Day 1: Entebbe or Kampala - Mabamba Swamp & Shoebill Stork Search
After arriving at night, you can rest till the late morning or early afternoon. The 9 day Uganda safari begins; we pick you up at your Entebbe or Kampala hotel any time before 13.00hr and drive to Mabamba swamp to search for the most sought after bird in Africa, the ancient looking Shoebill Stork along with many other birds in the Swamp. It takes about 1 hour to drive from Entebbe to the boat / Canoe, mainly on dirt roads - about 50km (1½ hour) west of Kampala. Mabamba Swamp is an extensive marsh stretching through a long narrow bay, fringed with papyrus towards the western main body of Lake Victoria in Mpigi District. You will then access the swamp in local fishing boat / Canoe with a local guide.
Pack a nice lunch, take some bottled water take along a good pair of Binoculars, hat, sun protection, insect repellent, light rain jacket. long-sleeved shirt, and long trousers – all in your backpack.
Mabamba Swamp is a large tract of marshlands with various channels through it and it provides the perfect habitat for countless of water-birds away from the Shoebill Stork such as Swamp flycatcher, African purple swamp hen, African water rail, Pallid Harrier, Papyrus Gonolek, White-winged Warbler and the Blue Swallow Common moorhen, lesser jacana, African jacana, African pygym Goose, White-faced whistling duck, Squacco heron, Blue reasted Bee-eater, Winding cisticola, Goliath Heron and many others
Back in the day, the Shoebill Storks were being killed in Uganda by superstitious fisherman who saw their sighting as a bad omen, meaning no success during fishing once found.
We end our day with a drive and check into your Kampala preferred lodging.
Day 2: Kampala - Murchison Falls Park & afternoon Safari drive
The morning starts early after your breakfast, we begin our journey northward to Murchison Falls National Park through Masindi. Before Masindi there is the option of adding on the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary, a large preserve where Rhinos are bred in an effort to restock Murchison Falls National Park with Rhinos (the last one was shot in 1982) - that included means we have to leave Kampala not later than 06.15hr so as not to disrupt the our day schedule. - it takes 1-2 hours. As we enter the park we go the top of the falls that make Murchison Falls National Park so famous. This is a place for most memorable pictures and a taking in of the sounds and sights, including the ever present rainbow created by the mist of the falls.
The river is 50 meters wide and goes through a 7 meter wide gorge plunging down 45 meters creating a roaring sound that will stay with you. Something you will never forget and there is something about standing alongside the mighty River Nile.
We check in at the Murchison Falls accommodations that you selected, choosing from budget, moderate or up-market. (recommended Budget - Global Village Guest House and very basic Red Chilli Camp, Mid-range - Fort Murchison Lodge and Up Market on lower end Paraa Safari Lodge).
After some refreshments we take the late afternoon game drive viewing some of the best wildlife and birds in Uganda. Murchison Falls Park is simply fabulous. Lions, Elephants, Antelopes such as Uganda Kob, Giraffes, Buffaloes all there as you move through the savannah landscape. Take it all in, it is most wonderful and literally awesome. Afterwards it is dinner at your place of lodging and a well deserved rest.
Day 3: Safaris drive & Nile boat Safari
Early morning breakfast and off for the morning game drive where you will see more and new animals and birds as you travel along Lake Albert and through the savannah. You will be simply glad that you came here and hate to return to the lodging facility for rest and lunch.
After lunch, we go to one of the major highlights of Murchison Falls National Park, motorized boat ride on the Nile to view the crocodiles, the many hippos along the bank and in the river, the birds, monkeys, buffaloes, elephants and so much more and of course the bottom of the falls. This is a three hour trip and it is best to wear a hat and lots of lotion. Use some insect repellent to avoid being bitten by Tsetse flies. Dinner at lodging and rest for the night.
Day 4: Drive to Fort Portal - Kibale Chimpanzee Forest Park
Breakfast early and we move on to Kibale Forest, driving to some beautiful countryside which is a bonus along the way. Lunch along the journey and of course we provide drinking Water while in the vehicle as we travel.
We reach Fort Portal area where you can stay either at budget, moderate or up-scale lodging facilities as you have selected. We check in and have dinner and rest for the night after a long day of travel. Recommended for the experience (Chimps' Nest Tree House in the jungle)
Day 5: Kibale Forest Chimp Tracking
Early Breakfast and leave the lodging for chimpanzee tracking (trekking). Other primates that may be observed are Red tailed monkeys, L’Hoest's Monkeys and lots of Baboons. This is a fabulous forest that you will absolutely love, imagine an African Rainforest filled with wildlife and primates, exotic plants and trees, butterflies, birds in abundance and you are in it.
Afternoon Walk – Bigodi Swamp Wetlands which is next to Kibale Forest and you just might see chimpanzees again and of course lots of birds are found there including the Shoebill Stork, the great Blue turaco, Blue monkeys, Baboons, otters, Mongoose, Bush bucks, Bush pigs and many more. Kibale Forest is also home to Forest Elephants who are hairier and smaller than their savannah cousins. They also have smaller tusks which allows them to roam the forests. You can also find Forest Buffaloes which are redder in color than the ones on the savannah. Kibale Forest is a part of a migration corridor that extends through Queen Elizabeth Park into the Democratic Republic of Congo. Look at the toes of a forest Elephants if you have time. They have one more toe than do its savannah cousins.
Bigodi Swamp Wetlands is a community project that has been put together quite well and entrance and guide fees benefit the local community.
You may consider spending more time with the Chimps and not just the 3-hour chimp trek of which just one is spent with them. You can do the Chimpanzee Habituation Experience (CHEX) and spend 4 hours watching and following the chimpanzees through the forest.
Common Question; What is the difference between regular Chimpanzee Trekking and Chimpanzee Habituation Experience?
Habituation here is simply a process of getting the chimpanzee oriented to human presence while in thier natural habitat. When you go for Chimpanzee Trekking, you are one hour with a fully habituated Chimpanzee Group after finding them. That means they are used to human beings. When you go on a 4-hour Habituation Experience, you are observing a Chimpanzee Group that is in the process of being habituated, – a process that takes up to two years long and you are a participant in the process. You go down in to the rainforest with a guide in a small group - max of 4 plus ranger. Once you find the chimps, you watch and follow them through the rainforest for a few hours. Expect the experience to differ each day as these are wild animals who are not trained to perform as if they are in a circus. On some days the trek may however be hard as you are often moving fast through dense forest so as to not lose the chimps. Learn more about Chimp Habituation Experience Vs. regular chimp trek.
Please Note – As of July 1, 2020, the Chimpanzee Habituation Experience increased in price from $200 to $250. Regular Chimpanzee Trekking in Kibale Forest increased from $150 to $200. Advance planning is necessary as this is not something you are going to decide on ground.
Day 6: Shifit to Queen Elizabeth Wildlife Park and Kazinga Channel Boat Safari.
An early morning breakfast and leave for Queen Elizabeth National Park (about 2½ - 3 hrs hours). Driving through Fort Portal town, you turn enter Queen Elizabeth National Park while in a game drive. QENP is surrounded by snow-capped 16,000-foot Rwenzori Mountains, and in the north, "Mountains of the Moon". The park is 767-square-miles of conservation area and is bordered on the North East by Lake George, and Lake Edward on the South West; its western border adjoins the Zaire Parc Du Virunga. Look out for teeming herds of impala-like Uganda Kob, as well as topi, elephant and lion, giant forest hog, Cape buffalo. There are also several soda lakes filling ancient volcanic calderas where flamingos reside seasonally. Arrive at your lodging choice, check in, lunch and relax.
A 4 pm boat safari on Kazinga Channel with it's highest concentration of hippos in Africa. At one time there were too many hippos and their grazing denuded the surrounding grasslands. Before independence they would be culled by the wildlife authorities. The locals ate the meat and after Idi Amin came to power, poachers and soldiers, and again at the fall of Idi Amin, many hippos were shot by locals, rebels and soldiers.
There are also crocodiles, countless of birds on the shore and overhead and in the water of the channel. This is a pleasant boat ride where you can get some great pictures of elephants and buffaloes on shore. Hopefully an open mouthed hippo shot.
Day 7: Morning Game drive and afternoon Relaxation (Or, Ishasha Tree Climbing lions all day)
It is off to a morning game drive catching some of the nocturnal animals as they call it a night. As you drive along there is nothing like a herd of Elephants moving across the track ahead of you. A pair of lions in the distant savanna grass. Buffaloes grazing in the early morning hour. Birds flying overhead, maybe a rock python here or there. The game track rides last about 2½ to 3 hours but you won't even realize the time has gone by.
The other option for the afternoon is the chimpanzee tracking in the Kyambura Gorge. Tracking tickets can easily be obtained at the park offices if not arranged at the time of booking the safari. The is here however is that the likelihood of seeing chimps is sometimes limited. They do move around a bit and sightings are not guaranteed. Dinner at the lodge and a night rest.
Day 8: We move to Lake Mburo National Park:
It is early breakfast and off to Lake Mburo National Park. The perfect place to break a long journey at one of the most delightful places in Uganda. You can stay at one of the classy up-market tented camps that are eco-friendly and simply one of the nicest places you have ever stayed at or you can stay at the budget facility.
We arrive for an afternoon lunch and check-in and then it is off to leisurely cruise around the lake. There is much wildlife to be seen from hippos to crocodiles, birds of all kinds, buffaloes, zebras, antelopes and much more. You will also see several other lakes such as Kazuma, Lake Bwa.
Day 9: Morning Game Drive & Return to Kampala
Breakfast and a morning Game Drive through the savannah or an ultimate treat. Check out Uganda’s wildlife besides the mountain gorillas in Bwindi such as zebra, warthog, buffalo, klipspringer, eland, oribi and waterbuck. Lake Mburo national Park, a haven for “impalas” small antelopes and herbivorous are most concentrated in Lake Mburo of all the Ugandan national Parks. There is more to impalas, Kampala; Uganda’s capital derives its name from here, it’s beautiful animal. A horseback safari, ATV quad safari tour is also possible. The choice is yours.
Drive to Kampala with stops at Mbarara for lunch, along the equator if you missed on the first day and at the Buganda Royal Drum Makers. Arrive in Kampala in late afternoon....Creating everlasting memories of the Pearl of Africa.
Below is what we offer as Safari Company
Lodging and Food, 4 Wheel Drive Safari Vehicle, Fuel, English Speaking Driver, Bottled Drinking Water on all Drives, Mabamba Shoebill Stork tour, Kibale Chimpanzee tracking permits, Park Entrance fees, & Guide for Tracking, Game Drives, Boat safaris, UWA armed expert ranger guide.
Not in Safari price: Air Travel to and from Uganda, Uganda Visa Costs, Laundry, Tips, Drinks, except those included in lodging meal price.
Feel free to contact us any time and book this Safari tour. We are here to answer any questions you may have. Whether its safari itineraries, competitive pricing or general information on any of our services/tours, we are just a phone call or few clicks away, shoot us an e-mail today, ...we look forward to hearing from you.
Whether you are looking for additional Uganda safari information, Safari itineraries, competitive quotes, or have any other questions, feel free to contact us at or even just call +256 (0) 777201697, we are always happy to answer your questions.