thought out to provide the highest of standards of accommodation, and whatever option you choose will be sure to not disappoint. One of the most popular options are the luxury tents which offer superb views from their wonderful deck terraces, and feature en-suite bathrooms, ceiling fans, and elegant furnishings.
Cuisine of the highest quality is served either in the formal dining room or on the lodge’s beautiful dining balcony overlooking the channel, whilst guests can enjoy a delicious cocktail and a refreshing dip in the stunning infinity swimming pool. This fabulous lodge also has a gift shop, business centre, cosy and well-stocked bar, and even has its own health club and spa where guests can enjoy some revitalising treatments after a long day of game viewing.
Bird Nest Resort, Lake Bunyonyi
Perfect for a peaceful and relaxing stay, the idyllic Bird Nest Resort is Lake Bunyonyi’s oldest and most famous hotel. Offering a very high level of comfort, outstanding hospitality and first-class cuisine, this amazing oasis along the lakeside is simply the perfect place to unwind before or after your Ugandan safari experience. That’s not to say that it’s all about relaxing, there are also many activities available here including free canoeing, birding and nature walks. The 14 bedrooms in the main lodge are well-equipped and many feature balconies with stunning views over the lake. For the more budget and environment conscious, the lodge also offers several beautiful self-contained eco-friendly cottages just a quick boat ride away from the main lodge.
The highly-rated on-site restaurant attracts visitors from all over Uganda, and a wide range of superb meals freshly prepared by the hotel’s excellent chef are served in the open dining area. The resort also features a fantastic ecological swimming pool with sun loungers and pool bar, a large terrace with open fire and a welcoming lounge bar.
What Our Customers
What a super experience – thank you so much making our trip to Uganda everything we wanted. We saw several gorillas, which were our main objective but were absolutely entranced by the variety and beauty of all the birdlife. More emphasis on this needed in your briefings, I would say, but this is a minor criticism since the guides were most knowledgeable and helpful and did all possible to ensure our comfort and safety. No hesitation in recommending you to friends and anybody who will listen! Thank you so much from us both.
We needed some suggestions for our African adventure since, although pretty seasoned travellers, this was somewhere we still needed to tick off our list. The lady we spoke to in your office was most helpful. We had seen ‘gorillas in the mist’ on TV so this was a must for us. She understood our needs and looked after us well – I still cannot believe how close our guide was able to get us to a family of these great apes – we now have lots more jealous friends. Thank you to all involved.
Thanks for all your help – the very detailed briefing and advice really made our vacation in Africa a true ‘Trip of a Lifetime’. Recommendations follow!
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