Clients Comments regarding our Safaris

Client Satisfaction is our Aim

What our Clients say about our Safaris in Uganda – Rwanda


Kabiza Wilderness Safaris takes a different approach – our focus is not on the profits we can make off of a client but how we can give and create that African Dream Safari in Uganda – that once in a lifetime trip to Africa and no matter if it is a budget, moderate or up-market – we do our all to create something beyond your expectations. We Concentrate on Uganda – Uganda the Pearl of Africa is our focus. We spend hours handwriting each safari – it is not cut and paste – it reflects your wishes and your input from start to finish.

Kabiza Wilderness Safaris is not large – it does not carry the overhead of a downtown office and many employees – it is a streamlined company – proud to be small with no intention of becoming large but large enough to serve beyond the expected – to us a dream safari in Uganda is not a business but a relationship with our clients from beginning to end and that includes our driver guides who once again are not focused on tips or money but your satisfaction and beyond.

Africa is a relational society – where the welcome mat is always out when you are here you will always hear “you are most welcome.” With us the bottom line takes care of itself –the focus is to serve the clients first and that is our aim– American Style Customer Service, Ugandan Knowledge, Understanding and Insight into culture, wildlife and places with a staff that is client orientated. Just look at our blog – it is rarely about selling, but about information about Uganda and not just terse information but an abundance – you can spend days on the 900 plus pages of Kabiza.com website and blog.

Below are recent emails from clients that went with us on Safari – anyone can get a driver in Uganda – but not a driver – guide with heart – once that exude a love for Uganda and shows customer care with the client in mind –simply giving their best.


“Kabiza Wilderness Safari Tour to Murchison Falls National Park”

My husband, my daughter and I write this “open letter of thanks” to Jon Blanc and Geoffrey Mugambwa of Kabiza Wilderness Safaris, for an absolutely marvellous 4-day safari over Christmas which absolutely met, and exceeded, our expectations after almost a year in planning!

For the third time in two years, our family has had the thrilling experience of a safari to Murchison Falls with Kabiza Wilderness Safari tours.

The planning was outstanding in every respect, and the plans were carried out flawlessly! Jon Blanc, in the planning of these four days many months beforehand, and Geoffrey Mugambwa, in his constant care of us throughout the safari, really did everything possible to make this one of the most memorable experiences of our lives! I had written to Jon beforehand, about what we hoped to experience, and his planning and the trip itself were highly responsive. The best use was made of every moment of the trip, with every possible need anticipated and attended to. The cost of the flights, the cost and difficulty of arrangements for my handicapped daughter’s care while we were away – all was worthwhile even had we travelled to Africa for purposes of the safari alone. At the same time, given how busy wedding events in Kampala kept us (kwanjula on 22nd, civil wedding on 29th, and numerous related events etc.) we really benefited in body, mind and soul, from our time in the Ugandan wilderness!

Accommodations at Chobe and Parra Lodges were quiet and lovely, clean and restful and comfortable given our very busy two-week schedule in Africa and at home before and after our trip, and exquisitely in keeping with the surrounding natural beauty of Murchison Falls National Park – each overlooking the Nile River with spectacular views. Beds were comfortable, bedding and bathrooms very clean, rooms very exceptionally attractive and well-kept. Food at the both lodges, and at the Masindi Hotel on the way back to Kampala, was also absolutely first-rate. Employees of Chobe and Parra Lodges were outstandingly pleasant, welcoming and accommodating. It would have been easy to have spent another night or two in the “luxury tents” at Chobe (on the upper level to the left of the main building as one approaches the latter) where we could hear the rapids and hippos all night long and also have fresh air. In this regard we thank Kabiza for its recommendations and organization. Unfortunately, our short trip to Africa did not allow this additional time! Our 24-year-old daughter felt very safe and content on her own in her tent, next to ours – although I had expected I might need to share with her! Nature walk as sunset approached, with the Ranger George, was lovely and informative. Coming from cold wintry Canada it was also an exceptional experience to relax at the pool and on the dining terrace so close to, and with such spectacular views of, the Nile River. Accommodations were similarly pleasant at Parra, where Kabiza had thoughtfully booked two adjacent rooms at the far end on the second story of the row extending to the left as you enter the main building. We could still see the river from the balconies, and it was very quiet. Kabiza’s recommendation that we not bother with air conditioning, in favour of ceiling fans, was a good one: It was comfortable sleeping under the ceiling fans in the quiet rooms. The food in both lodges was astonishingly superb, for such small lodges in such remote locations! There was absolutely nothing more one could have desired, whether in the natural and unspoiled beauty of the location, atmosphere/ambiance, comfort, food, services.

Kabiza’s recommendation that we use the drive from Chobe to Paara as a “game drive” was also an excellent one. It was a thrilling experience to drive for four hours, through such stunning landscape, seeing a multitude of animals very close to us (monkeys, the inevitable baboons, more giraffes than could be counted, cape buffalo, Uganda Kob, Jackson Heartbeast, wart hogs, jackal, countless beautiful birds) and variety of landscapes at every turn, and meeting only I think about two other vehicles – apart from which we saw no one until quite close to Parra! Geoffrey is of course an outstanding safari guide as well as driver, and gave us a wealth of information about the animals, the vegetation and the geography. Rain and thunderstorms kept us indoors that evening but Parra is a pleasant place to relax and talk about one’s ongoing adventure! Christmas Day – from 5:00 am to 8:00 pm – was a day to remember for sure. We had spectacular game drives in the morning and late afternoon/early evening, driving down to and around the delta area. Obviously it was quite something, for us, to be able to see the famous Victoria and Albert branches of the Nile as they meet at the top of Lake Albert and with the hills in the background across the water. Even more exciting was the sight of two lions, resting on the grass near the river, close to one elephant (with others across the trail) and deer (Jackson Heartbeast) also quite close to the lions – quite a scene! On the two drives on Christmas Day, we were joined by Ranger Sarah, who was extremely informative and very helpful in supporting Geoffrey as a guide. She was able to assist in locating the wildlife we only dreamed of seeing, and she gave so much information about the behaviour of the animals, and about the vegetation. We felt privileged to have been able to have experienced both sunrise, and sunset with the moon coming up, in this stunning environment. Our trip up the Nile to the base of Murchison Falls during the afternoon of Christmas Day, was also an unforgettable experience, and an opportunity to see so much more wildlife (beautiful water birds incluidng “cliff-dwellers,” hippos, crocs, monkeys, elephants, warthogs)! The “African Queen” was very clean and comfortable, and the staff very helpful. Boxing Day’s drive to Murchison Falls, and our time there, was equally memorable. There were so many different spectacular views of the Falls, and we were sorry to leave. Geoffrey made the best of the long drive home, too, taking us through the forested area of Budongo I believe. He was kind enough to lend his “sim” card to my daughter, so that she might copy photos he had taken with his own camera including numerous photos of the three of us – for which we are particularly grateful since we had purchased new equipment the day before travelling to Africa and we had a hard time figuring out how to use it properly! He had thoughtfully taken some wonderful pictures of all the highlights of the safari, including of the three of us. It is obvious that he knows and loves the natural beauty of his own country!

We felt that the cost was very reasonable, for such individual planning and attention, for such a full and rich itinerary, and for the lovely accommodations. We are glad that we had the opportunity to have had an individual safari, for we were able to maximize viewing opportunities – and there’s so much to see!

We know, realistically, that this may well have been our only opportunity to visit Africa and if that turns out to be the case, we are certainly lucky that we were able to have this experience in Uganda, and that our son and daughter-in-law had told us about Kabiza! The Kabiza website also certainly appropriately engendered well-placed confidence and left us so well-informed about all aspects of Uganda that we were really as well-prepared as any North Americans or Europeans could have been. We do hope that circumstances might permit our return in the not too distant future, and that we might be able to be accompanied by other family and friends. If such a trip may be again possible, we will certainly be in touch with Kabiza again, with a view to planning, once again, such a rewarding experience individually tailored to our situation and interests – but a longer safari, hopefully.

I should add, that our son and (now) daughter-in-law were very happy with their more modestly priced safari two years ago, and that our son, his friend and his mother were similarly delighted with their safari in December 2012 prior to our trip. Thus, as noted, ours was the third wonderful safari planned and carried out by Kabiza.

From cold and wintry (but pleasant) Napanee, Ontario, Canada – rather missing the Ugandan sun – and with thanks again, to Jon Blanc and Geoffrey Mugambwa of Kabiza Wilderness Safaris for such a life-altering experience in beautiful Murchison Falls National Park!

Martha


Due to our very limited time period and for complete ease, we booked our trip to the gorillas with a private safari company. I beleive it is possible on public transport but you should allow PLENTY of time! It will likely involve many different modes of transport and changes at each town to reach the forest. En-route we saw a number of buses that had either broken down or were stuck in the mud! with no alternative offered for their passengers now sitting on the side of the road. The other benefit to a tour company is the obtaining of gorilla permits. Only 8 are sold for each family per day and with 10 families that makes a daily limit of 80. For us, in the rainy season, there were still spaces available but we were told that permits for June, July, August and most of September are already sold out. To obtain your permit you need to contact the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) directly, make a payment and collect it from their Kampala offices. I did plenty of research on tour companies. Although it may be a little nerve wracking to send money abroad, it is much cheaper if you deal directly with a local Ugandan company than using a ‘middle man’ at home. In fact for our purposes, we just needed to be picked up, taken to the forest, driven around a bit and brought back. We also relied on the company to book our permits and accommodation. The best value for money I found was Kabiza wilderness safaris. They were great, more than fulfiled their requirements and our guide really looked after us and kept us safe on the roads – which is no mean feat! They were by far the cheapest I found but here is a number of other companies I considered along the way. I can’t vouch that they are any good, but it may be a starter for anyone who’s looking. Most important is to check your chosen company are a member of AUTO. All of these companies will ask you to pay for your gorilla permits in advance as they need this money to pay at the Kampala office. Kabiza didn’t ask for any money other than that, we paid the balance when we got there. I have heard of some that also wanted 50% of the tour fee as well as deposit

Askari Volunteers


Hi, we came back from Uganda less then a week ago, and we just want to share some of our experience. First I want to start by saying, do not be afraid to book with local tour operators, just make sure they are connected to AUTO, also contact several operators to make sure you get the trip best suited for you! We live in Sthlm, Sweden and we did A LOT of research,I contacted around eight different tour operators before finally booking with Kabiza Wilderness Safaris (this was the best option for us) We booked a private tailormade safari for 13 days, with the emphasis on wildlife. One of us is a wildlife photographer, so having an expirenced guide (not just a driver) as well as flexability in scheduale, was very important to us. We stayed at budget to moderate lodges (altough some felt more luxuarious than budget-moderate, which was a nice surprice). We started our journey, at the Ziwa Rhino Sancutary, were we also spent one night. We did the rhino tracking on foot, and the experience of standing 30 m, from a rhino was very special. We then headed to Murchison Falls, were we stayed for two nights. We did several gamedrives, a hike to the falls and also a bout cruise. In this park we saw a lot of wildlife! After Murchisons we continued to Kibale, and the Chimps. Here we stayed 2 nights at a beautiful nature lodge in the middle of the jungle. We were very lucky when doing the chimp trekking, and found a large group of chimps rather quickly, just an amazing moment. We regretted that we didn’t do the full day habituation experience, when you follow the chimps from early morning when they wake up until they nest for the night. After Kibale we continued to Queen Elizabeth NP, were we stayed for 3 nights at a fantastic lodge. Just a note about the roads, they are often not in the best conditions, and what appears to be short distances when looking at a map, can take several hours in reality. But on the other hand you really get to see the country. In QENP we didn’t see as much animals as we did in Murchisons, however we saw leopards tvice and lions so we consider ourself very lucky. We did the Kazinga channel, and we were suppose to see the bats and the phytons, but when we arrived the guide was sick so it got cancelled. In QENP we also did the Chimp trek in Kyambora gorge, here there is only 22 Chimps and we were fortunate to see 3, this trekking is very different from Kibale, but we recommend everyone to do it! After QE we headed to Bwindi (the highligh of the trip) going through the Ishasha sector, however we didn’t see any treeclimbing lions ( we new the chances were slim, but couldn’t help feeling a little disapointed) We arrived at Bwindi late evening, and here we spent two nights. There are 11 habituated gorilla groups, and the one we tracked was the Rushegura Group (with 17 family members). Words can’t describe the feelings we felt, it is truly an unforgettable moment that we always will remember. After leaving Bwindi we continued to Lake Mburo were we stayed for one night. Here we did game drives and a boat ride. On departure day we did a very early swamp walk with an UWA officer, trying to get shots of the elusive Shoebill, but we had no luck. After this we drove to Entebbe for our departure. Uganda is just an amazing destination, we would recommend everyone to visit this friendly and beautiful country! As a note; we would also recommend everyone to visit Kabizas blog (whether you book with them or not) where Jon Blanc, one the owners shares a lot of good and useful information. We got the tip to buy Australian RID (an insects repellant that also protects against tsetse flies) which we did, and this turned out to be a very good decision. Finally we want to wish everyone who is about to visit Uganda a wonderful journey!

Kind regards Michaela and Fredrik


Dear Jon,

It doesn’t take long before one gets back into the hum drum routine of life and the holiday seems like a dream but before too much more time passes, I wanted to tell you that we enjoyed every single moment of the trip that you planned for us.

Each day bought a new experience and a new adventure, we just didn’t know what to expect next.

Once you sent us the itinerary, I deliberately chose not to ‘check out’ the lodges on their own websites or on Trip Advisor as I didn’t want to have any expectations. It was really fun not knowing what to expect next apart from your own descriptions of a place.

We really thought that you put together a very thoughtful and enjoyable trip. We liked the fact that we didn’t have any very long drives, I think around 5/6 hours was the longest. We thought the scenery breathtaking and we very much enjoyed all the different types of accommodation you found for us.

We also appreciated the degree of flexibility. After our day of Gorilla tracking, our walk from Buhoma to Nkuringo to Kisoro and our day of Golden monkey tracking, we realised that we were ready for a bit of R&R rather than Mount Sabinyo (which we realised would have been quite a tough walk ‘up’). We so enjoyed the extra day at Birdnest and the relaxation of Lake Bunyonyi. My sister lives in Australia and I in London so we rarely get to spend time together and this was very much a trip of a lifetime and we enjoyed every single minute.

Thank you to all at Kabiza for what was definitely a trip of a lifetime and I truly hope that one day I shall be lucky enough to visit Uganda again.

Best Wishes,

Marianne


An unsolicited post on Trip Advisor by a Client

Uganda Forum: Use this safari company – highly recommended!

I have recently come back from Uganda having organised my safari with Kabiza Wilderness Safaris and I cannot recommend them highly enough. They were recommended to me by a friend in the first place and having travelled with them I wanted to pass on the recommendation.

Jon was brilliant at organising my itinerary for me and threw in suggestions of his own – which I’m very glad I took him up on! They were very competitive on price and everything was organised as was promised and there were no hidden extras or charges of any kind whatsoever. There was a small misunderstanding involving me having paid US$40 too much after I tweaked my itinerary a little at the last minute, which was my own fault as I hadn’t picked it up until the last day of my safari. Once I emailed Jon and pointed it out though he transferred the money back to my account after I had returned home – you can’t ask for more than that!

What made the trip, however, was my driver. If you do use Kabiza request to have Remmy! As a single woman travelling on my own I was a little apprehensive about what the driver would be like as so much of the trip was just the two of us in the van, but Remmy was absolutely brilliant. It’s not too many tour guides that share their bananas and passion fruit with you (he taught me how to eat passion fruits the proper African way), or hunt down banana gin in the back streets of a village for you because you want to try it.

Remmy was really knowledgeable about everything too and his English was superb. He has a great sense of humour as well, and it felt like I was on a road trip with my brother – an amazing journey.


Dear Jon,

Thank you. I had a great time in Uganda! The gorilla trekking was absolutely amazing. I must thank you and your team for making my trip very special. I really enjoyed the Nkuringo camp. The food they prepared was very nice and everyone was very friendly and accommodating! David, my driver, was fantastic. He was very courteous and we had a great time talking about US vs. Uganda, etc. I cannot say enough good things about him!

Hope to be back in Uganda soon. Too much to see and do and didn’t have enough time this go around. I will certainly be using you again when I return to Africa in the future!

Best regards,

Corrie


Dear Jon

Good to hear from you.

We can’t speak more highly of Kabiza. We had the most fantastic time throughout the entire trip. We were certainly lucky having e gorillas spend the night in our accommodation! Going to sleep with them outside our balcony and waking up to them also. Very lucky. The trail we then did the next day was unforgettable.

Equally we thoroughly enjoyed our 2 nights at Bunyoni.

So, as we enjoy jinja, thanks again and all the best.

Chris


“We booked local for Uganda and on a whim we chose Kabiza Wilderness Safaris. Fortunately that turned out to be a more than decent choice and our guide (Remmy Kityo) was very good for this kind of trip”

Paul


“If I have ever seen magic, it has been in Africa.” John Hemingway – African Journeys