Great Apes Safari

Travel Dates:
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Day 1:

Arrive at Entebbe International Airport where you will be met by a Wild Vision Adventures representative and transferred to your accommodation. Depending on your arrival time, a half day trip to Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary or a luxury boat cruise on Lake Victoria can be arranged at an additional cost. This could also be arranged at the end of your safari if you prefer. Other options include the Uganda Wildlife Education Centre in Entebbe, where there are a variety of visitors’ programmes including behind the scenes ‘work’ with the animals or a trip to the Mabamba wetlands in search of the rare shoebill. Ask when you book if you are keen on this.

Entebbe is a small, quiet town located on the shores of Lake Victoria and is easy to explore on foot or local transport on motorbikes known as “boda bodas” or local taxis. Visit the Uganda Wildlife Education Centre where you can see and learn about Uganda’s native wildlife, local markets to buy clothes and crafts, curio shops for souvenirs, and the Botanical Gardens on Lake Victoria where you can walk among beautiful trees, watch monkeys moving through the canopy above, and spot many indigenous bird species. Entebbe has a wide variety of restaurants serving many different cuisines as well as several bars and clubs where you can sample the local beer, catch a game of football and chat with the local Ugandans, known for their open and friendly nature.

Overnight at Karibu Guest House

Day 2:

This morning is the start of your Ugandan adventure! Drive to Murchison Falls National Park. Murchison Falls National Park, in the north-west of the country, is home to elephant, buffalo, lion and leopard, as well as a healthy population of hippo and huge crocodiles on the River Nile. On your way, you will stop at Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary enroute for a Rhino Tracking session. Here you will be doing rhino tracking which will involve stalking the animals on foot to get up close and personal with white rhinos, then you continue your journey on to Nile Safari Lodge.

Overnight at Nile Safari Lodge –

Day 3:

The 3 893 km2 Murchison Falls National Park forms the core of Uganda’s largest protected area and is also well known for its bird life – the Shoebill being a sought-after rarity. Together with the adjoining Bungungu and Karumu wildlife reserves, it forms a vast wilderness covering 5 072 km2 and containing a wide variety of wildlife including big game, forest primates and 450 bird species. The mighty Nile, the longest river in the world, flows through the heart of the park for a distance of 120 km, on its 6 500 km journey from Lake Victoria to Egypt and the Mediterranean Sea. The park’s centerpiece is the explosive, 40 m high Murchison Falls where the Nile is forced through a 6m gap in the Rift Valley escarpment. The Falls separate two very different rivers. Upstream, the river races down a turbulent 80 km channel punctuated with rapids. Downstream, the Nile flows quietly towards Lake Albert which it enters through a large papyrus delta. It is this peaceful 40 km stretch of river which provides the park’s prime wildlife spectacle and which our boats explore. Upon reaching Murchison, you will have the opportunity to drive to the top of these mighty falls and see the rainbow across the Nile as the water explodes over the falls.

In the afternoon we cross over to the Northern section of the park on the 0700hrs ferry and explore the savannah wilderness in our customized safari vehicle. Murchison boosts some incredible African wildlife with large populations of elephants, giraffes, buffalo and antelope species residing on the grassy plains. Hopefully you will also spot the more exclusive big cats during your wilderness explorations.

Nile Safari Lodge is a wholly owned family lodge, started in 2017 with a long-term dream of creating and offering a unique experience to the Pearl of Africa to share the beauty of the region. The purpose of the lodge is to offer experiences and memories that enables guests to “Escape the ordinary”.
The lodge is designed to be minimally intrusive, with sweeping views of the surrounding landscapes, as well as total exclusivity. The furniture and fittings have been carefully selected to blend the boundaries between inside and outside, creating a seamless integration with nature while upholding the comfort, aesthetics and durability. There is close attention to every small detail while trying to make the lodge one with the environment.

The Lodge was constructed using local materials with cultural knowledge of craftsmanship working with wood, grass and stone from the region. The eucalyptus poles structure is a largely ‘wall-less’ arrangement, with the main building featuring an ornamental ‘diamond grid’ that efficiently stiffens the roof in what is a non-hierarchical structural system.

There is no mechanical cooling anywhere throughout the lodge and the entire facility is powered by photo-voltaic panels. Guests are provided with all amenities of a luxury lodge including private fridges and wireless internet throughout, all powered by the sun. Water is pumped from the river, filtered to drinking water quality using a UV filtration system and then heated by the sun for showers and bathtubs.

Overnight at Nile Safari Lodge –

Day 4:

This morning you embark on a boat trip into the Victoria Nile Delta, a 20km cruise downstream from the park’s headquarters. Home to a wide variety of wetland and papyrus endemic bird species, including the elusive shoebill, this three to five hour cruise offers a unique opportunity to spot rarely found birds and animals such as hippo, elephants and large crocodiles.

Travelling through the centre of Murchison Falls National Park, guests can experience the constantly changing scenery of the Nile River as it winds its way to Lake Albert. In the afternoon you explore the river in the other direction and head to the base of the mighty falls where you may spot giraffe, elephant, different varieties of antelope, buffalo, a wide range of birds and if you are lucky, lions and leopards on your way back to the lodge.

Overnight at Nile Safari Lodge –

Day 5:

Today we are able to pack up our lunches and head into the wilderness in our safari vehicle to explore the sights and sounds of the savannah for the day.

Overnight at Nile Safari Lodge –

Day 6:

This morning we leave behind the savannahs of the Nile and drive to Kibale Forest National Park. The drive takes about 8-9 hours. Kibale, 766 km2 is one of Uganda’s enchanting forested parks. Here, you can hike in the park for hours observing the drama of life in a rain forest. The park contains pristine lowland tropical rain forest, montane forest, and mixed tropical deciduous forest. In addition to forest, you will also notice areas of grassland and of swamp. The forest is rich in wildlife. It is most noted for its primate population. Some of these are red-tailed monkey, diademed monkey, olive baboon, chimpanzee, black and white colobus. Some of the other mammals you might see are bushbuck, Harvey’s red duiker, blue duiker, bush pig, and African civet. More difficult to spot are buffalo, waterbuck, hippo, warthog, and giant forest hog. Herds of elephant once travelled back and forth through the area. These elephants have become more and more rare, and now are seldom seen. The birdlike in the forest and grasslands of the forest is abundant. There are almost 300 species, which have been identified here. There are 144 species of butterfly in the park and a diverse population of moths and other insects. A system of trails has been developed within the park, and tour guides are available to guide visitors.

Overnight at Ndali Lodge –

Day 7: Chimpanzee Habituation Experience

After breakfast enter the forest in search of our closest relatives. The forest is becoming alive with the dawn chorus and you will trek to where the chimps nested the previous night, hopefully in time to find them pan hooting and clambering down from the trees ready to begin the day.

Overnight at Ndali Lodge –

Day 8:

This morning, we say goodbye to the sparkling blue crater lakes and drive to Queen Elizabeth National Park. It is a 2-3 hour drive from QENP on good roads. On a clear day you may get views of the Rwenzori’s in the distance.

Queen Elizabeth National Park spreads over 1,978sq km in the western arm of the Great Rift Valley and is home to a wide variety of wildlife and many species of birds. With both a riverine and savannah habitat, the park includes the southern Ishasha area with the massive Maramagambo, one of the largest surviving natural forests in Uganda. The northern Mweya area, traversed by the equator and dominated by the scenery of crater lakes, is often occupied by large flocks of flamingos.

In the Mweya area of Queen Elizabeth National Park, also rich with wildlife, visitors will find vast numbers of Uganda’s unique and strange Euphorbia, or “candelabra” tree. The many nearby crater lakes and mountain ranges provide a beautiful backdrop f or your journey.

Drive to the Ishasha region of Queen Elizabeth National Park. The Ishasha area of Queen Elizabeth National Park is rich with wildlife including warthog, water buck, bush buck, leopard, Ugandan kob, elephants, countless bird species and even the rare giant forest hog. The Ishasha sector of the park is known for its famous tree climbing lions sometimes found lying about in the branches of the native fig trees.

Overnight at Ishasha Wilderness Camp –

Ishasha Wilderness Camp is situated inside the Southern Ishasha sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park on the Ntungwe river, and is an idyllic retreat for people who truly enjoy the wilderness. This exclusive camp offers quality accommodation and services in this unspoilt remote southern sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park famous for its tree climbing lions that can sometimes be spotted resting in the branches of the large fig trees in the area.

Each of the ten spacious framed canvas rooms, situated in the wooded area besides the river, is comfortably furnished and with large mosquito netted beds, its own private en suite bathroom and dressing area providing running water, hot water ‘bush’ showers and a flushing eco-friendly toilet.

A central lounge and dining area, under a cool thatched roof, provides a comfortable environment for meals and relaxing during the day. A shaded area beside the river offers al fresco dining and an evening ‘fireplace’ for guests to relax with sundowners and share their day’s experience.

As the camp is within the National Park, we have designed it to be as low impact as possible with low usage of water, power and other resources. Solar power is used for lighting with power points limited to a central area allocated for recharging cameras and videos.

Meals are freshly prepared with many local ingredients, offering a balance of international and locally flavoured cuisine with all meals being of several delicious courses. Our bar has a selection of local and imported beverages and our friendly local staff will attend to your needs. Hot beverages are available throughout the day on a self-service basis and are delivered to your tent with early morning wake up calls as required, allowing you to savour the early morning sounds of the ‘bush awakening.

Day 9:

Early this morning as the African sun breaks out over the wilderness, venture out in your customised safari vehicle for a game drive to look for big cats, elephants, buffalo and many antelope and a massive variety of bird species.

This morning we depart Ishasha in the southern part of Queen Elizabeth National Park and drive to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park – (2-3 hours travel time). Upon arrival at Bwindi, you will check into your room at Clouds Mountain Gorilla Lodge, and then in the afternoon you have the opportunity to explore the area or chose to do one of the additional activities.

Bwindi National Park, located in south western Uganda on the edge of the Great Rift Valley, is considered the most diverse forest in Uganda. The area, one of the few large expanses of forest in East Africa, where lowland and mountain habitats meet, contains a dense ground cover of herbs, vines, and shrubs. Home to over 120 mammals, 345 species of birds, 200 species of butterflies, and 160 species of trees, Bwindi is one of the richest ecosystems in East Africa. The park contains almost one half of the world’s population of the endangered Mountain Gorilla, making it an extremely valuable conservation site. Bwindi is also home to several endangered bird species with very limited ranges, and acts as an important catchment area for many rivers, supplying water for agriculture in the surrounding region.

Overnight at Clouds Mountain Gorilla Lodge

Day 10: Gorilla Trekking – Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

Following breakfast at the lodge, at 0730hrs travel to National Park Headquarters to meet your guides for the day and begin your gorilla tracking experience. Experienced guides and trackers will accompany your party on an early morning trek into the dense rain forest on the mountain slopes.

Roughly half of the world’s total gorilla population live in the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. Gorillas can be tracked year-round, although they are easier to track in the dry season. The hike, which requires a reasonable amount of fitness, will be through the spectacular rainforest and bamboo covered slopes of the park, accompanied by expert guides and trackers. The walking can sometimes be tough and long, but when you catch a glimpse of a magnificent silverback and his family, your journey will be well worth the effort. When sighted, visitors will be guided to within six meters of the gorillas. It is an extraordinary feeling sitting in the dense rainforest, knowing you are in the company of these rare creatures. You are allowed an hour with the gorillas before returning to the base station.

Residing in this stunning “impenetrable” rainforest, Bwindi protects over 300 robust gentle mountain gorillas. Feeding on nutritious roots, leaves and fruits from the park’s tree and fern species, the gorillas form a sublime backdrop amidst lush emerald green foliage and a kaleidoscopic fluttering of birds and butterflies. Ranked as one of Africa’s most ancient rainforests, trekking through this lush abundant thicket is a captivating experience; made all the more spectacular when you silently come upon these majestic beauties. This is a spectacularly humbling experience that you will never forget.

Set on a forested ridge near the entrance to the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, Clouds Mountain Gorilla Lodge boasts eight spacious cottages built from volcanic stone. Spectacular views stretch all the way to the Virunga Volcanoes of Rwanda, as well as across the border into the Congo, where the glow of Nyiragongo Volcano can be seen on a clear night. Warm and welcoming, each cottage features a bedroom, ensuite bathroom with walk-in shower and separate lounge. Comfortable chairs on the outdoor verandas provide the perfect vantage point to admire the unforgettable vistas of the forest below. Blazing fireplaces create a cosy glow as evening falls.

Meals are prepared using the freshest local ingredients and served in front of a roaring fire in the dining area or in the privacy of your stone cottage. The lodge is situated within easy walking distance of the trail where guests can begin their gorilla trekking adventure. Guided forest walks and birdwatching expeditions explore the surroundings, while local community visits give a glimpse of traditional life.

Overnight at Clouds Mountain Gorilla Lodge

Day 11: Gorilla Habituation Experience

The gorilla habituation experience in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park allows visitors to get close to a wild gorilla family and observe it for four hours. The adventure is an immersive wildlife experience unique to Uganda, giving visitors an intimate and personalized experience than the ordinary gorilla trekking adventure. Gorilla habituation is a gradual process by which a wild gorilla group is exposed to human presence until they regard human visits as harmless. Two gorilla families, the Bikyingi Gorilla Group in the Rushaga Sector and Posho in Nkuringo Sector, are currently under the 2-5-year habituation process and available for the habituation experience.

While we mountain gorillas in their natural habitat are wild beasts, gorillas that have gone through the habituation process are approachable and accustomed to human presence. They offer a peaceful and fulfilling experience, with the occasional mock charge or grumpy silverback reminding trackers to respect their boundaries.

Overnight at Clouds Mountain Gorilla Lodge

Day 12:

Drive to Kihihi airstrip for your scheduled flight to Entebbe.

This itinerary has the following inclusions and exclusions:


  • Airport transfers
  • 4×4 transport with English speaking local driver/guide as above
  • Accommodation and meals as above (full board on safari, bed and breakfast in Entebbe)
  • Bottled water in safari vehicle
  • All park entrance fees
  • Full day exclusive boat in Murchison Falls National Park.
  • Game drives in Ishasha region and Murchison Falls National Park.
  • Full liability insurance cover
  • 24 hour emergency contact


  • Personal expenses such as porters, drinks, tips, visas and travel insurance.
  • Chimpanzee permits for Kibale National Park (priced as additional costs on quote).
  • Gorilla permits for Bwindi Forest Bwindi (priced as additional costs on quote).
  • Scheduled flight from Kihihi to Entebbe (priced as additional cost on the quote).
  • Services/activities/meals not included above.


Yellow fever & malaria prophylactics are required.

For gorilla/chimp trekking it is imperative that you are healthy and free of any disease or virus – officials do have the right to refuse entry if you are found to have or show any signs of communicable illnesses.
Should you opt to spend time participating in the UWEC Wildlife Integration programmes, you may require additional inoculations and health clearances. Please enquire at the time of booking. These activities must be booked well in advance.


Most nationalities require a visa to enter Uganda which should be obtained and paid for online prior to arrival. A single entry visa is USD 50 per person. Passports must be valid for a minimum of 6 months.


It is imperative that you book and reconfirm your onward/return flights. Our office can assist you with this.

Great Apes Safari

Uganda is home to half the world’s remaining population of endangered mountain gorilla.
12 days & 11 nights
in Uganda

Travel Dates:

From $19,950
per person sharing; party of 6 adults

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