More Time with Gorillas and Chimpanzees, plus Wildlife Game Drives
Value+ 7-Days in Africa on this Mid-Range Priced Gorilla-Chimpanzee Habituation Experience-Wildlife Safari
A Private 7-Day-Gorilla-Chimpanzee Habituation Experience-Wildlife Safari that gives you the greatest return for your money. For most, being with a Gorilla Family on a Gorilla Trek, where you have one hour with Gorilla Family, is the Experience of a lifetime. The Gorilla Habituation Experience takes Gorilla Trekking to another level.
Spend more time with Gorillas and Chimpanzees on this private Value+ midrange Safari in Uganda. Add on top of that the abundant wildlife and scenery of Queen Elizabeth Park, and you come up with the perfect Primate – Wildlife Safari in the Pearl of Africa.
This is a changeable Safari regarding the number of days. It has one long drive-time Day from Rushaga to Queen Elizabeth Park, ower the day is broken up by activities such as a game drive in search of the Tree-Climbing Lions of Ishasha.
What is a Value+ Safari?
Our Value+ Safaris are private, full-service Safari using quality, midrange lodges with ensuite rooms or cottages. Our Value+ Hakuna Matata Safaris come with a full-board meal plan, and a private safari vehicle with your experienced driver guide, who will introduce you to Uganda, its primate, wildlife, and Ugandan culture.
Highlights of your 7-Day-Gorilla-Chimpanzee Habituation Experience-Wildlife Safari
This Safari begins in Kigali and ends in Entebbe: The Safari can be reversed.
- Gorilla Habituation Experience: Sped up to four hours with a gorilla family. There are only four participants.
- Tree-Climbing Lions: The best spot in East Africa to see tree-climbing lions.
- Wildlife Game Drives: In Queen Elizabeth Park.
- Wildlife – Birds Boar Cruise: Cruise the Kazinga Channel and see its fantastic wildlife, birds, Crocodiles and the vast number of hippos.
- The Scenic Explosion Crater Drive: See the stunning Crater Lakes on this drive.
- Bigodi Wetlands Sanctuary: Take a guided Walk through a Jungle Swamp.
- The Chimpanzee Habituation Experience: Spend more time with the chimpanzees on this six-hour-long activity.
- Optional Golden Monkey Habituation: Add a day to your safari and spend more time with the Golden Monkeys.
Your 7-Day-Gorilla-Chimpanzee Habituation Experience-Wildlife Safari in Detail
Arrival Day in Kigali, Rwanda:
The Kigali International Airport is the closest regional airport to both Mgahinga Gorilla Park and the southern area of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest in Uganda. It is a four-hour drive to the Rushaga area of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, where the Gorilla Habituation Experience takes place.
We will meet and greet you at the airport as you arrive in Rwanda. Depending on your arrival time, we can arrange for an overnight hotel and meals for you.
We can arrange a day tour in Kigali, including a visit to the Genocide Memorial. Kigali is one of the cleanest and most attractive capitals in Africa, and there are lots for you to do and see.
Day 1 – Drive to Rushaga – Bwindi Impenetrable Forest in Uganda:
Drive to Rushaga from Kigali-Rwanda:
Your Value+ 7-Day-Gorilla-Chimpanzee Habituation Experience-Wildlife Safari begins as we leave your hotel in Kigali at 6:30 am or the Kigali Airport for your moderately priced Safari. The drive time to Rushaga is about 4 hours, depending on the Border Crossing.
Visa for Uganda is $50, and the East African Visa is $100 and covers entry to Rwanda, Uganda, and Kenya. Both visas must be obtained online. In addition, you will need a Yellow Fever certificate for entry into Uganda.
Usually, the border crossing is about 30 to 45 minutes, and you are in Uganda heading for the ancient Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. Officials on both sides will try to ease the border crossing for Tourists.
Any inconvenience fades in the light of the shorter drive time you have before you. Please note that it takes nine to ten hours from Entebbe or Kampala to reach the Rushaga area.
The Route you are on from Kigali to Bwindi is one of the most scenic drives in East Africa through the rolling, terraced hills of Rwanda and Uganda.
Check into Lake Mulehe Gorilla Lodge:
Lake Mulehe Gorilla Lodge is an excellent, moderately priced lodge with splendid views of the Virunga Volcanoes above the scenic Lake Mulehe. The food is one of the European-Ugandan Fusion’s fantastic services.
The stone cottages are perfect for your stay while doing Gorilla Trekking or the Gorilla Habituation Experience in the Rushaga Area Bwindi Impenetrable Forest.
This Lodge gives you Value+ for your Dollar and value in terms of its setting, quality of rooms, and service on the Lake. We have used the Lodge for our Clients and have had no complaints during that time.
The Lodge is owned by a woman which years of experience in providing quality accommodations to International and Domestic Tourists alike.
Afternoon Activities that you can choose from:
- Bunia Forest Walk: This is a forest walk with Batwa Elders. The Batwa were the first people of the forest. Today you can see the rainforest through the eyes of its first people, the Indigenous Batwa.
- Village Walk: Take a guided village walk and meet the local community.
- Dugout Canoeing: You can go dugout canoeing with guide.
- Hiking: Hiking through the hills of the gorilla Highlands.
- Relax and Chill Out: Read a book and relax on your verandah.
Meal Plan: Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner
Day 2 – Gorilla Habituation Experience Encounter:
Early Breakfast and pick up your packed lunch from the lodge. We have provided you with what to wear and the gear to bring.
What Should I wear tracking for the Gorilla Habituation Experience?
Here is practical advice about what to wear while the Gorilla Habituation Experience in Uganda. Often Trekkers are not dressed right for the occasion, which can spoil your day, and your focus might not be on the Gorillas but on personal discomfort and misery. Wearing suitable clothing and footwear is about protection.
Gorilla Wear and Gear you will need:
- Daypack: Preferably a waterproof daypack, you can use it as a carry-on flying to Uganda. Pack all essentials inside the daypack.
- Hiking Boots: Make sure that they have good treads on them. You will need ankle support, something boots give you and give you reactions on muddy trails. Have a good pair of merino wool socks.
- Long Trouser: They will protect you from nettles and thorns. Tuck the trousers into your socks for added protection from ants.
- Long-Sleeved Shirt: Neutral in color. Again, this is for your comfort and protection.
- Rain Jacket or Poncho: Pack into your daypack. You never know when it will train. You are in an Afro-montane Rainforest.
- Tough Gardening Gloves protect your hands from thorns, nettles, and sharp branches.
- Wide Brimmed Hat: It gives you protection from the Sun.
- Camera Equipment – Binoculars: Ensure extra batteries and storage devices. Put them into Ziploc bags. Binoculars are not needed if you are not a birder.
- Packed Lunch and Bottled Water: You will need your lunch from the Lodge and two liters of bottled water that we provide you.
- Insect Repellent – Sun Lotion – Sunglasses: We recommend the effective Australian RID Insect Repellent. Good Sun blocker cream and sunglasses.
- You will need a Porter and Walking Stick: The services of a porter free you on the often-difficult trail, and a local walking stick helps you and steadies you on the often-challenging path. We supply our clients with both.
Read more about Gorilla Gear and Wear here.
Early Breakfast and take your packed lunch from the Lodge. For Gorilla Trekking Gear. Having the right gear and wearing the right clothes and boots make a difference in the quality of a Trek that you will have.
The Gorilla Habituation Experience Orientation:
Here you receive instructions about the Gorilla Habituation Experience. You are given specific instructions for the Habituation Experience, which is different since there are only four participants.
The Rangers will go over the Rules and Guidelines before going on you embark on the Habituation trek. The Distance and Face Mask Rules are there for the protection of Mountain Gorillas from diseases, including respiratory illnesses.
If you are ill on the day of your Gorilla Habituation Experience, it is required that you cancel the Habituation Experience Trek. This requirement protects the Mountain Gorillas and all human participants, including rangers, researchers, and porters.
Your Time with the Gorilla Family being Habituated:
The length of your trek is determined by the location of the Gorilla family being habituated. The gentle giants make new nests daily and move up to three kilometers up and down ridges and valleys. One reason you need the assistance of a porter and a walking stick.
The Gorilla Habituation Experience turns into an all-day trek with a return to the trailhead in the late afternoon.
You are one of the fortunate few that can take the Gorilla Habituation Experience. Many attempts, but since there are only four permits per day, the number of trekkers that have experienced more time with the Gorillas is few.
The actual encounter with the Gentle Giants is like entering someone’s living room. You experience with your eyes and ears how they live out their days, how they relate to one another, what they eat and how they communicate.
It is truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience. You will never forget an event, a most moving experience that can only be done in Uganda.
Trek in and trek out, the 4 hours with a gorilla family, is an all-day activity. There are only four participants and not eight like regular gorilla trekking.
Meal Plan: Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner
Day 3- Queen Elizabeth Park-Ishasha Area:
After Breakfast, at 7:00 am, we drive to Queen Elizabeth Park, where we stop in the Ishasha Region to take a Game Drive in search of the Tree-Climbing Lions of Ishasha. This is the best place in East Africa where you can readily see the Tree Climbing Lions sleep away the day. Besides Lions, there is a giant Elephant – Buffalo Population here
Drive time from Rushaga to Ishasha is 5-hours depending on the road conditions that day.
Ishasha Jungle Lodge:
We arrive at lunchtime at the Ishasha Jungle lodge, where you check in for the night. The lodge is near the entrance of the Ishasha sector of the park.
Ishasha Jungle Lodge is a moderately priced lodge that offers you all the comforts you need. Your room is a tented cottage with an ensuite bath and a verandah. You have a large room with mosquito netting for your bed.
You will enjoy the Lodge’s friendly, welcoming, and hospitable atmosphere. The main lodge is where breakfast, lunch, and dinner are served, and there is a lunge and bar at the main lodge.
WiFi and charging stations are available at the main lodge.
Afternoon Game Drive:
We take an afternoon game drive with an Uganda Wildlife Authority Ranger. We aim to see the tree-climbing lions that sleep the day away in the fig trees and the acacia trees in this area. Ishasha is the place to see tree-climbing lions in East Africa.
The lions sleep in the trees for up to 15 hours a day for reasons not fully understood by researchers. It is suspected that it might be to escape bothersome insects. Others suspect cultural reasons that have become ingrained in lions found in the area.
Additionally, you will see herds of elephants and buffalo herds, antelopes, including the colorful Topi antelopes. The Ishasha region of Queen Elizabeth Park is part of a wildlife corridor that stretches from DR Congo to the Kibale Forest. There will be both savannah and forest elephants and buffaloes. You would not be able to tell the difference; however, the Ranger and your Driver-Guide will be able to point out the difference. Read more about Tree-Climbing Lions here.
Meal Plan: Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner
Day 4- Queen Elizabeth Park-Mweya Area:
This morning at 7:00 am, we drive north through the park to the Mweya area. This a ninety-minute drive depending on the road condition. You will see a lot of wildlife and birds along the way. Before entering the Enganzi Lodge, we take the famous 27-kilometer Explosion Crater Drive. This is one of the most scenic drives in Uganda. You will see about twelve crater lakes, some with fresh, some with salt water, and some with savannah or forest cover.
Even National Geographic featured pictures of the crater lakes formed when the Egyptians built the pyramids. This is photogenic Uganda at its best. There is some wildlife up here, such as buffaloes and elephant herds.
On a clear day, you will see the Rwenzori Mountains of the Moon. You will also have great views of the Western Rift Valley, Lake George and Lake Edward, plus the Savannah below. Read more here about the Explosion Crater Lake Drive here.
Enganzi Game Lodge:
Check into Enganzi Game Lodge, an excellent moderately-priced lodge in the park. Your room is a large tented cottage with an ensuite bath and a private verandah with views of Queen Elizabeth Park below you.
The View of the vast Savannah alone is worth a night’s stay here. Our Clients have enjoyed their stay here, and you are offered more than comparable Lodges.
Enganzi Game Lodge is the perfect base while exploring the scenic Queen Elizabeth Park with its wildlife, explosion craters, the vast Kyambura Gorge, the endless Maramagambo Forest, and more.
The Lodge has a swimming pool for you to enjoy. The main lodge features a dining area, a bar, and a verandah with views where you can enjoy your meals.
Enganzi Game Lodge is also a family-friendly lodge open to children of all ages.
Afternoon Boat Cruise on the Kazinga Channel:
You take the Kazinga Channel Wildlife Boat Cruise in the afternoon from the Mweya landing point toward Lake Edwards. The boat cruise is one of the highlights of your time in Queen Elizabeth Park.
The Kazinga Channel has one of the highest concentrations of Hippos in East Africa. You can also see crocodiles, monitor lizards, and water birds such as pelicans.
There are also elephants, buffaloes, and antelopes that you will see. Additionally, you will see fishing villages and people living on the channel’s banks.
There are lots of opportunities for you to take pictures of the boat. Private boat cruises can be arranged. Read more here about Kazinga Channel.
Meal Plan: Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner
Day 5- Queen Elizabeth Park-Kibale Forest:
Morning Game Drive:
We take the last game drive in Queen Elizabeth Park. This will be in the Mweya area, which is quite different from the Ishasha region of the park. The game drive will end at about 10:00 am.
Drive to Kibale Forest:
After the game drive, we continue driving to the Isunga Lodge overlooking Kibale Forest.
Check into the moderately priced lodge that gives its guests value plus for their money. We have used this Lodge with great success on our safaris, and our Clients have responded more than positively.
There are four cottages with an ensuite bath in a very private setting. The food is prepared thoughtfully, and the service is excellent.
There are much higher cost moderately priced lodges in Uganda that do not match what you receive at Isunga Lodge.
Our clients who have stayed here have been more than enthusiastic about Isunga Lodge.
The Lodge is one of the newer ones around the park, it has to be one of the best in terms of service, value, and meals served.
You will enjoy your stay at this excellent lodge.
Bigodi Wetlands Sanctuary:
During the afternoon, we take the Bigodi Wetlands Sanctuary Hike. This a guided 3-hour hike through a Jungle Swamp; much of it is on planks that act like a boardwalk above it.
Your experienced guide is from the local community that has maintained the Wetlands for many years, with thousands visiting each year.
During the Afternoon, you might spot Chimpanzees, Colobus Monkeys, also baboons. The area is well-known for birds, and the chief attraction is the Blue Turaco, plus many other birds here.
When it comes to Mammals, you can see otters, bush pigs, mongoose, and the rare Sitatunga Antelope, to name a few.
This is a UNESCO self-sustaining eco-Tourism project offered by the local community.
Meal Plan: Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner
Day 6- Kibale Forest – Chimpanzee Habituation Experience:
What to wear and bring for the Chimpanzee Habituation Experience:
Wear the same clothes you would wear for the Gorilla Habituation Experience Safari, except gardening gloves. You will need a packed lunch from the lodge and two liters of Water. We supply you with water.
The Six-Hour Chimpanzee Habituation Experience:
Early Breakfast, and you are off to meet with your Ranger-Guide, who will take you into Kibale Forest, where a Chimpanzee Troop is being habituated, a process that takes up to two years. The process teaches Chimpanzees to be in the presence of humans. In this activity, you actively participate in the habituation experience process.
Before you see the chimpanzees, you will hear their hooting calls in the Distance. So you come upon them and spend one hour with them, observing their ways and habits.
Usually, you might see 4 to 6 other primate species here, many of the birds, butterflies, and mammals found here, and of course, the forest with its unique vegetation. You will see a lot more on all-day habituation than on a trek.
You must wear the proper clothing and shoes and have at least 2 liters of water, plus a packed lunch.
Meal Plan: Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner
Day 7 – Drive to Entebbe:
The Value+ 7-Day-Gorilla-Chimpanzee Habituation Experience-Wildlife Safari comes to an end. Tod y’s activities will depend on your departure from Entebbe International Airport. The Drive-Time is 4 1/2 to 5 hours depending on what time of day we reach Kampala and the traffic there.
A Day-Room can be arranged here for you until your flight out. We can also arrange for overnight Lodging.
What has been included in this Value+ 7-Day-Gorilla-Chimpanzee Habituation Experience-Wildlife Safari?
- Experienced Ugandan Driver-Guide: A Safari becomes more enjoyable with a knowledgeable and professional Local Driver-Guide.
- Greet and Meet at Airport upon arrival: We provide meet and greet services, including a welcome gift and Safari Informational Packet.
- Full-Board Lodging: All meals are included except alcoholic drinks, sodas, and snacks that you might order apart from meals.
- Private Safari Vehicle with pop-Up Roof: The vehicle has a car fridge, WiFi, and bottled Water.
- Gorilla Trekking: Gorilla Habituation Experience Permits are included in your Safari. Additionally, we provide porter services, a walking stick for support, and bottled water. Read our Practical Gorilla Trekking Advice:
- WiFi Internet Access: Most Lodges only provide a WiFi Internet Connection in the main lodge. We offer you a MiFi Router that gives you and your party access to the internet in your cottage or room, depending on nearby transmission towers. Read Staying in touch with home.
- Spanish, French, Italian, German, Russian, Mandarin, Arabic Speaking Driver-Guides: At an extra cost.
- Your Dietary Needs can be met: Notify us if you are a vegan, vegetarian, or need a gluten-free diet. Halala dietary requirements can be met in most instances. Strictly kosher nutritional requirements cannot be met on safari. a.
- ; Automatic AMREF-Flying Doctors Air-Medivac Insurance coverage: Our clients have covered a rare need for medical evacuation to a hospital that meets international standards.
Not included: Visas, Travel Insurance, Laundry, Tips, drinks at lodges such as Alcoholic drinks and sodas, and optional listed activities.
Contact us about this Value+ 7-Day-Gorilla-Chimpanzee Habituation Experience-Wildlife Safari: