Uganda’s Best Game Parks –14 days from $1,090 pp
Car hire and pre-booked accommodation. This two-week trip will take you through Uganda’s finest national parks and vastly changing landscapes; from the little Switzerland of the Southwest, and the lush tropical rainforests in the west, to the arid plains of Murchison Falls, Uganda’s largest National Park. This circuit caters for those who love to explore game parks, but find primate tracking too costly. You can opt for budget, comfort or deluxe accommodation.
Note: indicative driving time is without stops.
Day 1: Airport pick up, transfer to mid-range lodge set in a lovely garden in the charming town of Entebbe - Drive: 10 min.
You will be staying in Airport Guesthouse Entebbe, set in a lovely garden.
Upgrade Deluxe: the Boma Hotel, a boutique hotel in an old Victorian country cottage, set in a tastefully landscaped garden with swimming pool.
Day 2: Take the ferry to cross Waiya Bay in Lake Victoria, and connect via lovely back roads to the main highway going to Lake Mburo National Park. Covered with extensive acacia woodlands, this park is one of the best places in the country to see the giant eland antelope and zebras – Drive: 225 km / 5 hours.
Accommodation: two nights in Rwakobo Rock. This welcoming eco-friendly lodge is spectacular located on a rock outcrop overlooking the park. The place receives rave reviews time after time.
Day 3: Enjoy a day in the park. With no dangerous predators such as lions, Lake Mburo is the best place to go on a guided safari either walking, mountain biking or on horseback. Moreover, this is one of the few national parks in Africa allowing night game drives, which give you the chance to see some of the rare nocturnal animals like the mongoose, hyena, leopard and serval cat.
Day 4: Drive to the Kigezi Highlands, perhaps the most fertile and scenic region of Uganda: a landscape of expansive blue lakes, rainforests and mountains. You will spend two nights at Birds Nest at Lake Bunyonyi, a large crater lake dotted with dozens of small islands and encircled by steep terraced hills. The lodge also has a swimming pool – Drive: 250 km / 4 hours.
Day 5: Enjoy a day at the lake. There are several activities available such as swimming, canoe safaris, island hopping, hiking, or visiting a nearby batwa (pygmy) community.
Day 6: Drive to Queen Elizabeth National Park, Uganda’s oldest National Park. From open savannas to green rainforests, from dense papyrus swamps and crater lakes to the vastness of Lake Edward, it is little wonder that QENP boasts one of the highest rates of biodiversity of any game park – Drive: 260 km / 5 hours.
Accommodation: two nights at Bush Lodge, an intimate eco-lodge overlooking the Kazinga Channel. Comfort accommodation option is in a furnished safari tent with private veranda and en-suite ''bush'' shower. The budget option is lazy camping, where you sleep in a permanent canvas tent, provided with bed, light and towels.
Upgrade Deluxe: two nights at Mweya Safari Lodge, an old time favourite, due to its stunning location in the heart of the park, infinity pool overlooking the Kazinga channel, and neo-colonial grandeur.
Day 7: Enjoy a day in the park. Boat launch trips on the Kazinga Channel offer great game viewing, as do game drives around Mweya Lodge and the Northern Circuit. Further southwest, the remote Ishasha plains are famous for their tree climbing lions, while the Kyambura Gorge is home to habituated chimps. The nearby Maramamgambo Forest has a wide variety of forest monkeys and the dozens of crater lakes scattered across the park are often filled with beautiful pink flamingos.
Day 8: Drive to Kibale Forest near the pleasant colonial town of Fort Portal. Kibale is a 800 km2 tropical rainforest home to 13 primate species and an impressive range of birds – Drive: 120 km / 2 ½ hours.
You will spend two nights at Kibale Forest Camp in the middle of the rainforest. The comfort accommodation option is in a furnished safari tent with private veranda and en-suite bathroom. The budget option is lazy camping, where you sleep in a permanent canvas tent, provided with bed, light and towels.
Upgrade Deluxe: Ndali Lodge is perched on the rim of a distinct volcano. It is managed by the third generation of a British tea planter, and the ambience of an intimate English country house is still truly intact. Included on the basis of dinner & breakfast, expect silver cutlery and a candlelit 5-course dinner overlooking the lake.
Day 9: Kibale Forest is a nature lover’s paradise, with its sublime bird watching and chimpanzee tracking, as well as opportunities for viewing a wide range of other primates. Chimpanzee tracking is a half-day activity, starting either early in the morning or just after lunch. A field of beautiful crater lakes lies between Fort Portal and the Forest, which are perfect for a swim or exploration on foot.
Day 10: Beautiful back roads passing through friendly villages will bring you to Hoima town, the staging point between Fort Portal and Masindi at the southern entrance of Murchison Falls National Park – Drive: 223 km / 6 hours.
Accommodation: Kon Tiki Lodge, spacious thatched cottages set in a nice landscaped garden with little swimming pool. This little oasis makes a welcome break after the long and bumpy road from Kibale to Murchison Falls
Upgrade Deluxe: Lake Albert Safari Lodge, set on the top of a lakeshore cliff in the remote Albertine Rift Valley. Accommodation is in canvas sided, thatched cottages. Includes a small swimming pool.
Day 11: Today you will cross the entire Murchison Falls National Park, entering the reserve from the south, whilst staying overnight just outside the northern section of the park. Along the way you will cross Budongo Rainforest and visit the top of the waterfalls, which is a spectacular experience. Once you cross the Nile River, you can take a refreshing break at Paraa Lodge, situated at the heart of the park with excellent views of the river. Most of the wildlife is in the northern section of the park – Drive: 4 hours without stops.
Accommodation: two nights at Fort Murchison. The set-up of this lodge evokes the ambience of a well maintained isolated outpost from times when Arab traders explored the African hinterlands. Comfort accommodation is in a double room. The budget option is lazy camping, where you sleep in a permanent canvas tent, provided with bed, light and towels.
Day 12: Another day of self–driving safari with opportunities for game viewing. Other activities include a boat trip to the base of the falls or take a smaller boat downriver from Paraa towards the Nile River delta where it flows into Lake Albert.
Day 13: An excellent newly surfaced road takes you to the capital city, Kampala, where you will find a thriving dining and nightlife scene with a pleasant vibe. We would be happy to recommend some especially good places - Drive: 315 km / 7 hours.
In Kampala you will be staying in another very special and welcoming place. The Yellow Haven Guesthouse is a family-run guesthouse on the shores of Lake Victoria on the outskirts of the city and has several lovely self-contained apartments arranged around a large garden with a swimming pool, sauna, and BBQ area.
Day 14: Depending on the time of your return flight, there are a number of things you could do in Kampala or Entebbe, such as going to the pool, exploring the city on a motorbike (boda boda) tour or visit a number of mosques and temples. Practically from the steps of the guesthouse you can board a small motorboat for a safari on Lake Victoria. You will pass through small canals lined with papyrus and see plenty of birds. The guide will take you ashore for a cultural village walk, and you will also have the chance to shop at the Ggaba fish market to stock up on supplies in case you feel like having a BBQ in the evening.
Pick up from hotel and fly out from Entebbe – Drive: 40 km / 1.5 hours.
|Low season||High season*|
|Price in US$ / pp||2pax||4pax||2pax||4pax||2pax||4pax||2pax||4pax|
|Lazy camping (6 nights)||1,320||1,090||1,559||1,299||1,499||1,210||1,733||1,319|
* High season is from December 15th – January 31th and June 15th - September 15th
** If you would rather have a professional driver/guide, add US$ 480 to the total.
- Airport transfer
- 12 day rental Toyota Rav4 or Landcruiser,comprehensively insured
- Detailed day-by-day itinerary
- Bradt travel guide and roadmap
- Mobile phone with local SIM card
- Accommodation on the basis of bed & breakfast
- Park entrance fees for Lake Mburo, Queen Elizabeth and Murchison Falls National Park ($ 40 / person / 24h), car entrance fee ($ 15 / car / visit)
- Any optional activities. Note: a three-course meal at lodges costs on average US$ 15.