10 Days Gorilla trekking Safari in Congo and Uganda

Gorilla Safaris and Tours in Virunga and Bwindi Forest National Park

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The 10 Days Gorilla trekking Safari in Congo and Uganda is an impressing safari package that will combine Congo and Uganda’s most splendid national parks with unique cultural experiences and taste of world class services from some of the finest lodges in Uganda. You will visit different Kigali Genocide Memorial Center. The 10 Days Congo –Uganda Safari will take you the stunning Virunga National Park in Congo, Mgahinga Gorilla National Park –where silver meets Gold, Kibale National Park dubbed the primate capital of the world with largest counts of habituated chimpanzees, Bwindi Impenetrable National Park which has almost a half of the world’s critically endangered mountain gorillas and the scenic Lake Bunyonyi dubbed the lake of a thousand islands. The long 10 days Gorilla trekking Safari in Congo and Uganda will start in Kigali and end in Kampala.

Day 1: Transfer from Kigali to Kisoro – Uganda.

Early in the morning, you will be picked up by our experienced driver guide to start your Gorilla trekking Safari in Congo and Uganda with an interesting Kigali City tour. The city tour will take you through Gisozi genocide memorial center where you will have time to listen to the comprehensive history of Rwanda during the 1994 genocide and the events of the massacres, including personal accounts. You will view the Photographs, video clips, and artifacts of the genocide. After lunch in Kigali, you will embark on transfer to Kisoro in Uganda. On arrival to Kisoro, you will drive to your lodge to check-in, have dinner and overnight.

Accommodations: Mount Gahinga Lodge (Luxury/Upmarket), Kisoro Travellers Rest (Standard/Mid-Range), Countryside Guesthouse Kisoro (Budget)

Day 2: Do Early Morning Gorilla trekking in Virunga National Park.

Today is one of the main highlights of your Gorilla trekking Safari in Congo and Uganda! After an early morning breakfast, you will embark on 9 kilometers drive to border crossing point to DR Congo and proceed with 6 kilometers drive to Virunga national park headquarters. On arrival to the park headquarters, you will join other trekkers for an early morning briefing at 7:30am-8:00am from the Park rangers about the rules to follow when trekking gorillas in Virunga National Park. After briefing, you will head to Bakima Patrol Post where the gorilla trekking activities start. The park rangers will lead you into gorilla trekking trails to start searching for the mountain gorillas. After 1-3 hours of trek depending on the movement of the mountain gorillas, you will come closer to the apes. Once up close to the mountain gorillas, you will be required to wear surgical masks that are provided to you when encountering the gorillas in their natural habitat of Virunga National Park. You will be allowed to spend one hour with the mountain gorillas and during this time you can decide to sit down watch gorillas carry on with their daily activities of feeding, caring for young ones. You will remain close to the beautiful apes while observing them, photographing and immediately after one hour, you will retire to the starting point and thereafter, embark on drive back to the lodge for lunch and relaxation.

Day 3: Do Batwa Heritage trail and Transfer to Lake Bunyonyi.

After an early morning breakfast, embark on exploring the Batwa trail. The Batwa Trail is such an incredible experience as it takes you through the thick forests of Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. During this Batwa trail tour, the Batwa local guide will demonstrate to you their hunting techniques; how they used to gather honey; point out medicinal plants and demonstrate how to make bamboo cups. The tour will lead you to sacred Garama Cave- once home to the Batwa King, where the women of the community perform a sorrowful song which echoes eerily around the depths of the dark cave, and leaves you with a striking and moving sense of the richness of this fading culture. Thereafter fully exploring the Batwa trail, you will retire back to your lodge for relaxation and lunch. Embark on transfer drive of 80kms from Mgahinga to Lake Bunyonyi. On arrival to Lake Bunyonyi, you will drive to your lodge for check-in, have diner and overnight.

Accommodation: Birdnest Lake Bunyonyi Resort (Upmarket/Luxury), Lake Bunyonyi Eco-resort (Midrange/Standard) or Byoona Amagara Island Retreat (Budget/Basic

Day 4: Explore Lake Bunyonyi and Transfer to Bwindi.

After an early morning breakfast, embark exploring Lake Bunyonyi- the second deepest lake in Africa with lots of the tasty crayfish, so get set for a culinary delight. You will have an early morning boat cruise which will give you full account of different bird species with in the islands that are dotted all over the lake. You may also participate in refreshing activities such as swimming in the bilharzia free waters of Bunyonyi, you can also enjoy an early morning nature walks in the Bunyonyi Islands. After enjoying different adventurous activities, you will retire back to the lodge for lunch and relaxation. After lunch, embark on transfer from Lake Bunyonyi to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. You will depart Bunyonyi driving through the fascinating Kigezi Island to Bwindi Impenetrable forest. Upon your arrival to the park, you will advance with the drive direct to your lodge for dinner and overnight.

Accommodation: Chameleon Hill Lodge (Upmarket/Luxury), Gorilla Mist Camp (Midrange/Standard) or Broadbill Forest Camp (Budget/Basic).

Day 5: Do Gorilla trekking and afternoon Cultural encounter with the Local Batwa

After your early morning hefty breakfast, your driver guide will drive you with your packed lunch, bottled water, to the Park head Quarters in your respective gorilla trekking region for an early morning  briefing at about  70:30am to 8:00am about  etiquettes of gorilla trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. While at the park headquarters, you will meet other trekkers and you will be divided into groups of eight individuals who are only allowed to trek one specific habituated Gorilla family. After briefing, UWA experienced ranger guide will lead you to the trail heads where thrilling gorilla trekking experience starts from. You will entre in the ancient, thick dark impenetrable forest to begin hiking the hills and slopping the valleys when looking for the unique species of the mountain gorillas inhabited in the famous Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. The trek can take you between 2-8 hours to meet face to face with the mountain gorillas and once up close, you will be allowed to spend one magical hour with these stunning apes. During this time you can decide to sit down listen to gorilla crumble, study how these apes go about their daily activities and you can take as many photos as possible. When the one hour is done, you will walk back to the park headquarters and retire back to your lodge for late Lunch, relaxation. After relaxation, you will be driven to the nearby Batwa community for memorable, refreshing cultural encounter.  Here you will be guided by a local guide who will take you to the different communities to see how people have managed to survive through farming.  You will see how local brew is processed from fresh Bananas and forest remedies to get beer and Waragi and also enjoy the performances done by the local Batwa women groups. After that interesting cultural encounter, you will drive back to your respective lodge for to send your second Gorilla trekking Safari in Congo and Uganda experience with dinner and overnight. Thereafter the activity, you will retreat back to your lodge for dinner, memory sharing and overnight.

Accommodation: Chameleon Hill Lodge (Upmarket/Luxury), Gorilla Mist Camp (Midrange/Standard) or Broadbill Forest Camp (Budget/Basic).

Day 6: Transfer to Queen Elizabeth with an enroute game drive in Ishasha sector

Transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park after taking your early morning breakfast. The drive will take you through the impressive country side landscapes with rural setting and local populations. On arrival to Ishasha sector, you will have your lunch and participate in an afternoon game drive through the tracks of Ishasha sector. The game drive will give you the possibilities of encountering tree climbing lions that tend to lie on the branches of fig trees while keeping a close eye on herds of Uganda kob. You may also see other wildlife species like buffalos, elephants. After game drive in Ishasha, continue with the drive to Queen Elizabeth National Park in Mweya peninsular.

Accommodation: Mweya Safari Lodge (Upmarket/Luxury), Enganzi Lodge (Midrange/Standard) or Pumba Safari Cottages (Budget/Basic).

Day 7: Do morning game drive & afternoon boat cruise along the Kazinga Channel and transfer to Mountain Rwenzori

Take an early morning cup of coffee before embarking on the wild game viewing in the rolling savannah plains of Queen Elizabeth National Park. The drive will take you through Kasenyi which is a dwelling place for a range of game including the elephants, lions, buffaloes, Antelopes among others. The racks are well designed to increase you possibilities of encountering wild game. The sights of an elusive leopard, defassa waterbuck, Uganda kob, Side stripped Jackal; Oribis among others might be encountered. Return to the lodge after this 3 -4 hour game drive for refreshment and relaxation until the time for lunch. After having a thrilling lunch, embark on the rewarding boat cruise on the 45km long Kazinga Channel that connects Lakes Edward and George. The 2 hour boat cruise opens your possibilities of enjoying the calm channel waters filled with counts of Hippos no wonder the channel is called the Paradise of Hippos. The other sights of water birds and the Nile crocodiles may not be missed. Retire in the evening at 5pm to connect to Mountain Rwenzori Park. The transfer distance of 72 kilometers about 2-3hours on rough road will see you arrive in Mountain Rewnzori late in the evening like at 8-9pm. Upon your arrival to the park, you drive to the lodge to check-in, have dinner and overnight.

Accommodation: Hotel Margherita (Upmarket/Luxury) Rwenzori International Hotel (Mid-Range/Stamdard), Ruboni Community Camp (Budget),

Day 8: Hiking and Nature Walks to Rwenzori Mountains and transfer to Kibale forest park

After cup of coffee, embark on an early morning hiking to Rwenzori Mountains .You will hike through Kilembe Trail. The trail will take you through the lovely Nyamwamba Valley passing through glacial lakes and some stunning viewpoints before joining the Central Circuit at Lake Kitandara. Along the way, you will keep an eye out for chameleons, squirrels, vervet monkeys and many birds .After having memorable hiking experience, retire back to the starting point and head to the park for late lunch. After lunch, embark on 135 kms distance transfer to Kibale forest Park. Arrive in Kibale national park late in the evening like at 8-9pm and advance with the drive to the lodge for dinner and overnight.

Accommodation: Ndali Lodge (Upmarket), Chimpanzee Forest Guesthouse (Mid-range/Standard) or Rwenzori View Guesthouse (Budget/Basic).

Day 9: Do an Early Morning Chimpanzee trekking and Bigodi wetland walk in the afternoon.

Have an early morning breakfast and embark on the Chimpanzee trekking encounter in the primate Capital of the world – the Kibale National Park. The Park boasts of 13 primate species including the common Chimpanzees which have been fully habituated making your chances of encountering them to be at 90%. These apes are the most intellectual in the animal kingdom, perhaps brighter human beings. Chimpanzee trekking encounter starts at Kanyanchu tourism center at 8am in the morning and the Uganda Wildlife Authority Park rangers are dedicated to take you throughout the whole exercise. The Chimpanzees will lure you in a state of amazement as they swing through the branches, make pant hooting calls, play with each other, and imitate your body language along with other features that will make your one full hour with them a memorable experience of its own. In a bid to search for chimps, you will come across other primates including olive baboon, red-tailed monkey, black and white colobus monkey and the blue monkey. Retreat from the activity which tends to take 2 – 5 hours to your lodge for lunch, relaxation .Afterwards, embark on the transfer to Bigodi wetland. The Bigodi wetland, lies in close distance to the park thus connecting there is less hectic. The Bigodi wetland walk exposes you to typical eco –tourism encounter in Uganda. The impressive flora and fauna existing along with the local community is indeed rewarding to encounter. The sights of great blue turaco and the Sitatnga may not be missed. Retreat from the activity back to lodge for relaxation dinner and overnight.

Accommodation: Ndali Lodge (Upmarket), Chimpanzee Forest Guesthouse (Mid-range/Standard) or Rwenzori View Guesthouse (Budget/Basic).

Day 10: Do an Early Morning Fort Portal Crater Lake hike and visit the Amabere g’ Nnyinamwiru caves and Afternoon transfer to Kampala

After an early morning breakfast, embark on an early morning Fort Portal Crater Lake Hike to gain magnificent views and sights of the remarkable Fort Portal explosion craters. You will also tour the stunning Amabere g’ Nnyinamwiru caves with a magical Nyakasura River falling over them forming splendid water fall. The caves have breast like features which the locals attach a great cultural connotation and are thought to date back to the Chwezi era. Thereafter, Retreat from the activity and retire to the lodge for relaxation, lunch. After lunch, embark on drive transfer to Kampala –Uganda’s Capital City. You will arrive in Kampala in the evening like at 5-6pm and the driver guide will take you back to your lodge to end you 10 days Gorilla trekking Safari in Congo and Uganda or Entebbe Airport for your flight back home if the schedule is on.

End of the Safari.

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