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11 DAY HIGHLIGHTS OF UGANDA, RWANDA GORILLA, SAFARI, AND CULTURAL ROAD TRIP

Upon arrival in the morning, we will pick you up at the arrivals hall of Entebbe International Airport. The briefing is done at the airport by our tour representative which concerns the 11-day highlights of Uganda, Rwanda gorilla, safari, and cultural road trip. Later, we will transfer you to your Hotel in Kampala for checking in and refreshment, and early lunch before you will proceed for a 1/2 day Kampala city tour which includes Kasubu Tombs and Uganda Museum.

The Kasubi tombs tourism site is an active religious place in the Buganda Kingdom. Considered as a burial ground for the previous 4 Kabakas/Kings of Buganda makes it a very important religious center for the royal family, a place where the Kabaka and his representatives frequently carry out important rituals related to the Ganda culture. The kings buried here include Muteesa I (1835–1884) Mwanga II (1867–1903) (died in exile on the Seychelles Islands, and remains returned in 1910) Daudi Chwa II (1896–1939) Sir Edward Muteesa II (1924–1969) (died in exile in London, and remains returned in 1971) and other members of the Baganda royal family.

As a result, the site remains an important spiritual and political site for the Ganda people, as well as an important example of traditional architecture. It became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in December 2001 when it was described as “one of the most remarkable buildings using purely vegetal materials in the entire region of sub-Saharan Africa.

From there you will head to visit the biggest and the oldest Museum in Uganda which was founded in 1908. The Uganda Museums’ remarkable collection spans over two million years of human history. Enjoy African history cultures and treasures of Uganda under one roof.

Later be transferred back to your accommodation for  Dinner and Overnight at your accommodation.

DAY 2: TRANSFER TO MURCHISON FALLS NATIONAL PARK VIA RHINO SANCTUARY.

After breakfast, enjoy the panoramic drive northwest of Kampala through the famous battle zone of the Luwero triangle. It’s a 4-hour drive and we will take lunch at Rhino Ziwa Sanctuary where we will have our lunch and Rhino Trek.

After Lunch, we have a super interesting White Rhino trek. Ziwa has 22 free-roaming white rhinos. The trek takes about two hours in the company of a well trained and knowledgeable local guide who will educate you on their habits, behaviors, and conservation plans of this unique animal. You will fall in love with Rhinos after this experience. The Rhino re-introduction project is a project of Rhino Fund Uganda and Uganda Wildlife Authority.

Later after this fascinating and interesting trek, we will proceed to Murchison falls for checking in at your accommodation for your Dinner and overnight.

DAY 3: MURCHISON FALLS GAME DRIVE AND BOAT SAFARI

Set off the early morning at 8 am for the 3 hours journey to Murchison Riverboat Cruise on the Victoria Nile River. Over a 17km stretch enjoy sightings of hippos, crocodiles, elephant, waterbuck, and Uganda Kob. The boat will stop just tens of meters from the sinister, frothing, and bubbling base of the falls where you can take pictures of the majestic Murchison Falls. Have your packed lunch and proceed for the next session of today’s activities.

Later on, you will proceed for a game drive in the Nyamsika plateau to see the Cape buffaloes, Rothschild’s giraffes, Uganda kob, and waterbucks. You may also spot oribi, bushbuck, Bohor reedbuck, bush duiker, warthog, and bush pig plus large carnivores including lions, leopards, and spotted hyenas and olive baboons and a list of six species of primates found in the park.

After the game drive, you will be transferred back to your accommodation for your Dinner and Overnight at your accommodation.

DAY 4: MORNING GAME DRIVE AND TRANSFER TO KIBALE FOREST NATIONAL PARK

This morning you have the early morning game drive to see various different types of animals in their Savanna including the Cape buffaloes, Rothschild’s giraffes, Uganda kob, and waterbucks. You may also spot oribi, bushbuck, Bohor reedbuck, bush duiker, warthog, and bush pig plus large carnivores, Lions, leopards, and spotted hyenas and olive baboons, and a list of six species of primates found in the park.

Later we will take a long 7-hour scenic drive through remote Uganda on our way south to Kibale Forest. Where we expect to see some more animals of which some we might have missed in the previous game drives as the road transfer to our next destination is through the forest. Our stop for overnight will be in Kibale Forest National Park.

Evening Checkin at your accommodation a freshen up, relax with the Lodge Facilities, Dinner and overnight at your accommodation.

DAY 5: CHIMPANZEE TRACKING AND RELAX WITH THE LODGE FACILITIES

Today you will have your breakfast at 6 am later your driver-guide will meet you at the reception and drive you to the park headquarters for registration and of course your starting point for Chimpanzee Trek.

Chimpanzees share 98% of human genes making them our closest living relatives. They are found in 21 countries throughout Africa but are most easily sighted in Uganda due to their dense populations. Today, in Uganda, there are approximately 5,000 chimpanzees left in the wild. The Chimpanzee Trekking experience here is done on several wells maintained walking trails.

There is also a wonderfully diverse concentration of other primates, more than any other forest in East Africa, in fact. Besides our delightful cousins, the chimpanzees, you can also find red colobus, red-tailed guenon, white-nosed monkey, gray-cheeked mangabey, blue monkey, L’Hoest’s monkey, and the black and white colobus monkey. In addition, you may see olive baboons, bush babies, and nocturnal pottos.

The aim for your trekking through the jungle under the care of a professional guide, this trekking is 1 hour of the eye to eye contact with the chimpanzees.

Return to your Lodge for Lunch, a freshen up and in the afternoon relax with the Lodge Facilities. Dinner and Overnight at your accommodation.

DAY 6: TRANSFER TO QUEEN ELIZABETH NATIONAL PARK, GAME DRIVE, AND KAZINGA  CHANEL BOAT SAFARI

Today you will have your breakfast at leisure as you relax at the Lodge and later check out for your 1.5 transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park.

Upon arrival at the park office, register at the park entrance and proceed to a game drive in the park.

Queen Elizabeth National Park with her 200 kilometers of well-maintained game viewing tracks. We advise you to be alert and pro-active on your game drive to help the guide spot as many animals as possible. With an astonishing 5000 hippos, 2500 elephants, and over 10,000 buffalo thriving in its grasslands and shorelines, this park guarantees sightings of some of Africa’s most iconic species.

All being well you see elephants, buffaloes, different species of antelope, and just maybe some of the exciting predators such as lion, leopard, civet, genal, and serval cats.

Ten species of primates enjoy the park’s diverse habitats. Vervet and black-and-white colobus monkeys are easily spotted in the trees, and of course the boldest species; baboons! They are all there! A professional guide with extensive knowledge of the park and its inhabitants will help you to specify birdlife or wildlife.

Later you will retire at your accommodation for Lunch inside the park for a break and swap some stories about the experience later you will proceed to catch up with the sundowner boat safari along the Kazinga Channel.

Here, you will see a lot of hippos (more than you can possibly imagine), as well as a variety of other animals that come to the waterhole to drink or bathe. You can expect to see: Buffalo, Crocodile, bathing Elephant, and a range of beautiful birds. This will undoubtedly be one of the highlights of your tour. After the boat-safari, you will to your lodge for check, dinner, and Overnight at your accommodation.

DAY 7: GAME DRIVE AND TRANSFER TO ISHASHA

Today you will have your breakfast at leisure and later embark on your Safari Vehicle for your transfer via a game drive around the northern sectors (Kasese and Kyambura) of Queen Elizabeth National Park.  This area is home to a multitude of animals and plenty of Elephants, Elands, Hippos region will be spotted.  We will also embark to find the Lions living in this area.  They are normally quite easy to find but you never know with nature.  Keep your eye out for the private and elusive Leopard as well.

Later we will proceed to the Southern part of Queen Elizabeth known as the Ishasha sector and common with Tree climbing lions and Topis.

At Ishasha we will have a game drive where you will have some sightings of the various animals like huge herds of Uganda cobs, elephants, lions, hippos, & warthog. Queen Elizabeth National Park is an Elephant lover’s dream & we are sure you will have plenty of close encounters. For the extremely lucky you might even catch a sight of the impressive but very shy leopard. After the game drive, you will retire to your accommodation for dinner and overnight stay.

DAY 8: GAME DRIVE AND TRANSFER TO BWINDI FOREST.

We begin early as we start with a game drive in the Ishasha Sothern sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park. During the game drive, expect to see what you will have missed in the previous game drive. We head towards Bwindi, driving through the Ishasha sector. While driving through the verdant countryside, you will pass traditional homesteads and enjoy panoramic views of the Rwenzori Mountains.

Arriving in the afternoon  Bwindi National Park Ruhija region, home of the endangered mountain gorillas, you will check-in for lunch, have a freshen up, and relax with the lodge facilities as we prepare the next adventure as well as the highlight of the tour, of course, Mountain Gorilla Tracking. Dinner and Overnight at your accommodation.

DAY 9: RARE MOUNTAIN GORILLA TREK IN BWINDI

Today is the big day Prepare yourself for an encounter with one of Bwindi’s gentle giants: the rare Mountain Gorilla. For most people, this is the absolute highlight of their tour in Uganda.

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is a highlight for many visitors as this is where they will be visiting the home of the gentle giants. “The Rare Mountain Mountain Gorilla”

The park lies in southwestern Uganda on the edge of the Rift Valley. Uganda’s oldest and most biologically diverse rainforests lie on the mist-covered hillsides. This magnificent forest dates back over 25,000 years, even surviving the last Ice Age (most forests disappeared).

The Bwindi forest has an incredible diversity of flora and fauna and is the only forest in Africa that can make claim to hosting both mountain gorillas and chimpanzees. In fact, 1/3 of the worlds’ population of gorillas live here divided into 15 habituated family groups.

Also, 5 other primate species, 120 species of mammal, over 220 butterflies, and 360 birds species call Bwindi home. This is one of the three places to see the critically endangered mountain gorillas up close for your very own ‘Gorillas in the Mist’ moment in the world.

The gorillas you will trek belong to one of fifteen family groups who can tolerate the presence of humans for a brief period every day. Your trek will be an exciting (for some also challenging) journey along forested (sometimes slippery) slopes, entwined vines, bushes, and bamboo before you eventually reach the gentle giants.

En-route, your guide will point out signs of previous gorilla activity. Think of dung, nests, and chewed bamboo shoots. The time to complete the gorilla trekking can be as little as 2 – 6 hours! Once the family of gorillas has been located, you will be allowed a maximum of one hour observing them. Coming face-to-face with the mountain gorillas is a truly humbling and emotional experience.

This is a fantastic part of your tour you will definitely remember for the rest of your life. Return to your lodge for lunch and later we shall head off to meet the Batwa.

The Batwa are the original inhabitants of these forests, however today they are a displaced minority since the early 1990s.  This cultural tour is a re-enactment but a very real one as many members still recall living as forest dwellers and these tours now help them earn income.

Their traditions and skills are practiced as well as pass on these traditions to the next generation. Their bush skills are a delight and their small stature will amaze you.

After the Batwa, you will retire at your Lodge and relax with the Lodge facilities. Dinner and overnight at Agandi Uganda.

DAY 10: AND TRANSFER TO KIGALI  

After your breakfast, you will embark on your vehicle for a transfer to Kigali City Rwanda Via Katuna scenic drive heading for the Kigali Genocide Memorial.

Kigali Genocide Memorial

This is an extremely moving, challenging, educational, and ultimately inspiring memorial and a great place to understand the cause, tragedy, and successful rebuilding post-genocide.  The reconciliation and rebuilding have been miraculous and these memorials are built to inform, educate, and prevent such a tragedy to ever occur again.

The tour is very transparent and educational but very somber and humbling when you realize that over 250,000 deceased are buried on the site of the memorial.  Guaranteed you will feel every emotion during this visit.

The most common question that goes through your mind is “would I be capable of that level of forgiveness if I found myself in this situation”.  That’s a true inspiration.

After this tour, you will drive to your hotel for check-in, freshen up, and relax with the lodge facilities. Dinner and overnight at your accommodation.

DAY 11: BREAKFAST AT LEISURE AND TRANSFER TO KIGALI INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT.

Today you will have breakfast at leisure, relax with Hotel facilities as you prepare for your afternoon Airport transfer, After lunch at your accommodation, we head off to Kigali International Airport in time for you departing flight back home from the 11-day highlights of Uganda, Rwanda gorilla, safari and cultural road.

End of your trip. African Expert Safaris wishes you a safe travel to your next destination

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