502: Wildlife Photography safari

Ref: 502, 11-day

502: Wildlife Photography safari

$4410 per person

If your photography club is looking for a photography tour destination, this itinerary could be perfect for you. We offer a choice of talented photographers to lead the tour.

This photography safari is designed to give you an amazing tour to the Pearl of Africa. It takes you to four of Uganda’s fabulous national parks and a range of habitats. You will spend memorable moments with the enchanting mountain gorillas and chimpanzees, get close to wildlife on a safari walk, enjoy the stunning scenery and experience a little of Uganda’s fascinating culture.

 

Highlights

  • Amazing photography opportunities
  • Gorilla and chimpanzee tracking
  • Game drives for a host of wildlife
  • Boat cruise on some of the most breath-taking water bodies
  • Cultural experiences in local communities

 

Overview

Day 1: Evening arrival at Entebbe International Airport

Day 2: Travel to Kibale National Park. Swamp walk

Day 3: Chimpanzee tracking. Community tour

Day 4: Transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park. Visit Katwe Salt Lake

Day 5: Game drive. Boat cruise on Kazinga Channel

Day 6: Game drive to Ishasha sector. Continue to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest

Day 7: Gorilla tracking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

Day 8: Drive to Lake Bunyonyi. Canoe Safari

Day 9: Travel to Lake Mburo National Park. Community cultural experience

Day 10: Safari walk. Drive to Kampala. Cultural music and dance performance.

Day 11: Visit African craft village. Botanical gardens. Flight home

 

 

When is the best time of year to visit Uganda?

Although Ugandan seasons have become less predictable in recent years, peak tourist seasons usually coincide with dry seasons. When choosing your dates consider:

  • Uganda is an all-year round destination with a pleasant climate and temperatures averaging in the mid 20s0C. The huge variety in altitude means temperatures vary around the country (but this also means increased biodiversity)
  • Flight prices often increase in European/American holiday seasons
  • There are fewer tourists in low seasons so you can have the place to yourselves!
  • Many hotels offer all-year prices so the price of your visit may not change much between seasons
  • Most major roads going from the capital, Kampala, up-country are tarmac. Conditions on murram roads may worsen, to varying degrees, in rainy season
  • Rainy season can be good for birding as there is more food (bugs) available
  • If you are targeting certain birds, ask our advice on breeding and migration seasons
  • Should you plan to climb the Rwenzori mountains, dry seasons are best
  • Hiking may be better in rainy seasons when it is cooler

 

Please note

Permits are required to track gorillas. The minimum ages is 15 years. Gorilla permits are limited to eight people per gorilla family. Permits are also required to track chimps and the minimum age is 12 years.

Please read the information about primate tracking on our primates web page and remember to look at our suggested packing list.

 

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1
Day 1: Evening arrival at Entebbe International Airport
You will be welcomed by your guide at Entebbe International airport and s/he will stay with you throughout your holiday in Uganda. Transfer to a nearby hotel and spend your first night in the quiet surroundings of Entebbe.
Accommodation: Boma Hotel – Entebbe Meal Plan: Dinner is available up to 22:00 in your hotel  
2
Day 2: Travel to Kibale National Park. Swamp walk
08:00 Leave Entebbe and travel to Kibale National Park about 5 hours away, with various photo stops along the way and lunch en route in Fort Portal town. In the late afternoon, travel the short distance from your lodge to a community conservation project. Your guide will lead you on a nature walk in search of primates and birds.
Accommodation: Kibale Guest Cottages – Kibale National Park   Meal Plan: B, L, D  
3
Day 3: Chimpanzee tracking. Community tour
After an early start, you will join your group at 07:30 for a briefing before your guide takes you trekking through the tropical rain forest in search of your chimp family. Once you’ve found them, spend one hour observing and photographing them.  In the afternoon, take a local walk past beautiful tea plantations for some great landscape photography.
Accommodation: Kibale Guest Cottages – Kibale National Park Meal Plan: B, L, D  
4
Day 4: Transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park. Visit Katwe Salt Lake
Head towards Queen Elizabeth National Park via the beautiful and geologically fascinating crater lakes region (approx. 3 hours away). After lunch, drive to Katwe Salt Lake, where you will have the chance to interact with the local salt miners and learn about their way of life. On a clear day, you can take great photos overlooking the lake and from the waters edge
Accommodation: Ihamba Safari Lodge – Queen Elizabeth National Park Meal Plan: B, L, D  
5
Day 5: Game drive. Boat cruise on Kazinga Channel
An early game drive will take you on a lion tracking experience. This special activity will give you plenty of opportunities to capture images of these impressive mammals and any other animals and birds you find. Look out for antelopes, elephants, leopard, warthogs and buffaloes and more. In the afternoon, get on board for a boat cruise along the Kazinga Channel to see animals and birds on the shores of the Channel.
Accommodation: Ihamba Safari Lodge – Queen Elizabeth National Park Meal Plan: B, L, D  
6
Day 6: Game drive to Ishasha sector. Continue to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest
Set off at 09:00 for the Ishasha sector, an area famous for its tree-climbing lions. A game drive offers the chance to look for these iconic animals, large herds of buffalo and various antelopes as well as the other wildlife who inhabit the vast open plains. Enjoy a peaceful lunch in this serene wilderness before continuing your journey to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.
Accommodation: Engagi Lodge – Bwindi Impenetrable National Park Meal Plan: B, L, D  
7
Day 7: Gorilla tracking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
07:30 Prepare yourself to meet some of Bwindi’s legendary gentle giants; a very special experience and a real privilege. After a short briefing, set out with your group and trek through the jungle in search of your gorilla family; this can take anything from 2 to 6 hours. Once you find them, watch these enchanting creatures going about their daily activities in the wild for about an hour. Your images will surely become treasured memories. If time allows, later you can enjoy a community walk.
Accommodation: Engagi Lodge – Bwindi Impenetrable National Park Meal Plan: B, L, D
8
Day 8: Drive to Lake Bunyonyi. Canoe Safari
09:00 A 2 journey takes you to the stunning Lake Bunyonyi where you can enjoy relaxed photography from the lodge or on a local walk. Spend the afternoon on a canoe safari around this beautiful lake, dotted with a number of little Islands. Your guide will share the traditional tales associated with the little islands as you tour.
Accommodation: Birds Nest - Lake Bunyonyi Meal Plan: B, L, D  
9
Day 9: Travel to Lake Mburo National Park. Community cultural experience
Start the return journey northwards, driving to Lake Mburo National Park, Uganda’s smallest park, about 5 hours away. Stop at Igongo cultural centre for lunch and a tour of the museum en route, then at the park, visit the Enyemebwa centre, a community initiative to conserve local culture and heritage. There will be lots of photo opportunities here. Learn about cattle keeping and Bahima culture before returning to your lodge to relax.
Accommodation: Rwakobo Rock – Lake Mburo National Park Meal Plan: B, L, D  
10
Day 10: Safari walk. Drive to Kampala. Cultural music and dance performance
Your adventure continues with a guided safari walk in the park at 08:00 to get closer to the wildlife and see the park from a different vantage point. Make use of the hides and viewing towers available. At 10:00, enjoy the drive though the Ugandan countryside to Kampala, stopping off at the Equator for souvenir shopping, photo opportunities and to see the local drum makers. Once back in Kampala, relax before experiencing the very special Ndere Troupe’s cultural music and dance performance in the evening. You'll need to be fast to keep up with the action in this show.
Accommodation: Cassia Lodge – Kampala Meal Plan: B, L, D  
11
Day 11: Visit African craft village. Botanical gardens. Flight home
At a relaxed pace, visit the African craft village for souvenir shopping before the drive to Entebbe for lunch. Spend some time in the afternoon at the Botanical gardens by the lake side before you head to the airport in time for your flight home
Meal Plan: B, L Please note: all timings and routings are approximate and subject to change at short notice.

Guide price: US$ 4,410 per person

Based on 2 adults sharing a double room, in mid-range accommodation, in low season and travelling in a safari Land Cruiser (all our safaris and tours can be adapted to high-end, mid-range or budget versions)

 

The price for every safari depends on the number of people travelling, their ages, the time of year, whether or not international flights are included, the type of transport and accommodation used and the activities undertaken.

 

We calculate according to the specific dates of your booking because after we publish our itineraries some things may change. For example, hotels may increase their prices, exchange rates fluctuate, the government may introduce new taxes or some discounts may become available. Unfortunately, we also have to pass on surcharges imposed on us by, for example, airlines when fuel prices or airport taxes are unexpectedly increased.

 

We would be happy to prepare a quotation, based on your requirements. We normally include most costs in the price so all you need to bring with you is ‘pocket money’ for items like drinks, tips and personal shopping e.g. souvenirs.

Price includes

1 gorilla tracking permit each

A double room in mid-range, non-air-conditioned accommodation with a full board meal plan

Private safari vehicle with driver and fuel for this itinerary

All entrance and other fees for the activities included in the itinerary

Mineral water in transit

All government taxes

Price does not include

International flights

Visas

Travel insurance

Personal expenses: alcohol, laundry services and souvenirs

Tips (normally 5–10% and around $10 per day for your guide).