For years on end, Uganda is still one of the most popular safari destinations in East Africa. Although the country is land locked and relatively small, Uganda has put her best foot forward in constituting some of the best African safari itineraries on the continent. In fact, most travelers would agree that indeed, she is the “the pearl of Africa”, a graceful gem for the brave adventurous seeker. A typical Uganda safari will take you through the most exotic spots of this magical land; with plenty of memories to spare.
Our Uganda safaris are uniquely cut-out for your specialized needs. We understand that an African safari would be incomplete without the iconic Uganda safari wildlife. That is why we make it a point to present you with the rather unique opportunity to visit the most outstanding Uganda safari national parks; each offering unique wildlife safari goodness. Be it the curious members of “the Big 5”, which are the most sought after animals, or record breaking bird-life; we have got it all covered.
Bwindi impenetrable is without a doubt one of the most famous Uganda safari national parks. This is owing to the fact that it is a home to the rare Uganda safari mountain gorillas. Moreover, these gentle giants can only be found in three countries in the whole world; Uganda, Rwanda and the DR Congo. With our Uganda safaris, prepare yourself to come within close range as humanly possible as can be allowed. You can then choose to spend half a day or the entire day observing these unique apes.
The Uganda safaris tree climbing Lions are another common delight on the African safari arena. You will find that Queen Elizabeth National park is not only the most visited park on any Uganda safari but it is also where you can marvel at the wonder of a Uganda safari Lion climbing up a tree, hippos, or half of the world’s population of Nile crocodiles in the Kazinga channel. The park also poses a significant historic value as it was named after Queen Elizabeth upon her first visit to Uganda.
Murchison falls national park is not only home to some of the most magnificent Uganda safari falls but it also home to the majestic Murchison falls. The Murchison falls, falling over 43m high, will definitely blow your mind. Your Uganda safari will also include game viewing in parks like Kidepo valley national park, a lone jewel in the dry wild plains of north eastern Uganda and Kibaale forest national park where a Chimpanzee trekking adventure awaits you.
We consider hiking and mountain climbing a very important aspect of a Uganda safari. Indulge your inner adventurous self by joining our Uganda safari hiking team; persevering through the cold and physical challenges to conquer the summit of some iconic mountains like the Virunga ranges and Mt Rwenzori; the highest in Uganda. Expect some Uganda safari elusive scenery and photography opportunities at the “mountains of the moon”. Other hiking ventures will include; the sipi falls.
Hiking, game viewing and gorilla trekking are not the only Africa safari activities we have in store for you on our Uganda safaris. We strive to give you value for your money along with memories that will last you a lifetime. Experience a Hot air balloon Uganda safari; where you see the beauty of these lush green fields from the eagle’s eye. Meet an assortment of primates jumping from branch to branch as you float amidst the blue Uganda safari skies. Cover more ground while spotting more on your wildlife safari.
Our Uganda safari activity pack includes a wide range of African safari tours activities like birding; with over 1066 species to offer, canoeing along magnificent Uganda safari clear waters set against clear blue skies, white water rafting at the source of River Nile, fishing in some of the freshest waters on the planet, nature walks through open plains and thick forests and landscape viewing. Prepare yourself for some of the best Uganda safaris natural sceneries and mind blowing experiences.
There is no Uganda safari without a proper cultural encounter that is why we plan ahead for your African safari to interact with some of the most popular native tribes in Uganda. There are over 54 tribes in Uganda and you can only meet some of the most famous ones including the e’chuya batwa of Bwindi Impenetrable forest. This ancient tribe of pygmies is believed to have occupied the forest alongside wildlife for thousands of years. Learn about their tribal history and culture on these Uganda safaris.
There are over 400 Uganda safari mountain gorillas as per the 2006 census; with about 12 habituated gorilla families and 1 research family in Bwindi Impenetrable forest national park. Mgahinga gorilla national park has only one fully habituated gorilla family called Nyakagezi with 9 members; 4 silverbacks, 2 infants, 2 adult females and 1 juvenile. Gorilla families are named after sectors they reside in, the terrain of their hide out or the leader of the group.
Bwindi Impenatrable forest national park is divided into four sectors; Ruhija, Buhoma, Nkuringo and Rushaga. With our Uganda safaris, you have the opportunity to meet any Uganda safari gorilla families like Rushegura, Habinyanja( named after the swamp they live next to), Mubare , Bitukura, Oruzongo, Kyaguriro, Nkuringo, Mishaya, Nshongi, Kahugye, Bweza, Busingye and Nyakagezi. Some of the gorilla families keep moving even across borders.
Mountain gorilla trekking is one of the most undertaken Uganda safaris activity. Trek these gentle giants in a group of 8 people with our well planned Uganda safari tours. Only a maximum of 8 people are allowed to visit the gorillas in the wild to avoid putting the animals under stress. Trekking the mountain gorillas on a Uganda safari can last half a day to a full day and you can have plenty of time to observe them in their Uganda safari natural habitat.
As thrilling as Uganda safari mountain gorilla trekking is, it does not come cheap either. A mountain gorilla trekking permit goes for USD 700 per person for foreign non residents, $600 for foreign nationals and 300,000/= for East African citizens. A Uganda safari gorilla trekking permit is a document or card issued by authorities, in this case the Uganda wildlife Authority, and it can only be used per single person per day to trek gorillas either in Bwindi or Mgahinga.
Mountain gorilla trekking permits are on high demand and hard to come buy therefore we recommend that you book your Uganda safaris gorilla trekking permits about 6 months in advance to avoid disappointments. Please note that a gorilla trekking permit only admits Uganda safari tourists above the age of 15. This is because children can react unnecessarily when faced with a gorilla and this could scare the giants away or cause them to retaliate.
Uganda is a typical primate paradise with over 13 different primate species to spare. Join us on a Uganda safaris primate adventure where you can trek the intriguing Chimpanzees in the very depths of the tropical rain forests they dwell in. Chimpanzee trekking is a beautiful experience that gives you more than you actually bargained for by throwing in extra Uganda safari activities like birding, landscape viewing and nature walks on top of your trekking safari.
Kibaale forest national park is one of the best places to trek Chimpanzees on a Uganda safari. The park is covered in thick green forestry harboring over 15,000 Chimpanzees. A typical Uganda safari chimpanzee trekking adventure starts very early at about 8 am or in the afternoon at 3.pm and travelers head out in a group of six people to find the primates and spend an hour or two observing these curious apes. Chimpanzee habituation may last an entire day upon request.
The Kyambura gorge is an 11 kilometer game reserve spanning off the greater Queen Elizabeth National Park. The reserve borders the famous Kazinga Channel to the north and is home to about 13 Uganda safari primate species. Uganda safaris Chimpanzee trekking in Kyambura gorge will have you wading through thick bush coupled with thorns so we advise you wear suitable hiking boots, long sleeved shirts and trousers and also carry plenty of drinking water.
Budongo forest is not only one of the largest natural forests in Uganda, but it is also home to over 600 Chimps. This forest is also the largest Uganda safari mahogany forest and it covers about 826 square kilometers in Murchison falls national park. Uganda safaris chimpanzee trekking follows a 114 kilometer trail through the forest following clear streams while viewing the Chimps alongside other primates, mammals and plenty of bird species.
Our Chimpanzee trekking Uganda safari is specifically balanced to include a trip to Toro-Semliki wildlife reserve. This reserve is one of the oldest in Uganda and it’s a Uganda safari haven for over 70 Chimpanzees awaiting the adventurous traveler to seek them out. There are various Uganda safaris spots in Toro- Semliki wildlife reserve like the Mugiri forest, ntoroko where you can enjoy an undisturbed Uganda safari primate show.
Travelers should take note of certain Uganda safari Chimpanzee trekking rules that are strictly followed. For example; only persons above 15 years are allowed to trek Chimpanzees and they should be disease free (without flu or colds). No camera flashes are allowed as this may scare away the Chimps. We recommend that you wear good hiking shoes and long sleeved clothes on this Uganda safari as these will protect you from scratches from plants and thorns.
A Uganda safari chimpanzee trekking permit costs about USD 200 during a peak season and could go as low as USD 150 during a low season while a habituation permit costs about USD 250 in Kibaale forest National Park. In Kyambura gorge, Uganda safari chimpanzee trekking permits go for USD 80 while in Budongo, the cost about USD 90. In semliki game reserve, permits cost USD 30 for foreign residents and non residents and about UGX 30,000 for nationals.
Uganda safari Chimpanzee trekking permits are a document or card that admits only one person at a given time into the park to watch the curious Chimpanzees. They often include park entrance except for Semliki wildlife reserve where entrance is charged separately. Chimpanzee trekking is often on high demand, so we recommend that you book for your Uganda safaris Chimpanzee trekking permit about 5 months in advance to avoid unnecessary disappointments.
If you are thinking of an African safari to fulfill your birding fantasies, think no further than our Uganda safaris birding adventures. A Uganda safari will give you some of the most satisfying birding experiences with over 1066 bird species recorded as per the 20th May, 2020 Uganda bird census. We attempt to take you to some of the most elusive Uganda safari birding spots to give you real value for your money; enjoying a wide range of birdlife.
Bwindi Impenetrable forest national park is not only a Uganda safari primate paradise but it is also one of the best Uganda safaris birding sites in the country. The park has over 350 bird species owing to its diverse eco system. With our Uganda safari birding adventure, we take you through such elusive forests and other parks including Mgahinga gorilla national park, Echuya forest reserve, Murchison falls national park and other top birding Uganda safari destinations.
While on our ecstatic Uganda safaris, expect to see an assortment of safari birdlife; ranging from endemic, rare and endangered, water birds, land birds and even Eurasian migratory species. Some of the Uganda safari birding specials include; Shoebill stork, Shelly’s crimson wing, Marabou stork, Fox’s weaver, Uganda woodland warbler, African grey parrot, African spoonbill and the grey crowned crane, which is Uganda’s national bird among other birds.
A typical Uganda safari birding adventure is entwined with related safari activities like nature walks through tropical forests, landscape viewing, hiking, primate trekking and canoeing adventures. Birding adventures can cost from USD 50 up to USD 150 or more depending on the safari activities on your itinerary. We recommend you carry binoculars, a birder’s guide book, sunglasses, a hat and plenty of drinking water to ensure you have a beautiful experience.
Mgahinga gorilla national park is located in south western Uganda covering about 33.7 square kilometers adjacent to the overwhelming Virunga volcanoes. Although it is the smallest national park in Uganda, Mgahinga gorilla national park is quite popular among many African safaris owing to its high bird count, the famous Virunga ranges and diversity in wildlife. The park is also undeniably famous for its intriguing Uganda safari golden monkeys.
Golden monkey trekking is the absolute highlight of any Uganda safari in Mgahinga gorilla national park. The golden monkeys reside on the slopes of the Virunga Mountain ranges and are endemic to the Albertan rift. These unique primates were declared endangered by the World Conservation Union and are believed to be a special race of the blue monkeys. Uganda safari golden monkeys spot a beautiful bright orange golden body with black cheeks.
There are over 4,000 golden monkeys in the park as per the 2003 census and these primates can be trekked very early in the morning at 8.00am on your Uganda safaris adventure. The experience starts with a pre-trekking briefing at 7.30, explaining the rules and regulations of golden monkey trekking. Tourists then proceed through the thick Uganda safari forest to find the monkeys at an altitude of 2,500 meters above sea level.
Golden monkeys live in relatively low altitude thus they can easily be found. You will spend about 1-2 hours with the monkeys on a safari watching as they leave their nests and find food. Uganda safaris golden monkey trekking permits in Mgahinga gorilla national park cost about $50 for foreign non residents, $40 for foreign residents and UGX 20,000 for East African residents. Your permit includes park entry fees and a guide to take you through the experience.
Golden monkey habituation costs about $100 per person. Please note that this Uganda safaris experience is only open to persons of 12 years and older. Uganda safari travelers are encouraged to wear long sleeved shirts and trousers to protect from plant scratches and thorns. A back-pack is essential as well to store your lunch, snacks, documents and any other personal necessities. Carry enough drinking water to keep hydrated and comfortable hiking shoes.
Uganda is a metropolitan state with over 53 tribes. The immense diffusion of culture adds a rather exotic color to our Uganda safaris and you ought to be a part of this. The mish-mash of color, people and culture is bound to blow your senses away. While on a Uganda safari cultural adventure, you get to meet the various native tribes that live around the Uganda safari national parks, the spectacular mountain ranges or the Ugandan tropical forests.
Visit legendary Uganda safari tribes like the batwa people who are believed to be the original inhabitants of the Bwindi Impenetrable forest while on your Uganda safari batwa trail, the artistic Karimojong of the wild semi arid plains of Kidepo Valley national park, the Sabin of sipi falls, the Bagisu of Mt. Elgon and the very traditional baganda who are filled with song and a very strict yet rich Uganda safari culture and history.
A typical Uganda safaris cultural encounter in Uganda requires that you keep an open mind while you enjoy what is laid out before you since you will realize that most native communities live lives that are completely different from yours. Your safari adventure will involve visiting local communities, learning about their day to day lives and history. Some moments might find you dancing in tune to a drum, enjoying a folk song or listening to an ancient story.
River Nile is not only the longest river in Africa but it is also home to the world’s largest species of crocodiles; the legendary Nile crocodile. But that’s not just it; it is also one of the best Uganda safari places in the world to enjoy water sports. The Nile attracts travelers from all over the world with its clear water and endless adventurous opportunities. With our Uganda safari adventures, we bring you some of the best water activities you could undertake at the Nile.
White water rafting is one of the most adventurous Uganda safaris activities you could ever indulge in. If you are looking to spice up your wildlife safari in Uganda with some water sports, then White Nile rafting is the perfect sport for you. This Uganda safari activity will put your ability to remain calm and composed amidst chaos to the test as you wobble through intense grade 4-5 rapids on the longest river in Africa whilst holding onto a single rope for safety.
A typical white water rafting Uganda safaris experience will begin with a scrumptious breakfast followed by the much needed briefing; to remind travelers of the regulations, procedures and safety protocols that they ought to follow for a breathtaking Uganda safari experience before they are led by well trained guides to the banks of river Nile. Uganda safari rafters can then opt to go for the harder level of grade 4 -5 rapids or take the easier route with grade 3 rapids.
Any Uganda safari rafter is cautioned about going for White Nile rafting with any ailments such as high blood pressure or anemia; and as such, each individual is required to sign a bill of health form stating they do not have any ailments or complications. They are then issued Uganda safari safety equipment like helmets and life jackets before they embark on a 26 kilometer journey of River Nile goodness; taking breaks momentarily throughout the safari experience.
All Uganda safari rafters are encouraged to carry a set of dry clothes including underwear since they will be in and out of water most of the time. Since White water rafting is often on very high demand, one needs to book for their spot early and the whole experience can cost right from $145 -$255 depending on how long you are going to be there for (full or half day). Do not miss out on birding and scenery viewing while on this Uganda safari adventure.
Although relatively new to the Ugandan tourism scene, bungee jumping is one of the most thrilling water related sports of any Ugandan safaris adventure. So prepare to tick off “scary fun” on your Uganda safari to-do list. Bungee jumping can be organized in many elusive areas but nothing beats jumping and hovering over Africa’s longest river. In fact, we are confident that this Uganda safari experience will give you chills quite like no other.
Bungee jumping in Jinja, involves a precise Uganda safaris adventure plan with well calculated techniques to give jumpers the best Uganda safari yet. The experience starts with briefing where each individual receives personal briefing to prepare them psychologically before the jump. They are then fastened to a strong cord either at their ankles or on their entire body before leaping off a 44 meter high platform to touch the clear Uganda safari Nile waters below.
There is often a team of guides waiting at the bottom with a canoe or boat to unfasten travelers after their jump. Uganda safari bungee jumping can be done either in the morning or at night; although night time limits your Uganda safari scenery viewing and the chance to take great photos. One should ensure that they are in perfect health without chronic illnesses before registering for the experience as they will be required to sign a waiver form.
A typical Uganda safari bungee jumping adventure costs about $115 upwards. Travelers should pay attention to the fact that the adventure can only be done by persons above 13years of age and weigh between 35 -260kgs. Also, pregnant women are not allowed to take part in the activity. The bungee jumping cord can cause slight bruises or swelling at the ankles thus one can carry some oil to apply on the area in case need arises.
When planning a Uganda safaris water sport adventure pack, be sure not to count out Kayaking or White water kayaking. Kayaking is one of the best ways to experience a rugged side of the Nile without leaving out the calm and serene environment left behind in the wake of the Nile. Kayaking does not require a lot of experience and the whole process can be broken down for you by the professional kayak guide with a guarantee of a fun time even for first timers.
The whole Uganda safaris kayaking experience can kick off from Bujagali point before heading down stream to Lake Bujagali, where your lesson on Kayaking will begin. The area is quite and the waters are calm; thereby making it the best spot to relax, kick back and enjoy all the magic while learning a new skill as well. The lessons are given in the morning while Kayakers prepare for the main event in the afternoon.
The afternoon session starts from the village base catching up to the free flowing section of the Nile with moderate rapids and easy going waves that you can easily surf while you prepare for more challenging terrain. This section is pretty deep as well so you do not have to worry about hitting and rocks or any immense danger. Kayakers are protected by life jackets and helmets and are securely fastened onto their boats.
An average Uganda safaris kayaking adventure on the Nile in Jinja costs about $125 -$150 per person or even more depending on what safari pack one opts for. The reason Kayaking is one adventure not to miss out on is because travelers have the opportunity to get more than you actually bargained for. Enjoy different safari activities like birding, scenery and landscape viewing and photography among many others while on your Kayaking trip.
Jet boating is another Uganda safari water sport that gently beckons every traveler to its haven. Your African safari would be utterly incomplete without this spectacular water adventure. Jet boating involves travelers fastening onto their jets rides and rushing through a series of rapids while experiencing 360 degree spins and high speed drifting. Adding this sport onto your safari to do list is a guarantee of a good time.
The Uganda safaris jet rides cover about 90 kilometers per hour so expect to hold onto your jet with dear life as your guide crashes into warm rapids and spins around in circles while maintaining momentum. This activity is quite friendly to the point that children can be allowed to participate as well. The adventure kicks off at the free flowing section of the river and battles the Nile to reach Kalagala falls.
For travelers that wish to enjoy all the perks of the Nile on their Uganda safari without literally touching the Nile, Quad biking and horseback riding are the sports for you. You might not be battling the Nile head on but you are still guaranteed a great time while in Jinja, one of the most elusive tourism hubs of the east. Quad biking and horse riding is not only taken on by aquaphobes but also by people who desire to have fun while still laid back.
Uganda safaris Quad biking & horseback riding involves 1 – 4 hours trips (depending on what the traveler prefers) through the way-ward rocky county side to the touch of bustling Jinja suburbs. These trips often follow the course of the Nile right from the source over ridges and cliffs while making stops on the way to take in the dramatic escape of large bouts of water from the massive Lake Victoria, where the Nile has its source.
A typical Quad biking or horse riding safari in Jinja will start with a short briefing that lasts close to 30 minutes about the rules and regulations of the sports, plus any necessary safety measures. Adventurers are then issued with equipment like helmets and overalls to kick off the training session. After training, the participants take on the bikes for 1- 4 hours watching out for local kids and animals in their path and ensuring to stay on the designated track.
While on a Quad biking and horse riding adventure on the Nile, expect to see some fulfilling Uganda safari vistas all the way through. The course of the Nile has its typical thrill comprising of a diverse bird life, beautiful scenery, lush green vegetation set against the gushing sound of the clear Nile waters. One will also realize that the country side provides its own unique perks filled with plantations and some very warm hearted Ugandan natives.
Lake Bunyonyi is located in south western Uganda, with a surface area of about 46 square kilometers amidst a cascade of free rolling hills and a network of local farmland. The word “bunyonyi” is translated in local dialect to mean “a place of small birds”. This name was duly fitting, especially in the early years as one could find a diversity of bird species sauntering about the lake; it was, and still is, every birder’s dream destination.
Lake Bunyonyi is not only the deepest lake in Uganda but it is also one of the best Uganda safaris destinations. The lake is a magnificent sight for sore eyes with over 20 islands dotted on its calm waters set against a background of misty skies crowned with lush green rolling hills. Travelers from all over the world are attracted by the beauty of this lake and so they book safaris just to stand in awe of the breathtaking view before them.
The best way to really explore Lake Bunyonyi is by going on a Uganda safari canoeing adventure. This relaxing yet exciting safari involves travelers arriving at the scene, receiving a short briefing about the do’s and don’ts of canoeing on this lake and hoping into a local dug-out canoe to commence their adventure. The canoe provides a raw practical experience of life by this lake and gives you a chance to fully connect with Uganda at that moment.
During your Uganda safari canoeing adventure on Lake Bunyonyi, you will have the chance to visit the most popular islands like the floating island and the punishment island where young girls who got pregnant before marriage were left to starve to death. Spend a full day or half of the day birding, exploring the villages around the lake and meeting the locals and perhaps after your trip, you can opt for a picnic lunch on the islands or just relax on the shores.
Game drives or game viewing is really what Uganda safaris are all about. With our well planned adventure packs, hold onto your hats while we whisk you away to some of the best national parks and reserves to be in one is in search of wildlife. Uganda has about 10 national parks and game reserves randomly scattered about different parts of the country and we guarantee you that each of these parks offers it own uniqueness and specialties.
Right from the biggest names in the industry like Queen Elizabeth National park, Bwindi Impenetrable national park, Murchison Falls National Park, Kidepo valley national park and many more, you will find that a wildlife safari in Uganda is quite fulfilling. Get ready to see the endangered mountain gorillas of Bwindi, the tree climbing Lions, the primates of Kibaale and the majestic members of the Big 5.
Most Uganda safaris game parks organize game drives three time a day; early in the morning when tracks are still fresh, in the afternoon when animals gather around water sources to cool off from the scorching heat and evening or night game drives that give you the opportunity to spot nocturnal animals like Leopards, bush-baby and many others. Some parks, however, do not permit night game drives and can only be done upon special request.
Game viewing is done from the comfort of your 4*4 wheel drive, with a professional guide if you desire. You will realize that while on your Uganda safari game viewing adventure, you will have the opportunity to engage in other safari activities like birding and landscape viewing. Most game parks charge a game drive fee on your entry fee to the park and this can be about $40 for foreign non-residents, $30 for foreign residents and $6 for east African residents.
Uganda is blessed with about seven spectacular mountains. Uganda safari mountain and volcano hiking is a thrilling, adventurous and illuminating experience; however, travelers should note that it is not for the faint hearted. Hiking the Virunga ranges in Mgahinga gorilla national park is the best way to see some mountain gorillas while hiking to the summit of Mt. Rwenzori, also known as the mountains of the moon, is an experience quite like no other.
Mt. Elgon stands at 4,321 meters about sea level and has the largest volcanic base in the world, and it is also home to an intriguing number of wildlife. A Uganda safari mountain hiking adventure involves participants reporting to the start point, having a short briefing and registering before embarking on the hike with a guide. Depending on which route you take, reaching the summit can take between 3-7 days.
Prepare to push through thorns and thickets over ridges and through valleys to reach the summit. Travelers are cautioned to be of stable health, sound mind and should be physically fit as the climb will prove very challenging. Scenery and landscape viewing is very fulfilling while at the summit and travelers are often issued hiking certificates upon decent at the office. A mountain or Volcanic hiking adventure can cost from about $20 – $1,500.
Uganda is a paradise with endless safari activities to capture even the laid back adventurer. Our Uganda safaris pick out only the best sites for a memorable boat safari. Join our crew on a relaxing boat excursion on the Kazinga Channel in Queen Elizabeth National park to see an endless count of hippos and Nile crocodiles. A boat safari in this area will be the perfect way to enjoy a relaxing water sport while hoping for some action between prey and predator.
Murchison falls national park is not only the best place to see some members of the big five; but it is also another interesting spot for a Uganda safari boat ride. Enjoy a calm voyage with your friends or family on the Victoria Nile setting off from the shores to the base of the falls. The loud thunderous roar of the falls as they hit the depression below can be quite overwhelming but we guarantee it will stay with you long after your Uganda safari I over.
Uganda safaris boat trips start off from the shore where you will find some land animals like chameleons, lizards and other wildlife drinking water then head for deeper waters and more elusive scenery beyond the horizons. Have a chance to see some water birds like ducks and some storks strolling about the swampy areas. Photography is also high at this point as the whole scene is set against a lush green riverine background.
Kampala is the capital city of Uganda and without denial, her most prized economic center. Our Uganda safari adventure pack is well balanced to include leisurely tours of the capital, should the travelers desire it. Kampala city covers about 189 square kilometers in the central region of Uganda; 176 sqkm is covered by land while 13 sqkm is covered by water. The capital has about 5 divisions with a population of about 1650800 people as per the 2019 estimation.
Initially, Kampala city was set upon old Kampala hill that was mainly inhabited by Impala. The British, the then administrative power, named the city "hill of the Impala" It was then translated to Luganda as "akasozi ke'mpala" which the natives called "ke'mpala" and later on "Kampala" A Uganda safaris tour of Kampala city will enlighten you with the fact that the city is rich in diversity of culture, tribes and dozens of languages both native and foreign.
Some of the great Uganda safari sites travelers can enjoy in Kampala city centre and beyond include the Uganda museum; flooded with Ugandan history, Uganda maytyr’s shrine where Christians were burnt to death because of their faith, the Kabaka’s palace & lake and the Kasubi royal tombs where ancient Buganda kings were laid to rest and you can learn a great deal about the Buganda tradition here among many other places.
Your Uganda safaris adventure will not be complete without you tasting some of the best cuisines on the African continent. Be it in the bush while on your wildlife safari or back in the city relaxing, you are bound to land on a very scrumptious Ugandan meal. Many parts of the country offer for different cuisines but one thing you will find anywhere is the Ugandan rolex. This cuisine will have you testing an omelet rolled between a chapatti(s).
The rolex is definitely the signature Ugandan cuisine and we bet you will love it. Enjoy a variety of other cuisines like Chapatti, Matooke (mashed plantain), Muchomo (roasted meat), roasted maize, Kikalayi (roasted pork), ground nut sauce, luwombo (food wrapped in banana leaves) and Katogo among many other delicacies. Katogo means “mixture” of assorted foods. Served with salads, it is usually a common breakfast delicacy in many parts of the country.
Uganda is a beautiful country with quite a unique history awaiting adventurous travelers to seek it out. However, it is important to learn a few historic facts about the pearl of Africa before actually visiting it. Here are some historic facts about Uganda.
There are some pretty impressive statistical facts about Uganda and here are some very important ones:
Uganda has about 10 national parks thus providing enough room for you to enjoy your wildlife safari. When we talk national parks, expect only the best top destinations for a Uganda safari. Each national park is known for a special thing and you will realize that trip in the park will be the same as in the next park. Murchison falls national park is the biggest and its known for its Murchison falls, some of the most beautiful falls in Uganda.
Queen Elizabeth national park is another force to reckon with. As the most visited park in Uganda, Queen Elizabeth is famous for its tree climbing Lions. Other national parks to watch out for include; Kidepo valley national park, Bwindi Impenetrable forest national park, Semliki valley national park, Mt Elgon national park among many others. Spotting members of the Big 5 is a great opportunity on a Uganda safari wildlife adventure.
We consider Uganda generally safe for travel for travelers of any nationality owing to the fact that political insecurity has been greatly been cubed and the legendary aggressor, Koni, was put to an end. However there are some extra points to look out for while on your Uganda safaris adventure; to boost your safety and that of your loved ones. Firstly, ensure that you have acquired all necessary vaccinations and health requirements before your safari.
It is always important to walk in groups or in company of two’s and three’s especially for female travelers while on a Uganda safari. Travelers should also make it a point to avoid walking at night as robbers and buglers are quite common in Uganda. We thus advise that travelers keep close to each other and their guides t make sure that they are accounted for at all times. Also remember to seek guidance before heading out on your own.
For families enjoying Uganda safaris with their children, always make sure you know where your children are at all times. In fact, most safari camps will require children to share a tent with an adult to avoid children wandering out of their tents at night. Parents should always keep an eye on their kids especially when they go out to play by the pools and outside the lodges since they might encounter some wild animals.
Furthermore, we encourage travelers to keep track of what they eat during their wildlife safaris in Uganda. As much as you will find most foods attractive, it might not all settle well with your stomach. We thus advise that travelers always find out information about a certain food before actually eating it. This will help avoid any occurrences of allergies and food poison. Also, remember to carry with you personal medications if any.
Before booking or embarking on Uganda safaris, there are some points that every traveler should pay attention to, to ensure that they are not victims of fraud or that they have the best adventure that possibly can.
Uganda is a tropical country and like all foreign countries, might pose a mild health risk to Uganda safari travelers. As such, it is imperative to observe standard health requirements and acquire certain vaccinations before your trip. To begin off, all travelers to Uganda and most African countries are required to obtain a yellow fever vaccine and one should make it a point to travel with their vaccination card to show proof of vaccination at the airport.
Other important vaccinations to have before your Uganda safaris adventures are; Hepatitis A & B, tetanus, flu shots, Rabies and Meningitis. It is also imperative to get vaccinated for childhood immunizable diseases like Polio, Diphtheria and whopping cough. Since, Uganda is a tropical country, malaria is often a big threat so we advise travelers to have insect repellant creams, wear long sleeves in the evening and take anti malarial precaution medicines.
Uganda safari travelers should make it a point to carry personal medications for any underlying medical conditions. Anti allergies, hypertension medicines and diabetic medications should also be included on your travel items list. Uganda is generally safe for tourists but we recommend one watches out for personal health safety by staying away from street foods, un boiled (tap) water and wild unknown fruits.
For travelers planning their wildlife safaris in Uganda, we guarantee that finding a place to stay will not be a problem at all. There are more hotels, lodges and camps than tourists in Uganda and your choice of accommodation depends on the nature of your safari. Travelers on luxury safaris will find staying at a 5 star hotel well deserved while a mid range safari might get you resting at a lodge and a budget safari will have you camping in the wild.
We understand that accommodations have the power to break or make a Uganda safari that is why we offer the best accommodation option for you; be it a luxury, mid range or budget option because we want travelers to get value for their money. While on luxury Uganda safaris, one can opt for big names in the accommodations industry like Chobe safari lodge, Apoka safari lodge, Mahogany springs safari lodge, Mweya safari lodge and Ishasha wilderness camp among others.
Midrange accommodations include; Kidepo savannah lodge, Rushaga gorilla camp, Gorilla mist camp, Bush lodge and Jacana eco lodge among others. Uganda safari travelers will realize that some lodges offer luxury, midrange as well as budget accommodations in the same spot. Camping in the wild can be a great way to connect with nature, rest amidst animals sounds accompanied by a cool forest breeze.
Uganda is one of those African countries that are rich in culture and the daily lives of nationals are covered in color. While on your Uganda safaris, you will realize that a lot of things might catch your eye. However, it’s imperative to carry home something unique, memorable and quite outstanding. Choosing a souvenir can be quite tricky as you want to get value for your money and get something unique as well.
Purchasing souvenirs is a great way to commemorate your African safari in Uganda and it is equally a great way to give back to the community locals that make them. Souvenirs range from fabrics covered in bright colors and patterns to scarves, necklaces and bracelets. African fabrics, also known as kitenge, can be taken home whole or cut up to make any desired attire by a local tailor. You can be sure that your attire will be quite unique back home.
You can get a souvenir anywhere in the country even while on a Uganda safari game viewing adventure. Look out for hand woven baskets that are a treasure to the Baganda, beads and local mats. For an urban touch, one can opt for wooden carvings, paintings bowls and batiks. Many artifacts projects are undertaken by local groups like women programs to help improve their livelihoods and your purchase of their goods is a great way to support them.
Uganda is a basic multilingual country with over 43 languages grouped under the Bantu, Nilotics, central Sudanic and Kuliak categories. The languages are spoken by different tribes; each basically speaking its own although you might realize that some languages are a bit similar to others. The different sections of the country have a generalized term for the language spoken due to the dialect continua between different tribes in the same area.
You will find that around the central region, Luganda is the most used language, while that of the west will be termed as Runyakitatra and that of west Nile will be generally defined as Luo. However, while on your Ugandan safari, you ought not to worry has English is the Ugandan official language. Most people will address you in English to ease communication, although you might find that a bit of Luganda and Kiswahili are used especially on safari.
Gorilla trekking is one of the best adventures you will ever experience in Uganda. This thrilling activity involves hiking through dense forest cover to find the endangered mountain gorillas and spend an hour with them. Mountain gorillas can be found in only three countries in the world; Uganda, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Many travelers come to Uganda from all corners of the world to spot these gentle giants in their natural habitat.
Uganda safaris mountain gorilla trekking can be done in either the famous Bwindi Impenetrable forest national park or Mgahinga gorilla national park. The Bwindi impenetrable forest stretches into the Democratic republic of Congo and is home to almost half of the mountain gorilla population. Uganda has about 400 mountain gorilla individuals as per the 2006 census and the population is only expected to rise.
Bwindi Impenetrable forest national park has about 12 habituated gorilla families and 1 research family while Mgahinga gorilla national park has only one habituated gorilla family. Uganda safaris mountain gorilla trekking can be done during any time of the year but the experience is often unrivaled during the dry seasons of January – February and June – mid August. Hiking and observation is often easier during this time.
As fulfilling as mountain gorilla is, it does not come cheap. A traveler can trek mountain gorillas on a Uganda safari either in Bwindi Impenetrable forest national park or Mgahinga gorilla national park at a relatively fair price using a gorilla trekking permit. A gorilla trekking permit is a piece of paper or document issued by the Uganda wildlife Authority to allow adventurers to trek mountain gorillas in the wild.
The Uganda safaris gorilla trekking permit often includes a park entry fee and it admits one person to trek the gorillas per day. Permits go for USD $700 for foreign non residents, USD $600 for foreign nationals and UGX 300,000/= for East African Nationals. Gorilla permits are always on high demand especially during the festive seasons and dry seasons thus we strongly advise tourists to book theirs about 4 months in advance to avoid disappointments.
Although not mandatory, Uganda, just like many other African countries considers tipping a good practice. It is one of the best ways to show appreciation and maintain good relations with the people on your Uganda safaris team. Travelers will encounter a lot of people while on their adventure; these include porters, cooks, cleaners, guides and drivers. These people will contribute a great deal to the success of your African safari.
One can choose to tip between USD $3 to $10 depending on how much work or service you have been given. For personal guides you might tip about USD $5 while for cooks and cleaners, you can tip about USD $2 -$3. Uganda safaris tipping is not mandatory and thus someone should not feel like they must tip but rather it should come from their heart as a token of gratitude for the good service and successful African safari.
Many African countries are very conservative and Uganda is one of those countries. The world today has allowed people to wear whatever they want but while in Uganda, always wear decent clothes. It is absolutely frowned upon to wear skimpy clothes exposing body parts like breasts, thighs and bellies. If you do not wish to attract negative attention, ensure that you are always wearing clothes that cover your body even though it is hot.
Uganda is a relatively warm country thus it is essential that travelers carry light loose clothing to allow their bodies to breathe. While on your Uganda safaris wildlife adventure, long sleeved clothes and trousers can help protect your body from scratches, bites and pricks from thorns; especially on gorilla trekking safaris. They are also convenient in dodging mosquito bites in the late evenings. Invest in dull shades of blue, brown and green as well.
Before determining whether you need to buy travel insurance or not, there are some factors to consider:
Uganda is a third world country and you will realize that many sectors are actually just growing. However, art and culture is quite an intriguing topic on the Ugandan scene right from the languages bouncing off local Ugandan lips to the basic ways of life, art is literally everywhere. Ugandans express their love for art and their culture in various ways like clothing, paintings, wooden carvings, crafts and so much more.
While on your Uganda safari, a cultural encounter with the local natives will show you just how much Ugandans value their culture and tradition. If for example; you were to visit the Buganda kingdom or the Kabaka tombs, you would find the place adorned with cultural symbols like drums, animal skins and other royal artifacts representing the various clans and fallen ancient Kings.
Most tribes have different artifacts that hold great political and cultural significance for example the Banyankole hold a spear to represent leadership. On the more urban scene, travelers can enjoy some Uganda safaris trips to museums learning about the history and culture of the entire country. Cultural markets are flooded with brightly colored outfits, sashes with African prints, jewelry, paintings and mats made from straw or sisal.
No matter where you choose to go, a Uganda safari will always be delightful if given proper timing, planning and the right travel agency. However we admit that some destinations are a little better than others. As such; we think these destinations stand out and should be a must visit while on a Ugandan safaris. Each region has its own private get-away combo that you would find quite enjoyable and breathtaking.
River Nile is one of the top Ugandan destinations offering an assortment of water sports like White Nile rafting, jet-boating, kayaking, quad biking and horse riding. Other popular destinations to look out for include; Bwindi Impenetrable forest national park, Queen Elizabeth national, Mountain Rwenzori, Murchison falls National park, Kidepo Valley national park, Lake Bunyonyi, Mount Elgon and Ziwa Rhino sanctuary among many others.
Although Uganda is a pretty remote country, you will find that getting around can be quite easy. The commonest means of transport in Uganda is the public taxi or matatu; where you will share your ride with about 15 people. The matatus are quite flexible and reach almost every part of the country. They are cheap, quite safe and rather convenient. You could also opt to use a boda-boda (bike) for fast transport and to get by nearby places.
While on your Uganda safaris, you will be sure to enjoy your game viewing adventure from the comfort of a 4*4 wheel vehicle. These vehicles are perfect for navigating rough terrain while giving you a stupendous view of the park and the wildlife it hides within its boundaries. Travelers are often picked up from the airport; depending on your arrangement with your travel agency, and transported to and from their lodges to safari destinations.
On the more upscale scene, air transport is widely used in Uganda as well. For travelers arriving from abroad, your main entry into the country for your Uganda safari is Entebbe International airport where you African adventure will begin. Depending on where in Uganda you are going, there are several airfields in different areas like soroti, Mabarara, lira, Masindi and Jinja among others that you can connect to from the airport using a local chattered plane.
Uganda’s voltage ranges from 230 – 240 volts and thus travelers with American electric appliances are strongly advised to carry along a voltage converter and plug adaptor for these appliances to be able to work while on their Uganda safaris. Most sockets in your lodges, public places and hotels will require a typical three square pin plug as the ones in the United Kingdom. Please remember to use electric appliances with care and unplug after use.
Yes, travelers on a Uganda safari will need to have a visa for them to be able to enjoy their wildlife safari in Uganda. Ugandan safaris can be obtained online or upon arrival. However, tourists should note that Visas obtained upon arrival should have been applied for prior to the safari. Some countries are exempted from having a visa and these include EAC communities and COMESA members.
Other countries exempted from having Visas include; Barbados, Fiji, Grenada, Lesotho, Sierra Leone, Vanuatu, Bahamas, Cyprus, St. Vincent, The Grenadines, Malta, Jamaica, Solomon Islands, Antigua, Grenada, Cyprus, Belize, Gambia, Malta and Singapore. While applying for your Uganda safaris Visa, please remember to attach your yellow fever vaccination card, passport and passport photos and a police recommendation letter among other requirements.
Although Uganda is a relatively warm country and its people adorably friendly, there are still some things that you should not do while on any Ugandan safari. In order to have a beautiful safari, here are some etiquette points to note while in Uganda include;
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