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Private 12-Day Highlights of Uganda Luxury Safari-Primates plus Big-5

Posted by on May 17, 2019

The Highlights of Uganda – Great Apes and Wildlife

Private 12-Day Highlights of Uganda Luxury Safari

The Private 12-Day Highlights of Uganda Luxury Safari-Primates plus Big-5 gives you some of the Best the Pearl of Africa – Uganda has to offer.   It is our Primates plus the Big-5 Safari which takes you to 5 of the best parks. It is only in Uganda where you can combine such Bio-Diversity plus the Scenic Wonders of the Western Rift Valley, the Explosion Craters, the Rwenzori Mountains of the Moon and the Virunga Volcanoes.

Uganda is the Pearl of Africa. Africa Condensed into a Small Country, Africa without the crowds and on your safari, you visit five our of Uganda’s 10 National Parks, Stay in some of its best Luxury Lodges and get to know Uganda including its culture and people.

This  Private 12-Day Highlights of Uganda Luxury Safari-Primates plus Big-5 begins and in Entebbe. 

The Vehicle used for this Safaris is a Toyota Land-Cruiser with a pop-up roof for best game viewing – Porter Services and Walking Sticks for Gorilla Trek are included as is Bottled Water in the Vehicle for your Comfort.

Highlights of the  Private 12-Day Highlights of Uganda Luxury Safari-Primates plus Big-5

  • Gorilla Trekking – Porter Services – Walking Sticks – Bottled Water are provided.
  • Chimpanzee Trekking – Bigodi Wetlands Sanctuary Jungle Swamp
  • Rhino Trekking on Foot – Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary
  • Top of the Falls Hike – Murchison Falls
  • Rare Rothschild Giraffes in Large Numbers – Murchison Falls Park
  • Optional Hot Air Balloon Safari – Murchison Falls Park
  • Lion Tracking Research- Queen Elizabeth Park
  • Explosion Crater Drive in Queen Elizabeth Park
  • Tree Climbing Lions of Ishasha
  • Optional Guided Village Walk 
  • Optional Batwa Experience can be worked in on the day of Trekking 
  • Nocturnal Game Drive – Lake Mburo National Park
  • Horseback Riding Safari -Lake Mburo National Park – or Walking Safari – Bike Safari

Your Private 12-Day Highlights of Uganda Luxury Safari-Primates plus Big-5 In Detail

Day 1 – Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary:

Your Private 12-Day Highlights of Uganda Luxury Safari-Primates plus Big-5 begins. We pick you at your hotel in Entebbe or Kampala at 7 am.  The drive to Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary is through Kampala and then the Ugandan countryside, which includes the Luweero area with its many farms and villages – the journey will take us about 3 1/2 hours.

Check into Amuka Lodge – Lunch

Rhino Trek on Foot:  During the afternoon it is your up-close meet with the Rhinos – you have guides with, and you get as close as thirty feet of the Rhinos which is a thrilling Adventure for you.  There are some great photo opportunities during the Rhino Trek and of course personal enjoyment.


Meal Plan:   Lunch – Dinner

Lodge:  Amuka Lodge

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Amuka Lodge – Upmarket:

The Amuka Lodge is the only upmarket lodge in the area.  They are well-known for their excellent food,  a fusion of South Africa and Uganda, its extensive South African wine list, and the excellence of service.  The lodge has a small swimming pool where you can take a refreshing dip after your drive from Kampala.

The deluxe Cottages are comfortable and made from the local material found here – the wood comes from an abandoned saw-mill, and the Tent material was locally made.

The Meals here are excellent according to our clients that have stayed here in the midst Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary – this was a large ranch which has a similar landscape to Murchison Falls Park.  The Sanctuary is guarded around the clock, and no poachers have entered it.

The perfect stay-over half way to Murchison Falls Park from Kampala.


Day 2 – Murchison Falls Park: 

Breakfast and a morning boat ride safari where you might see Africa’s most sought-after bird – the elusive and ancient looking Shoebill storks found in the swamps in Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary along with many other water birds.

After the boat ride, it is off to Murchison Falls Park. This is a 3-hour drive to the Nile Ferry Crossing

There is an array of luxury lodges found here. However, there is only one upmarket lodge that is in the right location on the wildlife side of the River Nile and the Park, and that is Paraa Lodge.  If you do not mind a more extended trip to your game drives, there is Baker’s Lodge and Nile Safari Lodge.

Late Lunch

A midafternoon Game drive that takes in a 3-hour Game Drive Track.  The vehicle is equipped with a pop-up Roof for better game viewing.  The park is home to over 1000 Rothschild Giraffes, the most significant number of this endangered Giraffe also called the Baringo and Uganda Giraffe. You can see them in herds of over 50, even large Buffalo herds and Elephant Herds, thousands of Ugandan Kob Antelopes and other. Lions and Leopards, Serval Cats on occasions, Savannah Birds, all on this Borassus Palm Tree Studded  Savannah.


Meal Plan:  Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner

Lodge:  Paraa Lodge

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Paraa Safari Lodge – Luxury:

The thing that makes Paraa Lodge appealing is its location.  There is no crossing the River Nile at 7 am – you can start a game drive at the crack of dawn – 6:30 am.

You have a  wide variety of Room Choices such as standard rooms, suites, the newer Tented Cottages as seen in a picture on the left or the Queen’s Cottage which has two bedrooms, sitting Room and sleeps 4.  The Tents and Queen’s cottage are closer to the Nile, where you can readily see Elephants and hippos.

If you do not want the extra hassle of having to cross the Nile twice a day by ferry but spend that extra time o game drives Paraa Lodge is the logical choice for you – though it is a more extensive lodge, the tented Cottages might be right for you.

The lodge requires that you cross the Nile by Ferry for Game Drives.


Day 3 – Murchison Falls Park:

Breakfast – you can have it before or after the morning game drive – there is nothing like a sunrise game drive over the savanna – at times as the sun rises it burns off the morning mist and things become clear once again. Hopefully, we will run into a pride of lions, leopards, elephant herds, giraffes, antelopes, savannah birds.  The vehicle has a pop-up roof for you to look out from and enjoy the scenery, view the wildlife, and take better pictures.  A Uganda Wildlife Authority Ranger is on board of vehicle during game drives to point out the wildlife we otherwise might miss.  Between your Safari Guide and Ranger, you will not miss much.

A game drive is about 3 hours in length – and each game drive a different game track is followed for the variety of wildlife and birds.

Option – Hot Air Balloon Safari:  Instead of the Game Drive- see the park from above – 1 1/2- Hot Air Balloon Ride with traditional Champagne Breakfast (Sparkling Wine) in the Bush.  Cost Per Person $380.

Lunch at Paraa Lodge and some relaxation.

Afternoon Boat Safari up the River Nile, moving closer to the bank of the river to get some up-close shots of elephant herds, buffaloes, antelopes, the enormous Nile Crocodiles found here, pods, of hippos, water birds, monitor lizards and much more.

At the bottom of the falls disembark and enjoy the guided walk along the most powerful waterfall in the world – Murchison Falls – you will be cooled off by the spray that comes across the path at times from the waterfall.

Winston Churchill took this path in 1907 on his visit to Uganda.

At the top of the falls be greeted by your driver guide and after a walk around it is back to your lodge for the evening and dinner after an enjoyable day in the savannah and on the River Nile.

Option while at Murchison Falls Park:  You can go on a Hot Air Balloon Safari with Champagne Bush Breakfast following.  This is the only park where you can do a Hot Air Balloon Safari.  Cost is 380 USD a person.


Meal Plan:  Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner

Lodge:  Paraa Lodge

Day 4 – Kibale Forest Park:

Early breakfast and the longest drive on our safari (journey) thus far.  We cross the Nile by ferry at 7 am and head for the Kibale Rainforest where the West African Rainforest meets East Africa and the Primate Capital of East Africa.

Fortunately, this is a scenic drive, and we will break it up with lunch along the way, and today’s destination is well worth the somewhat long trip.

Note:  This is the one long drive time during the Safari – we can add one day to your safari and reduce the drive time by doing the following.  Taking the scenic drive from Murchison Falls to the town of Hoima – This drive is along Lake Albert and the Western Rift Escarpment with many photo Opportunities along the way.


Meal Plan:  Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner

Lodge:  Crater Lake Safari Lodge

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Crater Lake Safari Lodge – Lakeside Cottage:

This is the newest lodge along Uganda’s Crater Trail, and a wonderful job has been done in preparing a lodge for guests from around the world.

The closest Luxury Lodge to Kibale Forest, it is only a 7-kilometer drive to Bigodi Wetlands Sanctuary and Chimpanzee Trekking in Kibale Forest.

Superb views, cottages with WiFi, elegant furnishings and elegantly decorated, solar-powered lights in the cottages 24 hours a day, all added plus items while on Safari in Uganda.

Crater Lake Safari Lodge is a lovely addition to the area and already has become a favorite among visitors to Kibale Forest.

Crater Lake Safari Lodge is the closest Luxury Lodge to Kibale Forest and Bigodi Wetlands Sanctuary.


Day 5 – Kibale Forest-Chimpanzee Trekking:

Breakfast and it is off for an encounter with our closest relatives the chimpanzees.  It is best to take a light daypack, one liter of water, your camera equipment and a good set of binoculars, wear some jeans or long trousers, long-sleeved shirt, light hiking boots, a hat.

Chimpanzee Tracking usually is about 3 1/2 hours in length and a most memorable time for you.

You do have the choice here to either track chimpanzees or to participate in all day chimpanzee habituation experience where you are with researchers and others who are in the process of habituating the chimpanzees.  Both chimpanzee habituation or chimpanzee tracking must be well planned. (if you co the all-day Chimpanzee Habituation Experience, then we will eliminate the Bigodi Wetlands Walk-Hike.

There are many other primates that you might see during chimp tracking, generally between 5 to 7 other species, plus a wide variety – one thing you will find quite striking is the vegetation of the park, striking different from other areas of Uganda and East Africa.

Lunch -and then an afternoon guided walk at Bigodi Wetlands, which is a fascinating place for birders where you can see the large blue Turaco and Brown Parrots.

It is also home to the semi-aquatic Sitatunga Antelope, and it is a most exciting place, a jungle swamp where you can see primates scurrying through the trees, hundreds of different species of colorful butterflies and more.

Bigodi Wetlands Sanctuary is a UNESCO Sustainable Ec-Site where the local community has done an excellent job maintaining the balance between people and nature.

Bigodi Wetland is a shining example of what can be done in maintaining a balance between nature and human development.


Meal Plan:  Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner

Lodge:  Crater Lake Safari Lodge

Day 6-Queen Elizabeth Park

Breakfast and we are off for Queen Elizabeth Park and its tapestry of Natural wonders – a short drive of 2 1/2 hours, and before checking in, we take the scenic 27 kilometer Explosion Crater Drive where you will see various explosion craters, some as lakes, others covered by Savanna Grass or woodland.  It is the highest point of the park from where you have expansive views of the Western Rift Escarpment – Lake George and Lake Edwards and the savanna.  One of the craters was recently featured by National Geographic online.

For the drive, we have a Uganda Wildlife Authority Ranger on board to give you detailed background information that will enhance this drive.  In regards to wildlife, often elephants and buffaloes are seen along this route, but one takes it primarily for the scenery, and the view is simply stunning.

Check into the Lodge that you have chosen in the Mweya Area of Queen Elizabeth Park.

Relax for a while, and we take the game drive here where instead of Borassus Palm Trees you will find Candelabra Euphoria Trees that were planted by the pastoralists many years ago to fence in their cattle.

Lions, Leopards, Elephants, Warthogs, Bush pigs, Giant Forest Hogs, Buffaloes, antelopes are seen here on game drives – the vehicle allows you to stand and take great photos, you can even use a bean bag for better support of your camera.

A game drive usually is about three hours in length – however, it all depends on you and your wishes – some like to stay longer and take in more, others like to take their time when they are watching a pride of lions for example – you are in charge.


Options you have while at Queen Elizabeth Park: 

The most popular choice is the Lion Tracking Research with the Uganda Carnivore Project, which studies the carnivores here, and you would be tracking collared lions and leopards.  They also work with local communities and teaches them as to how to live in harmony with the Lions and Leopards.

The Banded Mongoose Research Project is another option you have here.  The Research project takes place on the Mweya Peninsula and involves a guided hike where you will see the Kazinga Channel, wildlife, and water-birds along the walk in and out.

Meal Plan:  Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner

Lodge:  Kyambura Gorge Lodge

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Kyambura Gorge Lodge – Luxury:

Kyambura Game Lodge took an old coffee plantation and gave it new life in the form of a luxury Lodge bringing another level of service to the area.

The Cottages have their style and design, something unique to the Volcanoes Lodges in Uganda and Rwanda.

View-wise you overlook the Kyambura Gorge, that gash in the Savannah with its underground forest, its River of the Blind and the Chimpanzees that are at home here.

The lodge has a nice swimming pool where you can take a break from the Equatorial Sun – have a great view and a cool drink.  The lodge is also near some villages that you can visit while staying at Kyambura Gorge Lodge.  The Lodge provides activities to its guests such as to a coffee plantation and production facility run by women.


Day 7 – Queen Elizabeth Park:

Breakfast or morning game drive first – the choice is yours.  Each game drive is quite different, and a different track is taken for each one.

A choice:  Chimpanzee Tracking in the Kyambura Gorge.  This would be the second time that you track Chimpanzees, and Kyambura Gorge is a fantastic valley to do so in.

There is time to relax and be – do some journaling, bask in the sun or swim in the pool.

3 pm:  Boat Safari on the Kazinga Channel – the boat moves rather slowly from the Mweya area toward Lake Edward, and you can see Elephant, Buffalo Herds, Antelopes, Monitor Lizards, Crocodiles,

There are also hundreds of water birds from Pelicans to Cormorants.  It is merely a fantastic boat safari and one of the highlights of any visit to Queen Elizabeth Park in Uganda.


Meal Plan:  Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner

Meal Plan:  Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner

Lodge:  Kyambura Gorge Lodge

Day 8 – Ishasha – Tree Climbing Lions: 

Breakfast and at 7 am we move to the unvisited part of Queen Elizabeth Park called Ishasha – it is a 2 1/2 hour drive.

At Ishasha, we take a game drive, and our focus is the tree climbing lions of Ishasha.  Ishasha is the best place in East Africa to watch the lions sleep the day way up in the fig trees.  Whether this is a cultural habit or an avoidance the insect has never been shown, the main thing remains that Ishasha is the best place for the tree – climbing lions in East Africa.

Not only will we see tree-climbing lions but leopards, elephant herds, buffalo herds, Topi antelopes along with other species and often you will not find many other vehicles in the Ishasha area of Queen Elizabeth Park.

Check into the exclusive Ishasha Wilderness Camp along the Ntungwe River where wildlife congregates to drink water or to bathe such as the elephants that you will see here.

After Lunch a game drive in search of the tree-climbing lions, you might also see leopards up in trees, usually with their prey — vast herds of elephants, buffaloes, antelopes.  Ishasha is part of a wildlife corridor that extends from Virunga National Park in the Congo to Kibale Fore.

Option:   The lodge offers a sundowner in the bush with drinks and snacks; this can be arranged at the time of booking the Safari.

Meal Plan:  Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner

Lodge:  Ishasha Wilderness Camp

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Ishasha Wilderness  Camp:

This is the only luxury Lodge within Queen Elizabeth Park – Ishasha Area.  It has a true Wilderness feel to it as is located along the Ntungwe River where you can see a lot of wildlife from your spacious Tent with large windows, en suite bath. The tents are tastefully furnished with a sense of subdued elegance and style of their own.

You receive world-class service here, and the meals are events in themselves.

Then there is the setting that provides the framework for this beautiful place called Ishasha Wilderness Camp.  The emphasis is on Wilderness, the roar of distant lions and the trumpeting of Elephants, along with the sounds of hyenas and the songs of the birds.

At night there is the African stillness along with the sounds of the night, the gurgling of the River will rock you to sleep only to be greeted by that second sunshine, a cup of coffee on the porch of your tent.


Day 9 – Bwindi Impenetrable Forest – Buhoma Area

Morning game Drive in Ishasha and a lost look at the Tree-Climbing Lions afterward we take a short drive to the Buhoma area of Bwindi Forest and check into the exclusive Bwindi Lodge where your home is a Banda – Cottage named after one of the Gorillas in the Area.

In the Afternoon you explore the forest with the Batwa People, the first people of the woods.  The Batwa Experience is an interactive hike with the Batwa who are pygmies and were evicted from their home in the Forest in 1991.  They will show you how they lived in harmony with nature and Gorillas.

They will also show you how they gathered and hunted, the items that they used for medicine and other things for food.  The huts that they used as a shelter will also be part of them showing you their ways.

This is the only opportunity that they have to show you how they used to live.


Meal Plan:  Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner

Lodge:  Bwindi Lodge

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12-Day Highlights of Uganda Luxury SafariBwindi Lodge in Buhoma-Exclusive Luxury Lodge:

Bwindi Lodge in the Buhoma area comes with a fun twist, an upmarket price for an exclusive luxury Lodge.  Among Luxury Lodges in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest this lodge per night full-board and all the extras beyond what upmarket lodge offer.

This Volcanoes Bwindi Lodge is synonymous with World Class Service, Cuisine, a reserved luxury style, thoughtful planning that puts this lodge into harmony with its surrounding.

From here walk to and from the Gorilla Trekking, visit with the Batwa People, the first people of the forest, and its unique give back to the local Community the Bwindi Bar where disadvantaged youth get training in the hospitality industry and you an Espresso that is on par with the best of Coffee Restaurants in Coffee loving Seattle, WA in the US.


Day 10 – Gorilla Trekking: 

Breakfast and your long-awaited day of the gorilla visit begins.  You will need a day-pack, take the packed lunch provided by the lodge, 2 liters of bottled water, for clothing you will need jeans, long-sleeved shirt, rain-jacket, light hiking boots, hat, gardening gloves to pull yourself up on vines or branches, hat.  We give you a porter to make your load lighter on the trek, and we suggest you purchase a walking stick – buy a carved one and keep it as a memory of this day.

The trek takes about 5 hours, and you spend one hour with the gorillas – certainly a fantastic experience that you will never forget.

Do you always see the gorillas?  The answer is 99% yes, there is a lot that takes place behind the scenes to make the gorilla trek a success, and that is a team of early trackers that goes ahead and finds the group.

After the trek, you might want to relax, a cold drink, and reflect on your adventure today in the ancient forest of Bwindi.

An option instead of Gorilla Trekking:  Gorilla Habituation Experience in Southern Bwindi Impenetrable Forest you have the option of spending 4-hours with a Gorilla Family on an All-Day Trek on the where the permit cost is 1,500 USD.  It means different lodging in either Nkuringo or Rushaga and a long drive there from Queen Elizabeth Park, and it is an experience that is well worth it.  The


Meal Plan:  Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner

Lodge:  Bwindi Lodge

Day 11 – Lake Mburo Park:

Breakfast and we head to Lake Mburo Park at 7:30 am which is half-way to Kampala and Entebbe.  There is only one upmarket Lodge found in this the smallest of the Savannah Parks in Uganda.  Here you have rolling hills, five lakes within the park and you can hike anywhere in the park guided by rangers.

Lake Mburo National Park is home to Zebras, Giraffes, the large Eland Antelopes, and other antelopes.  There are quite a few leopards in the park and a few lions whose roar you might hear at night but not often see.e

We check into Mihingo Safari Lodge and enjoy your tented cottage where even the bathroom has a splendid view- your cottage is a tasteful blend of the things one enjoys with an African touch.  The pictures before you are simply incredible, and this tent is a far cry from going camping in the days of your youth, it is the luxury, class, and ultimate comfort.

Lunch at Mihingo Lodge where you can see wildlife below at the watering hole.

Mihingo Lodge is simply a classy place in the African Wild of Uganda, from your tented cottage in a private setting to the swimming pool overlooking the park below – you will enjoy your last day in the African Wild.

During the afternoon we take a boat safari on Lake Mburo where we might see some otters, crocodiles, hippos, mammals such as Zebras, Giraffes, Antelopes, Buffaloes coming to water.

We Continue on a Game drive to see more wildlife before returning to the lodge


Meal Plan:  Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner

Day 12 Kampala -Entebbe: 

Breakfast and three-hour horseback safari that is guided across the rolling savannah, zebras, buffaloes, antelopes including the large Eland Antelope.

Lunch at Mihingo Lodge

Depart for Entebbe – but we first stop at the equator – we reach Entebbe in the late afternoon as your 12-Day Luxury-Gorilla-Chimpanzee-Trekking Wildlife Safari comes to an end

Meal Plan:  Breakfast – Lunch

Lodging depending on your departure time can be arranged such as a day-room, also at the beginning of the Safari lodging can be arranged at Entebbe if you arrive in the evening or night.

Lodging can be changed to fit your wishes during this 12-Day Highlights of Uganda Luxury Great Apes and Big-5 Wildlife Safari.

Cost for this 12-Day Highlights of Uganda Luxury Great Apes and Big-5 Wildlife Safari includes All Activities and permits listed except where it states optional.  It is full-board and consists of all food – bottled water in the vehicle at all times, Toyota Land-Cruiser Safari equipped, full-time, experienced Tour Guide – Safari does not include drinks soft as soft-drinks, alcohol at lodges, personal insurance, laundry.

If you are interested in this 12-Day Highlights of Uganda Luxury Great Apes and Big-5 Wildlife Safari – please contact us:


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