Jonathan agrees with Winston Churchill, Uganda IS the Pearl of Africa!
Chimpanzees use extraordinary social and communication skills to band together and rush through the forest, resulting in successful hunts. © Jonathan Rossouw
The southerly Ishasha sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park is home to a population of tree-climbing Lions that offer great photographic opportunities. @ Jonathan Rossouw
Mountain Gorillas share 95% of their genes with humans. It’s no wonder that spending time with them is such an unforgettable experience. © Jonathan Rossouw
A scarce denizen of the vast papyrus swamps of Central Africa, the Shoebill is one of the world’s most peculiar and sought-after birds. © Jonathan Rossouw
The Murchison Falls are created by the mighty Victoria Nile being squeezed through a mere 15-foot-wide chasm and released over a sheer cliff. © Jonathan Rossouw
Enormous Nile Crocodiles are a regular sight along the meandering Victoria Nile in Murchison Falls National Park. © Jonathan Rossouw
Uganda Gorilla Safari
Straddling the Equator in the heart of Africa, Uganda is a land without equal. From the source of the Nile on Lake Victoria’s papyrus-choked shores to the snow-capped Rwenzoris, the game-thronged grasslands flanking Murchison Falls to the legendary Mountain Gorillas of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, Uganda is a country of astonishing contrasts. In a continent long renowned for its wildlife, Uganda alone combines the intoxicating abundance of classic, thorn-studded savannas with the biological wonders of the primate-rich Congolese rainforests. Join Apex Expeditions on this comprehensive survey of Uganda and discover for yourself why Winston Churchill described the country as “The Pearl of Africa”!
- Travel by Air
- Travel by Road
- Travel by Boat
- Travel by Bullet Train
- Travel by Rail
- Travel by Dog Sled
On arrival this morning in Entebbe, you will be met and transferred to the Protea Hotel, on the shores of Lake Victoria. After lunch depart on an afternoon exploration of the shores of Lake Victoria, with our first opportunity to encounter such charismatic primates as Guereza Colobus and Tantalus Monkey, alongside immense Black-and-white-casqued Hornbills, glamorous Great Blue Turacos, and a wide array of waterbirds. Dinner and overnight at the Protea Hotel.
Entebbe / Murchison Falls National Park
This morning, transfer back to Entebbe Airport for the flight west across Uganda to Murchison Falls National Park. Uganda’s largest national park—a scenic wonderland of rolling palm-studded grasslands, Acacia woodland, Papyrus swamps, and the meandering Victoria Nile—is home to some of the most impressive concentrations of animals in all of Uganda. You have two full days to enjoy the magnificent scenery and bountiful wildlife of this unique area.
Approaching the Western, or Albertine, Rift, by air, you’ll gain a unique perspective of the spectacle that is Murchison Falls, the mighty Victoria Nile squeezed through a mere 22-foot-wide chasm to cascade nearly 120 feet to the rocks below. A private vehicle transfers you to Baker’s Lodge for lunch, before your embarkation for one of the world’s great wildlife-watching cruises. En route to the falls, you encounter a plethora of waterbirds, enormous Nile Crocodiles, grazing African Elephants, and one of the highest concentration of Hippopotamus in Africa. Eventually, you reach the base of Murchison Falls, with wonderful photographic opportunities, before returning downstream as the sun sets slowly over the Nile. Meals and overnights at Baker’s Lodge.
Murchison Falls National Park
Highlights of your stay are game-viewing cruises on the Nile. This morning you’ll head downstream to the delta on Lake Albert. Keep binoculars and cameras at the ready for the large herds of Hippopotamus and enormous Nile Crocodiles, with Defassa Waterbucks and elephants in close attendance. Birders will thrill to the species that live in this region: Grey Crowned Cranes, Goliath Herons, Red-throated Bee-eaters, and possibly even Shoebills. Continue your exploration of the park by safari vehicle in search of such charismatic animals as the elegant Rothschild Giraffe and Lake Chad Buffalo. Smaller herbivores such as Lelwel Hartebeest, Ugandan Kob, and Nile Oribi are plentiful, and support a healthy population of Lions. With luck, we should also encounter bands of terrestrial Patas Monkeys, a primate restricted to the arid savannas of the Sahel.
Kibale National Park
After an early breakfast, begin the fascinating drive to Kibale, traveling from the Rift Valley into a patchwork of colorful villages and agricultural lands. Eventually you reach a mixture of forest and tea plantations; at the foothills of the looming Rwenzoris, or “Mountains of the Moon.” Overnight at the beautiful Ndali Lodge, ideally situated for activities in Kibale National Park.
Kibale National Park
Spend a full day in Kibale National Park, one of Africa’s most celebrated forests for primates. Home to several large communities of Chimpanzees, many of Kibale’s primates are well studied and accustomed to human observers. The reserve is accessed by a series of well-marked and maintained trails and walking is relatively easy. Typically, chimpanzees live in large communities and are best located by their characteristic pant-hooting calls as they execute their nomadic treks along forest pathways or forage for fruit in the canopy above. Although they feed primarily on figs and other fruits, they also occasionally hunt other forest animals. At these times, the Chimpanzees use their extraordinary social and communicative skills to band together and rush through the forest to capture ground dwellers such as bushpigs and duikers. Although Chimpanzees are the main focus, you will also spend time viewing the other wildlife species which inhabit this diverse forest reserve. Those commonly encountered include Grey-cheeked Mangabeys, Red-tailed and Tantalus Monkeys, and both Ashy Red and Guereza Colobus Monkeys. Enjoy dinner and overnight at Ndali Lodge, with stunning vistas of the Ndali crater and the fabled Rwenzori Mountains.
Queen Elizabeth National Park
After an early breakfast, head for Queen Elizabeth National Park. The drive takes you once again to the western corridor of Africa’s Rift Valley. Arrive at Mweya Safari Lodge, situated on a bluff overlooking the Kazinga Channel and Lake Edward in time for lunch. This afternoon set out on a private boat cruise along the Kazinga Channel. This narrow ribbon of water teems with huge herds of Hippos—the largest concentration in the world—and buffalo, and connects Lake Edward with smaller Lake George. Birds here are both numerous and spectacular, including multiple species of eagle, stork, waterfowl, kingfisher, and bee-eater. Regarded by some as one of Africa’s best birding locations, more than 560 bird species have been recorded. Dinner and overnight at Mweya Safari Lodge.
Queen Elizabeth National Park
An early start provides a full day to explore Queen Elizabeth National Park. The focus is the southerly Ishasha sector of the park and its population of tree-climbing Lions as well as myriad other wildlife, including Uganda Topi, Giant Forest Hogs, and even Leopards. Dinner and overnight at Ishasha Wilderness Camp.
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest
After a final exploration around Ishasha, set out for the world famous Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. The drive through the Ugandan countryside winds through rolling hills, cultivated lands, and villages that make for excellent photographic opportunities along the way.
Arrive at the permanent luxury-tented Gorilla Forest Camp, set on the edge of the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, a World Heritage Site and one of the most biologically diverse areas on the planet. Later this evening you’ll have a briefing on gorilla-watching etiquette followed by dinner and overnight.
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest
Spend two days tracking Mountain Gorillas. Under the supervision of trained local guides, you’ll head out each day to the site where the gorillas were seen the previous day and then begin your search. Once the gorillas are located, you make your approach and sit quietly by them, watching and observing, with ample time for photography, or to simply enjoy this unique experience. The moment of looking into the soft brown eyes of a gorilla, to marvel at its size, and yet gentle countenance, as you introduce yourself to the family group, is truly unforgettable.
Other activities at Bwindi include forest trekking for the lesser primates, Blue and L’Hoest’s Monkeys. There are also opportunities to look for the many bird species that make this montane forest their home. Dinners and overnights at Gorilla Forest Camp.
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest / Entebbe
After breakfast, board your charter aircraft for the short flight to Entebbe then return to the Protea Hotel, where day-use rooms have been booked. Enjoy a final dinner at the hotel before you transfer to the airport for your independent late night flight homeward.
- April 24 – May 4, 2018
- Leaders Jonathan Rossouw & Marco Tonoli
- $16,770 Per Person Rate
- $18,580 Solo Rate
- 11 days Trip Length
- 14 guests
- Entebbe Start/End
In additional to all tour services from arrival in Entebbe to departure, as described in the itinerary, the trip price includes all gratuities; air from Entebbe to Murchison Falls and Bwindi to Entebbe, as noted in the itinerary; services of two Apex expedition leaders and local guides throughout; two-day gorilla tracking permits; Chimpanzee tracking permit; plus local beer and wine with lunch and dinner daily.
Sold out, please contact us to be added to the interest list for our 2019 expedition!
Have a question? Call us at 206.669.9272 / 800.861.6425. Prefer online?Get in Touch
A truly unique combination of primate experiences that includes tracking Chimpanzees to spending time with Mountain Gorillas!
In Search of the Bizarre!
A scarce denizen of the vast papyrus swamps of Central Africa, the Shoebill is one of the world’s most peculiar birds. Though related to the storks, the bird sports a bill so bizarre as to be considered the sole representative of its own bird family. Broad, boat-like, and sporting a wicked hooked tip, this oversized appendage is perfectly equipped to capture the slippery lungfish that constitute its main prey. Uganda’s healthy papyrus swamps are renowned as the very best sites on Earth to find this evolutionary oddity!