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12 Days Uganda Rwanda Gorilla and Wildlife

12 Days Uganda Rwanda Gorilla and Wildlife Safari

12 Days Uganda Rwanda Gorilla and Wildlife Safari Overview

This 12 days Uganda Rwanda Gorilla Safari is designed and well crafted to reward you with the best gorilla adventures and wildlife experience in both Uganda and Rwanda. This primates safari will give you unforgettable experiences to enjoy on a visit to both Uganda and Rwanda such as the magical gorilla trekking encounter, chimpanzee tracking in Nyungwe and Kibale Forest, and exhilarating chance to see and meet the golden monkeys. Besides the primates experience, you also get a chance to explore the green Savannah grasslands of Uganda’s major national parks.

 

This 12 days Uganda Rwanda gorilla safari will also get you to go for bird watching with an enormous population of great bird species in both countries, you may also opt for sightseeing tours to watch the huge crocodiles, Hippos while on boat cruise along the Nile in Murchison falls national park and Kazinga channel in Queen Elizabeth national park.

 

Highlights of the 12 Days Uganda Rwanda Gorilla and Wildlife Safari

  • Escapement scenery views along the way
  • Rhino tracking in Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary
  • Wildlife Game drives in Murchison Falls National Park and Queen Elizabeth National Park
  • Top of Murchison falls Experience
  • Boat Ride and Launch Trips on River Nile, Kazinga channel and Lake Kivu
  • Chimpanzee trekking
  • Gorilla trekking in Volcanoes national park
  • Nyungwe Canopy Walk Experience
  • Golden monkey Tracking / Dian Fossey Hikes visit

DAY 1: ARRIVAL FOR UGANDA RWANDA GORILLA SAFARI AT ENTEBBE AIRPORT

Upon your arrival in Uganda at Entebbe International Airport, you will be picked by driver guide from Visit and Tour Rwanda whi will then transfer you to your hotel in Entebbe or Kampala for dinner and overnight. The hotel of choice will largely depend on the arrival time in Uganda. From the airport to Kampala is a 1 hour journey (45 KM)

Accommodation Options: Protea Hotel (Up Market), Lake Victoria Hotel (Moderate), Hotel Triangle (Budget), Meal plan : Lunch and Dinner

 

DAY 2: TRANSFER TO MASINDI FOR RHINO TRACKING AT ZIWA RHINO SANCTUARY 

Today we shall set off from our hotel at 6:00am in the morning for a 5 hours juorney driving to Masindi where Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary is found. This is wehre we shall have our first wildlfie encounter on this 12 days Uganda Rwanda gorilla safari. Ziwa Rhino sanctuary will reward you the best big five experience. We arrive here at about 11 am. After a short briefing from the ranger guide on how to behave while in search of the Rhinos we start the trek into the bushes.

After an amazing wildlife encounter with the Rhinos, we shall go for a lunch break at one of the restaurant very close to the sanctuary. After lunch , your driver-guide will continue with the journey to Murchison Falls national park. We hope to arrive at the lodge later that evening for overnight with anticipation of a full day of game drive and boat safari the next day.

Accommodation Options: Paraa Safari Lodge (Up-market) Fort Murchison Lodge (Mid-Range)/ Heritage Safari Lodge (Budget).

 

DAY 3: WILDLIFE GAME DRIVE SAFARI IN MURCHISON FALLS NP

Today , you will experience a Uganda wildlife safari experience in the Murchison Falls National park. After having an early breakfast, we leave the lodge to set out to the northern banks of River Nile. You will enjoy the day cruising through the park in open rooftops of the safari vehicles having great game viewing time. You will look out for the Hyenas, Lions, Leopards, Elephants, Jackson’s Hartebeests, Oribi, Kobs, giraffes, among others. You will retire from the game for lunch at the lodge.

After having lunch, go for a boat ride experience on the scenic Victoria Nile that brings you to view the falls from the bottom. The boat ride offers opportunities for watching game associated with water such as crocodiles, hippos and those that come for water like elephants, buffaloes plus plenty of birds species.

Accommodation Options: Paraa Safari Lodge (Up-market) Fort Murchison Lodge (Mid-Range)/ Heritage Safari Lodge (Budget).

 

DAY 4: TRANSFER TO KIBALE NP FOR UGANDA CHIMPANZEE TREKKING

After having the best time in the Savannah plains of Murchison Falls National Park, we shall check-out and hotel/lodge and set off for a 7 hours journey time to for Kibale national park known where over 13 primate species can be located on a typical primates tracking day. This long hours journey will take you through beautiful views of the countryside and colorful local markets in some places. With a stopover for lunch, we arrive at the lodge in the evening ready for chimpanzee trekking the next day.

Accommodation Options: Up market – Papaya lake lodge, Mid-range – Primate lodge, Budget – Chimpanzee guesthouse

 

DAY 5: CHIMPANZEE TREKKING – KIBALE FOREST NATIONAL PARK

After having an early breakfast at the lodge, you will be driven to the park headquarters to attend to the briefing about chimpanzee trekking 7.00 am. You will be enlightened about the forest, what to expect while in the forest and the how to behave when looking for the chimpanzees in the forest. The chimps are generally moving all over the place which requires you to be fit and in position to keep following them as they search for food. The search for chimpanzees may last for a few minutes up to 4 hours depending on where they nested the previous night. Your ranger guide will lead the way as you hike through the forest.

While searching for the chimps, you will also have the chance of watching other primates resident in the park such as the red-tailed monkeys, black-and white Columbus monkeys, various bird species and mammals like Elephants, Buffaloes or wild pigs. Once you locate the chimps, you are allowed 1 hour in their presence and remember that flash photography is not allowed and so is eating or smoking in the presence of the chimps.

 

After trekking the chimpanzees, we shall in the afternoon visit Bigodi swamp and Eco-tourism site. This swamp was previously reclaimed and the community planted rice and maize in it which affected the Eco system of kibale forest removing the buffer zone for the forest hence increasing the wildlife people conflict. The community later decided to reinstate it and it is now home to several bird species and primates.

Accommodation Options: Up market – Papaya lake lodge, Mid-range – Primate lodge, Budget – Chimpanzee guesthouse. Meal plan – Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

 

DAY 6: TRANSFER TO QUEEN ELIZABETH NATIONAL PARK

After the great experience meeting the chimpanzees, your next stop for the 12 Days Uganda Rwanda Gorilla and Wildlife Safari is the Queen Elizabeth National Park (2 hours drive-time). You will have lunch at a restaurant in Queen Elizabeth national park after which we drive to Kazinga Channel which connects Lakes Edward and George for a boat safari. On this boat cruise, look out for Crocodiles, Hippos, Elephants, and several bird-species especially the elegant Pied and Malachite Kingfishers. After the boat safari, we leave for the lodge for dinner and overnight.

Accommodation Options: Up market – Mweya Safari lodge, Mid-range – Twin lakes Safari lodge, Budget – Irungu Safari Lodge

 

DAY 7: EPLORING UGANDA’S WILDLIFE –  TREE CLIMBING LIONS OF ISHASHA

We continue exploring the immerse wildlife of Uganda by continuing our safari to Ishasha sector of Queen Elizabeth national park later in the afternoon. After an early breakfast, we leave for a morning game drive in the kasenyi section of Queen Elizabeth national park. The uniqueness of Queen Elizabeth national park comes from the back drop of mount Rwenzori and a host of several habitats for wildlife. We shall go all out searching for Lions, leopard, and more easily the Warthogs, Buffaloes, Elephants and buffaloes etc.

After this experience, we leave for Ishasha sector in the southern part of the Queen Elizabeth National park which is home to several families of lions that love to climb trees.

Accommodation Options: Up market – Ishasha Wilderness Camp, Mid-range – Ishasha Jungle lodge, Budget – Enjogo Lodge. Meal plan – Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

 

DAY 8: TRANSFER TO VOLCANOES NP FOR RWANDA GORILLA TREKKING

The next morning at 7 am, after breakfast we check out of the lodge and try our luck looking for the tree-climbing lions in case we missed them the previous day before leaving for Rwanda through Cyanika border and continue to Musanze/Kinigi – Rwanda arriving later that afternoon. The journey from Queen Elizabeth NP is about 7 hours of the drive. Enjoy the beautiful landscape of south western Uganda.

Up market – Mt Gorilla view lodge
Mid-range – Le Bambou gorilla lodge
Budget – Grace place hotel

Accommodation Options: Up market – Mount Gorilla View lodge, Mid-range – Le Bambou lodge, Budget – Grace Palace Hotel. Meal plan – Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

 

DAY 9: RWANDA GORILLA TREKKING IN VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK

After an early breakfast you transfer to the park headquarters for briefing before going for the gorilla trek. Volcanoes National Park is a magnificent mountain range and home to the rare mountain gorillas. You should be at the park headquarters for briefing at 7.00 am to receive a briefing before your gorilla trek. Enjoy pure Rwandan coffee as you listen to the briefing with interludes of traditional dances.

After the briefing from the ranger guide you will be divided into different groups and you start your journey. The highlight of your trip will be spending an hour with the remarkably peaceful gorillas as they go about their daily life, feeding, playing, resting, and raising their young. Afternoon you will visit a cultural village or community walk interacting with the Rwandan people.

Accommodation Options: Up market – Mount Gorilla View lodge, Mid-range – Le Bambou lodge, Budget – Grace Palace Hotel Meal plan – Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

 

DAY 10: GOLDEN MONKEY TRACKING IN VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK

Today after breakfast, we transfer again to the briefing point at the park headquarters but this time for golden monkey trekking. The procedure is more or less like the gorilla trekking with a briefing from the ranger guides before splitting into different groups depending on how many people are present. There are only two habituated groups of golden monkeys for tourism.

You will soon notice once you locate the golden monkeys that they are more active and this, therefore, requires you to be fit as you move to follow them. The experience will keep you on your toes as you watch find the food especially the bamboo shoots and occasionally uproot post-harvest potatoes from the gardens of people living adjacent to the park. Return to the lodge for lunch and later leave for Kigali to return to your hotel or take your flight.

Accommodation Options: Up market – Mount Gorilla View lodge, Mid-range – Le Bambou lodge, Budget – Grace Palace Hotel Meal plan – Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

 

DAY 11: TRANSFER TO NYUNGWE FOREST NATIONAL PARK (7 HOURS DRIVE TIME)

We start the journey to Nyungwe Forest through the winding roads of Rwanda. You will have great moments of photos as you explore the countryside of Rwanda and watch everyday Rwandans go about their daily lives. We arrive at the lodge later that evening ready to explore Nyungwe forest the next day.

Accommodation Options: Up market – Nyungwe Forest lodge, Mid-range – Nyungwe Top View Hotel, Budget – Gisakura guesthouse (ORPTN)

 

DAY 12: CANOPY WALK NYUNGWE FOREST PARK & END OF UGANDA RWANDA GORILLA AND WILDLIFE SAFARI

In the morning after breakfast, we leave for Uwinka Visitor Center in Nyungwe forest where you receive a briefing before taking on the Canopy Walk. The canopy walk lasts about 2 hours with a specialized park guide who takes you through the hike to this amazing experience. Children must be 6 years and above to join in on the canopy walk and they must be accompanied by adults. You will learn about Nyungwe forest and how it is the main catchment area for rain in Rwanda.

Enjoy the views of the forest canopy as you walk and celebrate nature and have some sightings of monkeys, birds, and butterflies. This morning after breakfast, we check out the lodge and start the journey to Kigali from the legendary Nyungwe forest for your departure flight. You will have a stopover over in Huye and visit the ethnographic museum before proceeding to the airport to mark the end of the 12 Days Uganda Rwanda gorilla and wildlife safari.

What’s included in 12 Days Uganda Rwanda Gorilla Safari

  • Ground transport per in a customized safari vehicle
  • Park entrance fees
  • Game drives
  • Boat ride along the Nile
  • Rhino tracking fees at Ziwa Rhino sanctuary
  • Uganda Chimpanzee trekking permit
  • Rwanda Gorilla trekking permit
  • Nyungwe Forest National park Canopy walk
  • Bottled drinking water
  • Full board accommodation
  • Service of an English-speaking driver guide
  • All mentioned activities except for the optional ones

Related Gorilla Tours

  1. 6 Days Uganda Rwanda Gorilla Tour
  2. 6 Days Rwanda Cultural Tour & Gorilla Safari
  3. 2 Days Gorilla Trekking Rwanda
  4. 4 Days Uganda Gorilla Trekking

What’s not included in 12 Days Uganda Rwanda Gorilla and WIldlife Safari

  • Hotel fees while in Kigali,
  • Travel/Tourist Visas,
  • International flights,
  • Personal expenses like Cigars, beers, tips, souvenirs, laundry services
  • Porter fees when tracking
  • Tips to local guide
  • Insurance and shopping
  • And any other optional activity.

What to Bring for Rwanda Gorilla Tour

  • A rain jacket/poncho is very essential as it could unpredictably rain
  • Light clothes as the sun does shine pretty bright in this part
  • A torch is essential for safety purposes
  • A Zoom lens Camera for photographs
  • A good insect repellent to keep those persistent insects away
  • Hiking boots to wear for the jungle hikes in the Volcanoes NP
How to Obtain a Rwanda Visa

Acquiring your Rwanda visa just got much easier as the Rwandan government established a new visa regime starting January 2018. Presently, all travelers access visa on arrival at Kigali international airport. Also, remember to carry other travel documents such as passports and medical certificates

Obtaining Rwanda Gorilla Trekking Permits

A gorilla permit is a must have for Rwanda gorilla safaris without which no one is allowed to meet with the gorillas. Due to the high demand for the permits, travelers are required to book as early as six months prior to the trekking date. Booking can be done directly with the Rwanda Development Board (RDB) in Rwanda or Uganda wildlife authority (UWA) in Uganda. Read more about gorilla permits here

Rwanda Gorilla Trekking Tips

  • Mountain gorillas live at high altitude you should pace yourself while on the trek and drink enough water.
  • Recommended clothing is long trousers and long sleeved sweaters or shirts while in the forest to avoid insect stings.
  • Waterproof hiking boots are essential and rain gear useful.
  • Carry your day pack with lunch or some snacks. Eating, drinking and smoking near the gorillas is forbidden – designated time and place will be communicated.
  • Photography is permitted, although you must not use flash
  • Porters are available to help you carry your day pack for a small charge.