Uganda’s Finest – 15 days from $2,115 pp
Car hire and pre-booked accommodation. This circuit is an all-time favourite, and still among our most popular. During this 15 day trip you will visit Uganda’s finest national parks with superb game viewing and primate tracking, whilst cruising through a wide variety of landscapes. 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 spectacularly 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 and steep terraced slopes tumbling southwest towards the rainforest of Bwindi National Park - Drive: 260 km / 6 hours.
Accommodation: three nights at Mutanda Lake Resort. The lodge is spaciously set up on a private peninsula stretching into Lake Mutanda overlooking the Virunga Volcanoes. You will be staying in a cottage built on a wooden platform, with a private veranda overlooking the lake.
Day 5: Ready for the experience of a life time? Today you will be tracking the rare mountain gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. Bwindi’s mist-covered, forested hillsides and dense forest cover protect an estimated 320 mountain gorillas, roughly half of the global population. This includes 11 habituated groups which can be tracked by limited groups of people. You will be departing from the Rushaga or Nkuringo location.
Day 6: Plenty of activities can be arranged at the lodge. Enjoy a ride in a dugout canoe as the local fisherman do, go on a birding trip, nature hike or cultural village walk and finish off the day with a sunset boat cruise. Decide what to do then and there, or contact us in advance for reservations.
Day 7: 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: 270 km / 6 hours.
Accommodation: two nights at Bush Lodge, an intimate eco-lodge overlooking the Kazinga Channel. The comfortable 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 all-time favourite due to its stunning location in the heart of the park, infinity pool overlooking the Kazinga channel, and neo-colonial grandeur.
Day 8: 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 9: 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. Comfort accommodation 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 10: 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 11: 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 a 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 12: 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 13: 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 14: 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 a few lovely self-contained apartments arranged around a large garden with a swimming pool, sauna, and BBQ area.
Day 15: 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 / 1.5h.
|Low season||High season*|
|Price in US$ / pp||2pax||4pax||2pax||4pax||2pax||4pax||2pax||4pax|
|Lazy camping (6 nights)||2400||2115||2659||2209||2680||2330||2928||2424|
* High season is from December 15th – January 31th and June 15th to September 15th.
** If you rather go with a professional driver & guide, add US$ 520 to the total.
- Gorilla permit (@ $600 pp)
- Chimpanzee permits (@ $150 pp)
- 2x Airport transfer
- 13-day rental Toyota Rav4 or Landcruiser, comprehensively insured
- Detailed day-by-day itinerary
- Bradt travel guide with 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 cost on average $ 15.