22 Days Uganda Birding Safari

Overview of the 22 Days Uganda Birding Safari

The 22 Days Uganda Bird Watching tour allows you to explore the birds of Uganda in detail. Standing with 1057 bird species, Uganda features 11% of the world’s bird species and 50% of Africa’s bird count. The 22 Days takes you to Mabira forest with 312 species, Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary with 250 bird species, Budongo forest with over 360 species of birds including the endemic Yellow footed fly catcher and IlladopsisPuvelli, Murchison Falls National Park with 451 species of birds with sights of rare Shoe bill Stork, Kibale National Park with 375 species of birds with the endemic Kibale ground thrush, Bigodi wetland Sanctuary with 138 bird species including the famous Great Blue Turaco, Queen Elizabeth  National Park with over 600 bird species making it the habitat with many bird species in East Africa and the second in Africa, Bwindi Impenetrable National Park with 350 species of birds including 23 Species endemic to the Albertine rift, Lake Mburo National Park with over 350 Species with endemic Red faced Barbet, Entebbe Botanical Gardens, Lutembe bay and the famous Mabamba swamp. It is an adventure birding encounter for all seasoned world birders.

Highlight of the 22 Days Uganda Birding Safari

Day 1: Arrive in Uganda – Entebbe International Airport& connect to the lodge

Day 2:Transfer to Mabira Forest and do birding

Day 3: Whole day birding in Mabira Forest

Day 4:Transfer to Budongo Forest Reserve. Track Rhinos and birding in Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary en route

Day 5: Whole day birding in Budongo Forest Reserve – Busingiro Area

Day 6: Half day birding in Budongo Forest Reserve – KaniyoPabidi Site, transfer to Murchison Falls National Park & visit the top of the falls

Day 7:  Private boat to the Delta Area & birding in the savannah

Day 8:  Birding in the savannah landscapes of Murchison Falls National Parkand afternoon tourist boat cruise to the bottom of the falls

Day 9: Bird in Rabongo Forest and transfer to Hoima

Day 10: Transfer from Hoima to Kibale Forest National Park

Day 11: Do Birding in Kibale Forest and the adjacent Bigodi wetland Sanctuary

Day 12:Transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park, bird in the Mweya Peninsular

Day 13: Birding in Queen Elizabeth National Park; Kasenyi sector &Kazinga Channel tourist boat cruise

Day 14: Transfer to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. Birding in Ishasha sector en route

Day 15: Birding in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park – Buhoma Sector

Day 16:Undertake Mountain Gorilla trekking in Bwindi – Buhoma

Day 17: Birding to Ruhija through Neck

Day18: Birding in Umubwindi Swamp

Day 19: Transfer to Lake Mburo National Park, do birding with a boat ride on Lake Mburo

Day 20: Do half day birding and wildlife walking safari and transfer to Entebbe

Day 21: Birding in Mabamba Swamp & afternoon birding in Entebbe Botanical Gardens

Day 22: Birding in Lutembe Bay & Airport drop off

Detailed Safari Itinerary of the 22 Days Uganda Birding Safari

Day 1: Arrive in Uganda – Entebbe International Airport & connect to the lodge

Arrive in Uganda following the flight from your respective country of origin. You land at Entebbe International Airport which is the main gateway to Uganda where you will find the company representative dedicated to offer you a courteous welcome. The amazing weather and brightening atmosphere on the shores of Lake Victoria give you a remarkable first impression of Uganda. You will connect to the respective hotel for overnight

Accommodation

Budget / Basic: Airport Guesthouse Entebbe

Midrange / Standard: Boma Hotel Entebbe

Luxury / Upmarket: Protea Hotel Entebbe – Deluxe room

Day 2: Transfer to Mabira Forest and do birding

After breakfast early in the morning your tour guide will pick you from the hotel to head towards eastern Uganda, through Mabira forest along Jinja road for a forest walk in search for birds.  This forest ranks as one of the most important ornithological sites in Uganda with more than 300 bird species recorded such as the Hornbill species, Great Blue Turaco, African Grey parrot,  African Pitta , sunbirds and Nahan’s Francolin. Mabira Forest is one of the two places in East Africa where the pretty Tit hylia has been recorded and this rare bird is seen here regularly.   You settle for relaxation, dinner and overnight

Accommodation: Mabira Rain Forest Lodge

Day 3: Whole day birding in Mabira Forest

In the morning after breakfast you will go for a full day birding walk through the forest in search for more plus other birds not spot the previous day only to brake for a picnic lunch in the forest and then proceed with birding. This birding activity provides you an opportunity to see animals like monkeys and forest antelopes. Retire in the evening for relaxation, dinner and overnight

Accommodation: Mabira Rain Forest Lodge

Day 4: Transfer to Budongo Forest Reserve. Track Rhinos and birding in Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary en route

In the early morning after breakfast, drive North WesttoMasindi town close to Budongo Forest Reserve. This route offers you impressive views of the flat landscapes of central Uganda before making a stop at Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary to view white Rhinos and birds. The savannah thicket also features counts of birds over 250 species of birds and the expert guides will enable you spot a range of birds including; Blue spotted dove, Booted eagle, Abyssinian Ground Hornbill,Broad billed Roller, African Black Crake, Brown-backed Srub Robin,African Blue Flycatcher  among other birds. Have lunch on the Sanctuary and transfer to Masindi in the evening for relaxation and overnight.

Accommodation: Kabalega Resort Masindi

Day 5: Whole day birding in Budongo Forest Reserve – Busingiro Area

Very early in the morning after breakfast you will embark on a full day birding in the forest starting with the Royal mile area of the forest. This Royal mile is referred to as the country’s premier forest birding locality home to a number of species such as; western black –headed Oriole and purple-headed starling Banded Snake eagle, crowned and African pied horn bill, and Bat hawk seen at dusk, white-thighed horn bills, yellow-billed barbets, the chocolate backed blue breasted and African dwarf kingfisher, and the Green buls. You will have picnic lunch in the forest as you bird and retreat in the evening to your lodge for relaxation, dinner and overnight

Accommodation: Kabalega Resort Masindi

Day 6: Half day birding in Budongo Forest Reserve – KaniyoPabidi Site, transfer to Murchison Falls National Park & visit the top of the falls

Early in the morning after breakfast you will transfer to the KaniyoPabidi sector of the forest for more birding. This area also offers an opportunity to explore chimpanzees on your way to Murchison Falls National Park (optional arrangement).  In this forest coverage watch out for birds like the rare green breasted Pitta, African wood and African scops owls en route and the Puvel’sIlladopsis-a bird that has been recently discovered. You will drive towards the top of the falls where the Nile perfects its beauty. Here the Nile is transformed into explosive foam of thunderous wide water -funnels shaped through a narrow cleft in the Rift valley escarpment offering the most inspiring sight of its kind in east Africa. Here you have chances of viewing birds like the Pel’s fishing Owl, chest-nut crowned and the Red-winged grey warbler. Connect to the lodge for relaxation, dinner and overnight

Accommodation

Luxury / Upmarket:Paara safari Lodge – Deluxe room

Midrange / Standard: Murchison River Lodge – Thatched Safari tent

Budget / Basic: Heritage Safari Lodge

Day 7:  Private boat to the Delta Area & birding in the savannah          

Connect to Paraa jetty for an early morning private boat ride to the Delta Area one of the magical spots in Murchison Falls National Park. The cruise offers you a magical touch of the world’s longest Nile River as it slows down while entering Lake Albert. The Delta Area is famously known as the birder’s paradise as it offers good possibilities of viewing a range of bird species including the elusive Shoebill stork currently listed on the IUCN red list as Vulnerable and the most famous sought after bird species in Uganda. The River banks offer chances of viewing wild game.From the Delta boat, you undertake amazing birding in the savannah.

Accommodation

Luxury / Upmarket: Paara safari Lodge – Deluxe room

Midrange / Standard: Murchison River Lodge – Thatched Safari tent

Budget / Basic: Heritage Safari Lodge

Day 8:  Birding in the savannah landscapes of Murchison Falls National Park and afternoon tourist boat cruise to the bottom of the falls

After breakfast early in the morning you will be transferred to the northern game-viewing circuit traversing the whistling thorn acacia where you have possibilities of encountering birds like speckle-fronted weaver. Proceed across the airstrip and go through the Victoria Nile track that leads down the edge of the Victoria Nile delta. On reaching the Nile, check out the papyrus edges for the resident shoebills, blue breasted bee-eater and swamp flycatchers plus other swamp dwelling species. After, you will head towards the Albert Nile track to see the white billed barbet and black scimitar bill. Retreat from the activity and return to the lodge for relaxation and lunch after which you gather at Paraa jetty for afternoon boat cruise to the bottom of the falls. The 3 hour boat encounter opens you to the thrilling Nile waters in their relaxed flow as they join the Albert delta. The boat takes off at 2pm and you are advised to sit on its left hand side to have a good view of the birds and the other animals because most of them bank on the left side. You have possibilities of encountering hippos, crocodiles, buffaloes as they are surrounded by fish eating birds like Egyptian geese, Goliath heron, pied King fisher, African Darter weavers, African skimmer, Fulvous Duck and many more.  Retire for relaxation, dinner and overnight

Accommodation

Luxury / Upmarket: Paara safari Lodge – Deluxe room

Midrange / Standard: Murchison River Lodge – Thatched Safari tent

Budget / Basic: Heritage Safari Lodge

Day 9: Bird in Rabongo Forest and transfer to Hoima

Rabongo Forest spreads over 4km2 of the park landscape and offers impressive bird views most especially the forest birds and the walk also offer you impressive views of the Primates including the Black and white colobus, Baboons among others. The River Wairingo also presents impressive encounters. Retire from the activity and embark on the transfer to Hoima driving along the scenic Albertine rift escarpment with magical views.

Accommodation:Hoima Cultural Lodge

Day 10: Transfer from Hoima to Kibale Forest National Park

After a cup of tea head to KibaleForest National Park where you will reach in the early afternoon but will embark on birding at the entrance of the forest in the late afternoon. Retire for relaxation, dinner and overnight

Accommodation

Luxury / Upmarket:  Primate Lodge Kibale – Luxury Cottages

Midrange / Standard:Kibale Forest Camp – En suite Safari tent

Budget / Basic:Isunga Lodge Kibale

Day 11: Do Birding in Kibale Forest and the adjacent Bigodi wetland Sanctuary

After breakfast, have a guided birding in the Kanyanchu area where you will look out for birds like the grey parrots, the African go-shawk, the masked apalis, the majestic crowned eagle etc. you will have a picnic lunch in the forest and in the afternoon head to the Bigodi wetland sanctuary gaining possibilities of viewing birds like the brown headed Tchagra, papyrus Gonolek, mosque swallow and papyrus canary. Settle for relaxation, dinner and overnight

Accommodation

Luxury / Upmarket:  Primate Lodge Kibale – Luxury Cottages

Midrange / Standard:Kibale Forest Camp – En suite Safari tent

Budget / Basic:Isunga Lodge Kibale

Day 12: Transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park, bird in the Mweya Peninsular 

After a relaxed breakfast head to Queen Elizabeth National park 157km about 3 hours’ drive enjoying the sights of the Rwenzori Mountains en route. Settle for lunch in the peninsular and undertake birding in Mweya Peninsular. The area supports counts of bird species which include; Diederik Cuckoo, African Mourning Dove, Raptors, Red-chested Sunbird, Swamp Flycatcher, Grey-Headed Kingfisher, Pygmy Kingfisher, Nubian Woodpecker, Blue-napedMousebird, Little Bee-eater, Red-capped Lark, Martins, Swallows, Swifts, Grey-capped Warbler, Lesser Masked Weaver, Black-headed Gonolek, Scarlet-chested Sunbird, Slender-billed Weaver and Yellow-backed Weaverand Pin-tailed Whydah. Connect to the lodge for check in and relaxation

Accommodation

Luxury / Upmarket: Mweya Safari Lodge – Deluxe room

Midrange / Standard:Enganzi Game Lodge

Budget / Basic:Pumba Safari Cottages

Day 13: Birding in Queen Elizabeth National Park; Kasenyi sector &Kazinga Channel tourist boat cruise

After your breakfast in the morning drive towards Lake Kikorongo and the Kasenyi track for more birding in Queen Elizabeth National Park. You have chances of spotting birds like Glossy and sacred Ibises and Common Squacco Heron, in the Kikorongo Area. The Kasenyi track passing through grass plains which support large numbers of stork in seasons as well as raptors has much to offer for birders. These birds include; the martial eagle and the brown snaked eagle. You will brake to enjoy your packed lunch and go for the launch cruise in the afternoon on the Kazinga channel to have chances of encountering both resident and nonresident bird species such as the Great Cormorants, African Skimmers, and Kingfishers among others. These birds surround animal species such as hippopotami, Nile crocodiles basking in the sun, buffaloes and other wild game drinking on the channel shores which is a fascinating combination that is worth encountering.

Accommodation

Luxury / Upmarket: Mweya Safari Lodge – Deluxe room

Midrange / Standard:Enganzi Game Lodge

Budget / Basic:Pumba Safari Cottages

Day 14: Transfer to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. Birding in Ishasha sector en route

Early in the morning after breakfast drive through the Ishasha sector towards Buhoma-Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. Ishasha sector though known for the unique tree climbing lions which might also be spotted, the sector is a rich birders haven. The sector features species like African White-backed Vulture, Palm-nut Vulture, Ruppell’s Griffon Vulture, Hooded Vulture, Lappet-faced Vulture, Brown Snake Eagle, Bateleur, Long-created Eagle, Wahlberg’s Eagle Martial Eagle, African Grey Kestrel, Helmeted Guineafowl, Crowned Eagle, African Crake, Black-bellied Bustard, Senegal Plover, African Green Pigeon, African Wattled Plover, Ross’s Turaco, Striped Kingfisher, Double-toothed Barbet, Broad-billed Roller, White-headed Barbet, Greater Honeyguide, Yellow-billed OxpeckerGrey Woodpecker, Brown-backed Scrub-Robin, White-browed Robin-Chat, Green Crombec, Cisticolas and Grey-backed Fiscal among others. You proceed to arrive in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in the evening, dinner and overnight

Accommodation

Luxury / Upmarket:The Haven Buhoma

Midrange / Budget: Gorilla Mist Camp

Day 15: Birding in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park – Buhoma Sector

In the morning after an early breakfast, transfer to the forest following the waterfall trail for birding. Search for birds such as slender billed starling, Kivu ground thrush, plus the white bellied Robin-chat, Cinnamon-chested Bee-eater,  Mountain Buzzard, Mackinnon’s Fiscal, Sooty Boubou, Barred Long-tailed Cuckoo, African Hill-Babbler, Ayre’s Hawk-eagle, Black-and-white Shriker-flycatcher, slender billed starling, Dusky Tit, Ashy Flycatcher, Chin-spot Batis, Rwenzori Batis,  Dusky-blue Flycatcher and  Doherty’s Bush-shrike among others.

Accommodation

Luxury / Upmarket:The Haven Buhoma

Midrange / Budget: Gorilla Mist Camp

Day 16: Undertake Mountain Gorilla trekking in Bwindi – Buhoma

Undertake Mountain Gorilla trekking in the Buhoma sector where you have an opportunity to trek any of the three gorilla families of Mubare, Habinyanja and Rushegura. The trekking encounter commences at 8am at the Buhoma Park Headquarters and in the company of the ranger guide you follow the trail in search of the respective allocated gorilla family. The hike takes you through the hilly forested landscapes of Bwindi with mature trees and thick undergrowth that makes it memorable and beyond the gorillas alone. The gorilla trek also offers you birding opportunities in this number one birding destination in Africa as noted by the Africa’s bird club. The eventual encounter with the gorillas takes one full hour and allows you to re-unite with these ancient cousins. Take photos and gain in depth viewing whole maintaining the flash off and the 7m distance. Retreat from the activity back to the lodge for relaxation, dinner and overnight

Accommodation

Luxury / Upmarket:The Haven Buhoma

Midrange / Budget: Gorilla Mist Camp

Day 17: Birding to Ruhija through Neck

Early morning after breakfast go birding in the Ruhija area and look out for birds like the Grey-throated Barbet, Red-tailed and Shelley’s Greenbul, Common Buzzard, Red-throated Alethe, African Shrike-flycatcher Ayres’s Hawk-eagle, Black Bee-eater and Cinnamon-chested Bee-eater to mention but a few. Retire for Dinner and overnight

Accommodation: Gorilla Mist Camp

Day 18: Birding in Umubwindi Swamp

This is dedicated for your whole day exploration in Ruhija and Umubwindi Swamp. After breakfast, you head to birding encounters in Umubwindi swamp where you might have chances of encountering; the beautiful leafy looking broadbill, Olive, Elliot’s and Fine-banded Woodpecker, Black-billed Turaco, African Hill Babbler, Yellow-eyed Black Flycatcher, Mountain Illadopsis, Mountain Greenbul, Red-faced Woodland, Grey Cuckoo Shrike, Chestnut-throated Collard and Black Throated Apalis, Mountain Yellow Warbler,  Stripe-breasted Tit, Mountain, Shelley’s and Yellow-streaked Greenbul, African Green-Broadbill, Regal Sunbird and Rwenzori Batis among other bird species. Return through the hilly forested landscapes of Ruhija with sights of birds like; Macknon’s Fiscal, Augar Buzzard, Tropical Boubou, Ayre’s Hawk Eagle, Cassin’s Grey Flycatcher, Mountain Buzzard and Wagtail, Western Bronze NapedPigoen, Barred and Dusky Long Tailed Cuckoo, Black Faced Rufous Warbler, White Headed Wood Hopoe, Ducky Tit, Ludhur’s and Lagden’s Bush-Shrike, Grey Cuckoo-Shrike,  Grey-Green Bush-Shrike, White Eyed Slaty Flycatcher, Chestnut Throated Apalis, Streaky Seed-Eater, White Starred Robin, Stripe Breasted Tit among others. Retreat in the eveningfor relaxation, dinner and overnight.

Accommodation: Gorilla Mist Camp

Day 19: Transfer to Lake Mburo National Park, do birding with a boat ride on Lake Mburo

After your early morning breakfast, drive towards Lake Mburo National Park driving through the magical Kigezi Highlands. You make a lunch stop at Igongo Cultural Center 12km past Mbarara town after which you proceed for 33km to Lake Mburo National Park arriving in the afternoon. You will bird along the entrance road to Rwonyo in the late afternoon to watch out for acacia associated bird species like Rupell’s long-tailed starling, mosque swallow and black bellied bustard. Do night game drive in Lake Mburo National Park gaining possibilities of viewing amazing nocturnals including; hare, porcupine, Aardvack, white-tailed mongoose, honey badger, side – stripped jackal, bushpig, spotted hyena, serval cat, jenet cat, civet, thick – tailed Galago and black galago.

Accommodation

Budget / Basic: Eagles Nest Mburo

Midrange / Standard:Rwakobo Rock

Luxury / Upmarket:Mihingo Lodge

Day 20: Do half day birding and wildlife walking safari and transfer to Entebbe

After an early morning breakfast, embark on the extensive wildlife and birding experience in the rolling savannah landscapes of Lake Mburo National Park.Explore the park on foot following the respective trails in the company of an armed ranger to save you from attacks of wild animals. Choose to explore any of these areas; Miriti and Warukiri swamps, Rubanga forest and the salt lick. The encounter offers you chances of spotting Rufous-bellied Heron, Bateleur, Coqui Francolin, Grey Crowned Crane, Brown-chested Lapwing, Emerald-spotted Wood-Dove, Black-bellied Bustard, Red-headed Lovebird, Ross’s Turaco, Brown Parrot, Green Wood-hoopoe, Common Scimitarbill, Bare-faced Go-away-bird, Red-faced Barbet, White-headed Barbet, Long-tailed Cisticola, Nubian Woodpecker, Red-shouldered Cuckoo-shrike, Finfoot, White-winged Tit and Yellow-breasted Apalisamong other birds.  The walking & driving experience also offers an opportunity to explore counts of wild game including the Rothschild giraffes, the Topis, elands, waterbucks, Buffaloes, Burchell’s Zebra, Impala, Warthogs among other species. Retreat from the activity and embark on the drive to Kampala 240km about 3 – 4 hours with a stop at Uganda Equator crossing Kayabwe for amazing photo shoots and water experiments that justify the geographical divide between the north and southern hemispheres. You drive 40km to Entebbe for relaxation, dinner and overnight

Accommodation

Budget / Basic: Airport Guesthouse Entebbe

Midrange / Standard: Boma Hotel Entebbe

Luxury / Upmarket: Protea Hotel Entebbe – Deluxe room

Day 21: Birding in Mabamba Swamp & afternoon birding in Entebbe Botanical Gardens

Transfer after an early breakfast to Mabamba swamp which is about 50kms west of Kampala. On your way to the destination and at the destination, you will have opportunities of encountering White Shouldered Tit, Papyrus Gonolek, Red Cap, White Winged Warbler, Western Banded Snake Eagle, Weyns Weaver and White Spotted Fluftail. Mabamba swamp offers ideal encounters with the rare and highly sought-after shoebill stork along with other species like Allen’s and Purple Gallinule, Jacanas, Grey herons, RuffausSquaco, Purple and Goliath Heron, Bellied Heron, the Pallid Harrier which is globally threatened and migrant species of blue swallow, egrets, ducks among others. The bird encounter is done on a canoe where you also have opportunity of encountering the elusive Sitatunga Antelope. Return to Entebbe for lunch and in the afternoon go birding in the Botanical Gardens Entebbe where you have chances of exploring birds like the Verreaux’s Eagle, Vieillot’s Black weaver, Red chested sunbirds, golden-backed weaver, Black headed Gonolek just to mention but a few.

Accommodation

Budget / Basic: Airport Guesthouse Entebbe

Midrange / Standard: Boma Hotel Entebbe

Luxury / Upmarket: Protea Hotel Entebbe – Deluxe room

Day 22: Birding in Lutembe Bay & Airport drop off

Embark on the birding encounter in Lutembe bay where counts of birds including the migratory birds like white winged terns and Grey-headed Gulls along with other impressive species such as Caspian Tern, Temminck’s Stint,Hottentot Teal and those that have been recorded of recent namely the Broad-billed Sandpiper and Great Knot. Connect to Entebbe International Airport for check in and flight departure.

 End of the 22 Days Uganda Birding Safari

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rate per person in US Dollars

Budget Midrange Luxury
1 Pax 8233
2 Pax 6048
3 Pax 5321
4 Pax 4957
5 Pax 4739
6 Pax 4593
1 Pax 8673
2 Pax 6506
3 Pax 5785
4 Pax 5423
5 Pax 5207
6 Pax 5062
1 Pax 10154
2 Pax  8059
3 Pax 7362
4 Pax 7012
5 Pax 6803
6 Pax 6663
Single Supplement USD585 Single Supplement USD726 Single Supplement USD1128

GENERAL SAFARI INCLUSIONS

  • Gorilla Permit (for gorilla trekking safaris)
  • Chimpanzee Permit (for chimpanzee trekking safaris)
  • Full Board Accommodation on Safari
  • Transportation in 4X4 Safari Van with pop up & AC. The top up to the 4X4 Safari Land Cruiser can be arranged.
  • Fuel
  • Professional English Speaking driver guide. Any other foreign language speaking guide can be arranged on request.
  • Entrance fees to the tourist sites including Protected areas mentioned
  • Activity fees of the tourist activities mentioned
  • Bottled water while on safari
  • Border crossing fees (for cross border safaris)

 

GENERAL SAFARI EXCLUSIONS

  • General tips for the driver guide, site guides and service staff at the lodges
  • Laundry Services
  • Other Beverages / drinks of personal nature like Alcohol
  • International Flights (Arranged on request)
  • Domestic Flights (Arranged on request)
  • Visas
  • Optional Activity fees
  • Other extras not mentioned in the Itinerary
  • Airport Transfer unless it is part of the Itinerary (Arranged on request)
  • Accommodation in Kampala or Kigali unless it is part of the Itinerary (Arranged on request)

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