12 Days Birding Experience for Rift Valley Endemics in Uganda

This safari offers you an opportunity to photograph Uganda’s Rift Valley Endemic Birds combined with true wildlife safari experience in Murchison Falls National park, Kibale National park, Queen Elizabeth National Park, Lake Mburo National park and Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary.
Here you will begin the journey into the soul of African wilderness. It engages all your sense from the very first beginning sparkled to life when you first hear a distant roar of a lion or a laugh of a hyena in the night or a song of thousands of cicada beetles at midday then experience the heightening of these senses when you feel the ground vibrate of giant elephant cross right in front of you, never to be forgotten sights and safari moments. Enjoy wide range of animals in this Nile Valley. These prime Wildlife Parks provide the most exciting safari combined with spectacular landscape providing the best setting for Africa’s most iconic memorable and unforgettable visitor safari experience.

Day 1 :Arrive at Entebbe International Airport and Transfer to the Hotel
Arrive at the Airport meet your Guide and transfer to the Hotel for overnight, if you have time you can do birding here at the botanical gardens it is quite worth urban birding place for arrivals into the soul of Africa, I mean pearl of Africa, if not you can relax at the swimming pool with a glass of wine, bottle of beer or some soft drink with fantastic view of Lake Victoria as you wait for dinner before retiring.

Day 2: Transfer to Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary and Murchison Falls National Park
Uganda safarisDrive from Entebbe through Kampala to Murchison falls National Park on Bombo Road, Luwero, Gulu highway, through Nakasongola dry corridor before reaching Nakitoma the branch off point to Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary. Rhino tracking at Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary Stop over at Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary, the only place in Uganda where you can find Rhinos in the wild. Here at Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary you will enjoy the tracking of the southern White Rhino which were declared extinct in Uganda by 1983.
Later, through conservation efforts, the white Rhino found its birth again. Trade them on the foot which is a good memorable engaging activity. Along with the Rhinos, there are other wildlife that roam this sanctuary. They include animals such as: Baboons, Velvet Monkeys, Warthogs, Black and White Columbus monkeys, Uganda Kob, Waterbucks, Bush backs, Hippos, Pangolins, Mangoose, snakes and different species of birds such as; saddle beaked stork, shoe bills, and Grey crowned Crane, sculpture-breasted bush shrike, Piapiac, African hoopoe, Green Hoopoe, African paradise flycatcher, Died Erick cuckoo among others. As you walk through along led by the Rhino fund guide on the foot, stop over for lunch en-route. After tracing the Rhinos, drive to Murchison Falls National Park via the main gate of Kichumbanyobyo. Driving through Kaniyo- Pabidi forest the eastern sector of Budongo Forest is rewarding with plenty of forest birds, and primates such as baboons, Blue and black Columbus monkeys before reaching the escarpment with fantastic view. Viewing of the top of Murchison Falls Driving to the top of the falls is rewarding breath taking scenery, view the majestic waters of the River Nile, as it squeezes through at 6 meters’ cliff. You have an opportunity to see the violent compression through the narrow gorge creating a continuous roar into devils’ cauldron creating a trade mark rainbow. Afterwards, drive to the Lodge to check in for overnight.

Day 3: Morning and Evening Game drive combined with Birding in Murchison Falls National Park
Uganda game safarisAfter early morning breakfast, drive through this Palm lofted vegetation. Here in Murchison Falls National Park, you begin your journey into the soul of Africa. It is a journey defined by evocative stirring of all your senses at all the same time. It sparks to life with the roar of lions, and the laugh of hyenas, then experience the heightening of these senses, when you feel the ground vibrate of giant elephants cross right in-front of you, never to be forgotten sights and safari moments. Enjoy the wide range of wildlife in the Nile valley for the best of iconic and unforgettable safari moments in Murchison falls national park. As you drive around watch the plentiful herds of Uganda kobs, heartbeats, water bucks, buffalos, giraffes with spectacular view to watch some of beautiful and playful birds of Murchison falls such as Red-throated bee eaters, grey crown cranes, northern carmine bee eaters, long-crested eagle, African wattled lapwing, African hoopoe, Shoebill, Lilac-breasted roller, Black-bellied bustard, Denham’s Bustard, African Marsh Harrier, Lizard buzzard, Yellow-throated long claw, Northern double-collared sunbird, Goliath Heron, Bern Swallow, African fish eagle, Egyptian Vulture, Black-headed Gonolek, Abyssinian ground hornbill, Cattle Egret etc and drive back to the lodge for lunch.

Evening Birding in the Nile Valley
After Lunch prepare for the evening birding in the Nile valley birds expected to be seen includes; white-browed coucal, red-billed firefinch, saddle-billed stork, Plain martin, Sooty chat, Nubian woodpecker, with the interest of sighting Murchison Falls Nocturnal specials such Night jars and Owls. Enjoy big herds of Buffaloes, huge dark elephants, plenty of Uganda Kobs, graceful Nubian Giraffes, and many more as you wait for the fantastic African sun to set over the clear blue mountains of democratic republic of congo beyond lake Albert with that bright reddish orange reflections in the sky.

Day 4: Morning Boat Cruise to Albert Delta in Search for Shoebill and Other Wetland Special Birds
Birds in Murchison Falls ParkAfter early morning breakfast drive to Paraa at the landing to catch up with a boat to cruise downstream to the Albert delta where Victoria Nile meets Lake Albert at its confluence, this place is rich with such amazing birding opportunities for water birds such as African Jacana, Allen’s Gallinules, Purple swamphen, lesser Jacana, grey-crown cranes, white-faced whistling ducks, African darter, Great cormorants, lon-taled cormorants, Reed warbler, saddle-billed stork, gull-billed turns, African open-billed stork, black-egret, Pink-backed pelicans, Papyrus Gonolek, Goliath heron, purple heron and above all the most exciting Shoebill,… you will be gifted with some beautiful water residents such as Nile Crocodiles, Hippopotamuses in plenty here.

Afternoon Boat Cruise in Murchison Falls National Park
After lunch, drive down to the river for the afternoon boat cruise up stream to the bottom of Murchison Falls. It gives an opportunity to view the permanent residents of the river; such as, Hippopotamus, crocodiles, just meters away, enjoy the scenic view of Nyamsika Cliff the breeding grounds for pied kingfishers, Red throated bee eaters, and many other wildlife. This three hours boat cruise provides you with the tranquil sun downer as you cruise back offering the classic view of an equatorial sunset reflected on the river. This is one of the most and unforgettable experience the boat move just along the banks of the river to see animals and birds the frequent visitors of the river such as elephants, buffalos, waterbucks, baboons, warthogs. This is a rewarding experience, enjoyable and memorable. Drive back to the lodge

Day 5: Transfer to Kibale National Park

After breakfast, transfer to Kibale National Park via Buliisa-Hoima-Kagadi-Kyenjojo-Fort Portal road with a stopover for lunch at selected restaurants/hotels before proceeding to Kibale National Park via Kyenjojo. The drive from Murchison Falls National Park to Kibale National Park is very long but more scenic and rewarding through enjoying Bugungu Wildlife Reserve, the memorable ascent at the Rift Valley Escarpment with beautiful scenic view across Lake Albert towards the blue mountains of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the ever green tea plantations route in Kabarole combined with spectacular landscape and the view of Rwenzori ranges. Proceed to Fort Portal for lunch and afterwards drive to Kibale national park to check in at the lodge late in the evening.

Day 6: Chimpanzee Tracking in Kibale National Park
Kibale Forest National parkAfter early morning breakfast drive to Kanyanchu Tourist Centre to get registered and briefing from the ranger guide who will take you through this experience in the forest. The chimpanzee tracking is the most popular tourist activity in these loveliest and most varied tracts of tropical forest cover interspersed with over 375 species of birds including the Kibale specials such as African Pitta, yellow-ramped tinker bird, green-breasted pitta, black bee eater, blue-breasted kingfisher, Abysinian ground thrush, crowned eagle, brown-breasted alethe, eastern nicator, 60 mammal species and mostly famous 13 species of primate diversity. Participate and enjoy the chimpanzee tracking which starts at 8:00am. Which lasts 2 – 5 hours. The tracking is only for 6 people per group. After tracking drive back to the lodge

Day 7: Birding at Bigodi Swamp
12 Days Uganda birding safariAfter breakfast drive on the journey of discovery of the rich cultural tapestry. Join the local guide on the walk through the Bigodi Wetland Swamp to enjoy the local wildlife, birds and vegetation, the daily life of Batooro and Bakiga can be discovered during the village walk.
Birding here is excellent Expect to see birds such as papyrus gonelek, Great blue turacoo, swamp warblers, grey checked Mangbay, black and white colobus monkeys etc. This walk is a rewarding for the best community captivating real local life style. Drive back to the lodge for overnight.

Day 8: Transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park
After early morning breakfast transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park and birding en-route drive to Queen Elizabeth National Park through Kasese town. This drive gives you an opportunity to enjoy the scenic view of Rwenzori Mountains ranges being extremely humid area and frequently enveloped in clouds gives you the best photo opportunities you will have a great birding opportunities en-route. Enjoy and take the best photos of the plains that form Queen Elizabeth National Park, with rich cultural diversity of Bakonjo as you proceed to the lodge for overnight.

Day 9: Morning game drive & Birding in Kasenyi Plains (Queen Elizabeth National Park)
12 Days Uganda birding safariAfter Early Morning Breakfast with your packed Lunch drive to Kasenyi Plains for the best morning clear photographs in the medley of wonders and the vast savannah of Africa which is the perfect setting for a classic African safari experience; with the breathtaking and majestic sceneries across the entire mountain spectrum. Visit the vast open spaces full of oddities and secrets that are elastic thread of Natural wonders where you begin the journey into African wilderness the way Nature intended, to see the wild residents emerge for a drink from the busy waterhole as the sun begins to rise over the iconic bush veld scenery. In this vast savanna of Kasenyi which is the perfect setting for the classic African safari experience, get prepared to photograph animals such as Uganda Kobs, Waterbucks, herds of Elephants and Buffalos which provide dream photo opportunities here you will see birds such as helmeted guinea fowl, crested francolin, grey-backed fiscal, long-crested eagle, western banded snake eagle, cattle egrets, etc before returning to the lodge for lunch. Enjoy the great view set against the backdrop of the jagged Ruwenzori Mountains. Enjoy the explosion craters. Enjoy the view of Lake Nyamununka in front to the mighty Rwenzori.

Afternoon boat cruise in Queen Elizabeth National Park
After lunch drive to Mweya peninsula for boat ride along Kazinga Channel. Mweya is Queen’s focal point. It is still jam-packed with birds and animals. Its elevated position commands gorgeous views of the Kazinga Channel. Depart from Mweya cruise down the Kazinga Channel the most relaxing way to enjoy the wildlife safari here. This cruise gives an opportunity to view hippos, buffaloes and water birds as elephants stride along the banks. All you need to do sit back with your camera or binoculars at the ready and enjoy the incredible spectacle. This is the oasis for the many of the fascinating species that inhabit the park and it gives a chance to cruise just meters from hundreds of enormous hippos and buffaloes while elephants linger on the shore-line. The cruise is only for two hours and the boat trip ends in Lake Edward where you see how local fishing villages stay alongside with wildlife, enjoy birds’ colony of cormorants and pelicans, African fish eagle, Pied kingfisher, Giant Kingfisher, grey-headed kingfisher, etc. After the boat drive back to the lodge along channel track Via Katunguru gate, reaching the lodge late in the evening for overnight.

Day 10:Transfer to Lake Mburo National Park
After Breakfast drive to Lake Mburo National Park and as one drives through this region, he is amazed and impressed by the remarkable scenery that unfolds in sight. The region is sometimes referred to as the land of milk and honey. Enjoy the noble indigenous slow-moving new long-horned Ankole cattle which were originally herded down from ancient Egyptians 2000 years ago. Proceed to the lodge in the evening to check-in for overnight.

Day 11: Morning Game Drive in Lake Mburo National Park
12 Days Uganda safariAfter breakfast drive through designated game trucks to enjoy Game drive for the best wildlife safari experience in this sculptured landscape, rolling hills, rocky outcrops, and open wooded savanna. The expected animals include: Zebras, Impalas, Elands, Topis, Giraffes, Waterbucks, Klipspringers, Velvet Monkeys, Buffalos, Warthogs, Baboons, and several bird species. This park alone has 332 known bird species, and 69 species of mammals the compact jewel there are well presented wildlife at only 370Kms2. The park is small compared to other savanna national parks in Uganda. Being a home to surprising wildlife, and the only national park in Uganda that has Impalas, you enjoy the beauty of this whispers of the wild. After game drive, return to the lodge for lunch. This drive is a memorable one with a fantastic view of the dry rolling hills of Ankole with their signature long horned cattle just besides the roads.
Afternoon Boat Cruise in Lake Mburo National Park
The boat moves along the shores of Lake Mburo. This trip is two hours and very engaging especially when you spot Crocodiles and Hippos. You can also spot herons, African Fish Eagles, Pelicans, and perhaps the African Fin Foot and the Shoebill the sought after bird by bird watchers, in search for the specials of Lake Mburo this cruise will give you an opportunity to photograph, pairs of enormous fish eagles, hammerkops, Giant kingfisher, African finfoot, crocodiles and hippos with fantastic view of the lake reflected with marshy vegetation and drive back to the lodge afterwards.

Day 12: Morning Guided Nature walk and Transfer to Entebbe International Airport
After early morning breakfast drive to the gate to get the armed ranger guide for the walk. This walk gives you an opportunity to explore and photograph the attractions of this whispers of the wild in its natural state for the best memorable eye to eye wildlife in Uganda. You are likely to see Elands & Buffaloes and nearly always Warthog, Topis, Impala, Duiker, Bushbuck, Waterbuck and Zebra on the horseback safaris; it is a very peaceful and relaxing activity. After this enjoyable, adventurous and memorable experience relax because the dream come true tour has ended.
End of Trip