Insight Safari Holidays takes you to Uganda to visit the mountain gorillas and lots of wildlife in the 10 National Parks. From gorilla trekking to a game drive to see the big five or cultural experiences we got you covered.
Are you a solo traveller seeking fulfilling personal experiences or a couple on a safari to Uganda? How about a group of friends or a family affair, we tailor every safari to suit your needs and preferences.
Visiting Uganda to see the mountain gorillas is a truly amazing experience! Imagine being surrounded by stunning landscapes as you take on an exciting gorilla trek through the 331 sq km Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park. The gorillas are incredibly strong yet gentle, and watching them play and care for their young is truly heartwarming.
Their eyes are so soulful, just like ours, and being in their presence will make you feel a special connection with nature.
There is a special arrangement of the gorilla habituation experience where you can spend more time with the gorillas.
Besides the 459 gorillas, Uganda is blessed with the highest concentration of chimpanzees in Africa. When you visit Kibale forest you will encounter the chimpanzee and various monkey species. A visit to Mgahinga Gorilla National Park will give you a chance to see the Virunga gorillas and the sought after golden monkey.
Queen Elizabeth National Park and Murchison Falls National Park is a paradise for wildlife enthusiasts filled with amazing and varied safari wildlife. National parks provide the chance to see the famous Big Five animals close-up, with an array of intriguing animals. On adrenaline-filled game drives across the vast savannah of Queen Elizabeth National Park, guests will encounter magnificent elephants, fierce lions the elusive leopards, majestic rhinoceroses, and elegant buffaloes.
Murchison Falls National Park named for the majestic falls, provides breathtaking cruises on boats which allow you to admire the magnificent Nile Crocodiles basking on the banks of the river, see hippos in groups splashing in the river and glimpses of the swift African water buffalo, and the massive Giraffes on the shoreline.
Find out about 60 different cultural traditions in Uganda, the native languages, local crafts as well as African music and dance! You will connect with the local people including Buganda which has a vibrant culture and rich history, to traditional pastoralist Karamojong people in northern Uganda, and their distinctive livestock herding culture. Every region in Uganda has a unique display of culture.
Enjoy Uganda’s colorful traditional rituals such as the entertaining Kiganda dance or Banyankore Cow milking ritual, in which rhythmic dance and music accompany the locals. Taste the delicious cuisine of Uganda, such as matooke (steamed green bananas) and oluwombo (traditional stew) as well as Rolex, a chapati wrap. Visit the local markets or craft centres to see Ugandan craftsmen weaving intricately-woven baskets, vibrant textiles and exquisitely carved wooden artefacts.
Lake Bunyonyi, the 2nd deepest lake in Africa is located in south-western Uganda between Kisoro and Kabale, near the border with Rwanda.Its name means “place of many little birds” Composed of 24 Islands, it has a historical and cultural heritage making it one of the holiday destinations in Southern Uganda.
Lake Victoria is the largest lake in Africa and the second largest freshwater lake in the world by surface area, after Lake Superior in North America. It covers an area of about 59,947 square kilometers. Fishing and other water activities can be enjoyed on the lake with over 200 species of fish.
Find the best safari destinations in Uganda.
Uganda is is located 1 00 N, 32 00 E, with a total of 241,038 sq km, land: 197,100 sq km water: Insight Safari Holidays takes you to Uganda to see the mountain gorillas and lots of wildlife. Gorilla treks of 400 mountain gorillas, viewing wild animals like elephants, antelopes, tree climbing lions, buffaloes and more in 10 parks. Boating safari and water sports on Lake Victoria, Kazinga Channel, River Nile and Lake Bunyonyi. Hiking and climbing is done in Rwenzori mountains range, Margherita peak (5109m), Mount Elgon and Gorilla National Park of Mt.Gahinga, Sabinyo and Muhavura. 1061 tupes of birds found in Uganda, 330 mammals and more that you can see on your travel to Uganda.
Uganda boasts of having the mountain gorillas together with other 10 parks and reserves providing wildlife experience makes it a competitive holiday destination in Africa and the world or region. 43,938 sq km with 26.4% protected areas for safari parks, reserves and specie management.
The country offers variety of wildlife types within its many fantastic safari parks. Some of these protected reserves include; Murchison falls National Park famous for its beautiful scenic water falls and boat cruises on Nile, 76 types of mammals and 451 birds, Bwindi impenetrable National Park , common for the mighty mountain gorillas, Queen Elizabeth National Park, the largest national park famous for variety of wildlife species and the fantastic Kazinga channel, Kibale National Park , home to over 13 primates, Rwenzori national park famous for mountain climbing and wildlife, Semliki National Park known mainly for birding, Mt Elgon National Park famous for mountain climbing and nature walks, Lake Mburo National park also famous for harboring Zebras and Impalas. Overall, the 10 parks make your Uganda tour worthwhile.
With 52 tribes in Uganda, the cultural experience in Uganda is very rewarding.
Beautiful Terrain; All safari tours offer such experience of beautiful country side as well as green undulating terrains filled with coffee and banana plantations. There are also traditional homesteads and cattle grazing. You will also enjoy many beautiful scenic drives, good to the eyes of any tourist on safaris to Uganda.
Wildlife; These can be viewed in all the parks of Uganda and tourists have a chance to enjoy the big five and the herbivores including the giraffes, zebras, antelopes, hippos, and Nile Crocodiles. Get to see the 400 population of mountain gorillas found in Bwindi Impenetrable National park as well as chimps and other monkey types you find in Kibale National Park and Queen Elizabeth National Park. Besides wildlife , you will also have chance to view the many birds including the rare shoebill stock while on a safari.
Mountain Rwenzori (Mountains of the Moon); this is a snow caped mountain and is the highest in East Africa. This mountain was also known as Ruwenzori Ranges and they are mountain ranges of the eastern equatorial Africa. These ranges are on border between Democratic Republic of Cong and Uganda. The mountain is 5,109km above sea level and is about 120km long and 65km wide. It’s filled with variety of flora including tropical rain forests, the giant groundsel and the giant lobelia. The fauna around this mountain include; primates like the monkeys, forest elephants and endemic birds.
Murchison falls; these falls are in north western Uganda and its among the most magnificent water falls in found in Uganda and its located on source of Nile. Other safari trips include a boat cruise on the Nile were you will enjoy an up close experience with many water animals including; the hippos, giant crocodiles as well birds.
Source of the Nile; this is found in Jinja town and it was discovered by John Speke, you can enjoy many different water activities on source of Nile, these include; white water rafting, swimming, bungee jumping, boat cruises, kayaking and many more.
Many of destinations offer lodges and tented camps inside and outside the parks. The cost is between $ 150 to $ 900 for a double room per night. For gorilla trips in Bwindi Impenetrable National park, each of the sectors of this park has got variety of different lodges as well as camps which facilities those interested in tracking the endangered mountain gorillas.
There are 41 lodges to choose from in Bwindi alone. These facilities can be booked directly or by Insight safari holidays. The most luxury lodges charge between $ 900 and $ 1200 per night.
This is one of many questions asked regarding any safari in Uganda, the common answer to this question is; you may visit Uganda at any time of the year! However the difference may vary in Price since there two different seasons; i.e. the peak season of June to September and December to February. With this season the price of both gorilla permits and lodges is high since it’s a high season. The low season is from March to May and September to November. The luxury safari lodges usually lower their rates during the low season.
It’s also recommended that visitors should visit the country during the dry season which are from January to February and then June to September, this is because animal watching is best done during the dry season when many animals gather around the water holes. Bird watching can also be done throughout the year, but most preferably from November to April when there are many migrant species in the country.
Uganda Safari costing mainly depends on type of accommodation you chose and travel type. A gorilla permit costs $600 per person. The accommodation also costs between $150 to $900 and this depends in which facility you decide to sleep in. Cheapest gorilla tracking safari is approximately $ 1200 per person. And for the wildlife safaris to Murchison and Queen Elizabeth National Park, it can roughly cost $1000 for the budget travellers. Those willing to travel in groups, the safari price becomes low. A journey from Kampala to Bwindi is 527kilometres. Most destinations in Uganda will cost about $150 per day. A luxury safari to Uganda costs from $ 500 per day or more. A budget safari costs $ less than $ 100 per day.
You can visit Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park for gorilla tours, Murchison Falls National Park for falls viewing and wildlife drives and launch cruise. Other destinations include Kidepo Valley National Park recently ranked among the top parks of Africa, Queen Elizabeth National Park, Lake Mburo, and many others.
Uganda makes an excellent safari destination, offering diverse wildlife, stunning landscapes, unique experiences. Let’s look at some factoids highlighting Uganda’s appeal:
Uganda harbors over 10% avian species globally, over 1,070 recorded bird varieties because country features varied ecosystems – savannas, rainforests, wetlands, highlands – contributing rich biodiversity.
Uganda is one of just three countries worldwide enable see mountain gorillas in the wild. Bwindi Impenetrable National Park – UNESCO World Heritage area – hosts roughly half remaining mountain gorillas worldwide.
Kibale National Park contains over 1,500 chimpanzees, making prime spot for tracking, habituating chimps.
Uganda has “Big Five” (lion, elephant, buffalo, leopard, rhino) plus other large mammals like giraffes, zebras, various antelopes. Queen Elizabeth, Murchison Falls National Parks offer traditional game drives spot these creatures.
Uganda boasts varied scenery including magnificent Murchison Falls, where Nile squeezes narrow gorge, forming powerful cascade. Rwenzori Mountains, “Mountains of Moon” provide unique trekking opportunities, are UNESCO World Heritage Site.
With diverse habitats, Uganda is birdwatcher’s paradise. Notable species include shoebill stork, fish eagle, Great Blue Turaco.
Uganda made major efforts protect wildlife, ecosystems reflected in numerous parks, protected zones.
Uganda’s unique safari offerings attract more visitors yearly. Tourism revenue aids conservation, communities.
Uganda has good infrastructure, transportation making relatively accessible.
Beyond wildlife, Uganda offers cultural experiences with local communities – adding depth any safari.
Comprehensive packing list:
Neutral hues blend surroundings, brights
startle wildlife. Lightweight long sleeves shield sun, bugs, plants. Hat shade, cooling. Fleece chilly nights, early mornings high altitude. Rain protection sudden showers. Sturdy shoes walking, hiking. Sandals relax. Swimsuit if pool. Enough socks, skivvies.
Sunglasses UV protection. Binoculars see wildlife close. Camera, extra batteries capture sights. Power bank limited electricity. Bug spray deter mosquitoes. Sunscreen, lip balm prevent burns. Medications, first aid health needs. Hand sanitizer, wipes hygiene limited facilities. Toiletries.
Valid passport, necessary visas. Insurance cover medical, evacuation. Document photocopies. Vaccination certificates if required. Local shillings, small dollars emergencies. Credit cards not everywhere. Itinerary, contacts.
Daypack drives, walks. Adapter, converter Type G sockets. Multitool, Swiss Army. Ziplocs keep dry, organized. Reusable bottle hydration, less waste. Non-perishable snacks – bars, nuts.
Field guides learn wildlife, plants. Binocular harness easy carry, access. Travel pillow, eye mask restful sleep. Notebook, pen record observations.
Tailor specifics safari type, duration, time year. Confirm needs with tour operator. Thoughtful packing smooth enjoyable Uganda safari!
In Uganda, range of lodgings suit various preferences, budgets – from luxe lodges in national park hearts to budget-friendly options. Overview of accommodation types and prominent safari lodges:
Luxury Lodges and Camps
Luxury lodges provide high-end safari experience with lavish amenities, personalized service, stunning landscape views. Often feature spacious suites or tents, gourmet dining, various activities.
– Chobe Safari Lodge in Murchison Falls National Park
– Clouds Mountain Gorilla Lodge near Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
– Sanctuary Gorilla Forest Camp in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
– Mweya Safari Lodge in Queen Elizabeth National Park
– Apoka Safari Lodge in Kidepo Valley National Park
Mid-Range Lodges and Camps
Mid-range lodgings offer comfortable, enjoyable stays with en-suite facilities, range of amenities – good comfort/affordability balance.
– Primate Lodge Kibale near Kibale National Park
– Simba Safari Camp in Queen Elizabeth National Park
– Mihingo Lodge in Lake Mburo National Park
– Kibale Forest Camp near Kibale National Park
– Ishasha Wilderness Camp in Queen Elizabeth National Park
Budget Lodges and Camps
Budget options provide basic facilities, more economical choice for travelers – may have fewer amenities but still convenient, cost-effective way to experience national parks.
– Rweteera Safari Park near Queen Elizabeth National Park
– Buhoma Community Rest Camp near Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
– UWA Bandas and Campsites in various national parks
– Red Chilli Hideaway in Murchison Falls National Park
Tented camps offer unique, immersive safari experience – blend lodge comforts with close-to-nature feel.
– Elephant Plains Lodge in Queen Elizabeth National Park
– Buhoma Lodge near Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
– Nkuringo Bwindi Gorilla Lodge near Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
– Mburo Safari Lodge in Lake Mburo National Park
Community and Eco-Lodges
Some accommodations community-owned or eco-friendly, support local development, conservation.
– Ruboni Community Camp near Rwenzori Mountains National Park
– Nkima Forest Lodge near Kibale National Park
Ideal Uganda safari length varies based interests, specific parks, desired activities. Typical duration ranges from a few days to around 2 weeks.
Gorilla trekking a major highlight – requires at least 2-3 days including trek itself and park travel. The hiking lasts hours, so account for this singular experience.
National Park Visits
Uganda boasts variety of parks, each offering divergent critters, landscapes. Well-liked include Queen Elizabeth, Murchison Falls, Kibale. Typical individual park visit 2-4 days – explore, game drives, boat safaris.
Birdwatching, Nature Walks
Additional days likely necessitated if keen on birdwatching, nature walks to fully appreciate avian diversity, natural magnificence.
Calculate time for village visits, cultural performances if planning community interactions.
Time required between parks, destinations affects overall duration – road conditions capricious.
– Gorilla focused: 3-5 days
– Multiple parks: 7-10 days
– Extended with more activities: 10-14+ days.
Facts and Figures
– 2023 average international tourist stay: 10 nights
– Longer stays enable deeper exploration of terrain, critters, culture.
Research and Decide
– Research different parks, happenings, and activities that you want to experience.
– Decide duration, budget, preferred dates.
Choose Tour Operator
– Select reputable, licensed operator like Insight Safari Holidays specializing in Uganda safaris. Seek rave reviews, seasoned guides, commitment to responsible tourism.
– Work with operator to customize itinerary based on druthers, interests, budget. Discuss desired parks, activities (e.g. gorilla trekking, wildlife drives), accommodations, experiences.
Purchase Gorilla Permits
– If including gorilla trekking, operator should help snag limited permits from Uganda Wildlife Authority early.
– Confirm all itinerary details – digs, activities, transportation, special requirements. Verify alignment with expectations.
Payment and Booking
– Cough up deposit or full amount to secure booking through bank transfer, card, or methods specified by operator.
– Have valid passport with at least 6 months validity after travel. Scope and obtain necessary visas.
– Consult travel doc for advice on vaccinations, medications like malaria prevention.
Packing and Prep
– Pack suitable garb, footwear, gear for happenings. Don’t forget essentials like sunscreen, bug spray, camera.
– Purchase comprehensive insurance covering medical, cancellations, unforeseen events.
– Arrive in Uganda on specified dates, convene with operator/guide at designated meeting point.
Kruger National Park, South Africa
This iconic park is a true safari mecca, harboring the “Big Five” and over 140 mammal species including lions, elephants, leopards, and rhinos. It’s a birdwatcher’s paradise too, with over 500 feathered species. Accommodations run the gamut from budget-friendly rest camps to lavish lodges and private reserves.
Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Famed for the Great Migration, the Serengeti brims with diverse wildlife like lions, cheetahs, giraffes, and wildebeest. An estimated 70 large mammals and 500+ birds inhabit the park. Luxury lodges, tented camps, and mobile camps cater to various budgets.
Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya
This reserve is renowned for the Great Migration and abundant predators like lions, cheetahs, and hyenas. Over 450 bird species have been recorded here. Accommodations include luxury lodges and tented camps.
Chobe National Park, Botswana
Chobe boasts the world’s largest elephant population along with lions, leopards, buffalo, hippos, and 450+ bird species. The park offers luxury lodges, tented camps, and houseboats along the Chobe River.
South Luangwa National Park, Zambia
South Luangwa is celebrated for walking safaris and leopard sightings, plus elephants, buffalos, antelopes, and 400+ birds. Intimate lodges and tented camps provide an immersive wilderness experience.
Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe
Hwange is notable for its substantial elephant herds plus lions, giraffes, diverse mammals, and 400+ birds. Budget and luxury options allow varied safari experiences.
Lower Zambezi National Park, Zambia
The Lower Zambezi provides excellent elephant, hippo, crocodile and predator sightings. Over 400 bird species inhabit the park. Luxury lodges and tented camps line the Zambezi River.
Getting to Uganda means booking a flight to Entebbe International Airport, the main entry point for visitors. Entebbe is located near the town of the same name, about 25 miles southwest of the capital Kampala. Let’s walk through planning your flight step-by-step.
First, pick which airport you’ll fly out of. Major hubs across different continents have flights to Entebbe.
Next up, search for flights using travel sites or apps. Enter where you’re coming from, your dates, any preferences – compare options across airlines, routes and layover times for the best combo of convenience and cost.
Once you’ve found a good flight, go ahead and book your tickets directly through the airline website or travel site. Follow the instructions to finish booking and enter your info.
Be sure your passport is valid for at least 6 months after your travel date. Check if you need a visa for Uganda and get one if required. Also organize any other must-have docs like insurance, health certificates, vaccination proof.
Consider when you’ll get to Entebbe – many international flights come in at night. If needed, arrange transportation from the airport to your hotel or lodge ahead of time.
When you arrive at the airport, go through immigration and customs – have your passport, visa, docs ready to show them.
Once you’re through, you’re all set for your Uganda adventure! Dive into the amazing landscapes, wildlife sightings, culture and more that the country offers.
Major airlines flying to Uganda include Emirates, Qatar Airways, Ethiopian Airlines, Kenya Airways, Turkish Airlines, KLM, and Brussels Airlines among others.
|Months||Season||Weather||Highlights||Avg Temps||Avg Precipitation|
|January – February||Dry||Sunny, warm days; cooler nights||Good wildlife viewing; lower lodging rates||68°F – 84°F||1.2 in|
|March – May||Wet||Heavy rain showers; high humidity||Lower rates; gorilla trekking; birdwatching||70°F – 85°F||5.9 in|
|June – July||Dry||Sunny; minimal rain; warm days||Wildlife concentrations around water sources||71°F – 86°F||2.4 in|
|August – October||Wet||Moderate rains; cloudy days||Chimp trekking; whitewater rafting; lush scenery||68°F – 82°F||5.1 in|
|November – December||Dry||Warm, sunny days; little rain||Wildlife viewing; birdwatching; gorilla trekking||68°F – 84°F||1.9 in|