Uganda Birding Safari Tour Adventure
12 Days Tailor-made safari | Anyday departure
View Safari Highlights:
- Shoebills in Mabamba Swamp
- Lake Mburo National Park
- Bwindi Impenetrable Forest
- Queen Elizabeth National Park
- Kibale forest national Park
Uganda Birding Safari: Uganda’s remarkable avian diversity (1,061 species, of which two are endemic and four are rare or accidental) can be attributed to its location between the East African savannah, West African rainforests and semi-desert of the North. Uganda offers easy access to bird-rich habitats that are difficult to reach elsewhere. The country has only two endemics; but if you only take East Africa in consideration, you could count 150 species to be found only in Uganda. Migrant birds are present from November to April.
The 12 Day Uganda Birding Safari takes you to the top Uganda Birding Destination including: Mabamba Swamp, Lake Mburo National Park, Ruhiji in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, Queen Elizabeth National Park, Nyamusingiri and Kibale Forest National Park.
What to Expect
From a birdlife perspective, Uganda is good all-year round, especially since the main birding interest lies in the resident birds. The climate is the main factor to take in to consideration. Uganda is a very wet country. During the wet seasons, roads and forest trails might be in poor condition and rains could interfere with birding time.
In general, the best time for birdwatching is from late May through September, when the rain is less and food is abundant. The main nesting season in Bwindi and Mgahinga (key sites for the Albertine Rift Endemics) is May and June, but from mid-April to mid-May the rains might still be too heavy. February and early March is the only time Semuliki is relatively dry, but it is uncomfortably hot in the north, including Murchison Falls NP. December and January are also good months, since the north is not too hot yet and there is less rain in the south. The best time for primate tracking and wildlife viewing in the savannah reserves is also in the dry seasons, from June to August and December to February.
DAY 01 : Arrival at the Entebbe International Airport.
Our guide will warmly welcome and transfer you to your hotel for a briefing about your tour. Those who will arrive early will have the opportunity of going birding in Mabamba Wetlands to look for the endangered Shoebill stork and other birds such as the four globally threatened species and other species of regional significance, i.e. the Pallid Harrier, Papyrus Gonolek, White-winged Warbler and the Blue Swallow amongst other species. Overnight at the hotel.
DAY 02 : To Mabamba; and Lake Mburo National Park.
After breakfast drive back to Mabamba for further opportunities to find Shoebill and other species of interest missed on the first day. There are seasonal migrants such as Gull-billed Terns, White-winged Black Terns and Whiskered Terns, and residents such as Grey-headed Gulls. Other interesting species found in the marsh include good numbers of Goliath Herons, Spur-winged and Pygmy Geese, Papyrus Yellow Warbler, Papyrus Gonolek and a number of migratory waders. Later we proceed to Lake Mburo National Park, and have a stopover at the Equator. Enroute, we will have a stopover at Kaku Swamp to lookout for more spectacular species like the Rufous-bellied Heron and Hottentot Teal among other species such as: Striped Kingfisher, Bateleur eagle, Levaillant’s Cuckoo, Augur Buzzard, Coqui Francolin, Lilac-breasted Roller, and many more. Overnight stays at Mantana Tented Camp or the Bandas.
DAY 03 : Lake Mburo National Park – To Kabale
After an early breakfast, we go birding in L. Mburo National Park where we hope to spot a number of species such as the Crested Francolin, Emerald-spotted Wood Dove, Spot-flanked Barbet, Bare-faced Go-away-bird, Black-headed Gonolek and we will take a boat to look for the African Finfoot on the lake. After lunch we start the drive to Kabale, the “Switzerland of Africa” where we will have a good view of beautiful scenery blended with tea plantations. Lookout for birds such as Lesser Masked Weaver and Common Scimitar-bill amongst others as we travel. Over night at the hotel.
DAY 04 : Kabale to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park (Ruhija)
After an early breakfast with picnic lunch we start birding enroute Ruhija. We may be lucky and spot Black-fronted duiker and Yellow-backed duikers along the road while birding. Keep eyes open for especially the Long-crested Eagle, Mountain Buzzard, Handsome Francolin, Grey Crowned Crane, Olive Pigeon amongst others.
DAY 05 : In Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
After another early breakfast, we start birding Bwindi Impenetrable Forest looking for species such as African Crowned Eagle, Bat Hawk, African Harrier-hawk, African Goshawk, Wahlberg’s eagle, Ayre’s Hawk-eagle, Red-chested Flufftail, Temminck’s Courser, Great Blue Turaco, Black-billed Turaco, Ross’s Turaco, a variety of sunbirds and many more. Keep eyes open especially for Albertine rift endemics such as the Dusky and Shelleys crimsonwings, Regal sunbird, Rwenzori batis amongst others.
DAY 06 : Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
Another early rising and breakfast. For those who opted for tracking, start the gorilla tracking in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. For tracking, we will head to the briefing point at the park headquarters for a briefing on the dos and don’ts while in the jungle with the gorillas. You will be provided with walking sticks and you are also advised to have your lunch parked with enough drinking water. These treks to find the Mountain Gorilla can be quite strenuous depending on the locations of the gorillas from the start point. But with scouts, guides and porters, if we are lucky, we shall be rewarded with views of one of the most awesome creatures in Africa. Overnight at Gorilla Forest camp or lake Kitandara or Buhoma Homestead.
DAY 07 : To Queen Elizabeth National Park
After breakfast we embark on our journey to Queen Elizabeth National Park. We engage into a game drive upon arrival to look out for birds like the Goliath Heron, Palm-nut Vulture, Brown Snake Eagle, Martial Eagle, African Crake, Senegal & Water Thickness, Kittlitz’s Plover amongst others. Overnight and dinner at Mweya Safari Lodge or Jacana Safari Camp.
DAY 08 : In Queen Elizabeth National Park
We start with an early game drive where we hope to spot the Lion, Spotted Hyena and the rare Giant Forest Hog as well as the various birds in this extraordinary park with a list of over 600 bird species. More birding after breakfast and a return to the lodge for lunch overlooking the Kazinga channel where many species of animals including Elephant and Buffalo come to drink. We can also expect to see Weavers and Robin-chats by the restaurant and sometimes Swamp flycatcher in the restaurant itself. In the afternoon we shall have a launch cruise to explore the Kazinga Channel between Lakes Edward and George; we will see a variety of wildlife and a plethora of birds. Overnight and dinner at Mweya Safari Lodge or Jacana Safari Camp.
DAY 09 : Bird watching Nyamusingiri
To enable an early start we shall take a packed breakfast, and proceed to bird maramagambo forest area around Lake Nyamusingiri looking for: Black Bee Eater, Shining Blue Kingfisher, Blue–breasted Kingfisher, Red-collared Widowbird Honeyguide Greenbul, Snow capped Robin-Chat together with Barbets, Tinker Birds, Woodpeckers and Apalises. After lunch we then go birding to Kibale National Park where we shall see the Kibale Ground-thrush, found once and never found again, and it is the best place in Africa to see Chimpanzee. The forest holds 13 different primate species including Red Colobus and L’Hoest’s Monkey. Overnight at Ndali Lodge or Primate Lodge or primate lodge.
DAY 10 : In Kibale Forest National Park
Today we bird the Kibale Forest and Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary looking for birds like Black-billed Turaco, Yellow-spotted Barbet, Hairy-breasted Barbet, Grey-winged Robin-Chat, Papyrus Gonolek, White-collared Oliveback, Superb Sunbird, Grey-headed Sunbird. Overnight at Ndali Lodge or Primate Lodge.
DAY 11 : In Kibale Forest National Park
After breakfast we visit Kibale Forest National Park, which is reputed to have the greatest variety and highest concentration of primates in East Africa. The most famous of its 13 species is the Chimpanzee, our closest relative. Kibale 1450 Chimpanzee represent Uganda’s largest population of this endangered primate. Kibale is also a home to the rare L’Hoest’s monkey.
Other primates include the black and white Colobus, Blue monkey, Grey cheeked mangabey, Red tailed monkey, Olive baboon to mention but a few. So you will enjoy a guided nature walk in the tropical rainforest in search of the wild chimpanzees, red-tailed monkeys, black and white colobus monkeys and many others. After lunch we explore the Crater Lake region, which has many crater lakes. Dinner and overnight at either Primate Lodge or Ndali Lodge.
DAY 12 : End of Trip and Departure
Budget Accommodation: Buhoma community Rest camp or Wagtail Eco-safari camp.
Luxury Accommodation: Silverback lodge, Buhoma lodge or Lake Kitandara Tented camp
The 12 Days Uganda Birding Safari Cost Includes
- Airport Transfers
- Transportation – 4×4 Safari Cruiser/Van
- Accommodation – Budget/Luxury Lodging
- English Speaking Driver/Guide
- Park Fees & Guide Fees
- Bottled Drinking Water en-route
- Meals as specified in itinerary
Our Safari cost exclude:
- For short trips accommodation on arrival and departure are not included, but can be arranged on request.
- Visa fees (50 USD)
- Sodas, beers, wines and other drinks
- Medical Insurance