Safaris in Uganda and Rwanda
Safaris in Uganda and Rwanda are one of the most fascinating safari packages that travelers can book to explore the best of primates, wildlife, and natural features. Uganda and Rwanda are some of the top African Safari destinations that receive over 10,000 travellers annually touring the countries for different safari activities and adventures that happen all throughout the year.
These two countries are close to each other, so normally travellers have combined safaris that cross over to both countries to enjoy the unique facets of the safari experience in both countries.
These countries can both be accessed by use of an East African Visa that serves three East African countries, thus Uganda, Rwanda and Kenya, giving traveller access to all the three countries for 30 days. The East African Visa costs 150 USD and can be acquired at any point of entry of the three countries.
Having a safari in either Uganda or Rwanda or both countries is a lifetime reward especially if you love wildlife, nature and recreational activities; these two countries give you rich safari experiences like no other, from primates, big five, wildlife, scenic sites to mention but a few. You will forever be grateful you chose to have a safari in any or both these countries. The safaris you can do in Uganda and Rwanda include:-
Rwanda and Uganda are the two countries in East Africa if not the only two, with the most number of primates living in natural habitats in the countries. Uganda has almost half of the world’s population of both the endangered mountain gorillas and chimpanzees in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Mgahinga National Park and Kibale National Park respectively; this is why Uganda is called the capital of primates.
Rwanda is also has a good number of the endangered mountain gorillas in Volcanoes National Park and Chimpanzees in Nyungwe National Park.
The countries also have other primates that include golden monkeys, colobus monkeys, baboons and many more.
Uganda and Rwanda have had these different primate species habituated in their habitats for trekking activities that happen throughout the year; and this is the most sought after safari adventure in both countries, with travellers visiting the countries every month to see these endangered primates.
These primates are trekked/seen at trekking different permit costs set by the different 1500 USD mountain for gorilla trekking permits in Rwanda and 700 USD mountain gorilla trekking permits in Uganda. Chimpanzee trekking permits cost 100 USD in Rwanda and 200 USD.
You should note that trekking permits are acquired at least three months in advance because of the high demand of the trekking activities.
Both Uganda and Rwanda are wildlife hubs with a variety of animals in both countries that include the big five which are lions, elephants, leopards, Rhinos and Cape buffalos and other animals like giraffes, zebras, antelopes, impalas, topi, kobs, warthogs and many more. You can view these animals in both countries on game drives done in the game parks that include morning game drives, evening game drives, night game drives and full day game drives.
Rwanda has all the mentioned animals and more in one park, which is the only wildlife park in Rwanda that is Akagera National Park; well as Uganda has all the mentioned animals and more spread across its numerous game parks that include Kidepo National Park, Murchison falls National Park, Queen Elizabeth National Park, Lake Mburo National Park among others.
Game drives are done all through the year and the different parks attract different fees for the game drives. Normally your tour operator or the park management are able to advice on the different fees.
Water Safaris mainly include adventures activities done on water bodies for purposes of exploration and fun and they usually include boat rides, cruises, white water rafting, swimming, kayaking, canoeing, jet boating and many others; on top of enjoying beautiful scenery of the water bodies and the surrounding.
Both Uganda and Rwanda have several water bodies where all these activities are done to the fullest throughout the year.
In Rwanda these activities are done on Lake Ihema in Akagera National Park and Lake Kivu in north western Rwanda. The different lakes are managed by different bodies so the fees for the different activities are determined by the management of each water body. Your tour operator will advise on the costs.
In Uganda these activities are done on the Nile River, which is the longest river in the world, the Nile River is located in Jinja together with Itanda falls. Other places where the activities are done include the Murchsion falls in Murchsion falls National Park, Kazinga channel in Queen Elizabeth National Park, Lake Mburo in Lake Mburo National Park, Lake Bunyonyi in Kabale and Sipi Falls in Mbale. Like Rwanda, the prices for the different activities are determined by the different management of each park of water body.
Water Safaris are usually done as additional activities on primate and wildlife safaris and they are done throughout the year.
Birding in East Africa is somewhat a new venture; however the region has always had numerous species of birds that live in the different habitat across the countries. In Uganda and Rwanda, bird species are spread out in all the countries’ parks and each park has unique species that are survive in that given habitat. Birding Safaris in Uganda or Rwanda can be done as additional activities to other activities on a safari.
Birding Places in Rwanda include Nyarutarama Lake, Nyungwe Forest National Park, Rugezi Marsh, Akagera National Park, Volcanoes National Park and many more.
Birding Places in Uganda include Mabira forest, Kidepo National Park, Bwindi National Park, Queen Elizabeth National Park among other places.
Birding safaris like the water safaris are normally done as top ups of primate and wildlife safaris.
Rwanda is a called land of a thousand hills because of its hilly and mountainous landscape and Uganda though not as hilly as Rwanda has quite a number of mountains and hills. This makes both countries suitable for hiking escapades especially for hikers that love challenges the hiking trails in these countries give you a run for your hiking skills.
Hiking places in Rwanda include Mt Karisimbi that is a 2 day adventure, Mt Bisoke, Mt Gahinga, Mt Muhavura that are all one-day adventures and hiking trails in Nyungwe National Park like the congo trail.
Hiking Safaris can be done as standalone safaris or with other safaris depending on the traveller’s choice.