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21 Days Grand Uganda Safari – Discover the Pearl of Africa

Take this golden chance to enjoy the pearl of Africa’s beautiful sceneries that will be an everlasting memorable safari in your life. This safari will start from the central parts of Uganda to the northern parts from the northern parts to the eastern parts and then to the eastern parts as it ends in the central parts.

Be prepared to get amazed when you take the western circuit especially at the spectacular scenery slowly unfolding before your eyes and it never fails to impress. The flat lands and savannah gradually give way to a cascade of raising hills that never seem to end.

The amazing travel to Lake Mburo will be another high chance to see the beautiful zebras, impalas, waterbuck worth hogs and buffalos. Continuing to the south in Mgahinga national park rears the rare golden monkeys and the gentle giants commonly found in Bwindi NP. Moving towards the sunrise side in queen Elizabeth NP with a variety of attractions like buffalos, warthogs, giraffes, elephants and the water giants like hippos and crocodiles.

Visitors have a 99% chance of spotting the big five cats and enjoying the amazing climbing lions at Ishasha. At Semlik national park and in the game drive see some primates, and antelope reptiles and explore the Sempaya hot springs that have hot bubbling water that can even boil raw foods like eggs and unpeeled bananas.

From Semlik, you will have to head to the fort portal where you will visit the Amabere Ga’Nyinamwiru, a site that has a cultural story behind it. You will also visit the Toro palace which will bring you to the beauty of the Batooro culture like the dances, the cultural foods and the giving of pet names ceremony.

The northern part of Uganda will expose you to the largest national park of Uganda which is none other than Murchison falls which will reward you with the full sight of the toughest animal of the big cats which are the lions and other animals like the giraffes, lions, elephants and buffaloes.

The safari will also comprise Kidepo valley NP which borders Kenya in the west it has large herds of buffaloes, zebras, lions and ostriches. Mt Elgon is an extinct volcano that offers visitors the sight of elephants, especially on the lower slopes. Other wildlife includes antelopes and monkeys.

Hiking to vast caves will be another adventure for you to experience the vast caves, waterfalls, cliffs and gorges. Exploring the source of the river Nile and whitewater rafting will also be part of your activities.

Detailed safari itinerary

Day 1: transfer from Kampala to Lake Mburo NP

On the first day of the tour, the assigned driver guide will be dressed in a full company uniform and will take you through a quick briefing about this long safari. From the briefing, start your journey to lake Mburo. On your way to Lake Mburo, meet the long-horned cattle grazing in the farms and you will have a stopover at the equator stretch, buy some snacks and take some memorable photos.

On reaching Lake Mburo, check in to your booked accommodation facility for lunch and rest for the next day’s activity.

Day 2: game drives and boat cruise

Wake up early in the morning have your morning breakfast as you prepare yourself for a game drive. As soon as the breakfast ends, set off to the conservation Centre for a briefing about the wildlife which is good for the wildlife and your personal well-being. Start your game drive with a well-armed park ranger who is conversant with the park. Be able to spot beautiful wildlife like zebras which move in pairs, elands, bushbucks, impalas, worth hogs, buffaloes and much more animals. You can also spot some birds like the guinea fowls, scaly francolin, godwits and many different bird species. From the game drive, head back to the lodge and have your lunch.

The afternoon will begin with the game drive where you will get exposed to different bird species like the pelicans, the whistling ducks, spoonbills giant storks and the water giants like hippos and crocodiles. After the game drive, return back to your lodge for dinner and for an overnight stay.

Day 3: Transfer from Lake Mburo to Mgahinga NP

The day will begin brightly with a heavy breakfast served in the late morning, park your luggage and set for your journey to Mgahinga national park. You will pass by the Biharwe eclipse monument and take some memorable photos and learn more about the history of Uganda and continue to Mgahinga.

On your arrival at Mgahinga, check in to your booked lodge for lunch and rest as you enjoy nature.

Day 4: Golden monkey trekking and Batwa Cultural trail

Wake up very early and prepare for trekking after your breakfast. Start your briefing with high pleasure to spot some wild animals like the varvet monkey, black and white colobus and the olive baboons. If lucky enough, see the gentle giants (gorillas). The activity may take about 3-4 hours and only 1 hour is to be spent in the presence of the golden monkey experiencing their characters, especially the way they are attracted to the flashlight camera, not as the mountain gorillas which react oppositely to the flashlight. The golden monkeys inhabit the bamboo area of the park they are not as different from human behaviors. From the trek, head back to your lodge for lunch and prepare for the after-lunch activity.

In the afternoon, start your Batwa cultural trail with a guide who is a Twa man who will be able to demonstrate how the Batwa people lived in the forests a few years back where they could feed by fruit gathering, hunting and shelter by living in the caves, dressed by backcloth. They lived in different caves respectively where kings had special caves. From the cultural trail, return to your lodge for dinner and for an overnight stay.

Day 5: Visit Lake Mutanda for a boat cruise

The day will begin beautifully having your breakfast and then depart to Lake Mutanda where you will have a boat cruise and an overnight stay. Lake Mutanda is located in between the two gorilla national parks, it offers a boat cruise which will be a great offer for you to have a calm view of the water-loving birds like flamingoes, marabou storks and pelicans.

On reaching Lake Mutanda, check in to the booked lodge and then head to the lake for a boat cruise. While on your boat cruise, see some water animals like hippos and crocodiles and some water birds like the hamerkop, kingfishers, pelicans and whistling ducks. From the boat cruise, head back to the lodge and have your leisure enjoying nature as you wait for dinner and have a night spent in one of the lodges in Lake Mutanda.

Day 6: Transfer to Bwindi national park

The day will begin with a heavy breakfast, then check-out from the lodge and transfer from Lake Mutanda to Bwindi gorilla national park which may take about 2-3 hours. On your way to Bwindi, you will see some terraced gardens of different food crops like Irish, g. nuts and so many different crops since in Uganda most people do practice subsistence farming. On reaching Bwindi, check in to your booked lodge for an early lunch.

In the afternoon, a local guide will accompany you to the Batwa cultural community where you be entertained by the showcasing of their culture, housing, food, ways of life art and crafts, demonstrating how fir was made in the mediaeval ages to the tea growing in Kisoro and all others. Other communities around will bring to you breathtaking and inspiring moments like singing and dancing, woven, sewed or curved materials. From the community, head back to your lodge for dinner and watch out for the next day.

Day 7:  Gorilla trekking and leisure

Without doubt of the world’s greatest wildlife conservation park, wake up early in the morning have your breakfast and head to the conservation centre for a short briefing (does and don’ts) where you will be placed into a trekking group and be accompanied by a well-armed park guide who is well knowledgeable about the wildlife.

While in your trekking encounter some other animals like the varvet monkey, olive baboons, and elephants and if lucky enough see some forest hogs also some beautiful birds like western green tinker bird chestnut-throated Apalis, white-browed crombec, woodland warbler, African hill babbler can be spotted. The activity will take about 2-8 hours and only one hour is to be spent in presence of man’s cousins experiencing their behaviours like their feeding modes, how they feed their young ones and how they react to human beings. Did you know that even though gorillas are primates they can also feed on other small animals? From the trek, get back to your accommodation facility for a mouthwatering lunch and enjoy your leisure experiencing the warm and cold weather in the pearl.

Day 8: Departure to Queen Elizabeth National Park

Brightly start your day with a heartwarming breakfast that will mark the end of your last day in Bwindi and head to the most adventurous NP in Uganda (Queen Elizabeth NP). Will take this opportunity to enter queen Elizabeth in the Ishasha lion sanctuary to take a risk of having a chance to spot the rare tree-climbing lions which cannot be found anywhere than lake Manyara of Tanzania and queen Elizabeth NP of Kenya in the east Africa. On reaching your destination, check in to your booked accommodation facility for lunch and rest for another day.

Day 9: Game drives and boat cruise

Be prepared to get amazed when you take a game drive in Queen Elizabeth NP after having your morning breakfast. The flat lands and the savannah gradually never seem to end, sometimes the sky seems to be much closer as the glopping of the impalas takes your breath away, the caring elephants for their young ones as they move underneath their legs can be another surprising attraction how rare these huge tough animals also have love and care of their young ones.

At Ishasha one gets to see the rare species of tree-climbing lions and gentle yet trapping and hunting their prey. In Uganda’s most popular national park, there are always 99.9% chances of seeing 4 of the big five animals and the lucky moments with the aggressive leopards and astonishing tree-climbing lions, elephants are very closely knit but reactant to anyone who tries to disturb their peace.

From that exciting activity, head back to your lodge for lunch and rest as you prepare for a boat cruise.

A boat cruise at Kazinga channel on the Nile River in the afternoon will yet be another chance to see the common water-loving animals like gentle hippos, crocodiles and the salamander. The river bank is full of birds like the Egyptian goose, spur-winged plover, pied kingfisher, African fish eagle, the sacred ibis, malachite kingfisher and many others. When the amazing boat cruise is done, return to your lodge for dinner and for an overnight stay.

Day 10: Transfer to Semlik National Park

The 10th day of your travel will bring you to the savannah and a forest national park of Uganda that borders DRC in the west and this will be another opportunity for you to experience the beautiful sceneries like the Sempaya hot springs. The morning will begin with a breakfast served and heading to Semlik NP. On reaching there, check in to the booked accommodation facility for lunch and enjoy nature as the Semlik guiding team is preparing to spoil you.

Day 11: game drives and visit the Sempaya hot springs

The day lovely begins with a hot breakfast to warm your mind for the game drive, the driver guide heads to the conservation wildlife centre and immediately from there, starts your game drive. While in your game drive, spot some primates like the red-tailed monkey, olive baboons, antelopes and reptiles. Some beautiful birds like the red-billed helmet shrike and long-tailed hawk can also be spotted as also some beautiful butterflies. From the game drive, go back to your lodge, have your lunch and prepare for the afternoon activity.

In the afternoon, a local guide will accompany you to the hot springs where you will get amazed by the burbling water from the ground softly and make an experiment of cooking eggs in a pan, the water is really hot and burns. See some other animals like the olive baboons and the black and white colobus. From the experience, return to the lodge for dinner and rest for another day.

Day 12: Visit Amabere Ga’Nyinamwiru and a whole day in fort portal

Wake up in the sun’s rays, have your breakfast and prepare for a departure to Amabere Ga’Nyinamwiru. Amabere ga Nyinamwiru is the real stalactites and the stalagmites but Nyinamwiru’s story makes the sight of these rain-soaked rocks all the more interesting. The well-knowledgeable guide will be able to explain the formation of the site and the story behind the site. From the site, head to any restaurant in fort portal and have lunch. Take a long city tour experiencing the local market of Mpanga and Kabundaire.

Visiting the king’s palace is another attraction where you will get entertained by the Batooro cultural practices like dancing, the local foods, and art and crafts by the craftswomen. Learn about the history of the toro kingdom and how the different kings interchanged. From the palace, check in to any of the hotels in the fort portal and spend a night in a tourism city.

Day 13: Transfer to Murchison falls national park

Wake up very early, and prepare for a long journey after having your breakfast, set off for your journey to Murchison falls which is Uganda’s largest national park. While on your journey, meet some people carrying luggage on their heads and others on Boda Boda.

On reaching Murchison, check in to your booked accommodation facility for lunch and then rest for another day.

Day 14: Chimp trekking in Budongo forest and Game drive

Wake up in the brightest morning, with much excitement have your breakfast and head to the nearby conservation offices for a short briefing where you will be placed in a trekking group. Start your activity with a well-armed game ranger who is conversant with the park. While on your trek, see some animals like giraffes, monkeys, baboons and many different bird species. The activity will take about 2-8 hours and only one hour is to be spent in presence of the chimpanzees as you experience their characters, how they resemble human beings in 96% of their behaviours like the way they breastfeed their young ones and the sheltering modes. Later alone, return to the lodge for lunch and rest a bit as you prepare for a game drive.

Head for the game drive after lunch where you will have a great opportunity of seeing beautiful amazing animals like lions, giraffes, elephants, buffaloes worth hogs and antelopes. Birds like the spotted morning thrush, silver bird, buff-bellied warbler, red-breasted Apalis and very many kingfishers.

After the game drive, return back to your booked accommodation facility for dinner and rest for the next day’s activity.

Day 15: Game drives and Boat cruise

Early to bed early to awake, so wake up early, have your breakfast and break off to the game drive which will be another opportunity for you to spot some of the big five animals that may have not been spotted last night animals like the leopards, hyenas cheetahs and antelopes. You will stand a chance of spotting more birds like the pelican robin chat and the francolins. After the game drive, head back to your lodge for lunch and prepare for the boat cruise.

After having your lunch, head goes for the boat cruise where you will be able to encounter the water animals like hippos, crocodiles and salamanders. Also some water birds like marabou storks, flamingoes, whistling ducks and cranes. The sight of water and other water-loving animals like impalas buffaloes and elephants is also possible in the game drive. Later alone, head back to your lodge for dinner as you prepare for a departure.

Day 16: Transfer to Mount Elgon

Wake up early in the sight of the sunrise, enjoy your breakfast and start your journey to Mt Elgon where you will check out the vast caves, waterfalls, cliffs and gorges. Moving towards great eastern Uganda bordering Kenya in the west is an opportunity for hikers to exploit the beauty of the high Elgon. On reaching Mt Elgon, check in to your booked accommodation facility for lunch have your breakfast and enjoy the leisure of waiting for another day.

Day 17: Hiking to vast caves

The day gloriously begins with a heavy lunch and then head to the nearby conservation offices for signing in where a well-armed game ranger will accompany you to the park for proper protection.

In your hiking activity, be able to see some birds like the endangered lammergeyer, the white-bellied go-away, Jackson’s hornbill, the fawn-coloured lark, the long-tailed nightjar African grey flycatcher and much more. On reaching the caves enjoy the breathtaking darkness and the salty water that animals always come to at night to lick the salty water. From the hiking return back to your accommodation facility for dinner and wait for the next day as you will be transferring to Jinja.

Day 18: Transfer to Jinja

On your first 18th day of the grand travel, wake up early in the morning have a heavy breakfast and set off for your journey to Jinja where you will explore the Nile source. Have a stopover at Iganga for an en-route lunch, stretching and have some photos for memories. On your arrival in Jinja check in to booked accommodation facility for lunch and rest for the next day as you enjoy nature.

Day 19: Whitewater rafting and source of the Nile

Wake up early in the morning, have your breakfast as you prepare yourselves for the rafting activity and then head to the nearby conservation centre for a short briefing about the activity which is good for your personal well-being. In the white water rafting you will be enjoying the most interesting activity of jumping into the water which most people are afraid of as the boats are in movement up and down and the rescuers are always ready to help any of the participants who fall into the water.

Day 20: Transfer back to Kampala with optional activity in Mabira forest (nature walk, zip lining)

On the 20th day of the tour, wake up with high excitement and enjoy breakfast at the resort beach. Transfer to Kampala with an optional stopover in Mabira forest where you will encounter either zip lining or nature walk where different small primates will be spotted such as the varvet monkeys, black and white colobus monkeys, red-tailed monkeys and many more. Have lunch en-route as you pass through the beautiful landscapes of the tea estates or plantations, homestead and trading centers or small towns and then arrive at the booked hotel in Kampala for your accommodations.

Day 21: Short city tour and departure home

Have a short city tour where you will encounter different city-based attractions such as the national museum, religious sites such as the Bahai temple, and Rubaga cathedral, cultural sites such as the Kabaka’s lake, the palace, Kasubi tombs and the local markets such as the Nakasero market and Owino market. Lunch will be served at one of the local restaurants where local traditional foods like Luwombo will be served, followed by a drop-off at the airport and this will be the end of your 21 days safari in Uganda.


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