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3 Days Uganda Gorilla Safari

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Tour Details

Our 3 Days Uganda Gorilla Safari takes you to the southwestern part of the country to see the amazing mountain gorillas in Bwindi impenetrable national. The tour also includes the Batwa Cultural experience where you will get to meet the Batwa pygmies of Uganda. The Batwa were the original inhabitants of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest before the government evicted them and turned the forest into a national park. The government thought that by evicting them, it would stop illegal logging, poaching and create room for gorilla conservation. The eviction and resettlement was not a complete success because the Batwa were not compensated. They also failed to adapt to life outside the forest. Most remain very poor while the mortality rate shot up as they got introduced to new diseases. The Batwa also had to learn how to live with tribal groups they had avoided for centuries.

Although birds thrive in Bwindi, the real attraction are the mountain gorillas. The mountain gorilla is an endangered primate as listed by the International Union of Conservation for Nature (IUCN).

Itinerary

Day 1Pick up and drive to Bwindi impenetrable national park

Our driver will pick you up from the airport in Entebbe and start the long journey to Bwindi through Kampala city. The Journey from Entebbe or Kampala to Bwindi takes between 9 to 10 hours. This is quiet long but Uganda is the “Pearl of Africa”. If you love nature and beautiful landscape, then you will not be bored or fall asleep because there is so much to see. The first major stop is at the Equator crossing in Kayabwe for photography. The equator crossing is where the earth’s northern hemisphere meets the southern hemisphere. You can spread both of your legs on the different hemispheres and call yourself among the lucky few on earth who have done it. As you continue towards Bwindi, you will pass through several owns and districts. Watch out for the markets, people tending to their gardens and the amazing long horned Ankole cattle.

Western Uganda has arguably the best scenery and you will experience this while in the Kigezi region. And I shouldn’t forget to mention beautiful sightings of lakes, birds, rivers, forests, branches of the great East African Rift Valley and the Rwenzori mountains. The driver will ensure that he stops at several points along the way to allow you admire any interesting landmarks. Lunch will be taken in Mbarara at the Igongo Cultural Centre. Finally, you will reach Bwindi Impenetrable forest late in the Afternoon in time to shower, refresh, take a short walk around the lodge and sleep.

Dinner and overnight will be at Gorilla Mist Camp (Luxury) and Rushaga Gorilla Camp (Budget and Mid-range)

Day 2Gorilla Trekking – Batwa cultural encounter

The driver will pick you up after breakfast to go and attend the early morning briefing at the park headquarters. The briefing covers various topics including what to expect, the history of the forest, what to pack and how to manage your one hour with the primates. This is also the time when your passport and gorilla permit will be verified. After being allocated one of the gorilla groups, you will be led into the forest to look for the primates. Only 8 people may track a gorilla group in a day. The first task is to get to the starting point and this depends on the gorilla group you are assigned. If the starting point is close to the park offices, you will only need to walk. However, if it is far off, you will be taken by car. Things are done differently these days. An advance team of trackers is sent before the sun rises to identify the exact location of the gorillas. This advance team is in constant communication with your Guide by radio and lets him/her know which route to follow.

As you find your way in the thick forest, the Guide will share information about the park, the different species of plants, birds and primates. Feel free to ask the Guide and Rangers questions about the things you do not understand. Once you encounter the primates, you will only be allowed one hour with them. 

Use the time to observe them eat, play, groom and breastfeed. The dominant silverback will be observing your movements. With that in mind, stay calm, keep a distance, do not touch an infant or stare directly into the eye of a gorilla. Do not forget to take great photos of yourself with the primates. After one hour of interaction with the gorillas, you will be lead out of the forest and back to the starting point for your certificate of participation.  Our company Guide will take you back to the lodge for lunch and rest. Once you have rested for a while, the driver will take you for the Batwa Cultural Experience were you will be entertained with songs, dance and drama. You will also get to visit their community and learn a lot about their culture from the elders. After your encounter with the Batwa pygmies, you will go back to the lodge for relaxation.

Dinner and overnight will be at Gorilla Mist Camp (Luxury) and Rushaga Gorilla Camp (Budget and Mid-range)

Day 3Travel back to Kampala for departure

This will be the last day of your trip. The driver will pick you up from your room depending on your departure flight. If you have a late flight or planning to stay in Entebbe/Kampala, the driver will allow you to rest for a while. The journey back to Kampala will be long but with stops at the Igongo Cultural Center, the Buganda Royal Drum Makers and Kampala city. You will be dropped off in a hotel or at the airport in Entebbe.

Photos