Meet our two closest relatives, the chimpanzee and mountain gorilla, on our exclusive Uganda safari. Highlighted by these tracking adventures in the Kibale and Bwindi Impenetrable Forests, our exclusive itinerary shows you more of the Pearl of Africa - with more safari adventures in Queen Elizabeth National Park.
Day 1 – Welcome to Entebbe, Uganda
On arrival at the airport, you’ll be warmly greeted and chauffeured to our deluxe resort hotel in nearby Kampala - overlooking terraced rose gardens on the shores of Africa’s largest lake.
Day 2 – Kibale Forest National Park
After breakfast, today’s scenic overland journey brings you to our exceptional safari lodge, spectacularly situated on a hilltop close to Kibale National Park. The balance of this day is yours to enjoy the exceptional wilderness setting of our lodge. Meals B+L+D
Day 3 – Chimpanzee Safari + Queen Elizabeth National Park
After breakfast, an informative briefing sets the stage for an unforgettable, once-in-a-lifetime experience as we set out to track chimpanzees deep in the evergreen rainforests of Kibale Forest National Park. Chimps and humans share more than 98% of their DNA, making them our closest relative. They’re social and intelligent, and the Kibale Forest is the best place in the world to see these remarkable creatures in their native habitat.
But there are a dozen other primate species living in these verdant forests and this morning’s walking safari offers a chance to see a number of them including red colobus, black & white colobus, grey-cheeked mangabey and red-tailed monkeys as well as olive baboons.
After lunch, we’ll travel southward through varying vistas of crater lakes, forested hills and open savanna. To the east, lie the jagged peaks of the Rwenzori range – the fabled Mountains of the Moon. Our destination is Queen Elizabeth National Park where you check in to our luxury lodge, set on 80 private acres just minutes from the Park entrance. After time to refresh, an afternoon game drive introduces you to the region’s remarkable landscapes and wildlife – including Cape buffalo, waterbuck, lion, hyena, elephant, leopard and the giant forest hog. Meals B+L+D
Day 4 – On Safari in Queen Elizabeth National Park
Bisected by the 20-mile long Kazinga Channel that flows between Lake George and Lake Edward, the rich ecosystems of Queen Elizabeth National Park encompass bushy grasslands, wetland vegetation and Acacia woodland. In addition to the all the big game that you would hope to see on a classic African safari, the national park is also home to more than 600 bird species including martial eagle, papyrus canary, black-rumped buttonquail, and pink-backed pelicans. After breakfast, an early morning game drive promises heart-pounding wildlife encounters and a chance to espy many of these exotic avian species.
In the afternoon, a boat expedition on the Kazinga Channel explores this gently-flowing waterway - home to the highest concentration of hippos on the planet. Other wildlife sightings might include crocodile as well as buffalo and other big game that come to the Channel to quench their thirst. An evening game drive followed by dinner completes this wonderful day. Meals B+L+D
Day 5 – Bwindi Impenetrable Forest #WHS#
Today’s scenic overland journey brings you deeper into southern Uganda where you’ll check in to our safari retreat, set on a ridge surrounded by the wild beauty of the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. Later this afternoon, you might join one of the guided activities offered by our luxury camp – perhaps a forest walk to Munyaga Waterfall or a cultural visit to a nearby community. With its privileged location inside the National Park, you should also keep an eye out for the family of gorillas that regularly venture onto the grounds of our camp. Meals B+L+D
Day 6 – Gorilla Tracking in Bwindi
After a hearty breakfast, this unforgettable day begins at the Ranger Station for an important briefing from a Park Ranger. Originally created in 1942 as the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest Reserve, this pristine National Park encompasses 80,000 acres of scrambled vegetation and primeval forest draped over deep valleys and imposing mountain ridges. Recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site for its exceptional biodiversity, Bwindi is perhaps most famous for having nearly half of the world’s critically-endangered mountain gorilla population.
Living in complex social groups, there are fewer than 40 gorilla families in Bwindi - with just about a dozen that have been habituated for human contact. With the number of daily permits and the size of each trekking group firmly set by Park regulations, today’s experience promises an emotionally charged and intimately personal encounter with these amazing primates; sharing nearly 98% of their DNA with humans, gorillas are (after chimpanzees) our second-closest living relative.
Accompanied by an experienced tracker, you’ll hike into the Impenetrable Forest to catch up with your assigned gorilla family. After locating them, you’ll have an amazing opportunity to spend about one hour watching quietly as the gorillas go about their daily routine. A Park Ranger is at your side to offer insight and answer questions. Of course, videos and photos (without flash) are permitted. As your time with them unfolds, you’ll be able to discern their unique personalities and begin to unravel their complex social relationships. Moved and possibly even humbled by this experience, you’ll retrace your steps along the forested slopes to the Ranger Station, and then return to our luxury camp for dinner and a peaceful overnight. Meals B+L+D
Day 7 – Back to Entebbe for Departure
After breakfast, we’ll take you to the airstrip for your included flight to Entebbe where you’ll transfer to the international terminal for your onward flight. Meals B