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Uganda Gorilla Safari

Treasured Encounters in the Impenetrable Forest

 

Venture to a land coined "the pearl of Africa" - the raw and beautiful Uganda, crossing its wetlands, tropical forests, and volcanic crater lakes. Listen for pant-hooting calls of clever chimps high up in fig trees and spot black-and-white colobus, gray-cheeked mangabey, and vervet monkeys. Witness the expressive look of mountain gorillas up close in the Bwindi. Head for thrilling game walks and rides through acacia-rich woodland and grassy valleys. Come evening, bask in the comforts of wilderness lodges, and track hyena and white-tailed mongoose on thrilling night safari drives.

  • Stand face to face with mighty mountain gorillas in mist-covered Bwindi Impenetrable Forest

  • Track chimpanzees, red-tailed monkeys, black-and-white colobus, and gray-cheeked mangabey in Kibale National Park

  • Discover Queen Elizabeth National Park's leafy rainforests, dense papyrus swamps, and volcanic crater lakes

Contact an Expert

Arrive:

Entebbe, Uganda

Depart:

Entebbe, Uganda

Price: from $7,995

Duration:

10 Days

Departures:

See Dates

Group Size:

3-8 Guests

Min Age:

15 yrs

Activity:

Level 4

The hikes to see the mountain gorillas can last anywhere from 30mins to 7 hours over moderately steep, thickly forested, and uneven terrain, and the climate will be hot and humid. There are some long driving days over rough roads and dusty dirt tracks. Morning and afternoon game drives in our 4WD vehicles.
Learn more here.

Download Detailed Itinerary

Click here to download the Detailed Itinerary.

  • Arrive in Entebbe, Uganda

    Day 1

    Welcome to Uganda! Upon arrival in Entebbe, meet a MT Sobek representative outside the customs and immigration area at the airport, for your transfer to the hotel. Enjoy a welcome dinner this evening.

    Accommodation: Protea Hotel Entebbe

    This modern 73-room hotel is ideally located on the glistening shores of Lake Victoria and conveniently located just minutes from the airport. Protea Hotel Entebbe has a trendy restaurant that offers an exciting and truly inviting a la carte menu seven days of the week. With elegant furnishings and a warm, inviting feel, the hotel's decor and rooms create a luxurious atmosphere. The outside terrace, with its own special ambience and superb lake views, is the perfect place to take it all in.

    Transportation: 5-minute private van transfer

    Meals: Dinner

  • Explore the Kibale Forest

    Day 2

    This morning board a 4X4 vehicle and drive into Uganda's lush countryside, a country that Winston Churchill once described as "the pearl of Africa." Pass through gorgeous scenery featuring farmsteads crammed with bananas and tropical trees, scenic wetlands, and patches of bush and forest. Continue on to the hill country below the Rwenzori mountains, through beautiful tea plantations and parts of the tropical Kibale forest, where you may spot some monkeys.

    Accommodation: Kyaninga Lodge-Uganda

    Set against the stunning backdrop of Lake Kyaninga and the Rwenzori mountains, this elegant solar-powered lodge showcases nine spacious cottages made from hand-carved logs, each with a private deck. The en-suite bathrooms boast marble countertop basins, claw-footed freestanding baths, and glass-walled showers. The swimming pool overlooks the lake, and the restaurant in the main lodge serves superb European cuisine with local ingredients.

    Transportation: 7-hour private 4x4 vehicle transfer

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  • Bigodi Wetlands Sanctuary and the Crater Lakes

    Day 3

    This morning, head to Bigodi village for a wetlands walk in search of primates: keep your eyes out for red-tailed monkeys, vervet monkeys, black-and-white colobuses, L'Hoest's monkey, gray-cheeked mangabeys, and olive baboons, along with some of Uganda's beautiful birds such as the great blue turaco and the elusive Angola pitta. After a traditional Ugandan lunch, head to Bigodi village to meet the locals before returning to our lodge where an optional and leisurely crater lake walk awaits with a backdrop of picturesque landscapes beautifully dotted with serene crater lakes. On clear days it's possible to see the Rwenzori Mountains of the Moon, the tallest African mountain range, in the distance.

    Accommodation: Kyaninga Lodge-Uganda

    Set against the stunning backdrop of Lake Kyaninga and the Rwenzori mountains, this elegant solar-powered lodge showcases nine spacious cottages made from hand-carved logs, each with a private deck. The en-suite bathrooms boast marble countertop basins, claw-footed freestanding baths, and glass-walled showers. The swimming pool overlooks the lake, and the restaurant in the main lodge serves superb European cuisine with local ingredients.

    Activity: 3-hour nature walk

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  • Track Chimps in Kibale National Park

    Day 4

    We will depart early this morning with a packed breakfast and spend most of the day in the forest and up to 4 hours observing the chimps! Follow experienced ranger-guides and a tracker, listening out for the chimps' pant-hooting calls on your way to their nesting site. An early start means the opportunity to see them waking up, stretching, and descending from the tree tops. As the day goes on, you'll quietly witness their routines, see them eat, and watch the group's social interactions. Late in the afternoon, you will say farewell (and goodnight) to the chimps and head back to park headquarters.

    Accommodation: Kyaninga Lodge-Uganda

    Set against the stunning backdrop of Lake Kyaninga and the Rwenzori mountains, this elegant solar-powered lodge showcases nine spacious cottages made from hand-carved logs, each with a private deck. The en-suite bathrooms boast marble countertop basins, claw-footed freestanding baths, and glass-walled showers. The swimming pool overlooks the lake, and the restaurant in the main lodge serves superb European cuisine with local ingredients.

    Activity: 8-hours chimp habituation

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  • Spot Hippos on a Kasinga Channel Cruise in Queen Elizabeth National Park

    Day 5

    Drive south along the eastern length of the Rwenzori Mountains, with views of their glaciated peaks, and into the Great African Rift valley. Set out on a 2-hour launch trip on the Kasinga Channel to view some of the largest concentration of hippo in the world - reported to be about 30,000. In the afternoon, drive two hours to today's destination: Queen Elizabeth National Park Ishasha sector. Uganda's most popular and accessible savannah reserve, this spectacular park showcases leafy rainforests, dense papyrus swamps, and natural volcanic crater lakes. It has impressively rich biodiversity, including a total of 95 recorded mammal species and more than 610 species of birds.

    Accommodation: Ishasha Wilderness Camp

    Ishasha Wilderness Camp is set in a magical location on the edge of the Ntungwe river in the middle of the wilderness, offering a unique bush experience. With African meru-styled tents, guests have private en suite bathroom and dressing area providing hot water 'bush' showers and an ecofriendly toilet.

    Transportation: 5-hours private 4x4 vehicle transfers, 2-hour boat safari

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  • Safari in Ishasha Region of Queen Elizabeth National Park

    Day 6

    Head out to explore the southern Ishasha region of Queen Elizabeth National Park. Keep an eye out for the areas famed tree-climbing lions, with a 75% viewing success rate. The area is also known for herds of elephant, buffalo, and many antelope species, including the graceful kob and colorful topi.

    Accommodation: Ishasha Wilderness Camp

    Ishasha Wilderness Camp is set in a magical location on the edge of the Ntungwe river in the middle of the wilderness, offering a unique bush experience. With African meru-styled tents, guests have private en suite bathroom and dressing area providing hot water 'bush' showers and an ecofriendly toilet.

    Activity: Morning & afternoon game drives

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  • Head to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

    Day 7

    Today drive through the park to search for tree-climbing lions (75% success rate) and other game. Then continue on to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park, one of Africa's most ancient habitats comprised of steep, jungle-coated mountains known for their exceptional biodiversity. Protected as a national park and a World Heritage Site, these magnificent landscapes are home to more than 160 species of trees, over 100 kinds of ferns, at least 90 mammal species, and almost half of the world's population of critically endangered mountain gorillas.

    Accommodation: Mahogany Springs-Uganda

    Set on the Munyanga River and facing the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, Mahogany Springs is the perfect base for gorilla tracking expeditions. The suites showcase private terraces with panoramic views and en-suite bathrooms with open terracotta showers. The main building features a terrace with marvelous vistas, a living room with a fireplace and a library, and a restaurant and bar.

    Transportation: 2-hour private 4x4 vehicle transfer

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  • Trek the Forest in Search of Gorillas

    Day 8

    After breakfast, report to the ranger station for a talk on the etiquette of gorilla tracking, then hike with a guide and tracker through misty rainforest to encounter these wild creatures. Trekking can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 7 hours, on rough and at times muddy terrain; a reasonable degree of fitness is required. You'll forget the fatigue once you lay your eyes on your first mountain gorilla - the experience of seeing these gentle giants at close range and in the wild is among the most extraordinary nature can provide.

    Accommodation: Mahogany Springs-Uganda

    Set on the Munyanga River and facing the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, Mahogany Springs is the perfect base for gorilla tracking expeditions. The suites showcase private terraces with panoramic views and en-suite bathrooms with open terracotta showers. The main building features a terrace with marvelous vistas, a living room with a fireplace and a library, and a restaurant and bar.

    Activity: 1-7 hours gorilla trekking & wildlife watching on foot

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  • Encounter Mountain Gorillas

    Day 9

    Rise early for another full day of gorilla tracking. Hike through the bush, pushing your way through the undergrowth and parting thick creepers. You will have one hour with these gentle giants of the African forest after first encountering them. Bwindi is renowned for its mountain gorilla population, an estimated 280-320 individuals living in 15 groups. Looking deep into their expressive brown eyes is an unparalleled experience. Look out for other wildlife as you trek through the forest, including yellow-backed duikers and a variety of birds.

    Accommodation: Mahogany Springs-Uganda

    Set on the Munyanga River and facing the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, Mahogany Springs is the perfect base for gorilla tracking expeditions. The suites showcase private terraces with panoramic views and en-suite bathrooms with open terracotta showers. The main building features a terrace with marvelous vistas, a living room with a fireplace and a library, and a restaurant and bar.

    Activity: 1-7 hours gorilla trekking & wildlife watching

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  • Fly to Entebbe and Bid Farewell to Uganda

    Day 10

    This morning after an early breakfast, bid farewell to the bush and transfer to the airport for a flight back to Entebbe, scheduled to depart Kihihi airstrip at 9:45 am, arriving at Entebbe at approximately 11:25 am. Enjoy access to a dayroom at Protea Hotel (available until 6:00 pm) before your transfer to the airport for your flight back home.

    Transportation: 1.5-hour private transfer, 1.5 hour flight

    Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Uganda Gorilla Trekking Safari

Download Detailed Itinerary

Click here to download the Detailed Itinerary.

What to Expect

 

Why take this trip with us?

Reason #01

We pride ourselves in working with the finest safari outfitters in Africa. All wilderness treks are accompanied by expert guides and professional trackers.

Reason #02

20% of the gorilla permits fees go to communities for projects like building health care centers, schools, clean water and sustainable agriculture education.

Reason #03

This itinerary blends gorilla trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest with a relaxing stay at deluxe wilderness lodgings. Gorilla permits are guaranteed!

Meet your guides

Habibu Muhereza

Habibu Muhereza

Habibu was born in Uganda's Bushenyi district and is of the Munyankole Tribe. After working as a teacher, Habibu decided to follow his love of animals and become a Uganda Wildlife Authority guide. His work with UWA, as a ranger and interpretive guide, gave him the opportunity to explore all of Uganda's parks in depth. With hard work and dedication he was appointed head UWA guide for Queen Elizabeth National Park, enabling him to manage wildlife and educate his local community on how to live alongside their neighboring fauna.

Milton Owinji

Milton Owinji

Milton was born in Western Uganda and has over ten years of experience leading trips in the region. He is an excellent communicator, an exceptional listener, and is dedicated to facilitating a memorable experience for each MT Sobek traveler. He exudes a tremendous amount of enthusiasm for exploring and experiencing Uganda's landscape, wildlife, and cultural elements. Milton makes each guest feel welcome, and possesses an exceptional level of nuanced knowledge and expertise which make exploring Uganda an amazing adventure travel experience.

Musa Lubega

Musa Lubega

Musa hails from Uganda's Queen Elizabeth National Park and grew up surrounded by beautiful wildlife. With a deep love and respect for animals, he pursued studies in wildlife and tourism. He holds a Bachelor of Tourism from Makerere University and a Master of Sciences in Wildlife Management from the University of Connecticut. He also studied safari guiding at Utali College of Wildlife in Kenya. Beginning as a volunteer with the Uganda National Parks, he has worked with a lion doctor, with the Jane Goodall Institute, and has since been guiding for over 15 years. With his impressive background, Musa has developed an intuitive understanding of East Africa's fauna and flora, and is passionate about sharing his life's experience in the wilderness with his guests.

Activities

Scenic drives, moderate to strenuous treks and nature walks in search of wildlife, boat rides, and day/night game drives in safari vehicles.

Lodging

Lodges with modern comforts and great access to Uganda's raw wilderness, plus a boutique hotel to bookend the trip.

Climate

Uganda enjoys a tropical climate, though the heat is tempered by the altitude of more than 3,000' above sea level.

FAQ

How long can I spend with the gorillas?

Upon seeing the gorillas you will have just one hour with them, so we do two treks. On the second trek, you often feel you can put your camera down and really enjoy.

Will I definitely see the gorillas on a gorilla trek?

There are no guarantees, but it is highly likely you will see them. Guides are trained in locating the gorillas and will know where they were the day before, as well as their movement habits.

Do I need a visa for Uganda?

Uganda does require a tourist visa for travelers from the US. You must obtain this e-Visa before your trip. You can apply for this visa online. It costs $50USD and is valid for 90 days.

What are gorilla tracking conditions like?

You will find yourself climbing up steep slopes at high altitudes, scrambling through, over, and under dense undergrowth with nettles, barbed vines, and bamboo thickets on slippery and muddy terrain. It's important to be in good physical condition.

Are vaccinations required for Uganda?

A number of different vaccinations are recommended and/or required before entering Uganda. A certificate proving you have had the Yellow Fever vaccination is mandatory for entry into Uganda.

Is Uganda safe?

Uganda is considered safe and politically stable. Ugandan people are incredibly welcoming, polite and friendly.

2021

Scheduled Dates

  • Oct 01 - 10, 2021
    $7,995 price per person dbl occ
    +$450 internal airfare+$1,700 single supplement+$1,650 non-refundable primate permits due upon booking
    Wait ListConfirmed
  • Dec 18 - 27, 2021
    $7,995 price per person dbl occ
    +$450 internal airfare+$1,700 single supplement+$1,650 non-refundable primate permits due upon booking

    Special Offer

    $500 Holiday Surcharge

    Available

Price Includes

  • Expertise and services of our experienced adventure guides
  • All accommodations as noted in the itinerary
  • All breakfasts, almost all lunches and dinners as noted in the itinerary
  • Snacks and water between meals
  • Additional regional guides and experts on many trips
  • Comprehensive Trip Planner with detailed pre-trip information
  • Private guided tours at historic sites, museums, wineries and other select attractions as noted in the itinerary
  • Special events and other select attractions as mentioned in the itinerary
  • All gratuities at hotels and restaurants
  • Equipment and experienced guides for activities as described in the itinerary
  • Park and other entry fees (unless otherwise noted)
  • Fares for trains, ferries and other modes of travel as listed in the itinerary
  • Select transfers as mentioned in the itinerary
  • Baggage transfers and porterage

Price Does Not Include

  • International airfare, airport taxes, and excess baggage fees
  • Alcoholic beverages (MT Sobek provides wine at select events)
  • Gratuities for MT Sobek guides and guide-drivers
  • Travel Protection Program
  • Personal expenses

Contact An Expert

800-974-0300

Need help picking your next adventure? Call us to answer your questions.

2022

Scheduled Dates

  • Jan 21 - 30, 2022
    $7,995 price per person dbl occ
    +$450 internal airfare+$1,700 single supplement+$1,650 non-refundable primate permits due upon booking
    Available
  • May 15 - 24, 2022
    $7,995 price per person dbl occ
    +$450 internal airfare+$1,700 single supplement+$1,650 non-refundable primate permits due upon booking
    Available
  • Jul 03 - 12, 2022
    $7,995 price per person dbl occ
    +$450 internal airfare+$1,700 single supplement+$1,650 non-refundable primate permits due upon booking
    Available
  • Aug 15 - 24, 2022
    $7,995 price per person dbl occ
    +$450 internal airfare+$1,700 single supplement+$1,650 non-refundable primate permits due upon booking
    Available
  • Oct 01 - 10, 2022
    $7,995 price per person dbl occ
    +$450 internal airfare+$1,700 single supplement+$1,650 non-refundable primate permits due upon booking
    Available
  • Dec 20 - 29, 2022
    $7,995 price per person dbl occ
    +$450 internal airfare+$1,700 single supplement+$1,650 non-refundable primate permits due upon booking
    Available

Price Includes

  • Expertise and services of our experienced adventure guides
  • All accommodations as noted in the itinerary
  • All breakfasts, almost all lunches and dinners as noted in the itinerary
  • Snacks and water between meals
  • Additional regional guides and experts on many trips
  • Comprehensive Trip Planner with detailed pre-trip information
  • Private guided tours at historic sites, museums, wineries and other select attractions as noted in the itinerary
  • Special events and other select attractions as mentioned in the itinerary
  • All gratuities at hotels and restaurants
  • Equipment and experienced guides for activities as described in the itinerary
  • Park and other entry fees (unless otherwise noted)
  • Fares for trains, ferries and other modes of travel as listed in the itinerary
  • Select transfers as mentioned in the itinerary
  • Baggage transfers and porterage

Price Does Not Include

  • International airfare, airport taxes, and excess baggage fees
  • Alcoholic beverages (MT Sobek provides wine at select events)
  • Gratuities for MT Sobek guides and guide-drivers
  • Travel Protection Program
  • Personal expenses

Contact An Expert

800-974-0300

Need help picking your next adventure? Call us to answer your questions.

Go Private

Go Private

Gather your favorite travel companions to share an MT Sobek adventure on an easy-to-book Private Trip.

Choose from the selection of dates below for your group or if your preferred date is not available, we'll create a departure just for you.

Call or email us to get the ball rolling.

Private Trip Pricing:

2021 Pricing

4 to 5 guests from $9,295 per person double occupancy

6 to 7 guests from $8,795 per person double occupancy

8 to guests from $8,195 per person double occupancy

2022 Pricing

2 to 3 guests from $8,395 per person double occupancy

4 to 6 guests from $7,995 per person double occupancy

	

Take Over One of These Dates

Make Your Own Dates in These Months

Price Includes

  • Expertise and services of our experienced adventure guides
  • All accommodations as noted in the itinerary
  • All breakfasts, almost all lunches and dinners as noted in the itinerary
  • Snacks and water between meals
  • Additional regional guides and experts on many trips
  • Comprehensive Trip Planner with detailed pre-trip information
  • Private guided tours at historic sites, museums, wineries and other select attractions as noted in the itinerary
  • Special events and other select attractions as mentioned in the itinerary
  • All gratuities at hotels and restaurants
  • Equipment and experienced guides for activities as described in the itinerary
  • Park and other entry fees (unless otherwise noted)
  • Fares for trains, ferries and other modes of travel as listed in the itinerary
  • Select transfers as mentioned in the itinerary
  • Baggage transfers and porterage

Price Does Not Include

  • International airfare, airport taxes, and excess baggage fees
  • Alcoholic beverages (MT Sobek provides wine at select events)
  • Gratuities for MT Sobek guides and guide-drivers
  • Travel Protection Program
  • Personal expenses

Contact An Expert

800-974-0300

Need help picking your next adventure? Call us to answer your questions.

Go Custom

Create Your Very Own Adventure

Dreaming of an adventure designed exclusively for you? With insider access and decades of experience, our travel experts create custom tailored adventures that are perfect for families, couples, and large groups. MT Sobek's custom adventures are designed to our exacting standards and led by our award-winning adventure guides.