10 DAYS MURCHISON FALLS,BUGOMA FOREST AND KIBALE NATIONAL PARK PRIMATES SAFARI

Primates Safari : This 10 Days Murchison falls national park, Bugoma forest reserve and Kibale national park features visits in 2 of Uganda’s national parks and one of the best forest reserve. Murchison falls national park and Kibale national park. Murchison falls national park is the largest savannah national park located in north-west of Uganda with the plenty animals and home of the Murchison falls. Kibale national park on the other hand is Africa’s best chimpanzee trekking destination with guaranteed best views of the chimpanzees and other 12 existing primates in the park. It is also a home to 138 species of birds, 250 tree species and 60 species of forest wildlife including forest elephants, bushbucks, warthogs, giant forest hogs and buffaloes. Bugoma forest Reserve is a tropical rainforest located in the south-western part of Uganda – Kikuube district, Hoima district in the south, Kyenjojo district in the west, and at the eastern side of Lake Albert. Bugoma Forest Reserve covers an area of about 401 square kilometres (155 square miles/40,100 hectares). It was established into a Forest Reserve in 1932 and it has since been managed by the National Forestry Authority till date. Bugoma Forest Reserve is specifically situated on the top of an escarpment, east of Lake Albert on the fringe of the Western Rift Valley which offers breath-taking views of the countryside and other surrounding areas.

Queen Elizabeth national park is the second largest wildlife national park located in the western part of Uganda in Rubirizi district near Kasese district with a massive biodiversity with landscape including bushland, savannah, wetland and lush vegetation. The park covers an area of 1,978 square kilometres and was first founded in 1952 as Kazinga national park however later after the visit of Queen Elizabeth 11; it was renamed Queen Elizabeth national park. The park inhabits about 95 mammal species including the big 4 game (Lions, Leopards, buffaloes, and Elephants), other animals including; hyenas, hippos, waterbucks, Oribi to mention a few and over 600 bird species. Queen Elizabeth national park is surrounded by 2 lakes including Lake Albert and Lake Edward which support water activities like boat cruises, and fishing activities.

Bwindi Impenetrable national park is the most visited primates’ national park for gorilla trekking experience located in the southwestern part of Uganda close to Rwanda-Uganda border at the edge of the Rift Valley.  Bwindi Impenetrable national park is one of Uganda’s oldest national park with diverse rainforest of over 25,000 years ago and contains about 400 plant species. Bwindi Impenetrable national park inhabits half of the remaining endangered mountain gorillas in the world and it is divided into 4 sectors including; Buhoma sector which is the oldest trekking sector, Rushaga sector which has the largest number of gorilla families, Ruhija sector and finally Nkuringo sector. Bwindi forest also shelters some species of mammals including the forest elephants and the different species of antelopes.

Primates Safari highlights

  • Day 1: Transfer to Murchison falls national park – ziwa rhino sanctuary
  • Day 2: morning game drive and boat cruise
  • Day 3: Transfer to Bugoma forest reserve – Community tour
  • Day 4: Nature walk – track Uganda Mangebeys and birdwatching – transfer to Kibale national park
  • Day 5: Chimpanzee trekking and Bigodi swamp walk
  • Day 5: Chimpanzee trekking and Bigodi swamp walk
  • Day 6: Transfer to Queen Elizabeth national park
  • Day 7: Game drive and boat cruise
  • Day 8: Transfer to Bwindi impenetrable national park
  • Day 9: Gorilla trekking
  • Day 10: Transfer back to Kampala/Entebbe

Detailed itinerary

Day 1: Transfer to Murchison falls national park – Ziwa rhino sanctuary

Depending on your location in Kampala, you will be picked up by your primstes safari guide and transfer to Murchison falls national park. It’s about 5-6 hours hours’ drive with en-route visit of the Ziwa rhino sanctuary for rhino tracking experience; this is the only place in Uganda where we can see the rhinos. This will take about 2 hours and after meeting the rhinos on foot for 1 hour, proceed to Murchison falls national park. Enter the park via Kichwabanyobo gate to connect to top of the Murchison falls before you continue to your lodge for relaxation, dinner and overnight stay;

Primates Safari
Primates Safari
  • Luxury option – Nile Safari lodge/Paraa Safari Lodge
  • Mid-range option – Pakuba Safari lodge/Fort Murchison Lodge/Murchison River lodge
  • Budget option – Heritage Safari lodge/Red Chilly Rest Camp

Day 2: Morning game drive and boat cruise

After breakfast, embark on a game drive at the delta area where you will find most of the animals. Murchison falls National Park is the only park where you will be able to see most of the animals in the park. This will take about 2-3 hours depending on availability of the animals including Elephants, Rothschild giraffes, Buffaloes, Lions, Hartebeest, Uganda Kobs, Oribis and waterbucks.

Thereafter return to the lodge for lunch and later at 2 pm, you will set off for the boat cruise on the along the Nile which will give you an exciting panoramic view at the bottom of the mighty Murchison falls. Along the cruise, you will encounter crocodiles, hippos, and birds on the river banks like kingfisher, cormorants and bee-eater, drive back to the lodge for relaxation, dinner and overnight stay as above.

Day 3: Transfer to Bugoma forest reserve – Community tour

After breakfast at your lodge, check-out and embark on your journey to Bugoma forest located along Hoima road. It’s a 4-5 hours’ drive arriving in the area and proceed to your accommodation for check-in lunch. Later afternoon, visit the any of the communities around the forest. Dinner and overnight stay at Bugoma Jungle Lodge

Primates safari in Bugoma Forest
Primates safari in Bugoma Forest

Day 4: Nature walk – track Uganda Mangebeys and birdwatching and transfer to Kibale national park

After breakfast, connect to meet your driver-guide for a nature walk tour where you will track the Uganda Mangebeys and also do the birdwatching experience. Bugoma forest has over 225 bird species including several Guinea-congo Biome bird species, two of the noteworthy globally threatened bird species within the forest reserve including the Black-eared ground thrush (also known as Zoothera Cameroonensis and Nahan’s francolin (Francolinus nahani).

After lunch, transfer to Fort portal. The drive is interesting as you drive through the countryside with its people. Upon arrival, proceed to your provided accommodation to check-in, relax as you wait for dinner to be served and overnight stay

Accommodation and meals (Full board)

  • Luxury option; Kyaninga lodge
  • Mid-range option; Chimpanzee Guesthouse
  • Budget option: Isunga lodge

Day 5: Chimpanzee trekking and Bigodi swamp walk

After early morning breakfast, you will report to the park head offices for a briefing from the park warden about the activity you will be going for that is Chimpanzee trekking and during the briefing, you are given the your expectations about the experience and for your own good, please listen and obey to the instructions provided. After the briefing, with your trekking gears and water, enter the rainforest to start your search for the chimpanzee alongside your armed ranger guides. Kibale forest is the best destination in the world where you are 99 percent guaranteed to see the chimpanzees. The park has about 13 different primates’ species including the chimpanzees and also a home to a number of different birds and some of them will be encountered during the trek.

Primates Safari

Kibale forest also has a corridor that connects to Queen Elizabeth national park and so some animals do come to the forest and during your trekking experience, you may encounter some of the animals including the forest elephants and antelopes. The search for the chimpanzee will take about 2-5 hours depending on their location and on finding them, you will be allowed to spend 1 hour with the chimpanzees while taking pictures.

After trekking, return for lunch then go for a 2-3 hours nature walk in Bigodi wetland. This wetland is where you will find most of the remaining primates’ and most birds. The place is interesting and It’s most visited by researchers as there is a lot to find in this sound, walk through sounds of singing birds and playing primates. Before nightfall, drive back to your lodge, dinner will be served at your convenient time before bed time.

Day 6: Transfer to Queen Elizabeth national park

After your breakfast, check-out of your accommodation and transfer to Queen Elizabeth national park. Queen Elizabeth national park is located in the western part of Uganda in Kasese district, this park is the second largest national park after Murchison falls national park. Upon arrival, you connect for an evening game drive in the Kasenyi area before you connect to your accommodation for relaxation, dinner and overnight stay.

Accommodation and meals (Full board)

  • Luxury option: Mweya Safari lodge/Kyambura Gorge Lodge
  • Mid-range option: Parkview Safari lodge/Elephant Hub lodge
  • Budget option: Pumba Safari Cottages/Engiri Game lodge

Day 7: Game drive and boat cruise

After breakfast, transfer to Kisenyi area for your lion tracking experience and game drive. You will be able to meet the lions at a much closer distance given that Lions tracking is the only guaranteed that visitors are able to see the lions in Queen Elizabeth national park

After game drive, return to the lodge for lunch then connect for a boat cruise on the Kazinga channel. It’s a 2 hours’ boat trip with sights of different bird species, hippos, Crocodiles, Elephants, and Buffaloes to mention a few. Return to you lodge for dinner and overnight stay as above

Primates Safari
Primates Safari

Day 8: Transfer to Bwindi impenetrable national park

After breakfast early in the morning, check-out of the lodge drive heading to Bwindi Impenetrable national park via the Ishasha sector of Queen Elizabeth national park for an opportunity to spot the tree climbing lions. Have en-route hot lunch then proceed to Bwindi forest. It’s about 4-5 hours journey to Bwindi national park. Arrive at your lodge close to the park depending on which gorilla trekking sector you will go to. Check-in for dinner and overnight at the lodge.

Accommodation and Dinner;

  • Buhoma Community Rest Camp for budget
  • Buhoma Haven lodge for mid-range
  • Buhoma lodge for luxury

Day 9: Gorilla trekking

Breakfast is served quite early since you are required to report at the park headquarters by 7 am for a briefing about Gorilla trekking by the park officials. By 8 am, you will connecting to then starting point after you have being allocated a group to trek along with your trekking gears. The time taken trekking is not guaranteed between 2-8 hours depending on the movement of the gorillas hiking up and down the impenetrable forest to find the gorillas.

Meeting the gorillas is one of the most fascinating lifetime experiences. You will observe and take pictures of them at very close range. After an hour with the long-awaited gorillas, your guide and rangers will lead you back to the starting point where your driver will readily be waiting to transfer you back to the lodge for a restful evening. Dinner and overnight stay at the same lodge as above

Primates Safari
Primates Safari

Day 10: Transfer back to Kampala/Entebbe

After breakfast, check-out of the lodge and embark on your journey back to Kampala/Entebbe. It’s a 5-6 hours’ drive from Kibale national park to Kampala with en-route lunch. You will be dropped off a location you advise in Kampala be dropped at Entebbe airport for your departure flight back home

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