10 – Day Big Five and Primates Safari

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10 Days 9 Nights
Min Age : 15+

10 – Day Big Five and Primates Safari

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In 10 days, we will show you Uganda’s natural wonders. Via the Northern White Rhino’s in Ziwa, the largest herds of Rothschild’s Giraffe in Murchison Falls, our closest relative the Chimpanzee in Kibale, the abundance of wildlife in Queen Elizabeth NP and off course the rare Mountain Gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest you will get the best wildlife experience possible. All this under the professional guidance of one of our guides!

Itinerary

Day 1Arrival at Entebbe airport and transfer to the guest house

After arrival at Entebbe airport, the driver who will take you to the hotel will meet you. The hotel is near the airport. After arrival, you can enjoy the Ugandan evening air while enjoying a welcome drink.
Most international flights arrive in the evening at Entebbe airport, in case your flight arrives during the day, there are optional activities possible.

Day 2Transfer to Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary and Murchison Falls National Park

After breakfast, it is time to travel. Together with the guide, you will drive to Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary. Here you go on foot in search of the White Rhino! Ziwa is the only place where the rhinoceroses have 24-hour surveillance. The trip to Ziwa takes about 2 – 2.5 hours. After lunch, you drive to Murchison Falls National Park, where you check-in at the Lodge.

Day 3Early morning game drive and a boat cruise to the foot of the waterfall

At 7 am you’ll be on your way to spot the game in the park. After the ride through the park, you go back to the lodge for lunch. At 2 pm, the boat trip on the Nile starts, to the bottom of the Murchison Falls. This boat trip takes about 3 hours and during the tour, you will see a lot of wild animals, such as Hippos, Buffalo, Crocodiles and perhaps some Elephants. For people in good physical condition, there is the possibility you will be deposited at the bottom of the Waterfall and to take a hike up, along the Waterval. This hike is steep and slippery. After the boat trip/hike, it is time for dinner at the lodge.

Day 4 Travel to Kibale Forest National Park

The journey continues to Kibale National Park. From Murchison Falls NP to Kibale, it is a drive of 6 to 7 hours. The journey is long but also exquisite with a beautiful varied landscape, the hills and mountains you drive through becoming greener and greener until you reach the tea plantations of Fort Portal!

Day 5Chimpanzee tracking and Bigodi wetlands walk

Time to look for the Chimpanzees in Kibale National Park. You first go to the rangers in the park for a short explanation. Then the walk starts in the rainforest, the walk can be heavy, take good shoes and possibly a poncho. There will be a lot of time to listen carefully to see if you can hear the Chimps, they train the rangers in this so chances are that you will find the Chimpanzees! After the Chimp trek, you can relax in the lodge’s garden.
After lunch, there is a nature walk planned through the marsh. During this walk, you will spot many birds and perhaps some monkeys. The most common is the red colobus and vervet monkeys.

Day 6Next stop: Queen Elizabeth National Park

Today, you leave the rainforest behind and head for Queen Elizabeth national park along the Rwenzori mountains that form the border with Congo. After arriving at the park, the ride to the accommodation already gives you a great chance to spot wildlife.
In the late afternoon, you will do a short game drive.

Day 7Early morning Lion tracking experience and afternoon boat-ride on Kazinga Channel

Today, you get up early for the Lion tracking experience with the resident research team. The lion tracking experience gives you the biggest chance to spot lions, but there are many more animals. During the game, the drive will also visit a crater with a salt lake.
In the afternoon at 2 pm, you take a boat trip on the Kazinga channel. This channel connects two lakes and in and along this canal many animals live especially waterfowl. After the boat trip, it’s time for dinner.

Day 8Transfer to Bwindi NP via Ishasha’s tree-climbing lions

After breakfast you will continue the journey to Bwindi NP, via the southern part of Queen Elizabeth NP: Ishasha, here you will do a short game drive and try your luck to spot the famous tree-climbing lions.
After a lunch stop, you will drive to Bwindi – Rushaga sector and check-in at the lodge.

Day 9Tracking the Mountain Gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

Today is the day for Gorillas. After breakfast, you go to the rangers post for the briefing. After the briefing, the search begins for the Mountain Gorillas. Depending on the location of the family you will visit, the trip can take a few hours. The landscape is mountainous, so take good walking shoes. After this exciting experience, it’s time to relax at the lodge and view your photos.

Day 10Your last day in Uganda and travel back to Entebbe airport

Today is a travel day. Via a lunch stop in Mbarara and a break at the equator line you will drive back to Entebbe airport.

Inclusions

Price Includes

  • Entrance fees to the tourist sites Including protected areas mentioned.
  • Full board accommodation on safari.
  • Transportation in either 4x4 Safari Van or 4x4 Safari Land Cruiser, all with popup roof and AC
  • Chimpanzee permit (for chimpanzee trekking safaris)
  • Gorilla permit (for gorilla trekking safaris)
  • A professional English speaking driver/ guide. Other foreign languages can be arranged on request
  • Bottled water when on safari.
  • Fees for tourists activities mentioned

Price Excludes

  • Laundry services
  • Beverages/drinks of personal nature like alcohol.
  • Airport transfers arranged on request.
  • Optional activity fees
  • Visas
  • Other activity fees that are not mentioned in the itinerary.
  • Tips for drivers/guides and other staff members.
  • International flights (Arranged on request.)
  • Domestic flights (Arranged on request.)
  • Any other extras not mentioned in the itinerary.
FAQ

Do I need a visa to enter Uganda?

You are required to purchase a tourist visa before you enter Uganda. Tourist visas can be bought in advance via the embassy or consulate in your country or simply purchased upon arrival at Entebbe International Airport or at any overland border. Photos are not required and a single entry tourist visa costs US$ 100 per person for up to 90 days stay in Uganda.

If you are planning to combine Uganda with a visit to Rwanda or Kenya it is recommendable to request for the East African Tourist Visa instead of a single entry visa. This special visa costs US$100 per person and allows 90-days multiple entries to Uganda, Rwanda, and Kenya. Regretfully, Tanzania is not (yet) a member of the East African community and therefore not part of this special visa arrangement.

Are vaccinations required for my Uganda safari?

A number of different vaccinations are recommended and/or required before entering Uganda. A certificate proving you have had the Yellow Fever vaccination is mandatory for entry into Uganda. Immunizations against DTP (Diphtheria, Tetanus, and Polio) and Hepatitis A are recommended as well.

Besides bringing mosquito repellent, we also advise you to take malaria ‘prophylactics’ (prevention medication).

What is cancellation policy?

The following cancellation charges apply to the basic program rate:

60 days or more prior to arrival 10% charge
59 – 32 days prior to arrival 25% charge
31 – 8 days prior to arrival 50% charge
7 – 3 days prior to arrival 75% charge
48 hours or less prior to arrival 100% charge

Empathy Tours reserves the right to deduct all expenses incurred from money paid.
Gorilla & Chimpanzee permits and air tickets are 100% non-refundable.
No refunds will be made for any unused services, late arrival or no-show of any of the members of the tour.

I'm a solo traveller, is there a single supplement?

Solo travelers are very welcome! However, to minimize your costs we would suggest joining a group. Although we can try and arrange this for you, we cannot guarantee we can find a group whose interests, budget and preferred route correspond to yours, especially during the low season.
If you would like to stay in a single room please notify us well in advance and we will try to meet your request. Please bear in mind that single rooms are not common and it is more likely that you will be offered single occupancy of a double room. A single room supplement will apply.

How can I pay for my safari?

Once you have confirmed the final itinerary with us, you will be asked to pay a deposit of 30%. Gorilla permits must be paid for in full at the time of booking. Note that the availability of accommodation and permits is not guaranteed until officially confirmed by Empathy Tours. Accommodation, permit and activity reservations will be made as soon as payment has been received on our account.
For your convenience, the balance payment of 70% should be settled before the start of your safari. We accept payment by bank transfer in either dollar to our bank account in Uganda. Please note that all bank charges are at the expense of the client.

What is the Safari accommodation like?

Accommodation falls into three categories: budget, mid-range or luxury.
Budget accommodation may be simple and basic rooms, bandas or tents, with double/twin beds and mosquito nets when necessary. Private bathrooms are not always available and you may have to share bathroom facilities.

3-star, 4-star and 5-star accommodation offer comfortable rooms or luxury furnished safari tents with a private bathroom. Flush toilets and hot and cold running water are available. Mosquito nets will be provided where necessary.

All Uganda lodges are carefully selected and frequently visited by Empathy Tours staff, to monitor quality and service levels. The majority of safari lodges and hotels are small-scale, offering a unique location and ambiance, and usually have a maximum of eight rooms.

How many people are in your group safaris?

We offer tailor-made safaris for any number of participants. There is no minimum number for a group tour, although the bigger the group, the more attractive the price will be.

What is the best time to travel to Uganda?

Officially, Uganda’s dry seasons are from December/January through to mid-March and from June through mid-September. These dry months are the most popular with tourists, with July and August and Christmas and New Year being the peak seasons.
The most rain falls in October-November and April-May. However, this doesn’t mean that it rains all day, nor does it mean it will rain every day. Usually, there’s a tropical shower at night or a shorter shower during the day, but in Uganda, you can trust that after rain comes sunshine!

The weather is no reason to avoid traveling in the wet season – you might even consider it because of the easy availability of gorilla permits.
As in the rest of the world, the East African climate is changing, making it more difficult for us to predict the weather during your safari. However, in Uganda, the temperature is very stable and pleasant, with sunshine almost 365 days a year. During the day, the temperature averages between 23 and 27°C, although in some places it can be quite cool at night.

One remarkable aspect of Uganda safaris is: whether you travel in the dry, dusty months or in the wet season, you will never find the crowded tourism like in Kenya or Tanzania. If you spot a lion or leopard, it is very likely that you will be the only one to see it – even in peak season!