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Rwanda

12-Day Rwanda and Uganda Combo

Rwanda and Uganda Combo -- Trip Photo of Rwanda tour  Rwanda map

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Itinerary

Day 1 : Arrival Entebbe

Visiting: Kampala

Meet and greet at the airport by the guide. Transfer to the hotel in Entebbe.

Entebbe is a city in Uganda with a population of approximately 90,000. It is located on the shore of Lake Victoria 40 km from the capital city of Kampala. The name Entebbe derives from the Luganda phrase Entebbe za Mugala ("Headquarters of Mugala," head of lungfish clan) and thus literally means Headquarters - somewhat prescient, given that it would later serve as the British administrative capital of Uganda.

  • Meals: D
  • Budget Lodging: Airport Guest House Entebbe

Day 2 : Transfer to Kibale National Park, afternoon nature walk

Visiting: Kibale National Park

After breakfast we drive to Fort Portal via Mubende. This is a long trip to Western Uganda with a break for a picnic after Mubende.

In the afternoon you will have a guided nature walk at the Bigodi Wetlands Sanctuary. You will be accompanied by a trained Sanctuary guide provided by an official Community based organization.

On your tour, you will likely see several kinds of monkeys including black and white colobus, red colobus, mangabey, red tail, vervet, and L’Hoest. Birds are everywhere in the Sanctuary : the great blue turaco, also frequently seen are varieties of papyrus gonoleks, hornbills, waxbills, weavers, cuckoos, kingfishers, flycatchers, and many, many others. Overnight at Kibale Forest NP. (B-L-D)

Fort Portal is a small and attractive city. The fort was built between 1891 and 1893 and named after Sir Gerald Portal, the British Consul General of Zanzibar who arrived in Uganda in 1892 to formalise the protectorate of Uganda. He died of malaria a few months after the fort was completed.

  • Meals: BLD
  • Budget Lodging: Primate Lodge

Day 3 : Full day Chimpanzee Habituation Experience

Visiting: Kibale National Park

The chimpanzee Experience is a unique opportunity that will allow you to follow a chimpanzee group in its daily activities.

Accompanying Kibale reserve researchers and rangers, you will be on the forest floor early in the morning to watch the chimps wake-up (de-nesting) and search for their breakfast. Then you will follow them all day - observing the full gamut of their behavior - until they build new nests (nesting) for themselves at around 7.30pm.

You will be part of the Uganda Wildlife Authority initiative to habituate chimps to the human presence without changing their natural environment. This is one of the great moments of your safari!

The Rwenzori Mountains lie along the western border of Uganda and rise to a height of 5100 metres. They form a magnificent landscape of non-volcanic mountains, 120 kilometres long and 48 kilometres wide. The so-called Mountains of the Moon were formed from a single block during the creation of the western arm of the Great East African Rift Valley (Albertine Rift).

  • Meals: BLD
  • Budget Lodging: Primate Lodge

Day 4 : Transfer to Mweya (Queen Elizabeth National Park), afternoon boating safari on the Kazinga Channel

Visiting: Queen Elizabeth National Park

After breakfast transfer to Queen Elizabeth NP. You will enter the park at the Katunguru gate and take the channel track which runs parallel with the Kazinga channel. The channel track is particularly rewarding with warthog, bushbuck, waterbuck and elephants.

Lunch at Mweya Safari Lodge and in the afternoon you will take the launch trip on the Kazinga channel which many consider as a highlight of the safari. The launch trip takes 2 hours.

After the launch trip your driver guide will take you for a late afternoon game drive! (B-L-D)

The Kazinga Channel is a natural channel of 36 km long between Lake George and Lake Edward. The launch trip is the most popular activity at Mweya. From the safe boat you can see elephants, hippo, Nile crocodile and many water birds. The water birds are plentiful along the channel: African skimmers, African fish eagles, cormorants, saddle-billed storks, pelicans, etc. The Kazinga channel divides Queen Elizabeth in a northern (Mweya) and a southern part (Maramagambo, Kyambura, Ishasha). Landscapes will be different. The northern part is an euphorbia savannah while the southern sector is a typical acacia savannah.

  • Meals: BLD
  • Budget Lodging: Simba Camp

Day 5 : Morning game drive, afternoon transfer to Ishasha (Queen Elizabeth National Park - South)

Visiting: Queen Elizabeth National Park

The best time for game-viewing is early in the morning!

You visit the Uganda Kob Mating Ground which is a defined area specifically used by Uganda Kobs for challenging, enticing and mating. Adult rams defend a circle territory (30 meters diameter) and depending on the season the mating ground can have 20 and more of this small territories each defended by a male. Ewes enter the territories for mating and move freely between rams.

Watch the spectacular fights as kobs defend their territories, look for lions as well because the high concentration of kobs attracts their predators. After the game drive we also visit the fishing village and the salt works at Kasenyi village near to Lake George. Both sites are part of Queen Elizabeth NP and local communities can develop some of their activities. It will be an opportunity for your guide to explain the conservation policies and the relationship with the local communities. (Fishing is an important activity among the local residents.)

In the afternoon transfer to Ishasha about 3 hours away and you will have a short game drive on your way to the camp. You will spend two nights at Ishasha in this unspoilt remote southern sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park famous for its tree climbing lions.

  • Meals: BLD
  • Budget Lodging: Savannah Lodge

Day 6 : Full day game drives in Ishasha (Queen Eliizabeth NP)

Visiting: Queen Elizabeth National Park

You will explore Ishasha, the southern sector of Queen Elizabeth considered by some experts as one of the most alluring game viewing area of East Africa. It's an off-the-beaten-track destination that you will surely enjoy.

We wake up early, of course, since this is the best time for observing nature. You start from the southern circuit in search of the elephants and we will drive over the plains of Ishasha in the open savannah. The southern circuit has usually large herds of buffalo, Uganda kob and topi. Near to the swamps of the southern circuit you might see even leopard. We continue and drive to the northern circuit which is the area near the main road known for its tree climbing lions. We look particularly at the many fig trees where lions like to stay. But we also visit the Uganda kob mating ground which is their preferred hunting area.

After an initial scouting expedition, we return to the camp for a lunch, we relax, observe the hippos and we take time for a shower or siesta in the shadow of the woods.

In the afternoon you will have another game drive and during the dry season we will drive you to the Edward's flats to see elephants, large herds of buffalo and different waterbirds. Occasionally we might find in this area the shoebill stork and by surprise some hunting lions.

  • Meals: BLD
  • Budget Lodging: Savannah Lodge

Day 7 : Morning game drive, afternoon transfer to Buhoma (Bwindi National Park)

Visiting: Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

This is your last game drive in Queen Elizabeth. If you have missed the lions the previous days it will be the last opportunity to try again.

After lunch we depart to Bwindi a journey that can take a max. of 2 hours. We shall have a stop over at Kihihi for refueling and some shopping at the local stores. The Muzungu (the white visitors) are an attraction for the children of the village!

Bwindi is not far away and you will arrive at Buhoma in the afternoon. Time to have a cool drink, enjoy the sight and sounds of the rainforest. Overnight at your lodge. (B-L-D)

Bwindi has a unique rich and varied ecosystem and has lowland rainforest and afromontane forest. It's considered as one of the most unique and important forests of Africa. UNESCO declared it as a Natural World Heritage site for Humanity for his many values and because it is vital to the survival of many endangered species.

  • Meals: BLD
  • Budget Lodging: Engagi Lodge

Day 8 : Gorilla trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

Visiting: Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

Bwindi Impenetrable NP is a natural world heritage site. Hikers will love it, with the gorilla excursion as a high point of your safari!

Gorilla trekking is unpredictable. It's difficult to foresee how many hours you will hike. Expect to walk along distance in steep and muddy conditions, sometimes with rain overhead, before you encounter any gorillas. A good physical condition is recommended. For conservation purposes, time spent with the gorillas is limited to one hour. A ranger will brief you on how to behave with the gorillas.

Once you are back from trekking before 5 pm, you can be entertained by orphans of the Buhoma village, with their traditional Bakiga dances. For participants who want to contribute to the orphans, we advise them to bring some used clothes or school pencils/pens.

  • Meals: BLD
  • Budget Lodging: Engagi Lodge

Day 9 : Morning transfer to Lake Bunyonyi, afternoon free

Visiting: Lake Bunyonyi

After breakfast we depart for Lake Bunyonyi, meandering driving along the Kigezi mountains. Kigezi mountains is another unique scenary for you to view during your trip. On the way you will have a pic nic at an altitude above 2200m in the montain tops. Arrival is foreseen in the afternoon. A relaxing moments on the shores of this wonderful lake will be welcome for most participants. Lake Bunyonyi is bilarzia free hence an ideal water for swimming and water sports. (B-L-D)

Lake Bunyonyi, a crater lake formed by volcanic eruption, is 900m deep. This lake is the second deepest lake in Africa and third deepest in the World. It is a home for Otters, cray fish and variety of water birds. Being a bilharzia free waters, you can swim or take a canoe or motor boat ride.

  • Meals: BLD
  • Budget Lodging: Lake Bunyonyi Resort

Day 10 : Transfer to Volcanoes National Park

Visiting: Volcanoes National Park

Transfer to Volcanoes National Park

  • Meals: BLD
  • Budget Lodging: Hotel La Palme

Day 11 : Morning gorilla trekking, afternoon transfer to Kigali

Visiting: Volcanoes National Park, Kigali

After breakfast, you will depart for the headquarters of the Park where your driver-guide will accomplish the necessary formalities for you. You will meet your ranger guide for a briefing about the greatest animal experience ever!

After assigning your gorilla group Magic Safaris will drive you to the slopes of one of The Virunga volcanoes for your trekking. Your driver-guide will wait for you.

After the trekking, lunch at Ruhengeri and transfer to Kigali. On your way to Kigali, several stops will be made to admire the scenery. Rwanda is the country of the thousand hills!

  • Meals: BLD
  • Budget Lodging: Hotel Chez Lando

Day 12 : Depart Kigali

Visiting: Kigali

Pick up at your hotel, depending on you departure time, you will have the visit of the Genocide Memorial centre at Gizozi. Transfer to the Airport for your departure.

  • Meals: B

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