- Gorilla trekking
- Chimp trekking
- Game drive and boat cruise on Kazinga Channel
- Queen Elizabeth National Park
Celebrate a wild and sunny Christmas in Uganda. Search for endangered Mountain Gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, trek chimpanzee and enjoy game drives in Queen Elizabeth National Park with its amazing selection of wildlife – including tree climbing lions – just some of the very best reasons to visit Uganda. With luxury accommodation, professional guides and custom made safari vehicles – this fully hosted safari through the Pearl of Africa is really something special. Join us for 8 or 10 days.
Day 1 – 20 Dec
On arrival at Entebbe International Airport you will be met by a Wild Frontiers representative and transferred to The Boma guest house.
Set on the shores of Lake Victoria, Entebbe is a small town that is easy to explore on foot or local boda bodas (motorbike taxis). Explore the markets, hunt for souvenirs or crafts, meander through the Botanical Gardens or enjoy a boat cruise on Lake Victoria. You’ll find a wide variety of restaurants, bars and clubs where you can sample the local beer, catch a game of football and meet the friendly locals.
Entebbe’s original hotel, The Boma is a charming 1940’s home that has been converted into an intimate guest house offering simple modern comfort, warm hospitality and good food. Set in tropical gardens a short drive from the airport, the family run Boma extends a down-to-earth, homely atmosphere. Relax beside the swimming pool, grab a book from the library, or hop on a bicycle and cycle down to nearby Lake Victoria.
Overnight at The Boma (www.boma.co.ug)
Day 2 – 21 Dec
Transfer after breakfast to the airport for your scenic light aircraft charter flight to Kihihi airstrip. A roughly 90 minute drive through local villages and along mountain roads brings you to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, a World Heritage site.
Bwindi is one of the richest ecosystems in East Africa and home to over 120 mammals, 345 species of birds, 200 species of butterflies and 160 species of trees. The park contains an estimated one half of the world’s population of the endangered Mountain Gorilla, making it an extremely valuable conservation site.
Set within the National Park, just steps away from the Gorilla Trekking headquarters, Buhoma Lodge offers cosy accommodation in wooden chalets with uninterrupted views of the pristine rain forest. Well loved for its warm welcome and attentive service, Buhoma is an eco friendly lodge operating on solar power, constructed using sustainable local materials. Each of the ten wooden chalets offers a private verandah and enchanting forest views.
Awaken to chattering forest birds, and watch out for the occasional mountain gorilla that has ventured right in to visit the lodge.
Overnight at Buhoma Lodge with all meals and local drinks included (www.ugandaexclusivecamps.com)
Day 3 – 22 Dec
It’s up early today as one of the most humbling and enthralling wildlife experiences imaginable awaits your discovery. Coming face to face with an endangered mountain gorilla is something words cannot aptly describe. Please note that gorilla trekking is strenuous with treks ranging from 45 mins up to eight hours, at high altitudes in hot African conditions.
The thrill of the hour you spend quietly observing these gentle giants once you find them is well worth the hike to get there! Although mountain gorillas are wild animals and it should be noted that sightings cannot be guaranteed, viewing success rates are well over 95%.
Head back to Buhoma Lodge for a complimentary massage after your trek, or explore the surrounding Bwindi community.
Overnight at Buhoma Lodge with all meals and local drinks included
* Please note that days 3 and 4 are interchangeable depending on when we can secure gorilla permits *
Day 4 – 23 Dec
Those with pre-purchased permits will depart for a second gorilla tracking experience. Guests not tracking have the day free to explore the Bwindi area – optional activities include forest walks, a visit to a local school/orphanage/hospital or Batwa pygmy village, and some local curio shopping.
Overnight at Buhoma Lodge with all meals and local drinks included.
Day 5 – 24 Dec
Continue this morning onto southern Queen Elizabeth National Park (a 2-3 hour drive), with a brief stop enroute at the Ishasha Community Uplift project.
Immerse yourself in Agartha’s ‘Taste of Uganda’tour – it’s a fun, educational experience for the inquisitive visitor who wonders how a rural Ugandan lady lives. Watch how the local crops are transformed into local staples such as millet porridge and kalo bread. It’s a fascinating interactive experience.
Located in the western arm of the Great Rift Valley, the park is home to a wide variety of wildlife including elephants, leopard, lions, hippos, buffalo, Uganda kob, baboon, and many species of birds. The southern Ishasha area includes the massive Maramagambo, one of the largest surviving natural forests in Uganda, and is home to the tree climbing lions typically found in the area.
Enjoy afternoon game drives, looking out for the huge herds of buffalo, elephant and Uganda kob.
Overnight at Ishasha Wilderness Camp including all meals and local drinks (www.ugandaexclusivecamps.com)
This exclusive tented camp offers the only luxury accommodation in the remote southern sector of Queen Elizabeth. With all ten spacious tents set on the banks of the Ntungwe River, the eco-friendly Ishasha Wilderness Camp is an idyllic retreat for people who truly enjoy remote wilderness. The thatched central lounge and dining area offers a comfortable space for guests to enjoy wholesome dining, although meals are often served ‘al fresco’ next to the river.
The outdoor fireplace is the perfect place for guests to relax with sundowners and wind down after an exciting day’s game viewing.
Day 6 – 25 Dec
Spend the day enjoying game drives in the Ishasha sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park, rounding things off with scenic bush sundowners including drinks and snacks. This is what memories are made of!
Overnight at Ishasha Wilderness Camp including all meals and local drinks.
Day 7 – 26 Dec
Head north toward the ‘Mweya’ sector of the park to enjoy a leisurely boat cruise along the Kazinga Channel, a 32-kilometre long natural channel linking Lake Edward and Lake George. Kazinga’s shores are dotted with herds of lazy buffalo, pods of hippos wallowing without a care, and countless bird species. Drift past local fishing villages, and soak up the peaceful tranquillity of this beautiful African day.
(Cruise normally departs at 14h00, although this depends on availability when booking and is subject to change –no drinks/ snacks provided on boat.)
Overnight at Mweya Safari Lodge, located on a peninsula overlooking the Kazinga Channel on one side and the spectacular Rwenzori Mountains on the other. (www.mweyalodge.com)
Early morning start today, with the highlight being your Chimpanzee trekking in Kyambura Gorge.
The forest is alive with noise! Chimpanzees can be quite active and may move quickly through the forest canopy… or, if you are lucky, you may find them resting or eating near the forest floors. It’s an exhilarating walk, in beautiful scenery. As with gorilla trekking, sightings cannot be guaranteed.
After this activity, we depart to the nearby Mweya airstrip for those booked on the 8 day safari to return by light aircraft flight to Entebbe. Please do not book a flight out of Entebbe before 19h00
For those on the 10 day safari, a 3-4 hour drive takes you to Kibale Forest, comprising an interesting blend of lowland tropical rain forest, montane forest, and mixed tropical deciduous forest. In addition to forest, you will also notice areas of grassland and of swamp. The forest is rich in wildlife and is most noted for its primate population.
These include red-tailed monkey, diademed monkey, olive baboon, chimpanzee, and black and white colobus. The birdlife is also abundant, with close on 300 species identified here. The forest is also home to 144 species of butterfly and a diverse population of moths and other insects.
Overnight at Primate Lodge or similar including all meals. (www.ugandalodges.com)
Day 9 – 28 Dec
Your Kibale Forest chimp trek will generally take place in the morning. Rest of the day at leisure.
Overnight at Primate Lodge or similar.
Day 10 – 29 Dec
Depart after an early breakfast for the drive to Entebbe, arriving back late afternoon.
Please do not book a flight out of Entebbe before 19h00.
Please note – two gorilla trekking options are available on this itinerary. Please specify your permit requirements at time of booking.
GORILLA TREKKING AREAS & PERMIT ALLOCATIONS
On our scheduled departures, we typically buy permits for Buhoma & Ruhija, which are accessible from Buhoma area. One of the Buhoma families, and the Ruhija families, require a road transfer to the start point. This does not deviate from the enjoyment of the trek (and could be considered as enhancing your trip as you are seeing a different part of the region). Furthermore, your permit may be organised for day 3, or 4, of your safari. It will depend on availability at the time of purchase.
Guided forest walk Bwindi including park fees
USD 75 per person
Community visit Bwindi
USD 30 per person
Batwa Pygmies visit
USD 85 per person
2nd Gorilla trek including purchase fee
USD 670 per person
We offer 6, 8 and 10 day small group set departures throughout the year as well as combination Uganda/Rwanda trips. We are also experts at designing your own tailor made trip to meet your exact personal interests.
POPULAR TRIP EXTENSIONS:
MURCHISON FALLS: River Nile, game drives, chimpanzee trekking, fishing, bird-watching. Suggested add on 3-4 nights.
KIBALE: Chimpanzees and other primates, forest walks, crater lakes. Suggested add on 2 nights.
JINJA: Source of the Nile, adventure activities including white water rafting, bungi jumping, quad biking. Suggested add on 2-3 nights.
ENTEBBE: City life and local craft shopping, boat cruises or fishing on Lake Victoria, Botanical Gardens, Uganda Wild Life Education Centre/ Ngamba Island.
Yellow fever inoculation is compulsory & malaria prophylactics are recommended. For gorilla trekking it is imperative that you are healthy and free of any disease or virus – officials do have the right to refuse entry if you are found to have or show any signs of communicable illnesses. Should you opt to spend time participating in any UWEC Wildlife Integration programme, you may require additional inoculations and health clearances.
Most nationalities require a visa to enter Uganda. All visitors who require a visa should apply through the online application system prior to arrival at https://visas.immigration.go.ug. Cost is USD 50,single entry. Passports must be valid for a minimum of 6 months after return date of travel, or 12 months in the case of UK nationals, and have at least 3 blank pages in it. The newly established EAC Visa allows entry into Uganda, Rwanda and Kenya for one fee of USD100 – handy if you are visiting all three regions.
TRAVEL INSURANCE: Is compulsory for all guests travelling with Wild Frontiers.