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15 Days Uganda Birding Safari

The 15 days Uganda safari goes to the most important birding areas in Uganda. Visit 6 national parks to watch forest, grassland and water birds.

  • Visit 6 parks of Murchison Falls, Semliki, Kibale Forest, Queen Elizabeth, Bwindi, and Lake Mburo in Uganda
  • Birding Nature walk and in Bigodi Swamp and Royal Mile
  • Sunrise and sunset birding drives in Murchison Falls National Park, Queen Elizabeth National Park and Lake Mburo
  • Birding boat cruises on River Nile and Kazinga channel with high populations of water birds,

  • See the local birds, endemics and migrants
  • Cross the Equator and stand in two hemispheres at the same time
  • Birding in local communities and woodlands of Uganda

Day 1: Airport EBB – Arrival at Entebbe

You are warmly received and transferred to the hotel for overnight rest

Overnight stay: Lake Victoria View Guest House (BB) or The Boma (BB)

Day 2: Entebbe to Masindi 255 km, 5hr                                                                                                

We drive northwards and watch birds through the countryside farms, swamps and woodlands up to the old colonial town of Masindi. Several species can be seen along the way including local birds and seasonal migrants. We enjoy a relaxed evening. Overnight: Kabalega Resort (FB) or the Masindi Hotel (FB)

Day 3: Masindi town to Royal Mile   65 km, 1hr                            

We start early morning birding through local farms to the Royal Mile. Here, we look out for the Green Crombec, Black Bellied Firefinch and Grey Headed Olive Back. We then enter the woodlands to search for the Yellow-browed Camaroptera, Narinas Trogon, Ituri Batis, Green Sunbird, Yellow Spotted Barbets, Little Greenbul, African Emarald Cuckoo and many more. We retire to the Lodge to relax. Overnight: Kabalega Resort (FB) or the Masindi Hotel (FB)

Day 4: Birding in Budongo Forest to Murchison Falls 

We drive north to Budongo. This is the biggest forest in Uganda with some of the rare and most sought after birds. On the walk, look forward to see the African Dwarf Kingfisher, Chocolate-backed Kingfisher, Grey Parrots, Rufous-sided Broadbill, Nahan’s Francolin, African Crowned Eagle, Ross’s Turaco, Olive Camaroptera and Piping Hornbill. You are likely to encounter animals of the forest including chimpanzees. Have lunch at Budongo Eco-Lodge. We continue through the forest up to the top of the Murchison Falls. See the thunderous falls as the River Nile squeezes through a narrow rocky gap. We check in at the lodge with views of the wilderness and animals on the river banks below. Murchison Falls is the largest park and birding destination in Uganda with a wide variety of birds. Overnight: Murchison River Lodge (FB) or the Paraa safari Lodge (FB)

Day 5: Murchison Falls National Park  

We undertake a morning birding drive in the savannah park. There are plenty of birds to see along the Albert Nile and Victoria tracks. In the grasslands and skies, you find the African hawk Eagle, Martial Eagle, Flappet Lark, White browed scrub Robin, Black Cuckoo, Crested Frankolin and Croaking Cisticola. In the afternoon, we embark on the boat cruise on the river Nile sailing to the bottom of the Murchison falls. The boat trip provides an opportunity to see the water birds like the Shoebill, Woolly- necked stork, Goliath heron and long-toed plover. Other wildlife is visible in the water and along the shores. Overnight: Murchison River Lodge (FB) or the Paraa safari Lodge (FB)                                                                   

Day 6: Murchison Falls NP to Fort Portal about 8 hr

Today, we drive southwards though the wooded and cultivated countryside. The leisurely drive takes us birding all the way to Fort Portal. This town lies at the bottom of the Rwenzori Mountains. You will have lunch in the colonial administrative town of Hoima. Overnight: Fort Motel (FB) / Mountains of the Moon hotel (FB)

Day 7: Fort Portal to Semliki National Park   80km 2hr                                                                       

Have a hearty breakfast and proceed through the Rwenzori Mountains to Semliki. We explore the Semliki jungle and visit the steamy Hot springs. The forest birds in Semliki are an extension of the Congo basin. This makes it the best birding area in Uganda to see some of the West African species. It is ranked number two in Uganda’s birding sites by the African Bird Club Members. Among the birds to expect is the Black-throated Coucal, Blue-billed Malimbe, Congo Serpent Eagle,  Black Dwarf Hornbill, Grey-throated Rail, White-bellied Kingfisher and Yellow-throated Cuckoo. Later, we transfer to Kibale Forest, birding en route. We relax by the evening campfire to sounds from the nocturnal birds and animals of the forest. Overnight: Kibale Forest Camp (FB) / Primate Lodge (FB)

Day 8: Kibale Forest National Park

We go bird watching on a nature walk in the park. Expect to see various rare and colorful birds like the African Pitta, Narina Trogon, Green-backed Twinspot, White-winged Warbler, Grey Apalis, White-chinned Prinia, and White-napped Pigeon. It is possible to go for Chimpanzee tracking as well (optional).

In the afternoon, we make another nature walk in the Bigodi Swamp. Along the trails, we search for the papyrus endemics such as the Papyrus Gonolek and White-collared Oliveback. Other species to encounter are the African Marsh Harrier, the great Blue Turaco, Grey Parrot, Red-headed Malimbe and Yellow-billed Barbet. It is possible to do the chimpanzee habituation experience and birding the whole day in the forest (optional).

Overnight: Kibale Forest Camp (FB) / Primate Lodge (FB)

Day 9: Kibale Forest to Queen Elizabeth 160 km, 4 hours

Transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park through the crater lakes area with splendid views of the Mountains of the Moon along the way. Make a stop at the Equator. Later, we go for the afternoon birding  drive as the sun sets. On this excursion, we are likely to see the Black Bee-eater, Blue Quails, Caruthers’s Cisticola, Martial Eagle, Temminck’s courser, the Yellow-billed Ox-pecker and others. Queen Elizabeth ranks the best park for a birding safari in Uganda with over 600 species recorded. Overnight: The Kasenyi Safari Camp (FB) or the Mweya Safari Lodge (FB)

Day 10: Explore Queen Elizabeth National Park

The day starts with the birding drive in the Kasenyi plains west of the national park. This area is also famous for predators such as lions, hyenas, leopards with the antelopes and warthogs as prey. Return to the lodge for lunch. We then slope down for the boat cruise along the beautiful Kazinga channel. The boat sails close to numerous birds that come to feed or drink from the channel. Many bird species can be seen in the water or on the banks including the African Skimmer, African Spoonbill, Gray-headed Gull, Great white and Pink backed Pelicans, green backed Heron and three-banded Plover. There are animals at the channel like Hippos, buffaloes, elephants, giant forest hogs, and crocodiles. The cruise ends down by Lake Edward with stunning views of the mountains in Congo. Overnight:The Kasenyi Safari Camp (FB) or the Mweya Safari Lodge (FB)

Day 11: Queen Elizabeth N. Park to Ishasha

Have a morning birding drive as we transfer south to the Ishasha sector. Check in at the Lodge for lunch and relax. We enjoy a relaxed sunset drive birding and searching for the tree climbing lions. The drive goes up to the river camp. Birds that we may see on this drive include the African grey Hornbill, Greater Honey-guide, Green winged Pytilia, Scaly throated Honey-guide, Ovampo Sparrowhawk, Rufous napped Lark, Flappet Lark and many others. Overnight: Ishasha Jungle Lodge (FB) or the Ishasha Wilderness Camp (FB)

Day 12: Ishasha to Bwindi national Park (60km 2hrs / 150km 5hrs)

After a sumptuous early breakfast, we drive to Bwindi Impenetrable. On our way we bird through wooded and hilly villages and beautiful landscapes. Bwindi Impenetrable is a unique montane forest with many birds species and. It is a UNESCO heritage site and one of the Important Bird Areas of Uganda. Bwindi is also one of only 2 places in the world where you find the endangered Mountain Gorillas!! Overnight stay: Gorilla Mist Camp (FB) or the Mahogany Springs Lodge (FB)

Day 13: Bwindi Impenetrable forest on the trails Birding!!!

Early morning set off in the forest birding. Birds to see along the trails include the African Broadbill, Black-billed Weaver, Banded Prinia, Bronze-naped Pigeon, Red-throated Alethe, Oriole Finch and Rwenzori Batis. The Guides informatively explain the birdlife of the forest. In the afternoon, go birding along the forest edges. It is possible to do the tracking of Gorillas and have an hour with them (optional). Overnight stay: Gorilla Mist Camp (FB) or the Mahogany Springs Lodge (FB)

Day 14: Bwindi Impenetrable Forest to Lake Mburo National Park 190km 5hr                 

After breakfast, we drive leisurely birding with stops along the mountainous woodlands and cattle countryside to Lake Mburo. There are five lakes in the park making an excellent water birding area. It is mostly woodland harboring beautiful bird species Tabora Cisticola, Egyptian Goose Green-backed Woodpecker and Coqui Francolin, Grey-crowned Crane and Red-faced Barbet. In the afternoon, we go for a drive along the tracks to see the birds in Lake Mburo. Return to the Lodge to relax. Overnight: Rwakobo Rock (FB) or the Mihingo Lodge (FB)

Day 15: Lake Mburo to Kampala or Entebbe

After a full breakfast, have a birding safari walk in the park to search for more birds. It is a thrilling moment if you have never done birding on foot in an African park. We then transfer to Entebbe for your departure flight with a lunch break at the Equator crossing. END.

*Optional activities while birding

-USD 150 per person for the Chimpanzee tracking

-USD 220 per person for Chimpanzee Habituation

-USD 600 per person for Gorilla tracking

TOTAL PRICE 2019-2020 (Medium range accommodations- Full board)

  • 2 persons: USD 3235 per person (double/twin sharing) based on a private tour
  • 4 persons: USD 2655 per person (double/twin sharing) based on a private tour
  • 6 persons: USD 2435 per person (double/twin sharing) based on a private tour
  • USD: 665 single room supplement outside the double/twin room

The above Price includes:

  • Ground transfers
  • 4×4 custom built safari vehicle with knowledgeable driver/guide and fuel
  • Sealed Bottled drinking water
  • Clean accommodations and meals
  • Entrance fees to the National Parks and sites

The following activities: Morning and sunset birding drives, boat trips on the river Nile and Kazinga Channel and a visit to the crater lakes.

TOTAL PRICE 2019-2020 (High Budget accommodations- Full board)

  • 2 persons: USD 4720 per person (double/twin sharing) based on a private tour
  • 4 persons: USD 4050 per person (double/twin sharing) based on a private tour
  • 6 persons: USD 3750 per person (double/twin sharing) based on a private tour
  • USD: 755 single room supplement outside the double/twin room

The above Price does not include:

  • Activities not in the Itinerary
  • Flights and Insurances
  • Visa for Uganda
  • Meals and drinks not mentioned
  • Tips, personal expenses such as laundry and communications