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Touring Uganda – Tour to Uganda Trips, Uganda Tours

Touring in Uganda on a tour to Uganda – the pearl of Africa is a journey off the beaten path. Uganda tours (Uganda trips) take you to explore African wildlife safaris, nature, amazing history, beautiful scenery viewing, and unique communities.

Famous for protecting the world’s highest number of endangered Mountain Gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda is also home to 13 unique primate species that dwell in Kibale Forest National Park.

Additionally, Queen Elizabeth National Park, the most famous destination in the country is rich in biomes that merge the Equatorial Savannahs and the Congo Basin. Thus, making it a home to various wildlife species. It is no wonder that because of this biodiversity, Queen Elizabeth National Park has the highest number of birds in East Africa which is about 600 species.

A journey to Western Uganda will also unveil to you the indigenous Batwa Pygmies who were former residents of the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. On the other hand, the Karamojong and the endangered IK people live in North Eastern Uganda.

The relaxing Lake Bunyonyi and the source of the Nile River (which is the longest river in the world!) in Jinja are also either destinations where you can begin or end your adventures when you visit Uganda.

The Ugandan government is working hand in hand with various conservationists to provide better tour experiences to the number of travelers who are growing rapidly in the country.

Arrival at Entebbe Airport is the beginning of an adventure to remember for a lifetime as has been experienced by many tourists who have visited Uganda! Your itinerary can be tailor-made to suit your travel plans to other countries like Kenya and Tanzania.

Read the Uganda travel blog below for enlightenment about the country and let us help with planning your best-guided tour for an amazing travel to Uganda!

Types Of Uganda Tours/Major Categories of Uganda Vacations

Below are the major categories of safaris to experience when you visit Uganda.

  1. Uganda Gorilla Trekking Adventures
  2. Chimpanzee Trekking Trips
  3. Wildlife Viewing Trip
  4. Birding Trip
  5. Cultural and Community Trip
  6. Adventure Trip

Attractions/Things to See in Uganda

Touring Uganda

The pearl of Africa is endowed with various wondrous attractions for your explorations while you visit Uganda.

Below, we look at the various and most popular tourist attractions to explore while on your Ugandan travels.

Visit Uganda Gorillas On Gorilla Uganda Tours

The Mountain Gorillas are the major tourist attractions in Uganda, inviting various travelers to awe at the human-like creatures that are endemic to the Virunga region.

Through the amazing guided Mountain Gorilla trekking adventures, you will be able to see one Uganda Gorilla family as you study their behavior and take their photos to take back home. Travelers on a Uganda Gorilla tour often visit Lake Bunyonyi to relax from the hectic Uganda Gorilla trips.

Other Primates

Apart from the Gorillas, Uganda is also home to other primate species like Chimpanzees, Olive Baboons, Grey-Cheeked Mangabeys, Red-tailed Monkeys, Blue Monkeys, Pottos, Golden Monkeys, and many others.

You can easily see other primates in Kibale Forest National Park with the Golden Monkeys only in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park.

Wildlife

The animals in the country are indeed a wonder to view, especially on game drives, boat cruises, and nature walks.

Uganda has all the big animals which are the Lions, Elephants, Cape Buffaloes, Rhinos, and Leopards. You will also see various Antelope species in the parks, carnivores like Cheetahs, Hyenas, Mongooses, and many others.

Birds

There are over 1096 bird species in Uganda for birders to see in the different national parks, reserves, and other areas in the country.

Different bird species can be found in all parts of the country counting water species, savannah, and forest birds.

Migratory birds come around November to April, thus a good season for birders in the country.

Discover the Shoebill, Green-breasted Pitta, Handsome Francolin, Grey Crowned Crane, Long Crested Eagle, Black and White Casqued Hornbill, and Hammerkop bird species, among others.

Physical Features and Landforms

Physical features and landforms are also another of the most amazing attractions in the country. Discover Lake Victoria, Lake Albert, Lake Bunyonyi, and other water bodies like the Nile River/River Nile which is the longest river in the world, among others.

Likewise, hike Mount Rwenzori, Mount Elgon near Kenya, Mount Moroto, Mount Gahinga, or Mount Sabyinyo while you also discover various plateaus and waterfalls like Murchison Falls and Sipi Falls.

People And Cultures

This is another major attraction in the country, inviting travelers to learn about the local people and their ways.

The fact that Uganda has more than 40 tribes gives tourists the chance to learn about the diversity of the people and their uniqueness.

Indigenous tribes like the Batwa, Karamojong, and the IK have attracted various travelers from near and far to learn the unique ways of the people.

Things To Do and Places to Visit and Tour in Uganda

The country boasts many places to visit for different activities and adventures. Below, we discuss the major places to visit and different activities to do as you travel Africa.

Places To Visit And Tour In Uganda

Being a rich destination, there are many endpoints in the country where you will have amazing experiences of a lifetime on your safaris.

Major destinations however include national parks, game reserves, cultural centers, and cities.

National Parks and Game Reserves

There are 10 national parks in Uganda, all of which are managed by the Uganda Wildlife Authority. Read below to discover the most visited of these parks.

Queen Elizabeth National Park

Queen Elizabeth National Park s dubbed a “Medley of Wonders”, for the wondrous birds and animals that it protects.

This second largest national park in Uganda after Murchison Falls National Park is famed for hosting over 600 bird species, the highest checklist in the whole of East Africa.

Discover about 96 mammal species in Queen Elizabeth National Park on your game drive, boat cruise, nature walks, and scenic adventure while in the park.

You will also be able to see the elusive tree climbing Lions of the Ishasha sector in Queen Elizabeth National Park.

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

Endangered Mountain Gorillas live in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, and they are endemic to the Virunga regions of Uganda, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

About 20 Gorilla families offer the thrill of close encounters with one of the families, thus giving travelers memorable experiences as they visit Uganda.

Additionally, Bwindi Impenetrable National Park has all the most sought-after 24 Albertine Rift Endemic birds of Uganda, making it a birding paradise for birding enthusiasts.

Likewise, explore the great scenery of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and visit the neighboring Batwa Pygmies who were former residents of its forests to have a magical cultural encounter.

Murchison Falls National Park

Murchison Falls National Park is the oldest and largest national park in Uganda, named after “Murchison Falls,” which is recognized as the most powerful waterfall in the world.

This park in Northwestern Uganda has about 95 mammal species and more than 500 bird species spread in its wild and beautiful vicinity.

Enjoy an amazing game drive, boat cruises to the Devil’s Cauldron, birding, nature walks, sport fishing, and cultural encounters among others on your travel to this beautiful country.

Kibale National Park

Kibale Forest National Park also called the “Primate Capital of the World” hails up to its name as its forests protect 13 primate species including about 1500 Chimpanzees.

Other primates to see in Kibale Forest National Park include Red Tailed Monkeys, Blue Monkeys, Olive Baboons, Pottos, and Grey Cheeked Mangabeys among others.

More so, there are various forest bird species birding tourists can encounter while on their adventurous birding sessions in Kibale Forest National Park.

Kidepo Valley National Park

Kidepo Valley National Park is another rich savannah park in Northeastern Uganda.

The golden savannahs are great for both game drives and sceneries that spread over a beautiful landscape.

Visit Mount Morungole to discover a nature unmatched when you watch animals in the valley and others drinking from the water streams below.

In Kidepo Valley National Park, you can also visit the indigenous Maasai like the Karamojong people or the endangered IK tribe where you can learn about their various cultural ways.

Lake Mburo National Park 

Lake Mburo National Park is not just the nearest national park to Kampala, the capital city of Uganda, but also the only Uganda national park where you will see the Mpala Antelopes.

The park also hosts the highest number of Leopards in Uganda and Burchell’s Zebras thus a great destination for your game viewing travel to Uganda.

Discover the beauty of the park through the safe and guided morning game walks in the wild with the animals.

Mgahinga Gorilla National Park

Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is the smallest Uganda park and one of the only two destinations where the endangered Mountain Gorillas live, the other destination being Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.

Mgahinga Gorilla National Park will however give you an additional primate experience of watching the Golden Monkeys as it is the only destination in Uganda where you can see the Golden Monkeys.

Additionally, hike on one of its three mountains (Mount Gahinga, Mount Sabyinyo, and Mount Mahabura) for amazing scenic views.

Rwenzori Mountains National Park

The Rwenzori Mountains National Park is one of the beauties to behold on a Uganda adventure. The snowcapped peaks of the Mountain are the highest point in the country and the fourth highest on the African continent.

The Rwenzori Mountains National Park is more famous for its flora than for its fauna, given the unique plant species like the triffids in the vegetation zones.

The other amazing national parks to adventure while on your travel to Uganda include Semuliki National Park and Mount Elgon National Park.

Uganda also has 12 game reserves that are managed by the Uganda Wildlife Authority including among others Pian Upe Game Reserve, Kigezi Game Reserve, Kyambura Game Reserve, Bokora Game Reserve, Ajai Game Reserve, and East Madi Game Reserve.

Cultural Centers

There is a rich cultural presence and history in the country. Having various tribes and languages in the country guarantees a rich cultural exploration through the people and their history.

Examples of cultural centers in Uganda include Kasubi Tombs a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Kabaka’s Palace, Tooro Palace, Amabere Caves, Ntanda Pits, and the Namasole Tomb, etc.

Cities And Towns

Visiting the cities and towns in Uganda while you travel Africa is an opportunity to also learn about the ways of Ugandans and how they run their daily lives.

Visit Kampala, the capital city of Uganda, and other exciting towns like Jinja, Mbarara, Kasese, Fort Portal, Gulu, Arua and Lira, and others.

A Kampala City tour will allow you to visit various spots like the taxi parks and buildings like the Gadaffi Mosque.

Activities/ Best Things to Do in Uganda

Touring Uganda

Get the most out of your visit to Uganda through the various adventurous activities as discussed below.

Mountain Gorilla Trekking

Mountain Gorilla trekking is the activity highlight of the country, as many tourists come to spend time with the majestic primates in either Bwindi Impenetrable National Park or Mgahinga Gorilla National Park.

A Mountain Gorilla trek takes 2 to 8 hours depending on where you find a Gorilla family. Upon finding one, you will be with them for one hour as you get to study their behavior and also take their photos.

Take note to not take flashlight photos as they may threaten the Gorillas and cause them to turn violent.

Chimpanzee Trekking

Even though there are many Chimpanzee trekking destinations in the country, it is majorly done in Kibale Forest National Park.

Kibale National Park has one habituated Chimpanzee family that you can encounter in the forest as you spend time with them.

You can also do Chimpanzee trekking in the Kyambura Gorge in Queen Elizabeth National Park, in Budongo Forest found in Murchison Falls National Park, or in Kalinzu Forest near Queen Elizabeth National Park.

Game Drives

Game drives are short wildlife excursions in the natural habitats of wild animals to do game viewing. They are done in 4×4 vehicles, in the savannah parks like Queen Elizabeth National Park, Murchison Falls National Park, Kidepo Valley National Park, and Lake Mburo National Park.

You can also do game drives in the different national reserves Pian Upe Game Reserve.

Boat Cruises

Wildlife and birding adventures are also great on boat cruise trips in the different protected areas in Uganda.

Wildlife boat cruises occur in Murchison Falls National Park, Queen Elizabeth National Park, Lake Mburo National Park, and Lake Victoria.

Birding

Enthusiastic birders will enjoy their birding adventures in the country as Uganda holds both numerous and rare, most sought-after bird species.

You will find various birds in the water bodies, savannahs, forests, and woodlands.

Some of these bird species include the ancient Shoebill, the most sought after Green Breasted Pitta, Long Crested Eagle, Grey Crowned Crane, Sunbirds, Weavers, Gonoleks, and many others.

Birding can be done in Queen Elizabeth National Park, Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Lake Victoria, along River Nile, Lake Mburo National Park, and many other destinations.

Mountain Climbing

Various mountains are available for climbing in Uganda including Mount Stanely, Mount Speke, Mount Elgon Mount Gahinga, and Mount Sabyinyo.

Unlike other adventurous activities, mountain climbing will require you to be more physically fit so that the activity is less strenuous.

Nature Walks and City Walks

Uganda is a steward of amazing nature as it is gifted with various breathtaking nature and scenery to behold.

Enjoy the various nature walks in the different beautiful forests and landscapes in the country.

In the protected areas, you can take nature walks in the Maramagambo Forest of Queen Elizabeth National Park, Budongo Forest in Murchison Falls National Park, and the Buhoma and Ruhija regions of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.

Cultural Encounters

Visiting different cultures and tribes should be one of your prime activities as you visit Uganda.

Discover, the Batwa Pygmies near Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, and the Karamojong and IK at Kidepo Valley National Park.

How Much Do Excursions Cost in Uganda in 2023

Below are the fixed costs of major excursions in the country fixed by UWA for foreign nonresidents (FNR), foreign residents (FR), and East African citizens (EAC).

N0ACTIVITY/EXCURSIONFNR(USD)FR(USD)EAC(UGX)
1Uganda Gorilla trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and MGNP700600250,000
2Chimpanzee trekking in Kibale Forest National Park200150150,000
3Day trip guided game drives201520,000
4Boat Cruise302530,000
5Birding302520,000
6Rwenzori mountain hike504050,000
7White Water Rafting at Murchison Falls National Park505050

 

When And Where to Buy Chimpanzee and Gorilla Trekking Permits During Uganda Vacations?

You can purchase your Chimpanzee trekking and Uganda Gorilla trekking permits any time of the year from UWA offices or through your tour operator.

However, the dry season is a peak period so permits are sold out quickly for these excursions. Thus, we advise that you purchase your permit earlier.

What Do I Need to Know Before Traveling to Uganda? | What Should I Know Before Traveling to Uganda? | Uganda Travel Tips | What Does A US Citizen Need to Travel to Uganda?

Below, we look at the various travel tips that are necessary for your travels.

  1. Passport And E Visa or East African Community Single Tourists Visa

A visa and passport are one of your entry requirements to the country. You can apply for an e-visa or an East African tourist visa that allows you entry to Uganda, Kenya, and Rwanda.

Your passport must be valid for at least 6 months by your time of departure from the country.

  1. Vaccinations

To enter the country, you are also mandated to be vaccinated against Yellow Fever if you are five years and above. Children below 5 years should be vaccinated against Polio.

Other routine vaccinations like Malaria, Hepatitis A and B, and Rabies, Covid 19, are also recommended although mandatory.

  1. What To Pack

For smooth and comfortable travels, carry an insect repellant, sunscreen lotion, a camera, pair of binoculars, sunglasses, a waterproof back bag, food, and a water bottle for keeping safe drinking water.

Stick to bottled water and avoid taking tap water or eating food from dirty restaurants as it may not be healthy.

  1. What To Wear

It is important to wear long-sleeved clothes to protect your skin from insect bites. Long trousers and long-sleeved shirts are recommended.

Likewise, carry garden gloves, hat/cap, poncho/rain jacket, and strong sturdy shoes for trekking.

  1. Cultural Beliefs

Be open-minded toward the cultural beliefs of the locals, especially dressing in rural areas. Women should wear long clothes that cover the knee if they are in rural areas as this is a sign of respect and dignity.

In urban areas, you may wear shorts or trousers as many people do not mind it.

  1. Transportation

To get to and around Uganda, you can use various transport means like air transport, road transport, and water transport.

Common transportation inside the country includes Taxis, Boda bodas, Matatus (Mini Buses), Buses, and Domestic Flights.

For safety precautions, avoid public means of transport that have people especially late at night.

Best Tour Operators to Use When You Visit Uganda

Read below to find some of the best tour operators to use on your Uganda tour and adventures to other countries like Kenya and Tanzania.

  1. Prime Safaris and Tours Limited
  2. A Uganda Safaris
  3. Safari Uganda Safaris
  4. Gorilla Safaris & Tours
  5. Gorilla Trekking Uganda
  6. Guide to Uganda
  7. Wild Gorilla Safaris
  8. Africa Safaris Tours

 

  1. Jinja Source of the Nile Tours
  2. Kampala City Tours

Best Uganda Travel Packages/Popular Tour To Uganda Trips

Read below to choose the best tour package for your safaris in Uganda as you travel Africa.  These packages can be tailor-made to suit other safaris in Kenya and Tanzania.

a. 18 Days Uganda Tour – Gorillas, Chimpanzees, Wildlife & Community

b. 16 Days Uganda Safari Holiday, Gorillas, Chimps, Wildlife, Community, Scenery

c. 14 Days Uganda Safari − Gorillas, Chimps, Wildlife & Rwenzori Mountains Hike

d. 12 Days Safari in Uganda – Primate Trekking (Gorillas & Chimps), Wildlife Viewing Tour.

e. 10 Days Uganda Safari – Uganda Gorilla Trekking, Chimps & Wildlife

f. 8 Days Uganda Safari – Uganda Gorilla Trekking, Chimps & Wildlife

g.  7 Days Uganda Wildlife Trip | Uganda Game Viewing Trip

Safari Lodges and Accommodation in Uganda

You will find accommodation facilities in national parks, cities, towns, reserves, and various other places ranging from budget to midrange, and luxury to suit your travel budget.

Below, we look at the major accommodation facilities in the major tourist parks.

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

Luxury lodges in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park: Clouds Mountain Gorilla Lodge, Nkuringo Bwindi Gorilla Lodge, Buhoma Lodge.

Midrange lodges in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park: Gorilla Mist Camp, Ichumbi Gorilla Lodge, Gorilla Valley Lodge.

Budget lodges in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park: Bwindi View Bandas, Nshongi Gorilla Resort, Wagtail Eco Safari Camp.

Queen Elizabeth National Park

Luxury lodges in Queen Elizabeth National Park: Mweya Safari Lodge, Ishasha Wilderness Camp, Jacana Safari Resort.

Midrange lodges in Queen Elizabeth National Park: Enganzi Game Lodge, Ihamba Lakeside Safari Lodge, Ishasha Jungle Lodge, and Baboon Safari Resort.

Budget lodges in Queen Elizabeth National Park: Bull Bush River Camp, Pumba Safari Cottages, Tembo Safari Lodge.

Murchison Falls National Park

Luxury lodges in Murchison Falls National Park: Paraa Safari Lodge, Bakers Lodge, and Chobe Safari Lodge.

Midrange lodges in Murchison Falls National Park: Pakuba Safari Lodge, Fort Murchison Lodge, and Sambiya River Lodge.

Budget lodges in Murchison Falls National Park: Hornbill Bush Lodge, Red Chilli Rest Camp, Bar Lyec Safari Lodge.

Kidepo Valley National Park

Luxury: Apoka Safari Lodge.

Midrange: Nga Moru Wilderness Camp, Adere Safari Camp, Kidepo Savannah Lodge.

Budget: Apoka Rest Camp, Kakine & Nagusokopire Campsite.

Kibale Forest National Park

Luxury lodges in Kibale Forest National Park: Primate Lodge, Kyaninga Safari Lodge, Crater Safari Lodge.

Midrange lodges in Kibale Forest National Park: Kibale Forest Camp, Isunga Lodge, Mountains of the Moon Hotel.

Budget lodges in Kibale Forest National Park: Chimpanzee Forest Lodge, Rwetera Safari Park, Mwanba Kelele Lodge.

Lake Mburo National Park

Luxury lodges in Lake Mburo National Park: Mihingo Lodge.

Midrange lodges in Lake Mburo National Park: Arcadia Cottages, Mburo Safari Lodge, Mantana Tented Camp.

Budget lodges in Lake Mburo National Park: Rwonyo Rest Camp.

Frequently Asked Questions About Uganda Safaris

What Is Beautiful About Uganda?

Unique attractions like wildlife, primates like Gorillas and Chimpanzees, breathtaking scenery, various bird species, and warm welcoming culture are all beautiful aspects of Uganda.

Is Uganda Tourist Friendly? | Why Would Someone Travel to Uganda?

Yes, Uganda is tourist friendly. There are various remarkable experiences to awe at on your journeys to the country including scenery, wildlife, birds, the people, and their cultures.

Do People Vacation in Uganda?

Yes, several people come for their vacations in Uganda, where they will take part in various vacation activities like Mountain Gorilla trekking, exploring Lake Bunyonyi, game trips, boat cruises, nature walks, and hiking among others.

Does Uganda Require Yellow Fever Vaccination?

It is mandatory to have a Yellow Fever vaccination card before entering the country. Other mandatory documents are your passport and visa.

How Many Days Do You Need in Uganda? | How Many Days Should I Spend in Uganda?

Roughly 7 to 10 days are usually satisfactory to gain general knowledge about tourist attractions and highlights in Uganda.

They will allow you to trek and see Moutain Gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, wildlife in Queen Elizabeth National Park, Chimpanzees and other primates in Kibale National Park, adventures on the Nile River, and relaxation at Lake Bunyonyi.

Best Time to Travel to Uganda | What Is the Best Time of Year to Go on Safari in Uganda? | Which Month Is Best for Uganda? | What Is the Best Month to Visit Uganda?

The dry season is the best time of the year to go for a trip to Uganda. These are from December to February and May to August.

The dry season is the best time to visit Uganda because the weather is suitable as it makes the tracks dry and easy to pass, unlike the wet season when driving and trekking tracks are muddy, and thus difficult to pass.

The dry season also makes wildlife viewing easier because the vegetation becomes thinner.

How Much Is 10 Days Uganda Safari?

A 10-day safari in Uganda will cost about $ 3000 to $ 5000 depending on whether a tourist chooses budget, midrange, or luxury travel.

Is Uganda or Rwanda Better for Gorilla Trekking?

Both Uganda and Rwanda are great Mountain Gorilla trekking destinations. However, visitors may choose a favorable destination depending on the conditions that are best defined in one of the countries. Read below to find out the different aspects that make Uganda Gorilla trekking favorable in each of the countries.

Cost: The cost of Gorilla trekking is cheaper in Uganda compared to Rwanda. Uganda Gorilla trekking costs USD 700 while in Rwanda, it is USD 1500 for foreign nonresidents.

Terrain: Gorilla trekking paths in Virunga National Park are well-defined but steeper than those in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.

Accessibility: It is easier to access Virunga National Park from Kigali the capital of Rwanda than it is with accessing Bwindi Impenetrable National Park from Kampala, the capital of Uganda, especially on road transport.

The number of Gorilla families: Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park in Uganda have more Gorilla families than those in Rwanda, thus a higher chance of seeing Mountain Gorillas in Uganda.

How Expensive Is It to Travel in Uganda?

Uganda is among the most affordable tour destinations in the African continent. It suits budget, midrange, and luxury offers. Budget travelers can spend as low as USD 25, especially if they are camping.

How Much Does It Cost to Travel to Uganda? How Much Does a Safari in Uganda Cost? | How Much Does It Cost to Go on Safari in Uganda?

Averagely, each person on a Uganda tour may start spending from USD 150 per day on a budget, USD 300 per day on a midrange adventure, and about USD 600 on a luxury adventure.

Various aspects determine this cost some of these include among others the number of days spent on the adventure, activities, level of luxury, group size, and add-ons like tipping.

What Is the Best Way to Travel Around Uganda?

Using one of the tour operators as a tour guide is the best way to travel around Uganda.

Can US Citizens Travel to Uganda?

Yes, both US citizens and other foreigners can travel to Uganda for their safaris.

Is It Safe to Travel to Uganda Currently?

Currently, Uganda is generally safe to travel to. There are no serious crimes, only that travelers should take caution about pickpocketing and scamming in some parts of town.

It is however advisable to avoid entering as far as 50km into the South Sudan border because of the civil wars and instabilities. Also, make sure that you are with an armed ranger and follow the safety precautions of your tour.

Uganda may be off the beaten path, but there are numerous encounters to meet when you visit Uganda. From exploring the Gorillas in the mountains of Western Uganda to various other primates, wildlife, and cultures, the pearl of Africa is a home for every traveler.

Ready to plan your travel to Uganda? Contact us for free inquiries and book your trip today!

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