Multi-faceted Uganda Safaris
Yet Uganda safaris have so much more to offer – not just gorilla trekking. Uganda has one of the widest range of primates in Africa including the golden monkeys in Bwindi and chimpanzees in Kibale National Park, Semliki Wildlife Reserve and Semliki National Park.
A Uganda safari also meanders through varied landscapes. Luxuriant and fertile with vivid tropical forests alive with birdsong. Or even snow-capped peaks. Then classic savanna plains dotted with game, and finally beautiful lakes and wetland areas. Uganda is undoubtedly an adventure destination: its safaris have a rawness and authenticity that sets them apart. Mass tourism is unknown here. And the people of Uganda are friendly and welcoming.
Gorilla Trekking in Uganda
Nearly all our Uganda Safaris include a day or two of gorilla trekking. There can be few more moving experiences than meeting the brown-eyed gaze of the hugely endangered mountain gorilla. Gorilla tracking in Uganda can be quite challenging. You must be prepared to trek for up to seven arduous hours for the reward of an encounter with a 220 kg ‘silverback’ gorilla. But the anticipation is matched only by the euphoria after the short audience.
Uncontrolled hunting and the accelerating human encroachment into its high-altitude rainforest habitat have brought the mountain gorilla of Uganda to the brink of extinction. Due to conservation efforts, gorilla numbers are once again slowly increasing. And so now there are about 880 gorillas in the wild. Roughly half live in the Bwindi Forest National Park in Uganda and the remainder in the Virunga Mountains in Rwanda, and in the DRC.
A handful of family groups of gorillas have become habituated to limited human contact. But the number of gorilla trekking permits is strictly limited per day. So you need to book your Uganda safari well in advance.
Game-viewing in Uganda
As well as being home to the mountain gorillas, the Mgahinga and Bwindi National Parks of Uganda support diverse wildlife including chimpanzees, golden monkeys and other primates.
A short drive away are the plains, lakes and wetlands of the Queen Elizabeth National Park and Lake Mburo National Park. These support good numbers of elephant, giraffe, zebra, lion, hippo and crocodiles. Further north again is the safari mecca of Murchison Falls. This is Uganda’s largest national park and home to the ‘Big Five’ and more chimpanzees. Finally those who make the journey to the remote Kidepo Valley National Park are rewarded with less common sightings. Such as bat-eared fox and spotted hyena amongst the 77 mammal species found here.
Birding Tours in Uganda
Uganda boasts one of the widest ranges of bird species in Africa. You don’t even need to be a twitcher to get excited by the ease with which you can spot ”big tick” species such as the unforgettable Shoebill Stork. Semliki Wildlife Reserve has an almost 100% success rate for such birding sightings. And they can even be found within 50 km of Kampala.
Best Time to Visit for your Uganda Safari
There’s plenty of sunshine in Uganda. But the altitude of most of the country means that it’s rarely too hot to be active. The best time for a Uganda safari or gorilla tracking is in the dry seasons from January to February and then again from June to August. But, although conditions are more challenging in the wet season, the primate tracking is slightly easier then. As the gorillas are less on the move. And the country is green and lush.