8 Days Uganda African Big Five Game Safari
Uganda African Big Five Game Safari – For most travellers that take vacations to Africa for wildlife viewing, the joy of seeing the so-called Big Five strikes them profoundly. The Big 5, which comprise of Lion, Leopard, African bush elephant, Rhino and the African buffalo, were not dabbed this because of size. The source of the story is ironical but highly celebrated today. In the colonial times and today among game hunters, these particular animals have rated highly because challenges involved in the effort to take them down. Their defensive character also contributes highly to these credits.
We have learned that travellers love an experience that has high chances of seeing these extraordinary creatures. Therefore we have put together an authentic safari experience to the wilderness where they live. We spend time in their distinct habitats and spend ample time with their prey with hope that they shall come to hunt while we are out there. We have over 94% chances for these animals. From experience, this has worked and not, sometimes. Every day has its unique adventures, be adventurous to see what happens on yours.
The tour focuses on national parks, which are undoubtedly the most favourable homes of the African Big Five.
Day 1 Uganda African Big Five Game Safari: Arrival For Uganda Safari and Nature Walk to the Entebbe Botanical Gardens
Most of our Uganda arrivals, come through Entebbe International Airport; therefore, we like to spend a night around this beautiful town before heading to the wild. The countryside locations that the rest of the tour will cover are a couple of hours’ drive apart. Besides, this night is relevant for taking care of a few details, making sure everything is in place after your flight and also shade-off a little bit of the jet-lag.
But for travellers willing to go right away, we do not spend the whole day time wasted if the flights arrive early. We pay a visit to the best botanical garden in the region. These botanical gardens are a charming natural habitat mix. They are composed of native and a couple of exotic trees that identified as a priority in the formation of a research station over a hundred years ago.
These trees became a natural home to dozens of bird species, three primate species which are Vervet and the Red-tailed Monkeys and a family of the Mantled guereza which is a monkey from the colobus cluster. Other wildlife which is easy to encounter includes a Stripped ground squirrel and several reptiles among which the massive Nile monitor is.
The over one kilometre stretch along with Lake Victoria habitat is luxurious with a fantastic lake view and an attraction to classic African waterfowl. We take a walk around the gardens for the afternoon and spend a night in Entebbe.
Day 2 Uganda African Big Five Game Safari: Transfer to Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary
After breakfast, we will drive around past Kampala, the capital city of Uganda and start heading north into the real wilderness.
The Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary, which is our first right wild destination, is a privately ran initiative that will give you reasons to appreciate conservation efforts and ignite the desire to be part of them. It ranks highly among the most successful conservation initiatives in Uganda. It is a shame that a country which, once habituated two species of Rhinos, had them extirpated by the end of the 1980s, quite a shame. Thanks to the efforts of the Rhino Fund Uganda and a new government that appreciates nature, we can now see Rhinos in Uganda. Today a health population of White Rhinos in all ages roams the lands that they owned several years ago. We enjoy the privilege of being among the few people who can visit the sanctuary to trek and see these threatened animals and also spend a night in their unique habitat. It is also a good feeling to know that you are part of the effort towards the survival of such a magnificent animal.
We have lunch at the sanctuary and also do the Rhino trekking activity today.
Day 3 Uganda African Big Five Game Safari: Transfer to Murchison Falls National Park
This morning, we transfer to Uganda’s largest national park. Murchison Falls National Park is very popular, not only because of its incredible numbers of large and small wildlife but also exceptional sceneries that are composed of mountain views. Some of these mountain ranges are the border with Democratic Republic of Congo, long spans of plain Savannah grasslands, the sudden drop of the Great East African Rift Valley and its incredible escarpment. The Murchison Falls themselves are a highlight that hardly compares on the African continent.
After less than three hours drive, we will visit the top of the Murchison Falls National Park. Among our next day’s plans is to view them from the bottom, but the visit would be incomplete without enjoying the most dramatic views which are only at the top.
These are the world’s most powerful waterfalls, and they form when the mighty river Nile or the world’s longest river squeezes through a narrow cleft of eight feet and drops at a depth of forty feet. The Nile widens to up to three hundred and fifty metres and has points that are dipper than seven metres! Imagine all these water squeezing through 8 feet at one point; that is much pressure.
After we visit the top of the falls, we shall have a hot lunch from our accommodation facility and later do an afternoon drive. The drive will introduce us to the typical safari experience. Our game/wildlife drive on the northern side of the Nile will cover well-maintained tracks through open Savannahs. We should expect an excellent mammal experience from the large to some of the tiny mammals on the African continent.
Day 4 Uganda African Big Five Game Safari: Uganda African Big Five in Murchison Falls National Park of Uganda
We head out in the field early in the morning to catch up with the early risers. The big game hunters like Lions, Leopards and Spotted Hyenas are active in the night, but we also know very well that they are also active at dawn and dusk. We hope to find them roaming the beautiful Savannah while we also look for Rothschild’s Giraffe and the enormous African bush elephants. Herds of African buffalo are easy to see here. However, we also expect to see Uganda’s national mammal the Kob, Lelwel’s Hartebeest, Waterbuck, Bohor Reedbuck, Bushbuck, Oribi, Common Warthog, Side-striped Jackal, among others.
We will return to the hotel for a nice hot lunch and later take a three hours scheduled boat ride upstream to the bottom of the Murchison Falls. We love boat rides and the ones on Uganda waters are worth it. Each one of them has a unique wildlife experience. From the Jetty itself, we start scanning for wildlife, and frequently, the Hippopotamus are within close range. As the boat goes along the thick riverine forest habitats, we will browse the banks for gigantic Nile crocodiles and herds of African bush elephants that love to come down to drink and bath at this time of the day. The birdlife here is terrific since the Nile harbours an uncountable range of small aquatic animals. We should expect to see several Egrets and Herons that should include, Cattle, Great, Intermediate and Little Egrets. Goliath, Grey, Squacco, Striated and Black-headed Herons. Malachite, Woodland, the stunning Grey-headed and Giant Kingfishers should also be expected. We hope to observe breeding colonies of Bee-eaters, African Fish Eagles and if very lucky, the elusive Shoebill which is also Africa’s most sought-after bird.
Day 5 Uganda African Big Five Game Safari: Scenic Drive to Kibale Forest National Park
Our next game drive destination Queen Elizabeth National Park is quite a distance away, so we spend a night around Kibale forest and get a different kind of wildlife quality then proceed the next day.
We drive through verdant countryside and have continuous observations of the traditional grass-thatched homesteads and subsistence farmlands to Kibale Forest for the Chimpanzee Trekking experience the next day. This drive offers the complete knowledge of seeing the less privileged Ugandans and how happily they live; we learn from their lives that deferent factors drive happiness world over. The drive is quite lengthy, but we have the excellent roads advantage on this tour. We will enjoy the beautiful scenery and also be treated to an adorable green colour of the tea plantations when we approach Fort Portal town.
Day 6 Uganda African Big Five Game Safari: Chimpanzee Trekking and Transfer to QENP
This morning we visit Kanyanchu, which is a tourist information centre, and where most of the activities begin. We do not consider Chimpanzee trekking at Kibale forest for regular reasons, we have confirmed that here are the best chances for bringing humans into great experiences with their closest relative. This forest has the highest number of Chimpanzee individuals for any protected area world over and also the best wild adventure with these precious apes. Kibale forest is also dabbed the primate capital of the world because of its fourteen species record of primates. When a day starts, keen primatologist will enjoy the encounters with the Uganda red and Mantled guereza colobus species. The diurnal colobus will mix with the endemic Uganda mangabey, Blue monkey, L’Hoest’s monkey, Olive baboon, Red-tailed, Vervet and the recently described Tantalus monkeys. The optional nocturnal activities are great for the elusive Potto, Thomas, Demidoff’s and Spectacled galago among others. We do not know if we will do this activity until the day it should be done, this because a minimum of participants have to be willing to go and it should not be raining.
We will join other tourists to be split into groups of six and track the Chimpanzee in the morning.
In the afternoon, we will continue to Africa’s most diverse safari drive park, which holds a UNESCO World Heritage site because of the existence of up to eleven communities. The diversity of the habitats here earned this remarkable park numbers of wildlife considering its size. At approximately 1900 square metres, it is only the second-largest park in Uganda, but it has the highest record of mammal species and over 620 species of birds. This is much wildlife in such a small area.
Day 7 Uganda African Big Five Game Safari: Game Viewing and Boat Ride on the Kazinga Channel
Two sections occur on the northern part of Queen Elizabeth National Park. We intend to spend our morning session on the Kasenyi tracks side because we know that this where the real deal is. The Kasenyi tracks have interestingly well maintained short grasses which are most preferred by grazing animals. It is on this side we have discovered magnificent lekking grounds for the Kobs. The intelligent cats like Lions and Leopards, like to keep around these mating grounds where prey seems more comfortable to get.
We will scan the Euphorbia candelabrums, the sparsely distributed bushes and isolated Acacia trees for the tree-climbing lions and the solitary but also shy Leopards among other animals. We shall also visit a local salt mining lake. The communities that are within the park survive on these salt mines. Others rely on the fish from Lake Edward and George.
We will return to our accommodation for a hot lunch and in the afternoon do a boat cruise on the famous Kazinga Channel. This is a forty kilometres long natural channel which connects lake Edward and George. Lake George is wholly in the park, and Edward is shared between Uganda and DR Congo, and Kazinga channel is also entirely within this out of the ordinary conservation area. The two hours cruise covers a less than four kilometres round trip which goes along the banks of the channel and into Lake Edward. Here is an accurate picture of what paradise is described as in some Christian literature. African buffaloes chill in the water to suffocate parasites like ticks and also keep temperatures low while Oxpeckers peck their wounds for blood stains and cleanse them of insects as. The giant African elephants take baths and splash water around each other in love, species of antelope join the mix while Hippopotamus lay side by side with huge Nile crocodiles. The birdlife amidst these big mammals is incredible, and the calmness of the waters is breathtaking.
Day 8 Uganda African Big Five Game Safari: Transfer to Entebbe Via the Uganda Equator
For our last day, we will surely cover quite a distance. This an approximately eight hours drive, but we shall have an adventurous stop at the equator for photographic opportunities and the Equator experience. We will have our lunch along the way and arrive Entebbe in perfect time for departures if you have flights departing today.
A day room for changing before transferring to the airport is included in the costing of this tour.
- Transport in a 4WD Toyota Land Cruiser with a pop-up roof and clear sliding windows for excellent game viewing safari and photography
- All vehicle fuel for the tour
- One Chimpanzee Trekking Permit Per Person
- Boat Rides
- English speaking Ugandan driver/guide
- Accommodation and three meals a day (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner) through the tour. Or as agreed at booking
- Park Entrance/Conservation fees according to the program
- All activities described in the itinerary
- International air fares and entry visa
- Meals that are not part of your accommodation
- Personal (medical/travel) insurance
- Government tax or park fees increase
- Tips and gratuities to rangers, driver/guide, porter, hotel staff, etc
- All expenses of personal nature (e.g. drinks, laundry, optional activities, souvenirs etc.)