10 DayCulture and Wildlife Safari, Uganda

© Random Institute
Hippo in Queen Elizabeth National Park.
This 10 Day Culture Safari in Uganda will give you a unique experience as you witness a profusion of birds soaring the Ugandan skies, track chimpanzees, and embark on a cultural journey.

Uganda Safari Highlights:

  • Large variety of bird life
  • Awesome wildlife viewing
  • track wild chimpanzee
  • Exciting cultural overview of Uganda

Please Note: This is a suggested example itinerary, which can be amended to create a special unique safari just for you.

Day 1: Lake Mburo National Park

You will be picked up from the airport by your guide and driven through Uganda's rolling green hills to Lake Mburo National Park. This is a geographical extension of the Tanzanian plains and is home to a vast population of Zebra, it is the only park in Uganda with an Impala population, and is the best place to spot the African finfoot. On the way there will be a stop at Katereke, one of the Kabakas' Trail Heritage Sites.

Upon arrival in the park, spend the afternoon recovering from jet-lag or paddle on the lake in a dug out canoe listening to the wallowing Hippos. There are opportunities for an evening game drive. You stay overnight at the privately tented Mantana Camp (Full Breakfast).

Day 2: Queen Elizabeth National Park

Depart Lake Mburo and drive to Queen Elizabeth National Park, Uganda's most popular park and host to a large variety and volume of wildlife. There are over 560 species of bird found here including the martial eagle, black-rumped buttonquail, Verreaux's eagle owl and African skimmer.

You stay overnight at either Mweya Lodge (Full Breakfast), a large first class lodge overlooking the Kazinga Channel and the resident hippo population, or the smaller and more intimate Jacana Lodge (Full Breakfast) situated in the Maramagambo forest, on a beautiful crater lake. If there is time you may want to go on an evening game drive.

Day 3: Queen Elizabeth National Park

Queen Elizabeth National Park. An early morning game drive will provide you with the best opportunity to see a wealth of animals such as Elephant, Warthog, Lion, hyena, Uganda kob, Waterbuck and bushbuck. Later, a boat trip will allow you to experience wildlife up close where Hippos huff and spray mere feet away, Buffalo linger in the shallows and a tremendous variety of birds grace the grasses on the river's edge such as the malachite and pied kingfishers, great white and pink-backed pelicans and the open-billed stork.

In the afternoon you will take a guided walk in the mysterious Maramagambo forest. This feels prehistoric with strangler figs, giant screw palms, and wildlife of its own: a cave housing thousands of egyptian fruit bats, brightly coloured lizards and geckos, and the deep cobalt blue of the forest lake. Return to either Mweya Lodge or Jacana Lodge for sundowners.

Day 4: Queen Elizabeth National Park

Queen Elizabeth National Park. With a picnic lunch on board, you will head off to see the beautiful necklace-like string of crater lakes in the northern region of the park.

You will picnic at Baboon Rock Cliff. Set high up, the view over the craters to the north and the Savanna to the south makes for an inspirational sight. Return to either Mweya Lodge or Jacana Lodge for sundowners.

Day 5: Fort Portal

Depart Queen Elizabeth National Park for Ndali Lodge near the town of Fort Portal. The lodge is perched atop a hill with the most stunning views down to a private lake on the one side and waving green banana plantations on the other. In the afternoon you will have a chance to relax and tour a tea plantation where you will be able to see the process from start to finish as well as sample the fresh tea and if impressed, buy some for yourselves. You stay overnight at Ndali Lodge (Full Breakfast).

Day 6: Semliki Valley Wildlife Reserve

Before leaving Fort Portal you will go on a short hike with a local Ugandan guide who will take you up into the hills to visit a Ugandan village. Here you will be able to watch them weaving their baskets and making the dyes from various roots and berries. In addition to this you might wish to pay a visit to the local herbalist or medicine man, and listen to the ladies sing their wonderful songs.

Just in time for tea, you will wind down a mountain pass into Semliki Valley Wildlife Reserve, the oldest protected area in Uganda and home to a staggering array of flora and fauna. Nestled on the crest of the Wasa River Valley is the small and luxurious Semliki Safari Lodge. Each tented room has large four-poster beds, Persian rugs and en-suite bathrooms. As the only place in Uganda that offers night game drives you have a good chance of seeing leopard as well as the odd surprise or two, such as genets, cervals, white-tailed and slender mongoose. You stay overnight at Semliki Safari Lodge (Full Breakfast).

Day 7: Semliki Valley Wildlife Reserve

Semliki Valley Wildlife Reserve. Accompanied by guides and the resident Chimpanzee researcher, you will have an early morning start to track the wild chimps. They are more active than gorillas and tend to be seen at dawn and dusk. If lucky, you will catch the chimps in their night nests and observe them come to life.

The forest is fascinating and full of different species of flora and fauna. Return to the lodge for brunch and then lounge by the pool. Semliki has an extensive selection of books so feel free to collapse on the sofa with a good read.

Before sunset, go out in the open topped vehicle for a sundowner and watch the sun drop down behind the mountains and the expanse of the Congo beyond.Optional night game drive and overnight at Semliki Safari Lodge (Full Breakfast).

Day 8: Semliki Valley Wildlife Reserve

Semliki Valley Wildlife Reserve. After breakfast you will climb aboard the vehicle with a packed lunch for the short hop to Lake Albert and a great private boat trip. Here you will not only be stunned by the scenery, with the escarpment plunging down from dizzying heights and the Mountains of the Moon shimmering in the distance, but also by the extensive wildlife all around.

The lake is home to numerous varieties of bird not least of which is the rare and prehistoric looking shoebill. In addition to this you will see many other wonderful birds such as: common squacco, purple and goliath herons, hamerkop, yellow-billed stork, the African fish eagle, malachite and pied kingfisher, grey-headed gull, and an incredible colony of red-throated bee-eaters during the January to March breeding season.

Stopping at some waterfalls provides an ideal spot for your picnic lunch. You will make a slow return back to the lodge sipping on a cold drink whilst watching the sun drop down behind the mountains and the expanse of the Congo beyond. You once again stay overnight at Semliki Safari Lodge (Full Breakfast).

Day 9: Semliki Valley Wildlife Reserve

Semliki Valley Wildlife Reserve. After breakfast you have the option of several exploratory walks along one of the many forest trails in Semliki. Here you will be able to track the rare forest Elephant and explore the swamps. After lunch at the lodge, climb back in the Land Cruiser for the return trip and dinner in Kampala. Overnight at The Sheraton Hotel (Bed Breakfast).

Day 10: Entebbe

After breakfast, transfer to Entebbe airport for the flight home.


  • Cost of the gorilla trek, 1 gorilla permits per person
  • All accommodation
  • All ground transportation in private 4 x 4 Safari Land Cruiser, airport transfers and fuel
  • Full- time experienced safari guide (English speaking) and his associated expenses
  • All meals (except where B&B is denoted)
  • Water, snacks, tea and coffee in the vehicle
  • Fees in National Parks for rangers, park entrances and activities as indicated in the itinerary
  • All applicable taxes, administration and banking fees

Not Included

  • International flights
  • Any items of personal nature i.e. drinks, laundry, telephone, souvenirs, porters at the gorilla trek
  • Travel / medical insurance
  • Gratuities for Guide/driver / hotel staff
  • Any extras not mentioned in the itinerary
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