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18 Days Uganda National Parks Tour

Overview of the 18 Days Uganda National Parks Tour

The 18 Days Uganda National Parks Tour as the name suggests features an extended encounter allowing you to explore a range of Uganda safari sites in detail. The 18 Days Safari commences and ends in Entebbe incorporating adventure, culture, wildlife, primates like Mountain Gorillas and Chimpanzees and recreation. The destinations featured include; Lake Mburo National Park, Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Queen Elizabeth National Park, Kibale National Park, Kabwoya Wildlife Reserve, Murchison Falls National Park and Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary.

Safari Highlight of the 18 Days Uganda National Parks Tour

Day 1: Arrive in Uganda in the morning, transfer to Lake Mburo National Park for an afternoon game drive. An en route stop at Uganda Equator crossing Kayabwe will be made

Day 2: Do Morning game walking Safari in Lake Mburo NP & afternoon boat cruise on Lake Mburo

Day 3: Free day. Spend the rest of the day at leisure

Day 4: Transfer to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. Enjoy remarkable sightseeing en route (Kigezi Highlands)

Day 5: Do Mountain Gorilla Trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable NP & relax at the lodge

Day 6: Free day. Chilling by the Lake. Optional Boat ride on Lake Mutanda can be arranged

Day 7: Transfer to Queen Elizabeth NP & do game drive en route in Ishasha Sector where tree climbing lions may be viewed

Day 8: Do morning game drive in the Kasenyi plains, afternoon Kazinga Channel boat cruise & evening game drive in Queen Elizabeth NP

Day 9: Morning at Leisure.  Do an evening game drive

Day 10: Transfer to Kibale National Park. Enjoy sightseeing experience of the Rwenzoris en route

Day 11: Do Whole day Chimpanzee Habituation in Kibale National Park

Day 12: Relaxed breakfast &   transfer to Lake Albert

Day 13: Game drive in Kabwoya Wildlife Reserve & Bush dinner

Day 14: Transfer to Murchison Falls NP.   Optional exploration of Kibiro Salt Gardens en route

Day 15: Do Morning game drive, afternoon Nile launch cruise & hike to the top of the falls in Murchison Falls NP

Day 16: Morning at leisure & evening game drive in the northern stretches with the views of the sunset over the Nile River

Day 17: Day at leisure

Day 18: Transfer to Entebbe. Stop en route at Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary & Airport drop off

Detailed Safari Itinerary of the 18 Days Uganda National Parks Tour

Day 1: Arrive in Uganda, transfer to Lake Mburo National Park for an afternoon game drive. An en route stop at Uganda Equator crossing Kayabwe will be made

Upon arrival at Entebbe International Airport at 4am, you team with your guide and transfer to Lake Mburo National Park in the south west of Uganda with breakfast stop at the Equator (own arrangement). The drive to Lake Mburo National Park is 280km about 4 hours’ drive and at 117km from Entebbe, there stands Uganda Equator crossing Kayabwe which is a re-known site for photography where you can take pictures with one leg in one hemisphere and the other leg in a different hemisphere. There are also geographical experiments that can be carried out for the keen geographers to demonstrate the geographical separation of the north and southern hemispheres. You retreat from this break and continue on the drive to Lake Mburo National Park. Upon arrival, you check in at the lodge, settle for lunch and relaxation and at 4pm, you embark on an evening game drive to explore the impressive park landscapes with the views of the savannah at the sun set. The possible sights of Impala, buffalo herds, the Topis, Zebras, Rothschild Giraffes among others can be explored before retiring for relaxation, dinner and overnight.

 Accommodation
Luxury:
Mihingo Lodge

Midrange: Rwakobo Rock

Budget: Eagles Nest Mburo

Day 2: Do Morning game walking Safari in Lake Mburo NP & afternoon boat cruise on Lake Mburo

Lake Mburo National Park with an extensive savannah environment can be better explored on foot. The game walking safari at the sun rise allows you to explore the moist savannah dotted with magical acacia Species supporting a range of wildlife and birds. During the walk, you have possibilities of exploring the range of game including Impala, Rothschild giraffes, Burchell’s Zebra, Topis, waterbucks, Warthogs, bushbucks, Klipspringer, Cape Buffaloes, elands not forgetting acacia associated birds including the endemic Red faced Barbet. The hike to the Kazuma Hill allows you to gain beautiful views of the area and the myriad of lakes below including Lake Mburo and Lake Kacheera the only permanent water sources in the area. You retreat from the 3 – 4 hour encounter and embark on the transfer to the lodge for relaxation and lunch and in the afternoon you embark on the boat ride on Lake Mburo. The thrilling afternoon boat ride presents rewarding views of the calm waters of Lake Mburo that provide an ideal habitat for Hippos and the Nile Crocodiles. The views of fringing swamp and Kigarama hill beyond are also amazing. The bird species like the African Fish eagle and the African fin foot may be spotted during the boat ride. Retire from the encounter and do a simple game drive as you connect to the lodge

 Accommodation
Luxury:
Mihingo Lodge

Midrange: Rwakobo Rock

Budget: Eagles Nest Mburo

Day 3: Free day. Spend the rest of the day at leisure

You spend the whole day at leisure enjoying the comfort of your lodge

Accommodation
Luxury:
Mihingo Lodge

Midrange: Rwakobo Rock

Budget: Eagles Nest Mburo

Day 4: Transfer to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. Enjoy remarkable sightseeing en route (Kigezi Highlands)

After breakfast, you embark on the transfer to the southern side of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park 272km about 6 hours drive. You enjoy the en route scenic landscapes including the Kigezi Highlands and the overlooking Virunga Volcanoes. Retire for relaxation, dinner and overnight.

Accommodation

Luxury: Chameleon Hill Lodge

Midrange:  Lake Mutanda Resort

Budget: Ichumbi Gorilla Lodge – Standard room

Day 5: Do Mountain Gorilla Trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable NP & relax at the lodge

This is a great day that will mark your re-union with your long lost cousins – the Mountain Gorillas. You gather at the respective park headquarters for briefing in the morning at 8am where you are also allocated the respective gorilla families to track. From here, you head to the forest in the company of the armed ranger guides that will lead you up the gorillas. The walk is beyond the ordinary as it involves traversing the dense jungle whose thickness would at some points necessitate using a machete to make a path, hiking the challenging landscapes some of which are steep and slippery at times under the canopy of the mature forest which forms darkness even during the day. You are treated to the impressive bird songs and beautiful flowers through the experience. The encounter tends to take 2 – 8 hours depending on the gorilla movements and one hour is availed to you to have a direct touch with the gorillas. Upon approaching gorillas, their reaction is not predictable as it can include them giving you a courteous welcome, minding less about you and charging against you. However, as a result of habituation, Mountain gorillas are always welcoming with the Silverback beating a little of his chest to demonstrate his might and also welcoming to you to the group. The young gorillas are very playful and are at times not aware of the 7m rule thus can try to draw closer to even touching on your body – save it by taking some steps away to observe the distance. You are not limited in any way to ask as many questions about gorillas and their habitats along with taking pictures so long as you have the opportunity to do so. After your one hour with the gorillas, return to the starting point and connect to the lodge for relaxation.

Accommodation

Luxury: Chameleon Hill Lodge

Midrange:  Lake Mutanda Resort

Budget: Ichumbi Gorilla Lodge – Standard room

Day 6: Free day. Chilling by the Lake. Optional Boat ride on Lake Mutanda can be arranged (If you are staying at Chameleon or Mutanda Resort)

You spend the whole day at leisure enjoying the comfort of your lodge. An optional boat ride exploring the scenic Lake Mutanda and its Islands can be organised.

Accommodation

Luxury: Chameleon Hill Lodge

Midrange:  Lake Mutanda Resort

Budget: Ichumbi Gorilla Lodge – Standard room

Day 7: Transfer to Queen Elizabeth NP & do game drive en route in Ishasha Sector where tree climbing lions may be viewed

After breakfast, embark on the transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park driving through southern sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park named Ishasha well known for its tree climbing lions. The Ishasha sector presents a remarkable encounter with the unique tree climbing lions which are only existing in two spots in the whole world with Ishasha sector having the best viewing opportunities. You continue on the drive to the north of Queen Elizabeth National Park arriving in the evening for relaxation, dinner and overnight

Accommodation

Luxury:  Mweya Safari Lodge – Deluxe rooms / Katara Lodge / Mazike Valley Lodge

Midrange:   Enganzi Lodge

Budget:  Pumba Safari Cottages

Day 8: Do morning game drive in the Kasenyi plains, afternoon Kazinga Channel boat cruise & evening game drive in Queen Elizabeth NP

Wake up for a morning cup of coffee/ tea and embark on an early morning game drive in search for savannah wildlife in the rolling savannah plains of Queen Elizabeth in particular the Kasenyi area. Expect encounters of Lions, Leopards, Elephants, Antelopes like waterbucks, Uganda Kobs, Bushbucks among others, leopards, side stripped jackal, the spotted hyena not forgetting remarkable birdlife since Queen Elizabeth supports  600 bird species being the great bird habitat in Uganda and East Africa. You retreat to the lodge after 3 – 4 hour activity for relaxation and lunch after which you connect to Mweya jetty for an afternoon boat cruise on Kazinga Channel that stretch for 45km from Lake George to Lake Edward starting at 2pm. Along the channel, you enjoy the sights of the Nile Crocodiles; the great concentrations of Hippopotamus antelope, sights of birds such as the African skimmer and wild game drinking on the channel side including elephants and Buffaloes. In the evening, you take a game drive along the channel track in Mweya Peninsular as you connect to the loge for relaxation, dinner and overnight

Accommodation

Luxury:  Mweya Safari Lodge – Deluxe rooms / Katara Lodge / Mazike Valley Lodge

Midrange:   Enganzi Lodge

Budget:  Pumba Safari Cottages

Day 9: Morning at Leisure.  Do an evening game drive 

You have a free morning to chill in your lush cottages and enjoy the soothing swimming pool waters in the mid morning tropical sun. The evening game drive offers more wild game views and possibility to explore cats that hunt late in the evening.

Accommodation

Luxury:  Mweya Safari Lodge – Deluxe rooms / Katara Lodge / Mazike Valley Lodge

Midrange:   Enganzi Lodge

Budget:  Pumba Safari Cottages

Day 10: Transfer to Kibale National Park. Enjoy sightseeing experience of the Rwenzoris en route

After relaxed breakfast, you embark on the transfer to Kibale National Park 157km about 3 hours drive. You enjoy the fascinating scenic sights of the legendary Mountains of the moon – the Rwenzoris rising to 5,109m above sea level with snow capped peaks. It is the third highest Mountain on the continent of Africa.

Accommodation

Luxury:  Crater Safari Lodge – Luxury Cottage

Midrange:   Chimpanzee Forest Guesthouse – Cottage

Budget:      Chimpanzee Forest Guesthouse – Main house room

Day 11: Do Whole day Chimpanzee Habituation in Kibale National Park

Connect to Kanyanchu Tourism Center to catch up with briefing at 6am and then head to the forest of Kibale on the Chimpanzee habituation experience. The Chimpanzee Habituation experience unlike the Chimpanzee tracking presents a magical encounter to spend the whole day with Chimpanzees as you explore them forage, socialize, copulate, much fruit, patrol, make their impressive pant hooting calls from the time they leave their nests up to the time they build the new nests. It is a magical day in the forest exploring other forest wonders including the historical trees that are 55m tall and over 200 years old and the myriad of birds including the Kibale ground thrush that is endemic. You retreat from the activity at around 7pm to connect back to the starting point and then to the lodge for relaxation, dinner and overnight

Accommodation

Luxury:  Crater Safari Lodge – Luxury Cottage

Midrange:   Chimpanzee Forest Guesthouse – Cottage

Budget:      Chimpanzee Forest Guesthouse – Main house room

Day 12: Relaxed breakfast & transfer to Lake Albert 

Settle for relaxed breakfast after which you take up a relaxed transfer to Lake Albert enjoying the remarkable views of the Albertine Rift – the western arm of the Great East African Rift Valley.

Accommodation:  Lake Albert Lodge (Midrange)

Day 13: Game drive in Kabwoya Wildlife Reserve & Bush dinner

Take up a morning game drive in the Kabwoya Wildlife Reserve exploring beautiful landscapes and wildlife like Uganda Kobs among others. Spend the afternoon at leisure and settle for a bush dinner enjoying tranquil African night in the wilderness.

Accommodation:  Lake Albert Lodge (Midrange)

Day 14: Transfer to Murchison Falls NP.   Optional exploration of Kibiro Salt Gardens en route

Transfer to Murchison Falls National Park driving through the Oil rich areas of Hoima and Bulisa. An optional tour to Kibiro Salt Gardens which dates back to over 900 years ago supporting the generations and generations of the area’s inhabitants can be considered. The people depend on this salt as they exchange it with the neighbouring community for food and get income by selling it. The salt is extracted traditionally and exclusively by the local expert women. The footpath connecting to the site presents a challenging hiking encounter. Retreat from the encounter and proceed to Murchison Falls National Park entering through Bugungu Gate. Catch up with the ferry crossing across the World’s longest Nile River arriving at Paraa in the evening for relaxation and overnight.

Accommodation

Luxury:  Paraa Safari Lodge – Deluxe room

Midrange: Murchison River Lodge – Thatched Safari Tent

Budget: Hornbill Bush Lodge

Day 15: Do Morning game drive, afternoon Nile launch cruise & hike to the top of the falls in Murchison Falls NP

Connect to the park after breakfast to start the game drive at 7am in the northern section where the animals are known to thrive with better viewing possibilities. The park has open savannah rolling combretum with patches of borassus palms supporting counts of wild game including Rothschild giraffes, Elephants, Buffaloes, Jackson’s Hartebeest, Kobs, lions, leopards, and water bucks among others. The range of tracks has been specially designed to allow you explore the park in detail. Retreat from the 3 – 4 hour activity and relax at the lodge up to lunch time after which you gather at Paraa Jetty for a thrilling boat cruise. Congregate at Paraa jetty in the afternoon 2pm to embark on the boat cruise to the bottom of the falls. The boat cruise lasts 3 hours and offers you possibilities of encountering Nile crocodiles and Hippos. Birds like the most sought after Shoebill Stork might also be seen on the river banks enjoying the cool waters of the Nile River. Upon reaching the bottom of the falls, you embark on the hike to the top of the falls following the Nile River as it squeezes itself to pass through a less than 7m gorge before falling 43m below to what has been termed as the devil’s Cauldron forming a plume of spray marked by a thunderous roar and trademark rainbow. You link up with the guide and the vehicle at the top of the falls and transfer to the lodge for relaxation, dinner and overnight

Accommodation

Luxury:  Paraa Safari Lodge – Deluxe room

Midrange: Murchison River Lodge – Thatched Safari Tent

Budget: Hornbill Bush Lodge

Day 16: Morning at leisure & evening game drive in the northern stretches with the views of the sunset over the Nile River

Spend the morning at leisure at the comfort of the lodge enjoying the views of the Nile River or relaxing by the pool side. The evening game drive offers remarkable views of the savannah and River Nile at the sun set along with more wild game views.

Accommodation

Luxury:  Paraa Safari Lodge – Deluxe room

Midrange: Murchison River Lodge – Thatched Safari Tent

Budget: Hornbill Bush Lodge

Day 17: Day at leisure

You have this day to recite all the memories of the destinations that you would have covered so far and enjoy your good time at the lodge

Accommodation

Luxury:  Paraa Safari Lodge – Deluxe room

Midrange: Murchison River Lodge – Thatched Safari Tent

Budget: Hornbill Bush Lodge

Day 18: Transfer to Entebbe. Stop en route at Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary & Airport drop off

After breakfast, you cross with the 9am or 11am Ferry and transfer to Entebbe 351km about 6 hours drive. However, you make a stop en route to visit Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary to track white rhinos that only thrive at this place in the whole of Uganda. You can arrange lunch (optional) at Amuka Lodge or Kabalega Diner after which you proceed to Entebbe. You drive through Kampala enjoying the city landscapes. Dinner can as well be arranged in Entebbe (Optional) before eventual drop off at the Airport for the flight back home.

End of the 18 Days Uganda National Parks Tour