KAMPALA – Uganda is a place that caters to all types of tourists. It has everything, from big, bustling cities to beautifully lush landscapes and of course, including the gorillas in the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest and Mgahinga National Park.
In the Pearl of Africa, there is something for everyone. This diverse country would require a lifetime to get to know it all, but we believe that, with one week, you can get a taste of the most important highlights, such as gorilla trekking in Bwindi National Park, Murchison Falls, and Queen Elizabeth National Park.
Things to plan in advance
Before planning your Uganda Safari adventure, it’s important to consider the season in which you are going.
Uganda comprises of a tropical climate with two seasons; the wet season and the dry one. The first wet season is from March to May while the second runs from September to November.
The dry season goes from June to August and from December to February.
Either season is okay to travel with the right packing and 4*4 vehicles for your Uganda safari holiday.
Remember that you are going to be outdoors most of the time.
If you are visiting for a week, we recommend that you focus on these places:
Gorilla Trekking in Bwindi
Queen Elizabeth National Park
For every traveler, the top activity is a Uganda gorilla tour, which is the most rewarding experience on your safari.
Before travelling it’s necessary for one to prepare thoroughly in advance to avoid last minute disappoints. First of all, it’s must for visitors to buy a gorilla trekking permit and study all information about mountain gorilla tours in Uganda.
Think carefully about what you will take with you. Don’t pack too much because a huge pack becomes heavy and the tracking will be a pain in the neck.
Make sure to pack enough water, a snuck, thin rain jacket and a camera and importantly hire a porter at the park offices.
It’s possible to plan to travel for gorilla trekking yourself, hire a 4*4 vehicle in Uganda and contact the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) directly and purchase your gorilla permit hassle free.
What to expect
If you are traveling by plane, you will arrive in Kampala. This city is definitely a place one can spend some time exploring. It has changed a lot during the past years and it’s becoming a very special destination for tourists to visit. We recommend that you hire a Boda Boda to get around the city on your own. These devices are little motorcycles that are very common in this place. They are quite cheap and a very good alternative to traditional means of transport, as they allow you to avoid traffic jam.
We also highly suggest that you try some local food. Kampala offers lots of options including a Rolex, which is a play on words with its ingredients: “a roll with eggs”.
After getting to know the city, Murchison Falls is quite a gem and the number one spot for wildlife lovers, the park has a large number of wild animals.
A safari in Murchison Falls National Park begins by driving around the northernmost part of the Nile River, where you will be able to see the animals that make the African savanna apart. You will be likely to encounter giraffes, lions, leopards, hyenas, and elephants. But this is not all. If you like bird watching, you will not be disappointed. And if you are curious about the vegetal life, you will feel right at home here.
Days 3 and 4
Now comes the juiciest part of your trip to Uganda. It’s time to go to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest and meet the gorillas. There are many tours that offer similar services for a very similar price, so we recommend you choose the one that suits you best.
The one I took assigned a family to each of the tourists and then we went out to look for it. In my case, it took 2 hours to find them. But I have heard of people who had to wait for up to 8 hours. Once you find them, you can spend one hour watching them and taking pictures. Since the gorillas are habituated, they don’t feel threatened by visitors as they watch and take pictures! Its such a captivating adventure which you will keep this memory for the rest of your life.
Those who are going to Bwindi can stay in Lake Bunyonyi, which is quite close and has a lot for you to see. Lake Bunyonyi encompasses 29 islands and is characterized by its peacefulness.
Waking up to see the sunrise over the waters of the lake is an otherworldly experience.
A large number of birds who live in this area make this place magical. What is more, there are practically no wild animals here, so you will be able to swim with peace of mind.
I advise that you camp when you stay here. In this way, you will really live the experience of being close to nature.
Days 5 and 6
After this magical experience, it is time to go for more awe-inspiring adventures. We will explore Queen Elizabeth National Park. This place is known for being the most bio-diverse park on Earth. Here, you will find all types of landscape, like lakes and savannahs.
You will also see the most unique animals, like tree-climbing lions, hippos, elephants, and more.
Staying close to Lake Albert is an ideal experience. Not only will you be able to see the large herds of hippos bathing during the day, but you will also encounter them on firm land at night. These animals usually leave the water to feed on grass when the sun falls.
Our trip is now coming to an end. And this wonderful experience deserves a memorable ending. It is time for chimpanzee tracking in Kibale National Park. This park is home for over 1000 Chimpanzees and offers both Chimpanzee tracking and chimpanzee habituation experience.
Much like with the gorillas, this tour lets us visit the chimpanzees. And this comes at a much more affordable price. Seeing them climb trees and hang from them is a truly joyful experience. And a perfect closure for a trip you will cherish forever.