14 days Uganda & Kenya; Primates and Masai Mara

13 Days
From $0
Activity Level
Light
Transport
4X4 Land Cruiser
Comfort Level
Luxury

Trip Overview

Day 1: arrival at Entebbe International Airport

Day 2: Kibale national park

Day 3: chimpanzee tracking and swamp walk

Day 4: Queen Elizabeth National Park, afternoon game drive

Day 5: game drive and boat safari on Kazinga Channel

Day 6: Lake Mutanda

Day 7: Gorilla trekking in Bwindi forest

Day 8: drive to Kigali International Airport for flight to Nairobi

Day 9: Lake Nakuru National Park

Day 10: To Masai Mara Game Reserve

Day 11: Whole day game drives in the Mara Reserve

Day 12: Whole day game drives in the Mara Reserve

Day 13: To Lake Naivasha& Boat cruise on the Lake

Day 14: To Nairobi International Airport, departure

Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival at Entebbe International Airport

An Arrive Africa Safaris guide/driver will warmly welcome you to Uganda at Entebbe International airport and drive you through Entebbe town with an immediate view of beaches, local markets, and small businesses along the road to the highway. S/He will drop you at the hotel in Kampala city outskirts where you will spend the night.

You can go on a city tour where you can check out Kampala nightlife in different lounges, pubs, night clubs or visit the Nakasero market or Gaddafi mosque. This will be at your own expense.

Meals included: No Meals
Accommodation: Speke Hotel Kampala
Day 2-3: Kibale national park, Chimpanzee tracking and Swamp walk

Start the drive to Kibale Forest National Park in the Fort Portal district. It harbors the highest density of primates you may encounter during a primate walk. In this forest, one of the most memorable experiences is a visit to one of the habituated chimpanzee groups.  The most common primates seen here include the red-tailed monkeys, rare red colobus monkeys, Grey-cheeked Mangabey monkeys, black-and-white colobus monkeys, olive baboons, blue monkeys, and L’hoest monkeys. Enjoy the sounds and fresh natural smells of the forest. Other sights to behold are the snow-capped Mt Rwenzori and the forest canopy. The lush green vegetation is home to countless bird and butterfly species.

When you reach your hotel and rest at your hotel. 

Chimpanzees share 98% of human genes making them the closest living animals to humans. They can be found in at least 21 African countries but they have a big population in Uganda, about 5,000, so they are easily sighted here in the wild. The chimpanzee trekking experience starts from the park headquarters down well-maintained walking trails in the Kibale forest. As you walk, you will see other primate species in the forest like the Grey-Cheeked Mangabey monkeys, black-and-white colobus monkeys, olive baboons, blue monkeys, nocturnal pottos, bush babies, and olive baboons. Walkthrough the densely populated forest trails that will take you through the forest to see the chimpanzees live a normal day in their natural habitat.

Enjoy the next activity of a guided walk in the Bigodi wetlands sanctuary which lasts 4-5 hours of walking down swamp boardwalks, villages, and forest pathways. Engage in activities like bird watching since it’s home to 200 bird species including the crested crane and elusive Great Blue Turaco, butterfly viewing, and wildlife/primates tracking. Other animals found in the wetland include mongooses, wild pigs, Bush Bucks, Sitatunga antelopes, and otters can be seen around the swamp. You will need to have sturdy walking shoes for this walk.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner
Accommodation: Kyaning Safari Lodge
Day 4: Queen Elizabeth National Park, afternoon game drive, Park Game drive and Boat ride on Kazinga Channel

Queen Elizabeth National Game Park is very scenic because it combines bushland, savannah plains, forests, and wetlands with the Kazinga Channel flowing through the park that connects to Lake George and Lake Edward thus attracting wildlife and birds to it because of the huge waters it offers for survival. This park has one of the largest hippo concentration numbers in the world. On your first game drive in the park, you will explore Queen Elizabeth national park with 200 km of well-maintained game viewing tracks. Be alert and proactive to help the ranger/guide and you spot as many animals as possible.

 

Breakfast before daybreak lets you start the game drive early during the “golden hours” to enjoy watching the savannah land inhabitants like the elephants, buffalos, warthogs, kobs, antelopes wake up. See the African kingdom in its most active hours of the day as the first sunlight touches the savannah. See elephant, buffalo, kobs, lions, waterbucks, leopards, warthogs, birds and primate species during the drive.

Enjoy and relax with an afternoon boat ride when the sun is hot making the Kazinga Channel turn into a drinking spot for many animals, especially the crocodiles, hippos, buffalos that immerse themselves in the water to cool off. The animals might be unbothered by your boat so you can take photos of them up close.

Optional activity: Chimpanzee tracking in Kyambura Gorge

You can opt for a morning hike in the Kyambura gorge which is also named “valley of apes” because it is a geological feature that is home to several primates like vervet monkeys, chimpanzees, baboons, red-tailed monkeys. It’s a hidden gem in the far east of the park. It receives water from River Kyambura so it sustains rich biodiversity and wildlife especially the primates like the 16 chimpanzee families and forest bird species living within.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner
Accommodation: Mweya Safari Lodge
Day 6-7: Visit Lake Mutanda and Bwindi Forest, Mountain Gorilla Trekking

Allow the lush vegetation to enchant you as it is wrapped around hills forming the slopes of Kisoro, this is what will fascinate you as you drive south-west. Explore the volcanos and reach Lake Mutanda’s calm waters. This lake is surrounded by islands and has a hilly terrain around it with lively human inhabitants who co-exist with the wild game and birds.

Mutanda Lake Resort will reward you with the best view since it is perched on a peninsular Lake Mutanda and is isolated in the shadow of the Virunga Mountain range. This resort has comfortable and luxurious accommodation in a unique corner of the country since it is between Mgahinga and Bwindi National Parks hence being a perfect base and starting point for gorilla trekking, volcano hiking, bird watchers as well as simply nature lovers who seek solitude. Take a swim in the lake or paddle board or canoe among the locals as they go about their daily routines on the lake. Enjoy the sunset on your veranda.

Uganda has 50% of the world’s total population of the rare and endangered mountain gorillas that live in the Bwindi forest. They are currently 13 gorilla families in Uganda and you get to track one through their day’s routine. Meet a park ranger at the park headquarters who will be your guide throughout this encounter. The walk into Bwindi forest will be through well-maintained walkways but dress appropriately because the forested slopes are often muddy and slippery, have tangled vines depending on how deep into the forest you have to trek to meet the gorillas. When the family is seen, you will in silence watch them play, hunt, groom, and sometimes copulate. Please keep silent during the trek so as not to startle the gorillas, no flash photography around the gorillas, no feeding the animals, no mimicking the sounds made by the gorillas, and keep a distance of at least 6 meters.

It will take 2-9 hours to find and watch the gorillas depending on their movement. Lunch will be readily packed for the day. Stay hydrated through the day because of the long walk and energy you will need to move through the thick bushes.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner
Accommodation: No accmmodation
Day 8: Drive to Kigali International Airport for flight to Nairobi

Relax in the morning by Lake Mutanda till after lunch when the driver will take you to Kigali International Airport in Rwanda.

Please note that none of the activities and accommodation in Kigali are included in the itinerary. However, if you want to spend the night, let your Arrive Africa Safaris consultant know. Engaging in activities here will be at your own expense.

Opt for an East African Visa that will grant you access to Uganda, Rwanda, and Kenya using one visa.

You will fly from Kigali to Nairobi. A guide/driver will pick you from Jomo Kenyatta International Airport and drive you to your accommodation option for the night.

 

 

Meals included: No Meals
Accommodation: Wildebeest Eco Camp
Day 9: Lake Nakuru National Park

Today you start the journey to one of Kenya’s national parks; Lake Nakuru National Park. Make a stopover at Thomson Falls and the Rift Valley view point where you can take photos. Continue the drive to the floor of the Great Rift Valley surrounded by bushy and wooden grassland to your destination; Lake Nakuru National Park. This park is ideal for game drives, hiking and bird watching because of its surrounding escarpment and picturesque ridges. You can go on a game drive in the park to spot lions, elephants, antelopes, warthogs and other animals. Return to your lodge for lunch, relax then return for an evening game drive especially to enjoy the drive beautified with the sunset scene hitting the landscape.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner
Accommodation: No accmmodation
Days 10-12: To Masai Mara Game Reserve, Whole day game drives in the Mara Reserve

Today you drive towards the border of Tanzania to the Great Masai Mara game reserve. In July- October annually, 2 million ungulates migrate from this game reserve to the Serengeti national park alongside predators like lions, cheetahs, hyenas, and leopards following to prey on the weak and slow wildebeests, zebras or antelopes.

When you reach the gate, enjoy an en-route game drive towards your accommodation option that is a tented camp which will be your home for 3 nights.

 

Enjoy whole day game drive safaris in Masai Mara game reserve. If you make an early drive before sunrise, you will see predators after a night hunt and return to the Camp for breakfast. Enjoy the Big 5 in their natural habitat. You can pack a lunch and have a picnic in the game reserve. Remember not to litter or feed the animals. After an exciting day in the park, return to the Camp and relax as you enjoy the calmness of the Mara River as it flows by your tent.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner
Accommodation: Mara Eden Safari Camp
Day 13: To Lake Naivasha & Boat cruise on the Lake

Relax as you drive out of Masai Mara and arrive at Lake Naivasha for a late lunch.

Lake Naivasha is home to a variety of wildlife including a large number of hippos that enter people’s gardens in search of food at night. This freshwater lake has a good fish population like crayfish, tilapia, black bass which in turn attracts fish-eating birds like Great Cormorants, Fish Eagles, Pelicans and different types of Kingfishers.

Go for an afternoon boat cruise on Lake Naivasha to see birds and hippos.

 

 

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner
Accommodation: Naivasha Sopa Lodge
Day 14: To Nairobi International Airport, departure

After breakfast, you will be returned to Nairobi. Unfortunately, this is the end of your 14-day tour with AA Safaris.

Depending on what time your international flight is, you can do an optional activity in Nairobi though it will be at your own expense. An AA Safaris guide/driver will drive you to Jomo Kenyatta International Airport.

Note: Make sure your international flight is after 4 PM. If you need an extra night in Nairobi, contact your AA Safaris consultant who will make the arrangements at an additional cost.

 

Meals included: Breakfast and Lunch
Accommodation: No accmmodation

Expectations

Arrive Africa Safaris has this tour that will start you in Uganda to enjoy chimpanzee trekking in Kibale forest, see wild game in Queen Elizabeth, and engage in a boat safari on Kazinga channel as you see hippos, crocodiles, elephants by the shores of Lakes Edward and George. Relax by the lakes Mutanda and Naivasha, Lake Nakuru as you watch wild game and birds come to drink or relax by the waters. Highlight your adventure with gorilla tracking in Bwindi Impenetrable forest plus game drives in the famous Masai Mara game reserve will let you see wildebeest, antelopes, lions, cheetahs, giraffes, leopards, hippos, buffalos, hyenas, warthogs and will enlighten your mind as to why the Great Migration is one of the world’s seven wonders especially as the numbers of wild animals will overwhelm you. The accommodation chosen will add a spark to your animal and bird sightings.

Accomodations

Speke Hotel Kampala
For accommodation in Kampala, Speke Hotel is your right choice. We offer the best accommodation in Uganda to make your stay a memorable one. We are the first and one of the oldest hotels in Kampala Uganda, named after the famous British explorer, John Hannington Speke who discovered the source of River.Nile. Built in the British Colonial times of 1920s, the hotel is perfectly placed as the starting point for exploring Uganda's rich History. Speke Hotel kampala is situated at the heart of Kampala City, just 30 minutes drive from Entebbe International Airport. The hotel has 50 ensuite rooms and all the modern luxury hotel facilities that one would expect in a five star hotel.
Kyaning Safari Lodge
Set against the stunning backdrop of Lake Kyaninga and the Rwenzori Mountains beyond, Kyaninga Lodge is the spectacular result of one man’s vision and six years of unwavering commitment to creating an experience of Africa’s beauty unlike anything else.
Mweya Safari Lodge
To enjoy a more luxurious and exclusive stay while on this tour, sleep in one of the en-suite safari tents on the rims of salty Lake Bunyampaka located within the reserve area of the park. The camp is located in the Kasenyi savannah of the park. Look out for the lion prides and other animals (hippos, leopards, elephants, waterbucks, kobs, hyenas and warthogs) coming nearby which adds to your African wilderness experience. The tents have private bathrooms, private decks with spacious living spaces inside. The camp’s location gives easy access to the park for game drives and is in the ‘Big cats arena’.
Wildebeest Eco Camp
Wildebeest Eco Camp located outside the busy Nairobi city center will spoil you with luxury coupled with a Unique African experience in Nairobi’s permanent tented camp. Enjoy the tropical gardens that are home to hundreds of variety of birds and plants while still close to shops, markets, bans, cinemas, transport links and national parks. Relax at the infinity swimming pool, guest library &book swap, gift shop stocking local crafts.
Mara Eden Safari Camp
Mara Eden Safari Camp is located directly on the Mara River right in the center of the reserve with the front seating area ideal for relaxed game and bird viewing. All tents have hot and cold running water in the bathrooms, flush toilets, 24-hour solar lighting, and tasteful décor.
Naivasha Sopa Lodge
Naivasha Sopa Lodge will be where you will spend the night. It has acacia bushes and trees and is home to the resident giraffe, waterbuck, both Colobus and Vervet monkeys. Hippos can be seen every night when they come to the lake and as they leave they graze on the lodge lawns.

Availability and Prices

Included
  • Airport pickup
  • Transfers as indicated in the itinerary
  • 1 chimpanzee permit per person (a US$ 150 value)
  • 1 gorilla permit per person
  • Park-entrance fees according to the program
  • English speaking driver/guide;
  • Meals as indicated in the itinerary
  • Accommodation as indicated in the itinerary
  • Daily activities and excursions as indicated in the itinerary
Excluded
  • All gratuities
  • Airfare to and from destination
  • Trip cancellation insurance or any other travel insurance
  • Visas
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Domestic flights
  • All expenses of personal nature (e.g. drinks, laundry, optional activities, souvenirs cancellation insurance, or any other travel insurance)