8 Nights Birding Safari to Central & Western Uganda

Pied Kingfisher - Queen Elizabeth national park

This safari takes you to some of Uganda’s most impressive birding sites, where you can search for Shoebills, raptors, African Finfoot and much more. This tour also includes chimp tracking and opportunities to see a variety of other wildlife such as lions, hippos and giraffe, making it an excellent trip for nature lovers.

Grey-crowned Crane - Port Bell May 15 (4)

HighlightsItineraryOptions & extensionsPrices & bookingAccommodation & transportTravel advice
  • Search for the Shoebill Stork
  • Go birding by boat at Mabamba Swamp and Lake Mburo
  • Spot the famous tree-climbing lions of Ishasha
  • Experience the thrill of chimp tracking
  • Visit Queen Elizabeth National Park with over 666 bird species
USAGA professional bird guide Day 1: Arrive in Uganda
Arrive at Entebbe International Airport where we will meet you and take you to your accommodation. Depending on the time of your arrival, visit the Entebbe Botanical Gardens or Uganda Wildlife Education Centre.
Swamp birding by small boat at Mabamba Day 2: Birding at Mabamba Swamp and travel to Lake Mburo National Park
Drive to Mabamba Swamp for birding by boat. Travel to Lake Mburo National Park for a game drive.
African Fish Eagle - Lake Mburo Day 3: Lake Mburo National Park
Take a boat ride on Lake Mburo for birding.
Pied Kingfisher - Queen Elizabeth national park Day 4-5: Travel to Queen Elizabeth National Park
Leave early for Queen Elizabeth National Park passing through Ishasha, known for its tree-climbing lions. In the afternoon take a boat ride along the Kazinga Channel.
Black & White Casqued Hornbill Day 6: Transfer to Kibale National Park
Transfer to Kibale Forest National Park, and view the numerous crater lakes in the area.
 Chimp in Kibale forest  

Day 7: Chimp tracking and birding
Enjoy chimp tracking in the rainforest of Kibale National Park. Go on a swamp walk in Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary for birding and primate spotting.

Rwenzori foothills Day 8: Return to Kampala and Entebbe
Return to Entebbe via Fort Portal, travelling in the shadows of the Rwenzori Mountains. Stops en route include an African craft village. Arrive in the early evening in Entebbe.
Entebbe botanical gardens Day 9: Entebbe Botanical Gardens, Uganda Wildlife Education Centre and departure
Depending on flight times, you may be able to visit Lutembe Bay, Entebbe Botanical Gardens or Uganda Wildlife Education Centre. You will be taken to the airport for your flight.

NB: wildlife sightings are not guaranteed. If you have a particular bird/s that you want to see, let us know and we will tailor your itinerary to maximise your chance of spotting it.

Responsible tourism: where possible, we use locally owned accommodation with good environmental credentials.

Any of the activities below can be swapped for activities in this itinerary or you can extend this itinerary to add any of them. This may involve additional costs. We will be pleased to advise you about options and extensions.

  • Horseback safari in Lake Mburo National Park
  • Night game drive in Lake Mburo National Park
  • Tour of the salt lakes in Queen Elizabeth National Park
  • Chimp tracking in Queen Elizabeth National Park
  • 2 days birding in Semuliki National Park
  • 1 day birding at Mabira forest near Kampala
  • 2 days birding on the River Nile at Jinja and a boat trip to Samuka Island breeding site

Prices

This safari costs USD 3,700 per person and is based on two people sharing twin accommodation.

We are happy to quote for different group sizes | single person supplements | options/extensions | flight-inclusive packages.

Inclusions & exclusions

Price includes:

  • 1 chimp tracking permit each
  • A private safari vehicle with driver/guide and fuel for this itinerary
  • Full-board, mid-range, non air-conditioned accommodation
  • All entrance and other fees for the activities included in the itinerary
  • Mineral water in transit
  • All government taxes

Price does not include:

  • Flights
  • Visas
  • Travel insurance
  • Personal expenses such as bar bills, phone calls, laundry services, gifts, crafts and personal shopping
  • Tips and gratuities (normally 5–10% and around $100 for your guide).

Booking procedures

Our booking procedures are straightforward but please feel free to contact us if you need any assistance. We suggest you buy your international flights before booking (unless flights are included in your package).

  1. Once you have selected one of our safari packages or have agreed a bespoke itinerary with us you need to send us a booking form.
  2. We will acknowledge receipt of your booking and then we check the availability of your itinerary on your chosen dates and inform you if any changes are necessary. For example, if your preferred hotel is fully booked on your selected dates.
  3. When availability is confirmed, we will issue booking confirmation details including an invoice for your deposit. You must check these details carefully.
  4. You must pay a 50% deposit plus the full amount for any tracking permits (payments for permits are non-refundable unless we are to sell them on). Full payment is due no later than 70 days before travel and we will send you a reminder and invoice for this.
  5. Payment is by bank transfer into our Standard Chartered USD bank account in Uganda. You can also pay by credit card although there is a 3.5% administration charge. For those booking from within Uganda, cash payments are possible.
  6. We strongly recommend that you include cancellation cover in your travel insurance.

Booking Formpayonline

Please use one of these forms to book your visit:
Booking form: Holidays / Safaris

Booking conditions

Please take the time to read and understand the booking conditions governing your travel arrangements with Venture Uganda.

We also recommend that you also read the Travel advice pages of this website and the itinerary information relating to your trip before booking.

Booking Conditions

Accommodation

To help us select the right accommodation for your safari (and in the absence of a complete national hotel classification system e.g. 1*–5*) we use four levels: high-end, mid-range, budget and backpackers. These terms can mean different things to different people but are helpful to an extent.

Air-conditioned rooms are not available in all hotels. Where AC is available, there is usually an extra charge.

Some locations have a limited choice of accommodation and so, to stay there, you must accept what is available. Where possible we prefer to work with responsible accommodation providers. This means hotels and lodges which are locally owned, employ local staff, support their community and protect the local environment.

Transport
As standard, we use a spacious 7-seater, 4×4 safari Land Cruiser, with pop-up roof, fridge and phone/camera charging facilities. This is the perfect safari vehicle.

Alternatively, we offer a slightly cheaper 7-seater, 4×4 safari van with a pop-up roof.

transport

5 -seater versions of both Land Cruisers and vans are also available.

For large group tours we use small buses called Coasters. These usually seat around 28 people, including 5 jump (fold-down) seats in the aisle. They do not have a boot/trunk so luggage is carried on the back seats which reduces the seating capacity. The overhead luggage shelves are small and can only accommodate small bags. Therefore, we recommend you do not over pack.

All vehicles include a driver/guide and fuel for your itinerary. Additional activities, not included in your itinerary, may incur an additional fuel charge. Our vehicles are comprehensively insured, in good mechanical condition and have seat belts fitted.

Please let us know if you have any special travel requirements. For example, if your group has disabled members we will do our best to accommodate your needs.

Fly-in safaris

Fancy a fly-in safari, hopping from one location to another by small plane? Or save time by travelling to one of the farther destinations on your itinerary by air instead of road? Domestic flights are available to a variety of locations in Uganda so you can visit all or some of the places in your itinerary by plane, enjoying stunning aerial views of the countryside and wildlife below.

Scheduled and charter flights are available. Scheduled flights have some limitations in terms of routings and days of operation and in some cases minimum numbers are required. We will be pleased to advise you if you wish to fly.

Note: The luggage limit on small aircraft is 15kg per person, including both hand and hold luggage. This must be in soft bags not hard suitcases.

See our Responsible Tourism pages for information about our approach to tourism and advice on how to travel responsibly.

For general advice please see our travel advice webpage.

Specific advice for this safari

Chimp tracking permits are subject to availability. We recommend early booking if possible, especially in peak season (Dec–Mar and June–Sept). If permits are not available on your chosen dates, we may be able to run the trip in reverse order or alter the itinerary to fit.

Note: Uganda Wildlife Authority does not allow children under the age of 12 years to track chimpanzees.