Uganda

Enjoy an 8 days wildlife safari in Uganda at affordable rates.

UWA To Fight The Construction Of A Power Dam At Murchison Falls By ERA

UWA To Fight The Construction Of A Power Dam At Murchison Falls By ERA

You must have heard about the proposal to construct a hydropower plant at Murchison falls. The proposal was submitted to the Electricity Regulatory Authority (ERA) on 7th June 2019 by Bonang power project dam at Murchison falls. However, the proposal was bitterly rejected by conservationists, tour operators, nature lovers and the entire tourism fraternity in Uganda. Within 2 weeks after the announcement, over 3000 people have signed the petition against the construction of a hydropower plant at Murchison falls national park. If you haven’t yet, join the petition to save Murchison falls at the verge of destruction. The proposed dam is to be constructed on top of the mighty Murchison falls about 65 kilometers west of the recently constructed 600 MW Karuma Hydropower dam which will be officially commissioned in 2020. The Construction of a dam at Murchison falls was termed as “unthinkable” by Uganda Wildlife Authority and vowed to fight the project. Similarly, part of Bugoma forest home to over 500 chimpanzees is to be destroyed for sugar cane plantation. Situated in the hearty of Murchison falls national park, Murchison falls is one of the natural wonders after Which Uganda was called the “Pearl of Africa”. The falls is undeniably one of the top tourist attractions in the country, a must visit by most travelers on Uganda safari.

Who are the petitioners?
Many people have reacted in resistance to the construction of the power project at Murchison falls. The top petitioners in this are the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA
0, a government body responsible for tourism and wildlife conservation in Uganda together with Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) responsible for tourism product development and marketing in Uganda and lastly the Association of Uganda Tour Operators (AUTO) which joins together all travel and tour operators in Uganda. These bodies have initiated the campaign (“SAVE MURCHISON FALL”) via social media networks mainly facebook, twitter, watsup, and emails urging lovers of Murchison fall to petition against the hydropower project proposal. Interestingly, the campaign has been welcomed and joined by several people counting to over 25,000 by now.

Why opposed to dam construction
The construction of the Murchison falls dam will definitely shut tourism to the mighty falls. This will limit the number of tourist arrivals to Murchison falls national park since the falls are a major attraction in the park. Also, the construction of a power dam is against the efforts to promote tourism in Uganda. The petition was initiated by Amos Murungi an environmentalist and welcomed by many nature lovers who willingly signed the petition via social media especially watsup, Facebook, Twitter, and email. Murchison falls is one of the target areas where Bonang Power Limited plans to construct hydropower dams. Other areas in Question include Ayago, Uhuru, and Kiba. The construction of a power dam at Murchison Falls will generate 2,550 MW of electricity creating reliable supply to the country and enhancing economic development. Murchison falls is one of the major tourist attractions in Uganda, which attract thousands of travelers to the park. A boat cruise to the bottom of the falls is a must do, a hike to the top of the falls offers visitors spectacular views of the falls and the park while the delta area which forms part of Murchison fails is the best sport for lots of birds and water animals such as hippos, crocodiles, and hippos among others.

About Bonang Power Project
Bonang is a power company that was established in 2014 by tycoon Ernst Moloi with its headquarters in Norway. Some people say that the project has other offices in South Africa but we are not certain. Since its establishment, Bonang has successfully built 2 power dams and the one at Murchison falls will be the 3rd.

About Murchison falls national park
Spreading over 3,893 square kilometers, Murchison falls national park is Uganda’s biggest park located in northwestern Uganda on the shores of Lake Albert. The park was established in 1952 hence Uganda’s oldest national park comprised of Bugungu and Karuma falls and wildlife reserve. The park is named after the mighty Murchison falls in which Nile River squeezes through a 7-meter gorge to fall for 43 meters with a thunderous roar to form the Nile Delta with a permanent rainbow. The vegetation in Murchison falls National Park comprises of main savannahs while woodland and riverine forests cover other areas. These serve as food and habitats for various birds and wild animals. The park is known to have a high concentration of wildlife which includes over 76 mammal species and over 451 birds hence one of the notable birding spots in Uganda. Popular tourist activities in Murchison falls national park include:
• Game Viewing
• Sport fishing
• Hike to the top of Murchison falls
• Bird watching
• Forest walks
• Boat Cruise to the bottom of the falls
In conclusion, the construction of a hydropower project will kill tourism in Murchison falls national park. Join the petition today and save Uganda’s mighty falls for sustainable tourism.

Posted by admin in Blog, Uganda
Uganda Airlines Behind the Schedule for its First Commercial Flight

Uganda Airlines Behind the Schedule for its First Commercial Flight

Uganda airline may not operate its first commercial flight as was scheduled earlier. The national airline was planned to reach the skies in July 2019 but this may not work out due to unfinished tasks. Till now, Uganda Airline has not received its air operator’s certificate (AOC), which permits it to run commercial air transport operations. The certificate is to be issued by the Uganda Civil Aviation Authority once the national carrier meets all standards. The national carrier has so far finished two first phases and is working on accomplishing the third and fourth phases before July 2019. Other requirements include the perfect personnel and other necessary requisites to put a house in order. Uganda airline was revived in April 2019 when it received its first set of 2 Bombardier CRJ planes after several years of non-operating. This gave hope for the revived operations of the country’s national carrier.

What is AOC?
The Air Operators Certificate is an authorization given to an aircraft to operate commercial businesses. The AOC tell details about the aircraft such as airports it flies to and out, the purpose for operating, aircraft type, registration number and the geographic area where the aircraft will cover. Uganda Civil Aviation Authority will permit Uganda airlines to operate when all phases are complete.

What is required to get an Air Operator’s Certificate?
Besides, completing the four phases, an aircraft is required to have some other basics before it’s allowed to the operator for commercial reasons. Among the requirements are personnel (qualified workers), physical assets and a strong system that guarantee the safety of employees and the general public. Without these, an aircraft cannot be given a certificate to operate. Also, the airline is required to acquire a human resource, technical control team, supplier contract negotiations for Operational services, catering and fuel services before it’s allowed to fly into the skies. Uganda airlines is also expected to get a brand for its self, uniform design and also set up permanent commercial offices. More still, the national carrier is required to have a distribution network for all members of the airline association, reservations/ bookings systems, online methods and payment gateways among others. Fortunately, Uganda radio network (URN) confirmed that all requirements are almost done which gives hope for near future operations.

Way forward
The management of Uganda airline has not given up yet on meeting the deadline. For the few remaining days, the ministry is focused on tackling basic requirements. These include hiring a number of service providers to make bookings and handle cargo in Uganda and different travelers destinations. Uganda airlines are currently renting offices but will soon set up permanent offices in Kampala and Entebbe. Marketing strategies such as consigning with travel agents to sell tickets are yet to be complete. Regarding air space rights, Uganda has so far signed bilateral air service agreements with Canada, Israel, and Switzerland. This is a good move so far. The country is still negotiating for air space rights with Oman, Spain, and Qatar, which will be complete soon.

Who are the new board of directors for Uganda airlines?
Just like any business, Uganda airlines have a board of directors running all the operations. These include Ahabwe Perez the minister of State for local government, Benon Kajuna, Godfrey Ssemugooma, Catherine Aside, Rehema Mutazindwa, Charles Hamya, and Aziku Zua. These people are tasked to ensure smooth airline operations and make sure the airline is self-sustainable. The ministry of works and permanent secretary encouraged the board of directors to be efficient without giving any room for incompetence. The board is also tasked to ensure consistent value and quality services avoiding all mistakes that led to the collapse of Uganda airline.

Generally, the revival of Uganda airlines is an achievement for Uganda tourism and travel. The yet to start flights will obviously promote tourism and ease movements to and from the pearl of Africa. Fly with Uganda airlines; get the best services at affordable rates not compromising the value.

Posted by admin in Blog, Uganda
Uganda Joins African Tourism Board

Uganda Joins African Tourism Board

Uganda tourism is celebrating her membership to the African Tourism Board. The pearl of Africa finally managed to qualify as a member of the African Tourism Board, a great achievement that will put Uganda safaris to the next level. The addition of Uganda as an associate of ATB comes 2 years after the BBC described Uganda as the friendliest country in the globe. The combination of beautiful landscapes, favorable climate, wildlife, birds, distinctive culture, excellent hotels, and hospitable people make Uganda an exceptional travel destination. It’s after these stunning beauties that Church Hill dubbed Uganda “ the Pearl of Africa”. African Tourism Board was pleased to recognize Uganda as one for their members whom they promised to support and work with especially in the revival of Uganda airlines. The revival of Uganda airlines will help to make Uganda’s key USBs known to the world. African tourism Board was initiated in 2018 and has since become a catalyst for responsible tourism and travel, ensuring quality tourism services in Africa.

What makes Uganda a special tourism region?
It’s undeniable that the Pearl of Africa is richly blessed by nature. Travelers who have been to this land have enjoyed the beauty of Uganda, which offers travelers a remarkable travel experience at affordable rates. The top travel attractions in Uganda include:

Mountain gorillas
Uganda shelters the world’s highest population of mountain gorillas. The Pearl of Africa is home to half of the world’s mountain gorillas inhabited in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest and Mgahinga gorilla national parks in southwestern Uganda. 18 gorilla families namely Mubare, Habinyanja, Rushegura, Nkuringo, Bweza, Nshongi, Busingye, Kyaguliro, Bitukura, Oruzogo, Mishaya, Katwe, Christmas are habituated in Bwindi Forest and the one Nyakagyezi family in Mgahinga gorilla national park. These families are split in for regions (Nkuringo, Rushaga, Ruhija, and Buhoma), which make up Bwindi Forest National Park. Also, two families, Bushaho and Bikyingi are undergoing habituation experience and will soon be open for tourism. A single gorilla permit in Uganda costs $600 which make Uganda gorilla trips much cheaper compared to neighboring Rwanda @ $1500 per permit.

Chimpanzees
In addition to gorillas, the Pearl of Africa shelters the highest population of chimpanzees in Africa. Chimpanzee trekking in Uganda takes place in Kibale Forest (main chimpanzee destination), Kalinzu Forest, Kyambura Gorge in Queen Elizabeth and Budongo forest en route to Murchison falls national park. Travelers can also do chimpanzee habituation experience, which allows you to spend a half day with the endangered chimpanzees in their native habitats.

Culture
Uganda’s culture is exceptional and worth exploring. The country has a wide range of ethnic groups whose languages, beliefs and norms differ. Some ethnic groups including Batwa pygmies and Karamojong are so indigenous in their dressing, food and cultural practices in general. A cultural visit to any local community in Uganda will not leave you the same. Also, Ugandans are recognized as the most hospitable, friendly and loving people easy to interact and stay with. Visit Batwa pygmies in southwestern Uganda and learn more about their traditional forest life.

Birds
Besides wild animals, Uganda is a leading birding destination in Africa. The Pearl of Africa is home to over 1031 bird species 58 of which are endemic to the country. Among the bird species in Uganda include shoebill, Grey-breasted pitta, African green broadbill, Great Blue Turaco, Shelley’s Crimsoning, Standard-winged Nightjar, Short-tailed Warbler, Doherty’s Bush-shrike, Bar-tailed Trogon, and Black-breasted Barbet among others. The top birding spots in Uganda include Mabamba Bay wetland, Bwindi forest, Mabira forest, Kazinga channel, Mgahinga Forest, Kibale Forest, Bigodi wetland, Murchison Falls and Lake Mburo national parks.

Water bodies
The Pearl of Africa is endowed with beautiful water bodies all over the country. Lakes, rivers, and waterfalls across the country support various water activities like water rafting, boat cruising, sport fishing, and waterfall hiking among others. Enjoy white water rafting at the source of the Nile, visit the mighty Murchison falls in Murchison falls national park and Siipi falls in My Elgon national park.

Mountains
Uganda offers travelers with the very best mountain climbing experiences. Hike to Margarita, the highest peak of Mt Rwenzori for a memorable hiking experience. Other Uganda hiking trips include Mt Elgon, Mt Muhabura, Mt Gaginga and Mt Sabyinyo in Mgahinga gorilla national parks. Hiking travelers to Uganda are reminded to be physically fitted and prepare in advance.

The membership of Uganda to the African Tourism Board is a great achievement that will push Uganda’s tourism to the next level. The beautiful landscapes, wildlife, bird, and people make Uganda a premier travel destination in the world.

Posted by admin in News, Uganda
New Flight Services From Masaai Mara To Uganda

New Flight Services From Masaai Mara To Uganda

With effect from 1st June 2019, Air Kenya is set to launch direct flights from Masai Mara national park to Uganda. The new initiative will allow travelers to fly direct from Masai Mara in Kenya to Bwindi forest National park, Murchison falls national park, Queen Elizabeth and Kidepo Valley National parks in Uganda. This is a great move to promote joint Uganda Kenya tourism by allowing travelers to explore the two countries within the shortest time possible. The direct flights will save travelers the stresses associated with long driving hours and Kenya Uganda border crossing. The new initiative comes 5 months after Air Kenya suspended the coastal routes of Lamu, Malindi, and Diani on 11th January 2019. The reasons for air Kenya’ suspension of 3 coastal routes were to specialize on fully serving regions that needed more services better than the coat. With the new service,

What are the costs?
A one-way flight from Mara to Entebbe airport will cost $US 340. Those flying from Mara to Kisumu will pay $US 200 while flights from Kisumu to Entebbe costs $US 150 per person. The prices are fairly good affordable for most if not all travelers.

What to expect
There are lots of benefits travelers should expect from Kenya Uganda direct flights. The flights through Kisumu help travelers enjoy the beauty of magical Kenya with rewarding them with a thrilling pre gorilla trekking experience and other wildlife experiences in Uganda, the Pearl of Africa.

Connecting From Entebbe Airport to Uganda national parks
On reaching Entebbe, travelers with will pack and transferred to their respective parks by Aero link, a Kenya Ugandan Subsidiary. Aero operates direct flights from Kajjansi to Bwindi, Murchison Falls, Queen Elizabeth, and Kidepo Valley national parks giving you a memorable experience of a truly East African Safari Circuit.

How to do a Kenya Uganda Tour
A 4 Days Kenya Uganda flying safari is a perfect package to enjoy Kenya’s Masaai Mara game viewing and mountain gorilla trekking in Uganda. On the first day, you arrive in Kenya and transfer to Masai Mara, have an evening. On the second day, enjoy game viewing in open savannah plains of Masai Mara and in the evening fly to Uganda to Bwindi Forest. The third day is a full day encounter with the endangered mountain gorillas in the impenetrable forests of Bwindi. On the fourth and last day, fly back to Kenya for your return flight.

How to book a Kenya Uganda Tour
Africa Adventure Safaris tailor makes a suitable Kenya Uganda safari for you at affordable prices. ASS is your reliable travel operator in East Africa known for reserving gorilla permits and other wildlife experiences as well as guiding you throughout for a remarkable experience. And east African visa will enable you to explore the beauties of Uganda and Kenya with no difficulties.

In general, the introduction of Kenya Uganda flights is a relief to travelers especially those on short holidays. Book a Kenya Uganda safari, enjoy the game in Masai Mara, trek mountain gorillas in Bwindi and enjoy other wildlife experiences within the east African circuit within the shortest time possible.

Enquire Now

Posted by admin in News, Uganda
Murchison Falls; Tours & Safaris

Murchison Falls; Tours & Safaris

The mighty Murchison falls is one of the remarkable tourist attractions after which Uganda was dubbed the Pearl of Africa. Also known as kabalega falls, Murchison falls is situated in the heart of Uganda’s oldest and largest national park (Murchison falls national park) between Lake Kyoga and Lake Albert on the while Nile. The strong waters squeeze through a seven-meter gorge falling 43 meters down into the devils’ cauldron forming a permanent trademark rainbow at the bottom of the falls. Sir Samuel Baker and his wife were the first people to discover Murchison falls in 1864 during their trail in Uganda. Walking to the top of the mighty Murchison falls reward travelers with a magical thunderous roar of wild waters. Also, the top of the falls is the best site to see the park, wildlife, birds and local communities in the neighborhood. The mighty cascade drains the last of the river’s energy, transforming it into broad, placid stream that flows quietly across the rift valley floor into the lake.

About Murchison falls national park
Spreading over 3,893 square kilometers, Murchison falls national park is Uganda’s biggest and oldest park that was established in 1952. The park is located in northwestern Uganda lying at the northern end of the albertine Rift valley. Murchison falls national park is bisected by Victoria Nile, which plunges 54m over the remnant rift valley wall to create the dramatic Murchison falls. Vegetation in the park comprise of savannahs, shrubs, forests and swamps which provide food and habitat to animals and birds in the park.

Activities and Attractions in Murchison Falls
Murchison falls national park is a center for tourism in Uganda with a variety of attractions and activities.

Game viewing
With a wide concentration of wildlife, game viewing is the most done tourist activity in Murchison falls national park. Game drives in the open savannahs of Murchison falls reward travelers with spectacular game viewing experiences. Game drives are well done in the early morning and evening to catch up with animals browsing and hunting before retiring for day and night rest. Expect to see numerous animals such as giraffes, elephants, buffalos, Uganda kobs, warthogs, waterbucks, elands, lions, leopards, cape buffalos, hippos, Jackson hartebeest, crocodiles, red tailed monkeys, patas monkeys and oribis among others.

Boat cruising
A boat cruise at the bottom of the falls is a must do on your Uganda safari to Murchison falls national park. Cruising reward you with a fresh feeling of cold-water breezes and fresh air pus marvelous views of the falls and the park. Expect to see various water animals including crocodiles, hippos and monitoring lizards on the riverbanks. Water birds like ducks, bee-eaters, cormorants and fish eagles are also spotted. Travelers are reminded that boat cruising is done two times a day i.e morning and afternoon lasting for 2 hours each session.

Bird watching
Besides game, Murchison falls national park is home to over 451 bird species. Birding is well done in forested, swamp areas of the park as well as the bottom of the mighty falls. Among the birds you should expect on your bird watching trip to Murchison falls national park include African Quail-Finch, Black-headed Gonolek, Blue headed Coucal, Eastern Grey Plantain eater, Malachite Kingfishers, Blue headed Coucal, Squaco Heron, Grey crowned cranes, Silver bird and Speckle fronted weaver among others. Our professional birding guides explain to you all the unique features of each spotted bird.

Nature walks
Join thrilling forest/nature trails through the low hills, forest and swampy areas of Murchison falls national park, Nature walk is the best way to explore and discover the beauty of this park on foot. You will meet various birds and animals some of which are hard to see on a game drive. Most animals seen during forest walking are primates, which include red tailed monkeys among others. The best place to do forest walks in Murchison falls National Park includes Rabongo forest and in Kaniyo Pabidi forest.

Where to sleep in Murchison Falls NP
The leading accommodation facilities in Murchison falls national park include Paraa safari lodge, Pakuba lodge, Baker’s lodge, Sambiya river lodge, Chobe safari lodge, Budongo eco lodge and Palm Gardens among others. These offer you excellent food and sleeping services at affordable rates.

Other activities that can be done on a Uganda tour to Murchison falls national park include chimpanzee trekking in Budongo forest and Rhino tracking at Zziwa rhino sanctuary.
Enquire Now

Posted by admin in safaris, Uganda
Drive Time to Bwindi Forest National Park

Drive Time to Bwindi Forest National Park

Visiting Bwindi forest to track and see mountain gorillas is one of the most done things on Uganda Safaris. The impenetrable forest is located in southwestern Uganda bordered by Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. The park is home to the highest population of mountain gorillas, the key tourist attractions in the Pearl of Africa. Bwindi Forest is located roughly 448.8 kilometers from Entebbe international airport hence one of the furthest tourist destinations in Uganda. Traveling by road is the common means of transport most travelers use to reach Bwindi. For luxury and short time travelers, Aero link and fly Uganda offer direct flights from kajjansi airstrip to Kihihi airstrip in Kabale district. However, driving is the most affordable way of getting to this impenetrable forest.

Driving from Entebbe
The drive from Entebbe Airport to Bwindi forest takes roughly 9-10 hours to cover up the 44.8.8 kilometers. This full day of driving is impossible for short time travelers denying them a chance to visit the famous mountain gorillas. A 3 Days Uganda gorilla tour to Bwindi forest is the appropriate travel itinerary to visit and track the endangered mountain gorillas in Bwindi if you are landing at Entebbe airport. With this itinerary, the first full day is for transferring to Bwindi, second day for trekking gorillas and the third (last day) is for traveling back. Despite the long distance, travelers who drive from Entebbe to Bwindi enjoy a variety of enroute add-ons. These include a stopover at the equator for photographs and beautiful scenic viewing. A lunch stop at the igongo cultural center in Mbarara is a not miss. You will also enjoy fresh fruits, street foods (Muchoma, gonjas, roasted maize) on your way to Bwindi forest. This amazing pre-gorilla trekking experience makes the whole safari exceptional and memorable.

Driving from Queen Elizabeth National park
If you want to combine your gorilla tour with game viewing, the 6 Days Uganda gorilla and wildlife safari is a suitable package for you. Here you visit Queen Elizabeth national park for game viewing and course boat cruise at kazinga channel and then connect to Bwindi forest through Buhoma sector north of Bwindi. The drive from Queen Elizabeth National Park to Bwindi is roughly 4 hours via ishasha sector home to the famous tree-climbing lions.

Drive from Kigali Rwanda
Alternatively, travelers can fly to Kigali international airport in Rwanda and then connect to Uganda. Interestingly, connecting from Rwanda to Bwindi is much easier and quick for travelers with limited time. Upon reaching Kigali airport, travelers drive for 4 hours through Cyanika border in kisoro district or Katuna border in Kabale district connecting to Bwindi Forest. The scenic driving through the rolling hills of Rwanda and kabale make this journey more interesting and enjoyable. Clients doing 1-Day Uganda gorilla tour are required to set off from Kigali at 3:30am to reach Bwindi at 7:00am catching up with the pre gorilla trekking briefing. After trekking, travelers drive back to Kigali for their return flights. Connecting from Rwanda to Uganda is therefore the simplest way to trek mountain gorillas in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park.

What is required to cross from Rwanda to Uganda?
Border crossing from Rwanda to Uganda requires some documents. Among these travel documents include valid passport and visa. Travelers connecting through Rwanda are advised to use a single East African Visa, which allows you to move freely in Uganda and Rwanda with no disruption. With Gorilla Trek Africa, you are guaranteed safe border crossing having done Rwanda Uganda trips for over 15 years now.
Bwindi forest is an exceptional travel destination you cannot afford missing on your Uganda safari. Book a customized Uganda gorilla trek trip to Bwindi from either Entebbe or Kigali Airport to be part of this memorable encounter.

Enquire Now

Posted by admin in Uganda
Revived Uganda Airlines To Open Direct Routes From Major Tourism Source Markets

Revived Uganda Airlines To Open Direct Routes From Major Tourism Source Markets

After close to 19 years of non-operating, the along awaited Uganda airlines finally revives to operation. Uganda airlines finally revive! There was too much excitement at Entebbe international airport on 24th April 2019 when Uganda’s warmly received the first two jetliners of Bombardier CRJ900S carrying the Uganda flag. Uganda airlines confirmed that two remaining Bombardier CRJ900S would be received in July and September this year and these will be flying across the regional routes on the continent. Uganda further expects other two airbuses A330-800 Neos scheduled to launch long haul flights in December 2020 and January 2021. The two will operate direct flights from far away cities like London, Amsterdam and Guangzhou offering serving travelers with safe and comfortable travels.

Why Celebrations?
Having been down for over 20 years, the renewal of Uganda airlines is a great achievement, which puts an end to long waiting since 2001. In other words, there will be no more stopovers in cities like Kigali, Nairobi and Addis Ababa before proceeding to Uganda unlike before. The revived airlines will open direct routes from major tourism source markets enabling travelers to fly direct to Uganda without hindrances and unnecessary stopovers.

What is expected?
The revival of Uganda national carrier will obviously help to promote tourism in the Pearl of Africa by enhancing direct flight routes to Uganda for tourists. Despite the initial inconveniences associated with various stopovers, Uganda has seen a rise in the number of tourists over time. In 2019, Uganda received a total of 1.7 million travelers an increase from 1.4 million travelers that had been received 2014. The revival of Uganda airlines will undeniably shoot the number of travelers high out competing for the neighboring tourism destination.

Also, traffic at Entebbe International airport will rise with no doubt. The airport currently has the traffic of over 1.8 million passengers a rise from 1 million passengers in 2014, which is a great achievement. Also, Uganda airline will create new job opportunities for Uganda’s. These will work as air hostesses and pilots among others earning them an income reducing on unemployment levels in the pearl of Africa. Traveling with Uganda airline s will also reduce the money spent on other countries. Ugandans will now use Uganda airlines, which will keep all our money within Uganda’s economy. No more foreign exchange expenditure through travel by foreign airlines. It was realized that Ugandans spent USD 400 annually in travel, which has kept Uganda’s economy lagging behind.

About Tourism in Uganda
Uganda also dubbed as the pearl of Africa is naturally gifted with numerous attractions that offer travelers with magical experiences. Of recent, Uganda was ranked by CNN among 25 most beautiful places in the world full of hidden and overt beauty in every corner. Uganda’s Bwindi impenetrable forest national park, a premier gorilla safari destination in the world was ranked number one travel destination. The other places that were recognized de by CNN include Samburu in Kenya, Mount and Toubkal in Morocco among others. Among the various attractions why Uganda is ranked among the most beautiful countries in the world include mountain gorillas in Bwindi forest, source of River Nile ( the world’s longest river), the mighty Murchison falls, big game, birds, Culture and Margherita peak of Mount Rwenzori among others.

The beauty of Uganda was also recognized by Jean-Paul Boutibou, the vice president for commercial aircraft at Bombardier who praised the pearl of Africa for her unmatched beauties. Jean-Paul further described Uganda as a remarkable destination, which every travel should add, on his/her bucket list to Africa. Jean further talked about her life experiences with mountain gorillas in Bwindi forest, Chimpanzees in Kibale forest and the snow-peaked Margherita of Mount Rwenzori. To promote sustainable tourism, Ugandans are urged to protect wildlife, avoid encroaching on natural forests and wetlands for future generations.

The revival of Uganda airlines is an answered prayer. Fly direct to Uganda, visit gorillas in Bwindi, enjoy other beauties in the pearl of Africa for a memorable experience at affordable rates.

Enquire Now

Posted by admin in News, Uganda
Horseback Riding in Uganda

Horseback Riding in Uganda

It’s obvious that trekking mountain gorillas, visiting chimpanzees, bird watching and cultural encounters are the most done wildlife experiences in Uganda. However, the pearl of Africa is much more than that. Horse riding is yet another off beaten way to explore and enjoy the beauty of Uganda. It’s a magical experience, which most travelers have often missed on their Uganda safari. Horse riding is a way of refreshment and is normally done as a complement to other tourism activities in Uganda. Enjoy the unique rides through local villages, tea plantations, valleys, hills, and national parks. Horse riding can be by one traveler or a group of travelers ride at the same speed. First-time riders are taught how to move the horse hence no need for experience. Alternatively, travelers with experience in horse riding can ride together at high speed with plenty of cantering. Interestingly, horses are trained and hence know what to do and when. A simple briefing will help you horse ride with no difficulty.

What is the riding time?

The stretch of riding time is a traveler’s choice depending on his/her time and budget. Riding can be for a short time as 30 minutes to three hours depending on the client. The starting time is 10 am for the morning shift and 2 pm for the afternoon shift. The reason for morning and evening rides is to help travelers enjoy the magical sun down and sunsets respectively.

Where to do horse riding in Uganda

Are you wondering where you can go for horse riding in Uganda? No worries, we bring to places where you can go for horse riding in Uganda. These include among others:

Lake Mburo national park
Horseback riding is the best way to explore and enjoy the beauty and wildlife of Lake Mburo national park. Run by Mihingo lodge, horse riding is one of the exceptional experiences every traveler should miss on his/her Uganda safari to Lake Mburo national park. Here travelers ride through the savannah vegetation of Lake Mburo to explore different spots within the park such as lake Mburo, rivers and swamps and local communities. Riding is for four-five hours rewarding travelers with spectacular views of different wildlife grazing, hunting, and browsing in the park. 6 people are allowed on each trip, which is an opportunity for group travelers to enjoy together. While on your horse riding through lake Mburo expect to see a variety of wild animals, which include zebras. Impalas, common eland, oribis, African buffalo, leopards, waterbucks, warthogs, bush pigs, reedbucks, giraffes, Uganda kobs, jackals, and hippos among others. For birders, expect to see African finfoot, Mosque swallow, Tabora Cisticola, Great painted snipe, Abyssinian ground hornbill, yellow-winged swamp warbler, yellow-rumped tinker bird, papyrus gonolek and shoebill among others.

Source of the Nile
Enjoy exceptional Nile horse riding safaris at affordable rates. Travelers to Jinja have a chance to ride across and to the source of River Nile the longest river in the world. Source of the Nile horse riding starts from the Nile source through local communities and local tea farms for an exceptional experience. In other words, horse riding is one to explore the banks of river Nile, jinja and hills overlooking the Nile river valley.

The cost of horse riding
The cost for horse riding at the source of the Nile is $40 for one hour, $50 for one and a half hours, $60 for an hour and half sunset safari, $60 for 2 hours riding safari and $80 for a three hours ride. The experience and enjoyment are worth the penny.

Tips for horse riding

Travelers going or horse riding safaris are advised to consider the following tips seriously:
• Properly wear the horse riding gear
• Be gentle and free with the reins
• Mount the horse with confidence
• Sit upright and relaxed. Do not sprawl
• Do not hold the saddle horn
• Keep your eyes where you are going
• Take full control of the horse

In general. Horse riding is one of the magical experiences that last for a lifetime. Book a horse riding safari to Uganda, enjoy this exceptional venture at affordable rates with Africa Adventure Safaris your number one travel agent in Uganda and Rwanda.

Posted by admin in Blog, safaris, Uganda
Boat Cruising/Launch Trips In Uganda

Boat Cruising/Launch Trips In Uganda

Do you want to enjoy Uganda beyond seeing mountain gorillas? Boat cruising is yet another exceptional way to relish the splendors of Uganda. In addition to numerous wildlife, the Pearl of Africa is naturally blessed with freshwater lakes and rivers that make your boat cruising dream come true. It’s a magical feeling sailing on top of the calm freshwaters with spectacular views of the surroundings. Also, known as launch trips, boat cruising is normally done as a relief after tiring experiences such as gorilla trekking, mountain climbing, and chimpanzee tours to give travelers a fresh feeling before they return to their homes of origin. To make your Uganda safari complete, we combine our boat trips with other wildlife experiences such as game viewing, gorilla watching, cultural visits, mountain climbing and bird watching among others. The top spots to do boat cruising in Uganda include:

Kazinga channel
Situated in the heart of Queen Elizabeth national park, kazinga channel offers you a memorable boat cruising experience. This 8 meters longs and 40 meters deep channel connects Lake Edward and George in the western rift valley. A boat at cruise at kazinga channel starts at Lake George and ends at lake Edward, making it so interesting. Enjoy the fresh feeling of the water airs plus great views of numerous wildlife such as hippos, crocodiles, elephants, buffalos, and monitoring lizard among others. Besides wildlife, a boat cruise at kazinga is best for birders. Expect to see a variety of bird species such as African kingfisher, Squacco Heron, Long-tailed Cormorants, wattled plovers, yellow-backed weavers, fish eagle, water-thick-knew, Knob-billed ducks, African jacana, white-winged terns, Papyrus Gonolek, squacco heron, malachite, thin-tailed nightjars, black bee-eater, and black ramped buttonquail among others. Also, you will view the nearby fishing villages making your experience memorable indeed. Launch cruises are done two times a day in the morning at 9:00 am and in the afternoon at 2:00 pm lasting for thrVictoria.

Lake Victoria
The largest freshwater body in Africa offers you the best luxury boat cruise trips in Uganda. A boat ride to any of the island on lake victoria mainly Ssese island for the honeymoon, Ngamba Island for chimpanzees and Kalangala Island among others is worth doing. Enjoy sailing on the calm clear waters of lake victoria with clear views of various fishing villages and human activities. Fortunately, speed and engine boat have been introduced on lake Victoria to ease your cruising experience memorable.

Source of the Nile
Imagine cruising right at the source of the longest river in the world. Wow, a boat ride to the source of the Nile is an exceptional feeling that last for a lifetime. Posing your boat at the point where river Nile starts flowing is a magical experience, which thousands of travelers have over time come again and again to experience. Expect to see some birds and animals on the river shores, which make you experience much amazing.

Murchison falls
Cruise to the bottom of the mighty Murchison falls in the heart of Murchison falls national park, Uganda’s largest and oldest national park. Also known as a delta Nile cruise a boat ride to the bottom of Murchison falls make your Uganda safari to Murchison falls an experience to remember. See for yourself how water strongly squeezes through that narrow gorge before pouring down into the devils ‘cauldron forming a rainbow. Also, look out for crocodile, hippos, buffalos, and waterbucks, which are spotted on the riverbanks. For birders, expect to see birds like African Darter, Goliath Heron, secretary bird, black-headed plover, osprey, white-faced whistling duck, veracious dove, rock pratincole, yellow-billed stork, pied kingfisher, long-tailed nightjar, long-toed plover, Malachite Kingfisher, Blue-napped Moosebird, Black-billed Barbet, Abyssinia ground hornbill, piapiac, yellow-fronted tinker bird and White-rumped seedeater among others. Like at kazinga channel, boat trip at Murchison falls are done two times at 9:00 am and 2:00 pm daily lasting for three hours.

Lake Bunyonyi
Found in the extreme end of southwestern Uganda, Lake Bunyonyi is exceptional in its own kind. The small lake (Lake Bunyonyi) is the second deepest lake in Africa after lake Tanganyika and comprise of 29 islands. A boat ride to any of the islands on Lake Bunyonyi is a life-changing experience. Cruise to the punishment island where pregnant unmarried Bakiga girls, would be left to die in isolation and to the Akacuraniko Island believed to have turned upside down. Interestingly, each island on Lake Bunyonyi has a different story that is worth listening. More still, the swampy shores of Lake Bunyonyi house many little birds like the levillant cuckoo, Herons, African Harrier Hawk, the levillant, slender-billed ball fetch, cardinal woodpecker, Herons and African harrier hawk among others.

Tip for boat cruising in Uganda
Travelers intending to do boat cruise in Uganda are reminded to be extra careful and responsible. While on a boat cruise;
• Avoid hanging over the side railings of the boat
• Wear life jackets and keep them on fit to prevent drowning in case of any tragedy
• Avoid boozing and smoking on the boat
• Ensure the boat is balanced both sides, in front and back
• Properly check the boat before the start of the cruise to make sure it’s in a safe state
With a variety of water bodies, the pearl of Africa is undeniably the best place for boat cruising and launch trips. Book a boat trip to the source of the Nile, kazinga channel, Bottom of Murchison falls, lake Victoria and on Lake Bunyonyi for a magical experience.

Posted by admin in Blog, News, Uganda
Top things to Avoid on Your Uganda Safari

Top things to Avoid on Your Uganda Safari

Uganda has on several occasions been ranked among the top tourism destinations each traveler must visit before he or she dies. The country is naturally endowed with beautiful sceneries, amazing wildlife, hospitable people, birds, lakes, rivers, and intresting history among others. The combination of these makes a complete Uganda safari package which attracts thousands of travelers from all over the world. Over years Uganda tourism board has registered an increased number of travelers coming for gorilla watching, chimpanzee trekking, bird watching, game viewing and other wildlife experiences rewarding them with lasting memories. Just like traveling to any destination, there are risks involved. In this documentary, we are not talking a boy what to see and do in Uganda but rather the things every traveler must avoid on a Uganda safari to ensure his safety and his/her property. The following are things you must avoid in Uganda.

Avoid self-driving
Much as some travelers opt for self-driving in Uganda, this act is highly discouraged for the first time travelers. If you are visiting Uganda for the very first time, PLEASE get a driver guide to avoid getting lost or bumping into troubles. Many risks including taking wrong routes are likely to happen on a safe drive safari, which can be time wasting and also waste money. Also, Uganda has traffic rules, which every driver must follow to avoid accidents. Also in Uganda, most roads are not well marked which could make a first self-driver get lost in a new environment. Fortunately, Gorilla Trek Africa offers travelers driver guides to take them around making it easy, quick and enjoyable.

Avoid crossing the road anyhow
Whether driving or walking, never cross a Ugandan road anyhow. All people using the road are advised to read carefully and follow the traffic rules to avoid problems. If you are planning to join a road, you are advised to look, right, look left and then cross. Also, travelers walking are advised to consider using a zebra crossing, which is a sign of pedestrians crossing. Even if you are driving on a high way road, avoid over speeding and road traffic rules.

Avoid public transport and use of Boda Bodas
It’s okay to use public means of transport but not for the first time traveler. In most cases, taxi drivers and boda-boda riders take advantage of the first time travelers who do not know exactly where they are going. Also, tourists in public means of transport are overcharged compared to other people in a taxi, which is not fair. Travelers using public transport are advised to first ask other people in the taxi about the actual cost to avoid being cheated. Boda-bodas are so far the quickest means of transport in Uganda but the highest cause of accidents. Travelers are highly discouraged to board any boda-boda they come across since some riders are also robbers.

Avoid clubbing and traveling at night in Uganda
Nightlife and clubbing is one of spending free time in Uganda but highly discouraged for the first time travelers. Clubbing is all about drinking, eating and dancing with people returning home very late or even in the morning. This is not surely good for someone who is not familiar with the environment. First-time travelers are therefore are advised to avoid going into these clubs which are some times are associated with robbery and fighting by this who are drunk. If you decide to go for clubbing, avoid leaving your drinks in the one without anyone attending to it. Also, avoid flashing a large sum of money, which can attract the attention of many people some of whom are thieves. If you have valuables like phones, ATM cards, avoid exposing them.

Avoid foods that might make you sick
For the first time travelers, please avoid foods from street vendors such as Rolex, chapatti, roadside snacks, fast foods and roasted maize among others. Similarly, avoid eating raw uncooked things such as salads; raw cabbages, which can cause stomach upset for those no used to them. For those with buffest in hotels, make sure the food is kept hot to avoid eating cold foods, which are not good for you. Fortunately, some most moderate and upmarket lodges provide bottled water for other clients.

Avoid drinking tap water in Uganda
Travelers are reminded to avoid drinking any water they come across. Avoid drinking water from the tap, wells, ponds, rivers, and lakes since it’s not safe. Before drinking any water, make sure it has treated and boiled to avoid drinking contaminated water. Bottled water is the very recommended water to buy in Uganda especially that one of Rwenzori bottling company.

Avoid leaving valuables/cash in your room
As soon as travelers check into the lodge/hotel, they are advised to keep their property in the safe in their rooms and put their security code that no one knows about. For the rooms, which have no safes, travelers are reminded to keep their valuables especially driving cards, cash, ATM and other travel documents with the front desk that promise to keep them safe. While going into the field for gorilla trekking, game viewing ad forest walks, travelers are advised not to carry any property which can get lost in the jungle or be exposed to harsh weather conditions.

Avoid swimming where not sure
Uganda is undeniably endowed with natural lakes and rivers, which flow in different corners of the country. For that reason, swimming is one of the best activities travelers like to take part in especially during their free times. However, travelers are reminded not to jump onto any water they come across. Some waters are homes to hippos, crocodiles, and others infected with bilharzia. Swimming in Uganda is mostly done at Lake Mutanda and lake Bunyonyi all in southwestern Uganda. Also, travelers are advised to make use of the swimming pools at most lodges.

Avoid getting ill on a safari
Before and during your Uganda safari, travelers are reminded to seek medication to prevent any kind of sickness. As we all know that prevention is better than cure, travelers are advised to go for immunizations, carry insect repellents, eat hot food, swallow anti-viruses and use Sani-wipes to avoid contracting diseases.

We are ever ready to ensure your safety and comfort in the pearl of Africa. Boo your Uganda safari, avoid the above mistakes, enjoy Uganda activities especially gorilla watching and other wildlife experiences at affordable rates.

Posted by admin in Blog, News, Uganda
Uganda Safaris Through Rwanda

Uganda Safaris Through Rwanda

There are many Uganda safaris you can do through Rwanda. Rwanda Uganda safaris have presently become common due to the high costs of Rwanda tours that discourage some travelers especially those travelling on budget leaving them with crossing to Uganda as the only option. Travelers interested in doing Uganda safaris through Rwanda fly into Kigali international airport and then cross to Uganda through katuna border in kabale or Cyanika border in kisoro district. Connecting from Kigali international airport in Rwanda to Uganda takes roughly 4 hours drive, which is far better than driving for the whole day (roughly 10 hours) from Entebbe international airport. The most done Uganda tours through Kigali include among others:

Gorilla trekking in Bwindi/Mgahinga
A 1-day Uganda gorilla trip is well done through Kigali. Here travelers setoff from Kigali at 3:00am driving for 4 hours to attend the pre-trekking briefing in Uganda’s Bwindi/Mgahinga gorilla national parks. Travelers who want to trek in Rushaga sector south of Bwindi are advised to cross through Cyanika border in kisoro while those to trek in Buhoma sector north of Bwindi are advised to cross through katuna border in kabale. After briefing, travelers then roam in the jungle for between 30 minutes to 7 hours in search of mountain gorillas depending on the gorilla families’ location and speed of their movements. Whichever time traveler’s slope from watching gorillas, they immediately drive back to Kigali for their return flights. A 1 day Uganda gorilla trip has made it possible for short time travelers giving them a chance to trek gorillas and enjoy this once in a lifetime experience. The double increase of gorilla permit costs in Rwanda from $750 to $1500 diverted the would have been Rwanda travelers to Uganda where gorilla permits are cheap at $600 for foreign residents, $500 for foreign residents and 250,000shs for East African residents.

Game viewing
Uganda game viewing safaris can also be done through Kigali Rwanda. Here travelers drive through Kigali-kabale-Mbarara route to Queen Elizabeth national park. It takes roughly 6 hours through ishasha sector south of Queen Elizabeth, Uganda’s second largest national park.

Batwa cultural trail
Those who want to meet and experience the batwa cultural trail in Mgahinga gorilla national park can do it better through Kigali. Here travelers cross through Cyanika Uganda border, drive 2 hours from kisoro town to Mgahinga to meet the batwa pygmies. Batwa cultural trail is the best way to experience the traditional forest life of batwa pygmies who lived in the forest as their permanent settlement. Batwa lead travelers into the forest to hunt, search for medicinal herbs, collect honey and perform other cultural rituals. A traditional dance is presented to entertain travelers making their experience awesome.

Virunga volcano climbing
Uganda is a home to three Virunga volcanoes i.e Mt Sabyinyo, Mt Gahinga and Mt Muhabura all in Mgahinga gorilla national park. Mt sabyinyo is in the border of Uganda and Rwanda hence can be hiked from either side. The three volcanoes together with the other five volcanoes in Rwanda and Congo make a chain of the Virunga volcanoes. Travelers hiking in Uganda from Kigali are advised to wakeup very early to catch up with the hiking time.

Golden monkey trekking
Mgahinga gorilla national park in southwestern Uganda is one of the two destinations to trek golden monkeys. Mgahinga forest is a home to 2 communities of golden monkeys, which have been habituated for trekking. Interestingly, a permit to see golden monkey costs $100, which is fairly cheap but worth the penny. The other population of golden monkeys lives in Rwanda’s volcanoes national park northwestern Rwanda. Golden monkeys re lively creatures and monkey specie, which is distinguished from other monkeys by their golden fur.

Visit to lake Bunyonyi
Do not miss chilling and canoeing at lake Bunyonyi in the far corner of southwestern Uganda bordering Rwanda. Lake Bunyonyi is one of the outstanding tourism features in southwestern Uganda which o traveler should miss oh his Uganda tour.it takes 3 hours and 30 minutes fro Kigali airport to Bunyonyi.

In conclusion, Uganda trips have been made easy by connecting through Rwanda. Book a Uganda safari, fly into Kigali and cross over to Uganda for a memorable affordable experience in the pearl of Africa.

Posted by admin in African Safari, News
Ruhija Sector Of Bwindi Forest National Park

Ruhija Sector Of Bwindi Forest National Park

Why Visit Ruhija Sector Of Bwindi Forest National Park
Gorilla tours to Bwindi are done in four sectors that make up Bwindi Impenetrable forest national park. The four gorilla regions are Buhoma, Rushaga, Ruhija and Nkuringo each of which is exceptional in its own way. In this documentary, we zero down to Ruhija sector and the reasons you should visit it on your gorilla safari in this impenetrable forest. Situated in the Eastern part of the national park, Ruhija is a best sector worth exploring. The exceptions that make Ruhija a best stop for your Uganda gorilla safari include among others:

Mountain gorilla Trekking

Mountain gorillas are a key attraction for all visitors to Ruhija sector. This region is a home to three gorilla families namely, Kyaguliro, Oruzogo and Bitukura all available for trekking every day. Like in other sectors, 8 people visit a gorilla family each day, hence 24-gorilla permits available in Ruhija everyday visit each family in Ruhija region. A traveler has a choice to select which gorilla family he/she wants to trek depending on the availability of permits. Trekkers are reminded to carry the appropriate packing list with hiking shoes, long pants and rain jackets to ease gorilla trekking. A gorilla permit is a must have for everyone going to see mountain gorillas costing $600 for foreign non residents, $500 for foreign residents and 250,000UGX for east African residents. Potters are highly recommended to carry you bag and give support where necessary. Travelers are also given packed lunch since the actual time to send in the forest is unpredictable and changes depending on the toughness of the hikes, location f gorillas and traveler’s physical fitness.

Batwa pygmy encounters
Do not miss out visiting Batwa communities in the boundaries of the forest. Batwa are the indigenous dwellers of Bwindi forest that were evicted to the forest edges in 1991 when gorilla tourism was introduced in the park. An encounter with the Batwa rewards you with an extensive understanding of their traditional forest life, norms, and cultures. Batwa elders guide you into the forest to demonstrate their initial forest practices like hunting, collecting honey, and picking medicinal herbs. Batwa further demonstrate their traditional songs and dances as a form of entertainment to visitors.

Visiting community projects
While in Ruhija, visit and support community based projects owned and run by local people. Different community projects especially crafts, baskets weaving and bee keeping have been established to support local livelihoods. These projects receive tourism funding and are a key source of employment for local people some of whom are former porters. Tourists who visit these projects are given a chance to take part in these activities, which make them feel part of the community, an experience they cannot forget. Tourism projects have been a source of occupation for women, men and youth, earning them a living to improve their standards of living. Local projects also help to generate delicate balance between the environment, wildlife conservation and sustainable development in Ruhija and the whole Bwindi.

Bird watching
For birders, Ruhija is a best spot for bird watching. The region is a home to nearly 23 endemic bird species which include grey bush shrike, starred robin, yellow streaked greenbul, hornbills, Turacos, Dusky Crimson Wing and yellow-eyed black fly-catcher among others. Ruhija is therefore a recognized Important Bird Area (IBA) for its global conservation importance. Travelers are reminded to bring binoculars for easy spotting. Experienced guides help you spot birds and explain the unique features for each spotted bird specie, which make this experience indeed exceptional.

Forest walks
A nature walk through this quite cool impenetrable forest is an experience of its own kind. This walk is a best way to discover the entire gem in the forest, waterfalls, caves and rocks which make it mote beautiful. Expect to meet animals and enjoy the sweet sounds of birds singing up in the trees.

Comfortable lodges
Travelers to Ruhija are assured of comfortable, safe and luxury lodging services at affordable prices. Popular lodge in Ruhija include Bakiga Lodge, Gorilla Mist Camp, Trekkers Tavern lodge and Agandi lodge among others. Professional chefs, waiters, house keepers are available 24 hours to serve you with quality food and sleeping services. Travelers are advised to book for accommodation at least 2 months before travelling for timely preparations.

Cool and conducive weather
The cool stinging breezes that cover up the whole of Ruhija region especially at night make this region exceptional. The extreme but conducive cold weather in Ruhija is attributed to the hilly terrain and dense forests, which make up the region. In the morning hour’s dawn, forest fog stays until 11am good for photography. In the night travelers are given warm water bottles to provide them with some warmth and get away with freezing in the coldness.

In general, Ruhija sector in eastern Bwindi is surely worth visiting. Book a Uganda gorilla safari to Bwindi forest national park, meet the endangered gorillas in their natural habitat and enjoy this once in a lifetime experience.

Posted by admin in Blog, News, Uganda
Uganda’s Bird watching safaris

Uganda’s Bird watching safaris

Uganda Birding safaris
Bird watching safaris in Uganda are flourishing with a huge gem of over 1,000 bird species that have attracted attention in recent years. Uganda’s story of bird watching is a bad to good narration. There was always a scuffle between bird watchers and the residents who settled around the birding places. Back then, residents could chase bird watchers with machetes suspecting them to be land grabbers who were trying to inspect and take their land forcefully. However, the continued efforts of several organizations to promote and shape bird watching like the Uganda Bird Guides Club has now helped to turn the Pearl of Africa into an Ornithologist’s dream. The presence of thousands of bird species in Uganda’s variety of rainforests makes the Pearl of Africa one of the bird watching destinations in Africa and the world at large. To ambitious bird watchers, a 14-day itinerary Uganda Birding Tours
allows you to view 450 to 500 species, which is almost half of Uganda’s richness of the booming bird list that stands at 1,080 species. This number makes Uganda to posses about half of the continent’s total bird list that stands at 2,310 species. One of the favorable factors that gifts Uganda with this impressive bird gem is her conducive climate all year round enabling bird bleeding and while attracting migration of hundreds of others from different parts of the continent. On several occasions, bird watching is done as a complement to other tourism activities in Uganda especially gorilla trekking in Mgahinga and Bwindi, game watching, mountaineering and cultural encounters among other activities to make a complete Uganda safari package.

Where to find birds in Uganda

Some of the most experienced bird watchers in Uganda point out some of the best spots for a fruitful bird watching safari in Uganda. These include Mabamba Wetland, Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park, Semuliki Valley in Semuliki national park, Budongo Forest, Mgahinga National Park, Murchison Falls National Park, Kibale Forest, Queen Elizabeth National Park and Lake Mburo National park. Others include Kidepo valley national park though not well marketed.

Bird watching experts, The Uganda Bird Guides highly recommend Mabamba Swamp on the edge of Lake Victoria as one of Uganda’s Important Bird Areas (IBA). The site is a home for the elusive Shoebill Storks an endemic for East and Central Africa

Bwindi Impenetrable national park, which is majorly known for incredible gorilla safaris, is another destination recommended to curious birders. The montane forests of the Kigezi highlands offer one of the finest birding in Africa with over 23 Albertine Rift endemics. The species in this bird gem include some that are globally threatened like the African Green Broadbill and Shelly’s Crimson Wing.
Other Uganda’s bird watching spots like Queen Elizabeth national park qualify as top bird watching sites by holding such huge numbers of birds and a great variety of species. The park is the most prevalent of any protected area in Africa with over 600 bird species.

Today’s excellent Uganda birding safari are as a result of the great work done by the birding pioneers of Uganda who were very instrumental in installing this exciting door activity on the Uganda’s itineraries back in the late 1990s. The team took it upon themselves to educate and sensitize both locals and the media on how to conserve and promote birding in Uganda.

The recent International recognitions involving Uganda’s birding effort are clear indicators of a success registered so far in the activity. In October this year Uganda participated and emerge second through the triumph of 23-year-old Ashley Brian Baboineki at the international Youths Birding Competition hosted by Singapore Tourism Board. The competition had 78 participating nations.

Uganda also shined at the Global Big Day in May when 429 bird species where found from across the country by a group of 34 birders that were identified by an experienced network of local guides and the Uganda Tourism Board. Uganda’s impressive numbers put her in the first position in Africa ahead of Kenya, South Africa, Tanzania, Zimbabwe and Zambia who were also critical of the success of Africa’s tally.

Uganda’s ambitions to promote birding were also indicated by the formation of the Uganda Women Birders in 2013 to attract more women into birding and nature guiding as a profession. This women club has been growing with time with the assistance from tourism authorities including Uganda Wildlife Authority and Uganda Tourism Board. The club has grown from 5 members to 30 female guides who are recommended for jobs in tour companies as a way of supporting them.

Posted by admin in Blog, News, safaris, Uganda
What Makes Kampala City Exceptional

What Makes Kampala City Exceptional

What Makes Kampala City Exceptional
Have you been in Kampala city before? Are you planning a Uganda safari via Kampala? The capital of the pearl of Africa is an exceptional place to be. Whether you are a business person, an investor of even a traveler on a holiday? Kampala city has something outstanding for you. Unlike other cities, Kampala is suitable for all kinds of life let it be professional, business and simple life with out compromising quality. Being it a gateway to all tourism spots, most Uganda safari holidays start and end in Kampala. A city tour exploring the seven hills of Kampala is a not miss for all travelers to the pearl of Africa. After long safaris in the remote areas, for gorilla safaris, mountain climbing and local cultural encounters, a traveler needs some free time to chill off the stress before traveling back. Several hotels luxury, midrange and budget have established in all corners of the city to serve you with excellent food and sleeping services. Also, several apartments have been built for business people hence smooth flow of all kinds of business. Kampala city is Uganda’s commercial center hosting all prominent offices in different corners. Kampala therefore hosts the highest number of people in Uganda doing different kinds o work. The green vegetation and red rooftops that surround Kampala make it indeed a best place.

Low cost of living
With no doubt, Kampala offers the lowest cost of living compared to other cities in the neighboring countries. Low cost of living does not mean low standard services but rather an affordable life for all people at all budgets. Transport in the city is cheap especially in public transport where there are taxis at shs500 only from one place to another. Also, there are several restaurants to serve you with plenty of food at a relatively low cost. At 10,000, you cane get good ready food in a restaurant accompanied with fresh juice or water. It’s therefore rare to feel hungry while in Kampala. Also, the city has local markets for example owino selling plenty of fresh foods and clothes at low cost. Also, snacks like chapattis, Rolex and sumbis are available everyday costing as low as sh500 to make your life easy in Uganda’s capital city.

Tourist attractions
For travelers, a Kampala city tour to different tourism spots makes your Uganda safari a complete package. Reach out to Uganda Museum, Baha’i temple, Kasubi tombs, Makerere University, Uganda martyrs shrines in Namugongo, Gaddafi mosque, Namirembe hill, Mengo palace, Afriart gallery, Kampala Hindu temple, Parliamentary house and Bulange royal building. Also luxury hotels like Sheraton Hotel, Serena Hotel, and Imperial royale hotel, Hotel Africa, Pearl of Africa Hotel and the common wealth resort Munyonyi among others. These places are good for fun and relaxing.

Good for shopping
If you are a shopper, Kampala, city offers you whatever you want at affordable prices. Are you looking for clothes, fabrics, utensils, cosmetics and all other households, Kampala sorts you. The leading shopping malls in Kampala include Forest Mall, Grand imperial shopping Mall, Tirupati Mazima Mall, Ntinda shopping Centre, Acacia mall, Oasisi Mall, Pioneer Mall, Mukwano Mall, Lugogo mall, capital shopper, Kamu Kamu Plaza, quality shopping village, Metropolis shopping mal and Owino market among others. All these serve you with fresh, clean and updated services in all quantities at affordable prices. Visit any of the shopping malls on your stay in Kampala for a memorable stay.

Fortunately a lot of transformation has been achieved in Kampala under the management of Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA). Through KCCA, local markets have been transformed to international standards while roads such as the Entebbe expressway have been constructed to ease the connectivity from Kampala to Entebbe international airport for those who have connecting flights.

In general, Kampala city is an exceptional city to be for a unique experience. Enjoy a Kampala city tour; go for shopping, walking and chill off your stress in the capital city of the pearl of Africa.

Posted by admin in News, Uganda
Uganda Flying Safaris

Uganda Flying Safaris

Uganda Flying Safaris
Scared of long distances and many driving hours? No worries, scheduled flying safaris make your Uganda safari short and easy. There are direct flights from Kajjansi airstrip to most national parks and other tourism spots to ensure you get to your desired destination as quick as possible. The scheduled flights give short time travelers a chance to enjoy exceptional Uganda safaris by flying to any tourism destination of their choice, Aero link and fly Uganda make your flying safari a success at reasonable rates. All flights start out from Kajjansii to different airstrips depending on the traveler’s itinerary. Interestingly, all flights can be adjusted to meet traveler’s available time. Initially, all-domestic flights in Uganda have been operated by Aero link, but thanks to fly Uganda which has also launched flights starting with Bwindi impenetrable forest national park starting on 2nd November 2018. In the short time to come, Fly Uganda will extend its flying safaris to other national parks to make your Uganda safari memorable.
Africa adventure Safaris helps you book your scheduled flights to any destination of your choice served with excellent inflight services all-inclusive in the flight fares.

Flights to Bwindi forest national park
Gorilla trekkers to Bwindi forest national park fly from Kajjansi to kihihi airstrip, which takes roughly an hour. From kihihi, travelers are transferred to Buhoma sector north of Bwindi forest to catch up with the gorilla trekking session. This save travelers 10 hours of driving from Kampala to kabale giving those with limited time a chance to see the endangered species in the shortest time possible. Bwindi is a home to half of the world’s mountain gorillas with 17 gorilla families habituated for trekking everyday. Direct flights to Bwindi make Uganda gorilla safaris easy even for travelers with limited time hence increased tourism revenue from the sell of gorilla permits.

Flights to Mgahinga gorilla national park

Travelers flying to Mgahinga land at kisoro airstrip in kisoro. From there travelers drive a few kilometers to Mgahinga to meet face to face with the endangered species. Safaris to Mgahinga gorilla national park also reward you with exceptional batwa cultural encounters, hiking Virunga volcanoes and golden monkey trekking among others.

Flights to Queen Elizabeth national park
For travelers to Queen Elizabeth national park, you fly from Kajjansi to kasenyi airstrip. Kasenyi is well known for the high centration if wildlife normally seen grazing and predators hunting. Expect to see herds of elephant’s buffalos, lions, antelopes, Uganda kobs and many other animals in the park. Game viewing is well done in the morning and evening hours to catch-up with animas feeding before retiring to rest. Travelers are therefore reminded to book flights in the time favorable for game viewing.

Flights to Kidepo valley national park
Kidepo is Uganda’s furthest national park located in northeastern Uganda. Air transport is the best way to reach kidepo valley national park. Travelers driving from Kampala to Kidepo normally spend two nights with en-route sleepovers due to long distance. With flying safaris, travelers fly from Kajjansi to Apoka airstrip saving you the very many hours on the road. A Uganda safari to kidepo valley is an exceptional off beaten experience. Do not miss out a cultural encounter with the kalimajongs and IK people for memorable cultural experiences.

Flights to Murchison falls National Park
Murchison falls is Uganda’s largest national park in northwestern Uganda and is a home to the mighty falls after which the park derives its name. Here travelers fly from Bugungu in the north or Pakuba airfield in the western part of the park. Travelers to Murchison falls national park. A boat cruise at the bottom of Murchison falls and a hike to the top of the falls is an experience of its own kind. Also Murchison falls hosts a high number of animals, which include elephants, buffalos, giraffes, waterbucks, warthogs, Jackson’s heartbeat, lions, and hippos among others. The hot air balloons in kidepo national park reward you with in-flight views of animals, vegetation and local communities in Murchison falls.

How to book Uganda flying safaris
To book any domestic flight, contact the sales team at Aero link or fly Uganda. Alternatively, Africa adventure Safaris helps you book your Uganda flying safari at affordable rates. Travelers are also reminded to book fro flights at least 2 days before the actual day to ensure timely preparations.

In conclusion, you can fly to any tourism destination in Uganda. Book a Uganda flying safari to Bwindi, Murchison falls, kidepo valley and queen Elizabeth national parks with Aero link and Fly Uganda affordable rates.

Posted by admin in News, safaris, Uganda
Lodges/Camps in Bwindi Forest Np

Lodges/Camps in Bwindi Forest Np

Where to Sleep In Bwindi Forest National Park
Are you planning a gorilla safari to Bwindi impenetrable forest national park? Do you wonder where you will stay for your overnight? Bwindi forest has a variety of luxury/ budget and midrange lodges and tented camps all set to offer you comfortable, safe and excellent food and sleeping services. Fortunately, all accommodation facilities in Bwindi are well furnished and strategically over looking the park and the neighboring communities. Also, all lodges have well-built cottages with private verandah and some with forest views. The rooms are spacious with comfortable beds, en suite bathroom with flush toilet and a hot shower or Bath tubs, Mosquito Proof rooms. In some rooms there are safety deposit boxes. All the luxury lodges have a lounge area with a bar dining facilities, fireplace, recharging facilities with Wi-Fi Internet access available among others. Lodges in Bwindi are scattered in four sectors namely Buhoma, Ruhija, Rushaga and Nkuringo in the north, east and southern regions of the park. Therefore, the choice of the lodge to stay depends on the sector and the gorilla family a traveler intends to trek. Fortunately, most lodges are situated a short distance from the trekking starting pint which saves the client energy to travel long hence giving them enough time to rest. Travelers are reminded that the cost of lodging services vary from lodge to lodge based on standards of each lodge but services in all lodges are worthy the price. Choose from our selection of best lodges in Bwindi to ensure a memorable stay in the home of endangered mountains:

Luxury Lodges in Bwindi Forest
Among the luxury lodges in Bwindi forests split in all sectors
Luxury Lodges in Bwindi Include;
Lake Kitandara Tented camp in Buhoma Sector
Mahogany Springs in Buhoma Sector
Buhoma Lodge in Buhoma Sector
Gorilla Safari Lodge in Rushaga Sector
Agandi Uganda in Ruhija Sector
Chameleon Hill Lodge in Rushaga Sector
Silverback Lodge in Buhoma Sector
Ruhija Gorilla Safari Lodge in Ruhija Sector
Clouds Mountain Gorilla Lodge in Nkuringo Sector Trackers Safari Lodge in Buhoma Sector Sanctuary Gorilla Forest Camp in Buhoma Sector Volcanoes Safari Bwindi Lodge in Buhoma Sector Nkurungo Bwindi Lodge in Nkuringo Sector

Deluxe and Budget accommodations provide accommodation arrangement without compromising quality and comfort. The accommodation is offered in tents, cottages or cabins, which are placed on raided wooden floors covered by grass thatch making it ecofriendly. Just like the luxury lodge, deluxe and budget lodges have the main building with the restaurant/well-stocked bar, the fireplaces, Back-up power generator, Laundry services and Mosquito nets among others. Interestingly, the cost of services in deluxe lodge is quite cheap which make it a best option for travelers on a budget.

Budget accommodation facilities in Bwindi
Gorilla Mist Camp in Ruhija Sector
Bakiga lodge in Ruhija Sector
Crested Crane Bwindi Hotel in Buhoma Sector
Trekkers Tavern in Ruhija Sector
Rushaga Gorilla Camp in Rushaga Sector
Buhoma community Rest Camp in Buhoma Sector
Wagtail Eco Safari Camp in Rushaga Sector
Ruhija Community Rest Camp in Ruhija Sector

Midrange or Deluxe lodges;
Bwindi Jungle Lodge in Rushaga Sector
Ichumbi Gorilla Lodge in Rushaga Sector
Silverback Lodge in Buhoma Sector
Engagi Lodge in Buhoma Sector
Buhoma community haven lodge in Buhoma Sector
Gorilla valley Lodge in Rushaga Sector
Mutanda Lake Resort in Rushaga Sector
Gorilla Close up Lodge in Ruhija Sector

Conclusively, travelers to see mountain gorillas in Bwindi forest national park are assured of safe, comfortable and high quality food and sleeping services at Affordable rates. Choose fro our list of selection of lodges, book a lodge/tented camp of your choice and enjoy your stay in the natural habitat of the critically endangered mountain gorillas.

Posted by admin in News, Uganda
Uganda Strengthens Fight Against Poaching

Uganda Strengthens Fight Against Poaching

Uganda Strengthens Fight Against Poaching
Close to 500 game rangers have been passed out by the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) to beef up the security of wildlife in the country’s national parks and game reserves after under going training at Murchison Falls Training Ground in Nwoya district. The group, which consists of 393 men and 97 women aged between 22-30 will be deployed in different conservation around the country to add on the already existing force in the field. The training was carried out for four months conducted by UWA in conjunction with the UPDF’s fourth division Gulu. In 2005, the same recruitment also took place where 200 rangers and 400 UPDF men were seconded to UWA under Special Wildlife Integrated Force for Tourism (SWIFT).The passing out ceremony was presided over by the president of Uganda Yoweri Kaguta Museveni who congratulated the graduates and the Uganda Wildlife Authority for building manpower to protect the parks. He said that lawlessness in the parks has been going down for the last five years, which has made the number of animals in the park to go up, especially the elephants.Also, the fight against poaching guarantee increased Uganda safaris for gorilla trekking in Bwindi, game viewing and other related packages in the Pearl of Africa.

The President also blamed the “mediocrity” of the Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) for not doing enough to promote the Ugandan Tourism Industry. The President said Uganda has unique potential in tourism with high plateau area with the lowest part 650meters above sea level and the highest part more than 5,000 meters above sea level saying that this should be the basis for promotion of the sector.

The president said that the promotion of the potential of wildlife has been poor due to poor performance of the Uganda Tourism Board. He says that some countries have very little to offer yet they attract more tourists mentioning Spain as an example that attracts 50 million visitors per year.

Concerning the development and improvement of the tourism sector, Museveni said there is need to work on the roads in the parks and he called the UWA management to have a master plan and he will look for money for it. Museveni also advised UWA to construct airport or aerodrome near the park to help in transportation of tourists by overcoming the hustle of traffic jam in Kampala. The president also advised that in order to combat the issue of conflict between human beings and wildlife, electric fence could be put in place and some plants that animals don’t like, like red pepper should be planted to deter the animals from straying into community land.

The president also said that he has instructed Uganda Revenue Authority to introduce scanners at all borders to track the vehicles that might be used to smuggle animal products. The newly passed out rangers are expected to boost the security of wildlife that has always been threatened by poachers in the parks where they will be deployed. The most endangered animals in Uganda parks include elephants, buffaloes, and antelopes that are always hunted by poachers for products like meat, husks, hides and skins, among others.

The rangers will also be very instrumental in offering security to tourists against some dangerous wild animals like lions and leopards that may attack tourists while traversing through the game parks enjoying activities like game drives, game viewing, chimpanzee and gorilla tracking, among others.

Posted by admin in News, Uganda, WildLife
UWA Translocates 15 Giraffes from MFNP to Kidepo

UWA Translocates 15 Giraffes from MFNP to Kidepo

UWA Trans locates 15 Giraffes From Murchison to Kidepo Valley National Park
The Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) together with the Giraffe Conservation Foundation in August this year started the process of trans locating 15 giraffes from Murchison Falls National Park to Kidepo Valley National Park. The main reason for the trans location process is to promote conservation through enhancing the ecosystems with sparse populations while depopulating the high-density areas to ensure ecological balance and sustainable conservation while rewarding travelers with unbeatable Uganda safari experience besides the famous mountain gorillas.

The move is aimed at increasing the population of the Rothschild’s giraffes in the Kidepo Valley National Park that has been low for a long time estimated to be around 47 animals. At the same time the trans location relieves Murchison Falls national Park of ecological pressure brought about by a huge number of the giraffes of about 1,200 individuals. Indeed the scarcity of the Rothschild’s giraffes in Kidepo has been causing some major concerns among the visitors since they had to drive for a couple of kilometers around the park looking for these rare species.

This year’s trans location comes after registering success in the same process last year when 19 giraffes were trans located from the Northern to the Southern bank of Murchison Falls National Park and later 2 giraffes were also trans located from the Northern bank of the Park to the Uganda Wildlife Education Centre at Entebbe.

The trans location process was carefully planned in order to avoid the tragedy that happened in Kenya where 11 rhinos died immediately after trans locating them. Although the Kenyan Ministry of Wildlife and Tourism reported that the deaths were due to the high-saline level of water that the Rhinos drank in the new location, other sources indicated that it was due to poor process planning and management and poor veterinary care.

In order to ensure that exercise runs successfully, the process included identifying which animals would be moved and darting to make them unconscious to allow rangers check their heart rates. The animals would then be secured with ropes and placed in the recovery cart. Moving the animals to the new location is done using customized transport trucks that are lined with cushions to protect the giraffes. UWA reaffirms that all precautionary measures are being undertaken by experts to ensure the giraffe trans location is smooth and successful.

In addition to the Rothschild’s giraffe population that is being boosted in Kidepo Valley National Park, there is a variety of other attractions in this remote destination found in Northeastern Uganda at the borders with South Sudan and Kenya. Among the famous attractions of Kidepo include the amazing game drives that lead visitors to thousands of game including the rock loving lions, elephants, large herds of buffaloes, leopards, zebras, hartebeests, antelopes, warthogs, waterbeests, numerous bird species and a variety of small species like the leopard tortoise, among others.

The park has also got an amazing landscape, which is flat allowing you to have incredible game drives to all the corners of the park. Binoculars are placed in various corners of the park to enable you view the distant animals and other fauna and flora species within the park. Seasonal Rivers run through the park including the Narus River that flows through the Narus valley that divides the park into two sections, Narus and Kidepo.

The communities around Kidepo Valley National Park are also worthy a visit because they are so unique and awesome. These include the IK on the slopes of the Morungole ranges in the Northern part of the park and the Karamajongs in the Southern part. Their unique culture and activities will blow your mind and can never be rubbed off your memory.

The remoteness of Kidepo valley national park comes with a distinctive advantage to her visitors to enjoy uninterrupted game views and other tourist activities within and around the Park. The long distance to Kidepo makes it free from the traffic and the congestion of visitors, which are evident in other Parks that are relatively near from the capital Kampala thus a reward to travellers who endure the long journey to this distant destination.

Posted by admin in News, safaris, Uganda
New Gorilla families in Bwindi forest national park

New Gorilla families in Bwindi forest national park

Bwindi is a popular gorilla safari destination in southwestern Uganda. The impenetrable forest is widely known for sheltering the highest number of mountain gorillas that give high number of travelers a chance to meet “face to face” with the critically endangered mountain gorillas in the jungle. With no doubt, Bwindi is surely gifted by nature. We bring the good news of more two-gorilla families, which have been opened, for trekking. The newly introduced gorilla families bring a total of fully habituated gorilla families in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park to 17 hence an opportunity for many travelers to access gorilla permits and trek mountain gorillas. The other gorilla families in Bwindi are Mubare gorilla family, Habinyanja gorilla family, Rushegura gorilla family, Oruzogo family, Bitukura gorilla family, Kyaguliro family, Nshongi gorilla family, Mishaya gorilla group, Kahungye gorilla family, Busingye gorilla group, Bweza family, and Nkuringo family. In addition, two more groups namely;Bushaho and Bikyingi gorilla families are yet to be opened for trekking in Rushag setcor of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park bringing the total number of mountain gorilla families in Uganda to 21 including Nyakagezi family in the sister Mgahinga gorilla national park.

The two new families come along with 16 extra gorilla permits since each family is visited by eight travelers each given one permit. Gorilla trekking is the most done activity in Uganda, Rwanda and Congo which bring in the highest number of travelers from all parts of the world and the whole world to have a taste of this once in a lifetime experience. The breaking news called for celebration by travel operators in Uganda and travelers who had been struggling to get gorilla permits. Uganda of recent faced a scarcity on gorilla permits due to high demand for gorilla safaris by the incoming travelers and the high cost of gorilla permits in the neighboring Rwanda.

The major aim for the introduction of new gorilla families in Uganda was to address the high demand for gorilla permits in Bwindi, which would at times put the management of Bwindi on tension. On the same day UWA introduced new gorilla families, it put an end to ground payments for the permits. For that case, all travel operators were asked to pay for permit at UWA head quarters to avoid risks of handling cash on ground. Also, UWA is putting up strategies to develop an improved cashless system saving tour operators risks of carrying large sums of money to UWA head quarters to make payments. Fortunately, Travelers are assured of their safety in the presence of these two new families just like with other groups. The two families successfully went through a habituation process for three years and are not wild to travelers.


Which are these new gorilla families

You should be enthusiastic to know these newly introduced gorilla families. These are Christmas and katwe gorilla families. The two families are in Buhoma and Nkuringo sectors of the park in the north and southern parts of Bwindi respectively and these include:

Christmas gorilla family
Sited in Nkuringo sector south of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park, Christmas has become a third gorilla family in this region along side Nkuringo and Bushaho gorilla families. The family is headed by Christmas as a dominant silverback, which some people believe, was born on Christmas. The family has a total of 9 members including 3 adult females, 3 black backs, and two babies. Fortunately, travelers intending to trek Christmas family have a variety for accommodation services including clouds mountain gorilla lodge, and Nkuringo Bwindi lodge, which serve travelers with excellent food and sleeping services.

Katwe gorilla family
This is anew family in Buhoma sector north of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. Katwe family joins the other three families of Mubare, Habinyanja and Rushegura making a total of habituated gorilla families in Buhoma to four. The ease of access to Buhoma from kabale town and availability of luxury accommodation facilities make Buhoma the first choice of most gorilla trekkers in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. Presently, there are 32 gorilla permits in Buhoma hence an added chance for most gorilla trekkers in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. The family under went through a habituation process for 3 years which h made it familiar to human presence hence guarantee travelers of their security in presence of these gentle giants. Investigations are still undergoing about the actual number gorilla members make up this family but its trekking has already started. The accommodation facilities in Buhoma sector include among others mahogany springs lodge, Buhoma lodge, Bwindi forest lodge, Engagi lodge, Trackers safari lodge, Silverback lodge, and Buhoma community haven lodge. These lodges are luxury, midrange and budget serving excellent comfortable food and sleeping services to travelers at affordable rates.
Uganda gorilla treks in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park/Mgahinga gorilla national park can be complemented by other activities such as batwa cultural trail golden monkey trekking, forest walks and volcano climbing which all make your safari an experience for lifetime.

In general, Uganda celebrates the increase of habituated gorilla families in the four sectors of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. Book a Uganda safari to Bwindi, meet face to face with the critically endangered mountain gorillas in the jungle and enjoy this life changing experience.

Posted by admin in News, safaris, Uganda
Guide to  Gorilla trekking in Uganda

Guide to Gorilla trekking in Uganda

Planning a Uganda gorilla safari to have an encounter with these endangered mountain gorillas in their natural habitat? Africa Adventure Safaris is a solution. An in-depth understanding of basic facts concerning gorilla trekking is very essential for a successful trek. Gorilla trekking is a highlight for most if not all trekkers to Uganda drawing thousands of travelers from all parts of the world and the best wildlife encounter in the whole world. Uganda is a home to approximately 75% of the world’s mountain gorillas making it the best destination to trek gorillas. Among the basic facts every travelers should know include the following:

Where to trek gorillas in Uganda
Trekking in Uganda is done in the tropical rain forests of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park and Mgahinga gorilla national park both in southwestern Uganda. Bwindi is a home to 12 habituated gorilla families scattered in the sectors of Buhoma, Ruhija, Rushaga and Nkuringo. On the other hand, Mgahinga gorilla national park has one habituated gorilla family named Nyakagyezi available for trekking. Despite in the past decades where Nyakagyezi family would cross borders to the neighboring Rwanda and the DRC, the family has now stabilized in Mgahinga available for trekking.

Health status and physical fitness
Mountain gorillas share approximately 99.8% of human genes hence the closest relatives to human beings susceptible to human diseases. The close relativity therefore requires all trekkers to be free from every sicknesses especially air borne like flue and cough to avoid the spread of human wildlife diseases. Regarding physical fitness, gorilla trekking is not a walk away venture but rather an adventurous as trekkers hike in the dense forest with thorny bushes and slippery grounds. Physical fitness is therefore important for easy and flexible movements in the dense, muddy and slippery forests grounds while searching for the mountain gorillas.

The best time for trekking
Dry season in the months of June, July August, September, December and February is the best time to trek gorillas. During these months, there is limited or no rain at all which make it easy to hike through the dense forest and photography. However, gorillas can also be trekked in the wet season between the months of March, April and Novembers. During this period, gorilla permits are offered at a discounted rate, which is an added advantage especially to the budget travelers. Additionally, accommodation facilities (lodges and hotels) charge low cost prices in the wet seasons, which help travelers to get high quality services at low rates.
The challenge in the wet season is the heavy rains, which make the grounds muddy and slippery hence difficult to hike through.

Gorilla permits
This is a pass to see gorillas without which a traveler is not allowed to take part in trekking. A Gorilla permit requires advance booking and payment of the deposit for timely allocation of specific gorilla family. This permit is valid for an hour after which it is claimed expired and trekkers have to return to the starting point. A single gorilla permit in Uganda costs 600usd and 450usd in the peak and low seasons respectively in the two national parks. Gorilla permits are accessed from the Uganda wildlife authority a government body responsible for wildlife conservation and tourism in Uganda. 8 permits are issued out for each gorilla family meaning that eight people are the maximum number of trekkers allowed to trek one gorilla family every day.

How to dress
Trekkers must dress right for comfortable and quick hikes in the jungle. The attire recommended for trekking involve hiking boots for easy movements in slippery ad muddy grounds, hand gloves to protect from thorny bushes, rain jackets and sweaters for the cold weather and un predictable rain shower, hats and sun glasses for protection from direct sun, long sleeved shirts and pants help to protect the travelers from bites by ground insects.

Briefing and trekking time
A simple briefing by the park rangers is the start for every trekking. Its in the briefing that the trekkers are told the rules and regulations while with the gorillas such as keeping a distance of seven meters away from the gorillas and turning their backs in case of sneezing or coughing.
Immediately after briefing at around 8:00am, trekkers hike into the forest in search for the gorillas. The actual time to spend in forest is not specific but varies depending on the location and the movement of the trekked gorilla family. On reaching the gorillas, trekkers spend an hour as they take photographs and observing the human like characters of the gorillas. At the end of an hour, the permit expires and trekkers descend back to the their respective lodges.

Where to stay
There are standard hotels and lodges in and out for the two national parks serving trekkers with quality services at negotiable prices. The services vary from luxury, budget and mod range services at varying prices but quality services. These hotels and lodges among others include Mahogany springs, Bwindi lodge, Buhoma lodge, Chameleon hill lodge, Bakiga lodge, Nkuringo lodge, Clouds gorilla lodge, Gorilla Mist Camp and Gorilla Safari Lodge in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. For the case of Mgahinga, there is travelers rest camp in kisoro and Amajambere Iwacu Community Camp at the entrance of the national park.

Conclusively therefore, trekking mountain gorillas in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park is an extra ordinary experience that no traveler should miss out.

Posted by admin in News, safaris, Uganda
New Travel Experiences In Kisoro

New Travel Experiences In Kisoro

New Travel Experiences In Kisoro
Kisoro district is indubitably full of wonders, those who have been there before have experienced how charming it feels to stay in kisoro. The region is one of the beautiful places in Uganda blessed with a variety of intriguing features which include the majestic mountain gorillas, Virunga volcanoes, crater lakes (bunyonyi & Mutanda), unique cultures and beautiful flora and fauna which together make your Uganda safari to kisoro an experience for lifetime. The beautiful rolling hills of kigezi region after which Uganda was dubbed the pearl of Africa make it more amazing. The outstanding views of the eight Virunga volcanoes shared by Uganda, Rwanda and democratic republic of Congo make it more amazing. Much as gorilla safaris, golden monkeys, volcano climbing and batwa cultural trail have been a focus for most of the past travelers to Mgahinga, New travel experiences have been introduced to diversify tourism in the region. The new tourism products in kisoro have been introduced b the Mgahinga cultural and crafts center with the support of Uganda tourism board and the government. These new activities will complement the already existing tourism products making your Uganda gorilla safaris to southwestern Uganda a lifetime experience. Among the newly introduced tourism products in kisoro district include:

Mountain biking
Mountain biking is the best way you can explore the entire gem in kisoro region. Great thanks go to ultimate cycling Uganda, which has mapped three biking trails to help travelers visit different sites in kisoro district and the neighboring communities. Each of these trails takes a different routes and directions through local centers, gardens and homes covering different distances. Also, the starting points vary depending on the location of a traveler. The Mgahinga trail stretches 60 kilometers starting from the Mgahinga cultural and crafts Centre. Travelers ride through the gate of Mgahinga gorilla national park as they proceed to Rwanda DR Congo border. On their way back, travelers ride through kisoro town ending their ride at the Mgahinga cultural center.

For those in kabale, the 80-kilometer ichuya trail start from lake bunyonyi via regions of kacyekano, Muko and Ichuya ending at the Churchill point. This trail helps travelers to explore much of Kabale region and all its beauties. Bwindi trail is the longest trail of all the three. The trail start from kabale town through Bwindi forest, Mutanda region ending at Mgahinga gorilla national park. Mountain biking is an opportunity for travelers to encounter local people in their farms, homes as well as exploring other attractions in the region.

Caving
Ngarama cave has been the only visited cave in Mgahinga hence a need for more caving products for travelers. To make it more enjoyable, Mgahinga cultural and Crafts center has packaged two more caves in Mgahinga park to reward travelers with extensive and exceptional caving experience. The newly discovered caves are Sooko cave at the bottom of Mount Mgahinga and Ruhengo cave at the foothill of Mt Sabinyo. Local guides have been trained on how to do it best and have also given the all the necessary requirements such as torches, gumboots and hand gloves to ease caving and ensure memorable experiences. Local guides disclose the secrets about each cave the great role they played in sheltering local people who would seek refugee especially in times of tribal wars. The caves are believed t have existed for thousands of years.

Caldera expeditions
Kisoro region was in the past years affected by volcanic eruptions, which led to the formation of calderas. Among the caldera features in kisoro include volcanic mountains with crater lakes at the top. A hike to any caldera is a memorable experience, which help you appreciate what nature can do. Also, a walk to the summit is an opportunity for travelers to meet new people making your experience more enjoyable.

Churchill point
Do not miss a hike to the Churchill point on top of Kanaaba Mountain in Echuya forest in kisoro. It’s on this hill that Churchill appreciated the beautiful sceneries of Uganda realizing that the country is indeed the pearl of Africa. Churchill point reward travelers with clear views of kigezi rolling hills which stretch to infinity, the green vegetation, natural forest of Bwindi, Virunga volcanoes, the Echuya forest stretching from lake Bunyonyi and all other natural beauties that make south western Uganda indeed the Switzerland of Africa.

Conclusively, kisoro district offers it all you need to meet and exceed your travel needs on a Uganda safari. Enjoy memorable gorilla treks, golden monkey tours, volcano climbing, mountain biking, caving, caldera expeditions and Churchill point rewarding you with memorable experiences in the pearl of Africa.

Posted by admin in Blog, News, safaris, Uganda
Uganda to Celebrate the Debut Gorilla Festival

Uganda to Celebrate the Debut Gorilla Festival

Uganda to Celebrate the Debut Gorilla Festival
For the very first time, Uganda is ready to celebrate a gorilla festival set for 6-8 October in Mgahinga Gorilla national park at the foothill of the Virunga mountain range in kisoro district. The festival is aimed at promoting Uganda gorilla tour packages and disclose the newly produced tourism products in Uganda to the outside world. Mountain gorillas are a key attraction in the festival and some gorilla babies will be named just as the kwita izina ceremony in Rwanda. This is the first time Uganda is openly naming gorillas. Also, the mountain gorilla festival is Uganda’s opportunity to understand and celebrate the value of conserving the critically endangered mountain gorillas. Also, the festival’s main target is to emphasize the risks of the critically endangered mountain gorillas in the Virunga massif shared by Rwanda, Uganda and Democratic republic of Congo. Mgahinga cultural and craft center in cooperation with the Uganda tourism board and Uganda Wildlife Authority are the organizers of this amazing festival. Over 200 people including travelers, conservationists, local people, and other players in the tourism sector are expected to grace this festival.

Rwanda has for the last decades been the only country celebrating the birth of iconic mountain gorillas. This year, Rwanda will celebrate the naming of 18 baby gorillas at the head quarters of Volcanoes National Park a home to the majestic creatures. It’s very crucial for Uganda to celebrate the gorilla festival being a home to over 50% of the world’s surviving mountain gorillas.

Other activities that will take place
The gorilla festival is not only about mountain gorillas but rather a variety of other activities. The attendees will have an opportunity to enjoy and celebrate other activities, which have been introduced in Mgahinga gorilla national park and kisoro district as a whole. The extra activities include among others:

Cycling/Biking
Cycling is one of the new tourism products that have introduced in the Virunga region. Here travelers ride on bicycles through local gardens, plantation and homes. This help travelers to explore local villages and activities which bring in close contact with local people which increase their understanding of local traditions, customs and cultures. Cycling is organized by the ultimate cycling Uganda together with the Uganda cycling federation to reward travelers with extra experiences which make a stay in Mgahinga indeed a life changing experience. At the end of the ride, every participant will plant a tree for the wellbeing of mountain gorillas and local people. Bamboo trees serve as food and habitat for gorillas while local people use them for construction poles, charcoal, firewood and herbs for medicine. Cycling is the most environmental friendly transport, which help in conserving the natural environment leading to sustainable conservation. Tree planting will also help to solve local people’s conflicts with park managers encouraging local support for tourism in the park.

Caving
A safari to Mgahinga gorilla national park without caving is surely incomplete. Ngarama cave is the focus for most caving trips in Mgahinga guided the Batwa during their famous Batwa cultural trail. The cave was initially the place of worship foe batwa pygmies to perform their rituals and offer sacrifices to their gods for prayer and thanks giving. Fortunately, two more caves assessed to be thousands of years old have been discovered in the park but are not yet open to tourism. Local guides have been trained and equipped with all necessary tools to ensure memorable caving experience.

Virunga Volcano Climbing

A hike to the summit of any volcano is an experience you should not miss out. The volcanoes in Mgahinga gorilla national park are Mt Gahinga, Mt Muhabura and Mt sabyinyo. Interestingly, each Volcano is unique on its way hosting an awe-inspiring feature at the summit. Mount Muhabura has a crater lake with crystal clear water; Mgahinga has a crater swamp while Mt sabyinyo summit is shared by Uganda, Rwanda and Congo. This helps travelers to be in three at the same time. Home stays and caldera expeditions are other tourism products that have been introduced in kisoro district.

How much is charged to attend the gorilla festival
Just like other festivals, the Uganda gorilla festival comes with a cost. Each participant will pay ush200, 000 (55$) to allow him/her be part of this three days festival. The fee is an inclusion of meals, tour activities and transport for those traveling from Kampala to kisoro. Those who will sleep over in tents, lodges or hotels will pay extra money for accommodation

In general, Uganda the pearl of Africa is an exceptional destination with diverse tourism activities and attractions. The cou8ntry has 10 national parks, mountains, rivers valleys, forests, and hospitable people, which make Uganda a place to stay.

Posted by admin in Blog, News, Uganda
Rushaga Sector of Bwindi Forest National Park

Rushaga Sector of Bwindi Forest National Park

Rushaga Sector of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park
Rushaga is one of the four sectors that make up Bwindi Impenetrable forest national park a home to the highest number of mountain gorillas in the world. Rushaga is an exceptional region situated in the southern part of Bwindi. The high cost of gorilla tours in Rwanda have presently made Rushaga a popular sector to see and interact with these critically endangered species. Rushaga is mostly visited by travelers connecting from Kigali through Cyanika border in Kisoro district. A gorilla trek to Rushaga sector is an special experience which come along with other experiences like clear views of the Virunga volcanoes especially the Virunga, Gahinga and Muhabura in Mgahinga gorilla national park and lake Bunyonyi which is the deepest crater lake in Uganda, and the second deepest in Africa. Among the reasons why you should visit Rushaga sector of Bwindi include among others:

High number of gorilla families and availability of gorilla permits

Rushaga is well known for sheltering a high number of habituated mountain gorilla families available for trekking. The sector is a home to five gorilla groups which guarantee travelers a chance to access permits unlike other sectors. These families include Nshongi, Kahungye, Busingye, Mishaya and Bweza gorilla group. These gorilla families vary in size but an interaction with any of the five is a memorable experience. Just like in all gorilla destinations, ach gorilla family in Rushaga is led by a silverback, which determines the movements and daily activities within the family. Everyday there are 40 gorilla permits available to issue out in Rushaga which guarantee access to permits even those who book at the last hour. The availability of many gorilla families give travelers an opportunity to choose which gorilla family he/she wants to trek.

Gorilla habituation

Besides gorilla trekking, Rushaga reward travelers with memorable mountain gorilla habituation experience. Its only in this sector that wild mountain gorillas are trained to make them familiar with human presence before they are declared free for trekking. Presently two gorilla families namely Bushaho and Bikyingi are undergoing habituation experience. In habituation, each gorilla family is visited by a group of four travelers for four hours interaction. Unlike in gorilla trekking where eight people are allowed to interact with a gorilla family, only a group of four people are allowed to interact with a family undergoing habituation. Travelers are expected to have a valid habituation permit which cost 1500usd for four hours interaction. A habituation permit which cost 1500usd is a must have by all travelers.

Ease of access from Kigali
For those connecting from Kigali, Rushaga is the first stop point. The sector is roughly 3 hours drive from Kigali through Cyanika border. Also, Rushaga sector can be easily accessed by air. Here travelers can use a charter flight to kisoro airstrip from where you connect to Rushaga.

Availability of lodges

Rushaga sector is well served with a variety of luxury, midrange and budget lodges, which serve travelers with excellent food and sleeping services. The available lodges in Rushaga sector include gorilla safari lodge, chameleon hill, Ichumbi lodge, Mutanda lake resort, Bwindi jungle lodge and gorilla valley lodge among others. These lodges hire professional, knowledgeable staff who not only offer excellent services but basic knowledge about gorilla tourism in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. Also these lodges organize other activities such as community visits and forest walks, which make your safari to Bwindi a complete package.

Other sectors in Bwindi
Buhoma sector situated in the northern part of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. Gorilla families in Buhoma are Mubare family, Habinyanja family, and Rushegura family. Buhoma has a unique history being the first sector to be visited by first travelers. Mubare is the first gorilla family to be habituated in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park.

Ruhija sector is located in the eastern part of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. Gorilla families in Ruhija sector are Oruzogo family, Bitukura family, and kyaguliro family.

Nkuringo sector is also located east of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. Travelers to this sector get a chance to trek Nkuringo gorilla family, which reward them with a lifetime experience.

On the actual of trekking, all travelers to Rushaga are advised to gather at Bwindi impenetrable forest national park head quarters in Rushaga at 7:00am for a briefing. In general, Rushaga is an exceptional gorilla region you should not miss out on your gorilla tour to Bwindi impenetrable forest national park.

Book a gorilla safari to Bwindi, meet face to face with the critically endangered species in their natural habitat and enjoy this once in a lifetime experience.

Posted by admin in News, Uganda
what is killing Uganda’s Tourism Potential

what is killing Uganda’s Tourism Potential

What is Killing Uganda’s tourism potential
Located in East Africa, Uganda the pearl of Africa is blessed with diverse natural and ,manmade resources which include mountains, forests, different vegetation types, cultural and historical sites diverse cultures and sub cultural groups, it is also a home for half of the rare endangered mountain gorillas located in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park and Mgahiga national park south western Uganda and many other animal such as elephants, lions, buffalos, rhinos, monkeys, baboons and different bird species for the birders, the pearl Africa borders Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Democratic Republic of Congo and south Sudan .

However, despite of the interesting tourism features in Uganda, the country has not realized its targeted proceeds from tourism for the several years past compared to its neighboring countries such as Kenya, Tanzania and recently Rwanda whom they share borders . The total tourism receipts for example in 2014 fell from shs56b to shs42.6b which is 24% of the total revenues collected, this was according to the Uganda wild life authority’s latest auditors general report 2013/2014. The limited benefits from tourism in Uganda are attributed to the following:
According to Jossy Muhangi, the public relations manager at the Uganda wild life authority, negative publicity of the country in the outside world countries (tourist origins) is the main cause for low growth of tourism in Uganda. Uganda is still known for insecurity because of the lord’s resistance army rebels mostly in the northern parts of Uganda which threatens most tourists and hinders them from touring to Uganda despite of its unique and interesting tourism features. Also, the fragile security situation in the Horn of Africa, especially in Somalia where al-Shabaab militants have created an undesirable environment hinder travelers to Africa and partly to Uganda killing tourism in the country.

More still, the outbreak of the epidemics especially Ebola in West Africa also limited tourism in Uganda, tourists were so much scared for their lives and safety from this dangerous epidemics that was spreading at a higher speed leading to the death of many people in the shortest time including tourists. Up to present, most travelers still know that Ebola still exists and cannot travel to Uganda hence killing tourism in the country.
In addition, the anti homosexuality law that was passed by the parliament of Uganda in 2013 had a great impact on the growth of tourism in the country, it is believed that most travelers to Uganda come from countries were homosexuality is a right for people and even some of the them participate in the game. This anti homosexuality law that was passed and signed restricted most travelers from visiting Uganda hence killing tourism in Uganda.

Also, the political rivals in Uganda led by the opposition parties has made Uganda especially in Kampala the capital and the main hub in the country un conducive for then travelers, the most opposing party is the forum for democratic party (FDC) and such rivals and fights with the police of Uganda discourages travelers to the country hence killing tourism in Uganda.
Conclusively, According to the Uganda tourism board spokesperson Vincent Mugaba, the lack of a clear cut strategy for promoting tourism both at home and abroad coupled with the unscrupulous expenditures on the unrewarding public relations promotions by the Uganda tourism board is the main cause. He also argued that Uganda is not the only country facing declining tourist numbers but also the immediate neighbors, like Kenya who actually spend a lot on marketing their countries. However, Uganda as a tourism destination is trying to tap every opportunity possible to market tourism so as to promote tourism in the country and cover up for the decline in the past.

Posted by admin in News, Uganda
Buhoma Sector of Bwindi Forest NP

Buhoma Sector of Bwindi Forest NP

Why trek mountain gorillas in Buhoma sector?
If it were possible, Buhoma sector would undeniably be a first stop for all travelers to Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. Situated in the northern part of Bwindi in kanungu district, Buhoma sector is an exceptional region of the park. its not surprising that most if not travelers booking gorilla tours in Bwindi first ask whether there is availability in Buhoma. This w has left many people stunned on what makes the sector unique compared to the others sectors namely Rushaga in the south, Ruhija in the east and Nkuringo in the south which are normally asked as the next alternative. Travelers always resort to other sectors after failing to get availability in Buhoma. Also. Gorilla permits in Buhoma are always fully booked by early travelers since gorilla permits are issued on first come first serve basis. Buhoma sector has an interesting history being the first region to be visited by the first group of travelers to Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. Also, Buhoma is a home to Bwindi’s oldest gorilla family named Mubare which was habituated in 1992. Buhoma has always been outstanding compared to other regions hence a desire for all travelers. Some of the reason why you should trek mountain gorillas in Buhoma include among others:

Ease of access
Regarding access, Buhoma is the easily accessible region in Bwindi forest national park. The sector is roughly 2 hours drive from kabale town via kanungu and 4 hours from ishasha sector south of Queen Elizabeth national park. The ease of access is an added advantage for travelers enabling them to take part in some activities such as the game drives in ishasha, forest walks and community visits in Buhoma unlike other sectors in the far corners of the national park. Those driving direct from Kampala can reach Buhoma by taking Kampala- Masaka-Mbarara-Ntungamo-Rukungiri- Buhoma route. Alternatively, travelers can fly direct to kihihi airstrip and then drive a few kilometers to the park

Gorilla families
Buhoma sector is a home to three gorilla families habituated for trekking. These families also known as groups are Mubare, Habinyajna and Rushegura family. Interestingly, each of these families has a different story. Mubare was the first group habituated in 1992 and hence the oldest family in the park having 9 members. Habinyanja was habituated in 1997 comprised of 17 members and lastly Rushegura family, which was opened for tourism in 2000 having 19 members. Altogether, buhoma. Each day, 24 gorilla permits are available and issued out in Buhoma where of the three gorilla families is visited by 8 people everyday.

Alternative activities
Besides gorilla trekking, Buhoma offers a variety of activities and attractions for travelers. These include a community walk to the adjacent communities of batwa pygmies and Bakiga communities. The batwa demonstrate their forest life to the before they were evicted to the edge of the forest. Also, travelers are allowed to take part in local communities such as digging, preparing local food, baby-sitting, brewing local beers, and collecting fruits among others. also, travelers can do forest walks to different points of the park. Birding watching is also a must do in Buhoma if the safari is to be complete.

A variety of accommodation facilities
If you want to sleep comfortably and eat delicious food, look not further than Buhoma sector. The sector has a variety of luxury, midrange and budget lodges which all serve high quality services. The cost of services vary from lodge to lodge depending on the quality of service but all lodges offer excellent services delivered by professional and experienced staff. Lodges in Buhoma include mahogany springs lodge, Buhoma lodge, Bwindi forest lodge, Bwindi guesthouse, Bwindi view bandas, gorilla forest camp and Bwindi volcano lodge among others. All these lodges have connecting short cuts to the gorilla trekking starting point, which make it easier for travelers to catch up with the pre trekking briefing at the national park head quarters in Buhoma.

In general, a gorilla safari to Buhoma sector is a lifetime experience in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. The ease of access, comfortable lodges and camps and all other activities make Buhoma a best place to trek gorillas in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park.

Posted by admin in Blog, News, Uganda
Gorilla tours in Bwindi Forest National park

Gorilla tours in Bwindi Forest National park

Tourism In Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park
Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is sited in the South Western part of Uganda along the border with Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) next to Virunga National Park in DRC. The park covers a total land area of 331 square kilometers (128 sq comprised of both montane lowland forests and can only be accessed by foot due to the thick forests and the rugged nature of its terrain. Bwindi is also very rich in fauna with over 120 mammal species, of which 10 are primates and more than 45 small mammal. Mountain gorillas are the popular primate species and over 480 gorillas live in this tropical rain forest. The national park is therefore the best place to go for gorilla tours rewarding travelers to spend time with these amazing species. Besides gorillas, Bwindi is a home to some chimpanzees, L’Hoest’s Monkey, African elephant, African green broadbill and Cream-banded swallowtail, black and white colobus, red-tailed monkeys, vervet, the giant forest hog and small antelopes. Carnivores like side-striped jackal, African golden cat and African civet can also be found in the park. There are also over 350 bird species and more than 200 butterfly species. Various fish species can also be found in the Park’s Rivers and streams.

The park lies at the edge of the up-warped Western Rift Valley in Kigezi Highlands with a very rugged topography accompanied by narrow valleys with a complex network of Rivers along its steep hills. The altitude in the Park Range from 1,190 to 2,607 meters (3,904 to 8,553 ft) above sea level. it is also important to note that over 60% of the park has an elevation of above 2,000 meters (6,600 ft). The national park experiences tropical climate characterized with an annual mean temperature range of 7 to 27 degrees celicious and annual rainfall ranges from 1,400 to 1,900 millimeters. The peak rainfall is received in March to April and September to November.

Bwindi impenetrable forest national park was garzetted in 1991 together with the sister Mgahinga gorilla national park purposely to conserve mountain gorillas and promote gorilla tourism. Uganda Wildlife Authority, a government body in charge of wildlife conservation and Tourism in Uganda, manages all tourism and conservation activities in these parks. The nearest local town to the park is Kabale in the South East, which is 29 kilometers (18 mi) away from the park by road.
Also, Bwindi is a water catchment area with a dense network of water streams from heavy rainfall in the park and because of this, many Rivers have resulted from these streams. The major ones include; Ivi, Munyaga, Ihihizo, Ishasha and Ntengyere Rivers which flow into Lake Edward. Other Rivers from the park flow into Lakes Mutanda and Bunyonyi. Therefore besides tourism, Bwindi is a source of domestic and agricultural water for the local communities adjacent to the park.

In terms of biodiversity, the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is biologically rich. The park has the richest population of trees in East Africa in its Afromontane forests, which is a rare vegetation type in Africa. Over 220 tree species can be found in the park, which makes more than 50% of all Uganda’s tree species. Among these, there is rare white Mahogany threatened plant specie found within the park. The vegetation provides food and habitation to mountain gorillas together with other animals and bird species in the forest.

Gorilla Tours in Bwindi
Gorilla trekking is the main tourist attraction for most if not all travelers to Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. The park shelters over 400 mountain gorillas, which have been habituated into 12 gorilla groups available for trekking. Surprisingly, this number makes up almost half of all the mountain gorillas in the world which shows you how the park is hugely blessed with this kind gorillas and hence the best destination for gorilla safaris in the whole world. The rest population of gorillas in the nearby Virunga Mountains of Rwanda’s volcanoes national park and the Democratic Republic of Congo in Virunga national park. Most of Uganda’s gorilla tours are made to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park because of the presence of these numerous mountain gorillas in the park. Away from gorilla trekking, Chimpanzee tracking is also another good tourist attraction at the park. The chimps can also be seen in the nearby neighborhood to those of the gorillas. They also offer an incredible experience to tourists with their human like behaviors.
Monkey watching and bird watching also offer an extra enjoyable experience to tourists after exploring the gorillas and chimps. The park has rare monkey species like the golden monkeys and the red tailed monkeys that are always entertaining tourists with their canning plays and fights. A variety of bird species ranging from small to big can also be watched at the park, which is also a breathtaking moment.

Gorilla permits in Bwindi
All travelers to see gorillas in Bwindi must have valid gorilla permits as a pass to see these gentle giants in their natural habitat. A single gorilla permit in Bwindi costs 600usd and it allows travelers to spend an hour with mountain gorillas. Fortunately, foreign residents pay 500usd while east African residents pay 250000shs which is an added advantage. However, gorilla trekking costs of accommodation and transport to the park are not included in the above gorilla permits. Booking gorilla-tracking permits in advance is very essential as they always have a limited availability. Gorilla trackers are advised to book for permits at least 3 months in advance.

Getting to the park
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National park can be accessed by both road and air transport means. By road, Bwindi can be reached via Kampala-Kabale-Kanungu-Buhoma route, which takes 5-6 hours. Another route is that of Kampala-Ntungamo-Rukungiri-Kihihi-Buhoma. This is the easiest and most convenient route and has about 390km in addition to the marram road to Buhoma. By air, travelers can either decide to fly from the main Entebbe airport or from Kajjansi airfield. These flights will lead to one of the three airstrips around the park, which include the tarmac airstrip at Kisoro, Kayonza and Kihihi airstrips.

What to Pack for a gorilla tour in Bwindi
To ensure a successful and enjoyable gorilla safari to Bwindi impenetrable forest national park, a ravel must have a fully equipped packing list. Among your list of items you should carry include hiking boots for easy movements, garden gloves to protect your hands during your gorilla tracking adventure, a rain jacket to deal with unpredicted forest rains and sun glasses/hut to protect from direct sunshine. You will also need a long sleeved shirt or blouse together with a pair of jean trousers, which protect from insects like the safari ants that may disturb your gorilla trekking experience. Energy giving snacks and enough drinking water are also recommended to boost you during the exhausting gorilla trekking journey. A pair of binoculars will also help you to view some of the distant species like birds, monkeys, chimps and other primates. Finally you may need to pay a porter to give you a push or a pull during your gorilla trekking as the gorillas may be far.

Accommodation/Where to Stay in Bwindi
A variety of luxury, midrange and budget lodges have been established in tBwindi impenetrable forest national park to service travelers with excellent food and sleeping services. These lodges include Lake Kitanda Bwindi Camp, Volcanoes Bwindi Camp,the Gorilla Resort-Bwindi,Lodges in Bwindi
Mantana Luxury Tented Camp, Gorilla safari lodge, Bakiga lodge, Gorilla mist camp, Mahogany springs lodge, Chameleone hill lodge. All these lodges have experienced staff to welcome and serve travelers any time. The prices charged vary depending on the standard of the lodge (luxury, midrange &luxury) but travelers are assured of quality services.

When to Visit Bwindi Forest National Park
The park is open for wildlife viewing and gorilla safaris throughout the year. However, the best time for a traveler is from June to August and December to February because these are drier months and therefore forest trails are not impassable and slippery.

Gorilla Trekking Rules and Regulations
At the start of every trekking day, all travelers assemble at the park head quarters for a briefing about trekking rules and regulations. These are to ensure safety of the endangered gorillas and the travelers. The trekking rules and regulations include among others:
Washing hands before you go for Gorilla trekking.

Keep your voices low, by keeping your voices low this enables one to look out for different mammals in the forest, remember it’s a forest which protects and inhabits a number of birds, mammal by lowering your voices you will have a chance to see more of the inhabitants of the forest.

Do not live the Rubbish behind during your trek, the animals might eat the Rubbish and die; always keep all the Rubbish in bags and go back with them.

Always stand 7meters away from the Gorillas; the more you stand back the more relaxed they become to continue with their day to day life, observe them closely as they eat, play, groom each other, display their nests such a beautiful encounter.

Always keep your voices low, however questions are allowed to be asked in case you need to know more.

Stay in tight groups of eight do not move around the Gorillas may take charge, do not look direct in their eyes and do not run away this may increase the risk.

Do not to touch the Gorillas these are ‘wild animals’.

Do not eat, smoke, drink this may live the droppings causing the Gorillas to eat and might lead to transmission of diseases.

Flash Cameras with lights are not allowed during the trek.

The maximum time to spend with the mountain Gorillas is 1 hour. After all that time spent with the mountain Gorillas move 200 meters away and start talking, but in a low voice.
Conclusively therefore, Bwindi impenetrable forest national park is a place to visit. Book a Uganda safari to Bwindi, enjoy gorilla trekking and other tourism activities in the park.

Posted by admin in Blog, News, Uganda
Chimpanzee Trekking In Uganda – Primate Trekking

Chimpanzee Trekking In Uganda – Primate Trekking

Chimpanzee Trekking In Uganda
An encounter with chimpanzees in the jungle is undeniably an exceptional experience you must not miss on your Uganda safari. With over 1500 chimpanzees residing in Uganda, the pearl of Africa is the best destination to see and interact with these endangered species. Chimpanzees share 99.8% of human DNA hence the closer relatives to human beings and their human like characters in their social life and responsibilities make them distinct from other primates. Chimpanzee trekking is the second most done activity in Uganda after gorilla safaris in the rain forest of Bwindi impenetrable forest and Mgahinga gorilla national park in southwestern Uganda. Just like in gorilla trekking, travelers to see chimpanzees are obliged to follow trekking rules and regulations which among others include keeping a distance of seven meters, speaking at a low tone, and not littering any trash in the chimpanzee habitat. For those interested in chimpanzee trekking, Uganda has various chimpanzee destinations, which among others include:

Kibale forest national park
Shared by kabarole and kamwengye district, kibale forest is a home to the highest population of chimpanzees in Uganda. The tropical rain forest is a home to 13 primates hence the best place e to see and interact with these primates among which are the endangered species. Three chimpanzee communities have been habituated for trekking in kibale and all trekking starts at kanyanchu information center after a briefing. Besides chimpanzees, kibale forest national park is a shelter to Vervet monkeys, Cush babies, Colubus monkeys, Blue monkeys, olive baboons, grey cheeked Mangabey, red tailed monkeys, Pottos, black and white colobuses and L’Hoest monkeys among others. Additionally, kibale offers the exceptional chimpanzee habituation experience, which allow travelers to spend extended time with their close relatives. All travelers must have a valid permit, which costs 150usd for foreign non-residents, 100usd for foreign residents and 100,000ush. On the other hand, a habituation permit is quite expensive costing 200usd for foreign residents, 200usd for foreign residents and 150,000ush for east African residents. Both trekking and habituation are life changing and worth doing.

Kyambura gorge
Also known as the “valley of apes” kyambura gorge is in the eastern section of Queen Elizabeth national park. kyambura gorge is roughly 100 meters deep and home to the great chimpanzees. Interestingly, chimpanzee trekking in kyambura gorge is quite easy and takers limited time to meet these apes unlike in kibale forest national park. Trekking chimpanzees in kyambura also require a permit, which costs 50usd for foreign non-residents, 50usd for foreign residents and 30,000ush for east African residents. Other activities in kyambura gorge include nature walks and bird watching which all make a safari to the gorge an experience for lifetime.

Budongo forest
Budongo forest is a yet a best place for chimpanzees trekking situated in Murchison falls national park. For those who have trekked chimpanzees before, Buongo is ranked the second after Kibale forest in offering memorable chimpanzee trekking experiences. A visit to Budongo forest for chimpanzees is a not miss on your safari to Murchison falls national park and is surely worth doing. A permit of a chimpanzee permit costs 80usd in high season and 75usd in the low season while east African residents pay 40usd. Budongo forest is Uganda’s biggest mahogany forest, which comprise of 465 tree species and is a home to over 24 mammals, 290 butterflies and 140 species of moths. Kaniyo pabidi and Busingiro ecotourism sites are also interesting to visit on your visit o Budongo Forest. Besides chimpanzee trekking, Budongo forest is good for bird watching and nature walks, which make it a best place to visit.

Kalinzu forest
Kalinzu forest is yet another place to see the famous chimpanzees and is visited along with Queen Elizabeth national park. Kalinzu forest compromise of over 414 tree species hosting over 378 bird species among which include black casket, great blue Turaco, sunbirds, and white caskets among others. Also, kalinzu is a home to blue monkeys, black and white colubuses and vervet monkeys among others. You should also expect to see over 250 butterflies, 100 moths and various reptiles and flowers all at your disposal. Chimpanzee trekking in kalinzu is done at a cost of 40usd hence the best option for budget travelers.
Other places to see chimpanzees in Uganda include Kagombe, Itwara, Kasyoha-Kitoma, Otzi, Muhangi and Wambabya all offering you a close encounter with these amazing apes.

How to access the permits
Chimpanzee trekking permits can be booked direct from Uganda wildlife authority (UWA) a responsible government body for tourism and wildlife conservation in Uganda. Alternatively, a traveler can book a permit through any trusted tour operator who offers chimpanzee trekking safaris to kibale forest, Budongo, kyambura and other chimpanzee destinations.

How to dress
Just like mountain gorillas, chimpanzees live in rain forest, which become muddy and slippery especially in rainy seasons. Travelers are therefore reminded to dress in hiking boots for easy movements, hand gloves to grab on forest branches, long sleeved shirts and pants to protect from thorny bushes, hats and sun glasses to deal with direct sun and rain jackets for the unpredictable weather conditions.
In conclusion, chimpanzee trekking is the best wildlife experience you should not miss on your safari to Uganda. Book now and visit any one of chimpanzee destinations and meet face to face with the close relatives to human beings.

Posted by admin in Blog, News, Uganda
World Investors to Boost Conservation Tourism in Uganda

World Investors to Boost Conservation Tourism in Uganda

With a major aim of boosting tourism and wildlife conservation in the country, Uganda for the time hosted the conservation and tourism investment forum on 6th October 2017. The forum was a platform for top government officials, responsible tourism bodies, private investors and all senior business figures from all parts of the world to gather and discuss how best Uganda can be marketed nationally and internationally as well as to attract more private investors and travelers from parts of the world to visit Uganda. It was realized that despite Uganda’s beautiful nature, rift valleys, lakes, rivers, mountains, hospitable people, birds and mostly half of the world’s endangered mountain gorillas, the country still receive few travelers as it was expected. Uganda’s government and responsible bodies have therefore realized a need for extensive marketing and private investment so as to boost conservation tourism hence attracting a large number of tourist arrivals into the country. The need to boost tourism and promote wildlife conservation in Uganda was the main reason for the launching of conservation and tourism investment forum by the government and responsible tourism bodies.

While in the meeting, the government of Uganda disclosed tourism to private investment calling upon all private investors and other conservation organizations to support tourism as well as marketing the country o the outside world. The conducive climate and strategic location of Uganda in the heart of East Africa make it a best country to stay.

New marketing strategies were raised especially encouragement of private sector investment as an additional source of capital to complement the traditional sources of conservation capital. It was also an opportunity for the government to market its beauty and all the treasures to lure and attract more investors and tourists to come and explore what Uganda offers ranging from mountain gorillas and much more. Private investors were also called upon to take part in management of protected areas in conjunction with the government and other responsible bodies.

The Uganda Tourism Board enlightened private investors about the importance of natural resource conservation in boosting tourism sector in ten country calling upon all private investors and Non Governmental organization to take part in management of natural resources hence tourism development. Some private investors such as Max Graham the founder of elephant conservation group space for giants welcomed the idea appreciating that Uganda has it all to offer but only lacks extensive marketing and investment. The private investor also confessed that all other private investors have been waiting for government’s invitation for a joint management and marketing of Uganda’s tourism resources.

Private investors were also concerned about Uganda’s political security as well as security of wildlife in respective national parks for the smooth running of tourism activities in all parts of Uganda. In response, the president of Uganda “His excellence Yoweri Kaguta Museveni” assured travelers of a tight security system and a strong army, which has been and will continue to ensure peace in the country ensuring of all investments. Also, the anti poaching measures that were put by the Uganda wildlife authority have increased a population of elephant’s population.

Also, there should be good and easy connectivity to uganda national parks and other tourism spots a cross the country. This therefore calls for extensive investment in maintaining roads connecting to Murchison falls national park and Kibale forest reserve among others. New roads to kidepo valley national park and Bwindi impenetrable forest national park are under construction assuring investors and traveler’s easy connectivity to all national parks and other tourism spots in all parts of the country.

With the participation of private investors and government authority, Uganda tourism is hoped to boost. The Uganda tourism bard a body responsible for marketing and new product development is assured of great turn up in terms of tourist arrivals into the country. Uganda hopes to receive over million travelers by 2020 based on the 1.3 million travelers that were received in 2016.

Conclusively therefore, all private investors and non-governmental organization are called upon to support tourism conservation in Uganda hence boosting tourism sector.

Posted by admin in Blog, News, Uganda
Batwa Community Trails in Bwindi Forest National Park

Batwa Community Trails in Bwindi Forest National Park

Much as Bwindi is widely known for gorilla trekking, a visit to the batwa community is surely a not miss on your gorilla safari to Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. Batwa community trails are usually done after or before gorilla tour but the experience is worth doing. These Batwa trails lead you to the batwa communities and into their homes bringing you close to these ancient people who for thousands of years co-existed with wild animals in the forests of Bwindi impenetrable forest and Mgahinga gorilla national park before the introduction of gorilla tourism and conservation. Though done for a short time, the batwa trails in Bwindi are related to the batwa cultural trail in Mgahinga gorilla national park in which travelers spend the whole day experiencing the batwa’s traditional forest life.

With the introduction of gorilla tourism in in Bwindi, the Batwa were evicted to the forest edges. The batwa community walks in Bwindi take you to batwa local communities where you learn more about their forest life. It’s not just a conventional nature walk but an in-depth interaction which increase an understanding of who the batwa are. You may meet some small groups of batwa during gorilla trekking but a walk out to their homes is an amazing experience.

Who are the batwa?
Batwa pygmies are also known as the “forest keepers” who lived harmoniously with wild animals in the jungle for thousands of years. These people would make small huts made of leaves and tree branches where they would stay comfortably. Batwa pygmies did not do farming but lived a happy life in the forest. However despite their long living and free access to all forest resources, these indigenous people had no legal ownership of the forestland a reason why they were evicted with no compensation. Today, Batwa live in small communities and they welcome travelers in their homes sharing them with detailed information regarding their traditional forest life. Batwa are believed to have loved the forest like their lives and they knew well that God had blessed them with the forest as their own.

These people depended fully on the forest for a livelihood and they would freely roam all over the forest for honey, wild yams, fruits, firewood as well as hunting down small animals on which they survived. Batwa trails in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park are different from the Batwa trail in Mgahinga gorilla national park but both experiences reward you with a memorable experience.

What to expect
Bwindi forest national park
As you travel to batwa communities, expect to meet very short indigenous people from whose eyes you witness true love for the forest especially when they are narrating their eviction from the forest. On reaching their homes, travelers are allowed to take part in traditional activities such as how to make bush fire, preparing local food and traditional dances. All this is done out side the forest unlike in Mgahinga where demonstrate their traditional forest life inside the forest.

Why visit the batwa communities
Bwindi forest national park
Batwa pygmies have an interesting history of how they harmoniously lived together with wild animals in the forest. In trying to adapt to a normal life after their eviction from the forest, batwa have now started different coffee shops where travelers can enjoy coffee as they listen to stories, others make craft products such as baskets, hand bags, hats, bead and mats among others. Travelers are encouraged to buy these products as an indirect support to these less developed people. More still, an interaction with the batwa is a great opportunity to understand in depth their ancient forest life and their co-existence with wild animals.

In conclusion therefore, be part of batwa community trails in Bwindi, meet the indigenous forest people and enjoy a memorable time.

Posted by admin in Blog, Culture, News, Uganda
How is Uganda a Premier Tourism Destination

How is Uganda a Premier Tourism Destination

Gifted by nature, Uganda the pearl of Africa is undeniably a premier tourism destination you must not miss out on your uganda safaris.Blessed from the conducive climate, the rolling hills, hospitable people, a variety of wildlife and bird life in all parts of the country, Uganda offers it all to fulfill and exceed every travelers expectations on a safari. Right from Entebbe international airport, you feel a change. The fresh air and sea breezes from lake victoria along with the beautiful sceneries in the surrounding areas make you feel at home. Whichever part of the country you travel to, something new and unique awaits. All travelers who have ever been on a Uganda safari testify how Uganda is a distinct tourism destination. Looking at tourism and conservation, it has been a success evidenced by an increase in tourist arrivals from 700 in 1986 to 1.3 million travelers in 2016. Besides, progress in Uganda’s tourism is attributed to infrastructural developments, tight security and strong laws that have been put against poaching. The popular reasons why Uganda is a premier tourism destination include among others:

The conducive climate
It’s neither hot nor cold in Uganda but rather a best place to stay with two seasons. The dry season is between the months of June, July, August, September, December and February where as wet season is in March, April, May, and November. Dry season is the best for specific activities such as gorilla trekking and nature walks but all activities can as well be done in all seasons. What is most interesting about Uganda climate is that even after few minutes of down pour, the sun sets in and all the coldness disappears into air. Its interesting that In terms of altitude, Uganda’s lowest point is at 650 meters above the sea level while the highest point is at 5009 meters above the sea level which make the county best for agriculture and related tourism activities mainly agro tourism.

Mountain gorillas
Uganda offers the best wildlife encounter (gorilla trekking” being a home to the highest population of the world’s endangered mountain gorillas. Uganda gorilla safaris entail travelling deep into the tropical rain forests of Bwindi impenetrable; forest and Mgahinga gorilla national park both in southwestern Uganda. Interestingly, an encounter with gorillas in Uganda is quite cheaper at a cost of 600usd for a gorilla permit, which allow travelers to interact with the gentle giants for an hour. In the low season, gorilla passes are discounted to 450usd, which is an added advantage especially for budget travelers. 13 gorilla families have been habituated for trekking in Uganda 12 of which reside in Bwindi and 1 in Mgahinga gorilla national park. Besides gorilla trekking, Uganda is the only place to do gorilla habituation experience done in Rushaga sector of Bwindi national park. The experience allows travelers to take part in training wild gorillas o the presence of people with a group of conservationists, researchers and gorilla doctors. Habituation experience is a whole day encounter with the gentle giants in the wild where travelers spend four hours with the gorillas.

Bird watching
The pearl of Africa is a home to over 1,050 bird species inhabiting the forests, swamps and on the shores of water bodies. The common birding sites in Uganda include Mabamba bay wetland a home to rare species like swamp flycatcher, shoe bill, black kite, black headed heron, papyrus Gonolek, lesser jacana and malachite kingfisher among others. Bwindi impenetrable forest national park is a home to over 350 bird species 14 of which are not found else where in the whole country, Murchison falls national park shelters roughly 450 bird species along the Nile river, Kazinga channel in Queen Elizabeth national park, is a home to slender tailed nightjars, grey headed kingfisher, African skimmer, African mourning dove and the migratory flamingoes at lake Bunyampaka. Birding in Uganda can also be done in Semuliki national park hosting 441 species in the riverine forests, kibale forest national park with over 375 bird species 6 of which are endemic to the albertine rift valley. Other birding sites include Budongo forest, lake Mburo national park and Rwenzori mountains national park. Travelers are assured of seeing different kinds of bird species and in-depth knowledge about each bird specie.

Wildlife viewing
Game viewing in the open savannah grasslands of Uganda is very interesting mostly done in Murchison falls national park, Queen Elizabeth national park, kidepo valley national park and lake Mburo national park. Uganda is rich in biodiversity, which include herds of elephants, buffalos, zebras, hippos, rhinos, lions, leopards, giraffes, warthogs, waterbucks, impalas, Uganda kobs and antelopes among others. Game viewing is done in the morning and evening hours targeting these animals grazing and hunting in the open savannahs. Experienced guides help you in spotting and explaining in details the unique characters about each animal specie in the park.

Cultural trails
Uganda is known for the unique cultures and hospitable people easy to associate with in a short time. The interesting cultural encounters in Uganda are the Batwa cultural trail in Mgahinga gorilla national park and Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. Here travelers interact with the traditional forest people who lived in harmony with wild animals in the forest for thousands of years. The Batwa pygmies demonstrate their forest life to the travelers inform of hunting, collecting honey and gathering fruits in the forest expanding travelers understanding of who the actual Batwa are. Besides the Batwa, travelers visit local people in their homes and take part in local activities such as grinding sorghum, preparing local foods, making local breweries and cultivation giving them an experience of the local life.

Mountain climbing
Besides wildlife, birds and hospitable people. Uganda is good for mountain climbing. The hiking spots in Uganda include Rwenzori mountains also known as the mountains of the moon famous for the permanent snow on its highest peak (Margherita). Hiking Rwenzori Mountains can start from either the central circuit or the Mahoma nature trail, which are the main hiking trails to the summit of the mountain. The mountain has three main peaks, which are the highest Margherita at an altitude of 5,109 meters above sea level, Speke at 8,889 meters above sea level and Luigi di Saviola at 4,626 meters above sea level. Other areas where mountaineering can be done are Mt Elgon, and the Virunga volcanoes (Mt Gahinga, Mt Sabyinyo and Mt Muhabura) in Mgahinga gorilla national park. Take part; hike any of the mountains rewarding you with a lifetime experience.

Conclusively therefore, Uganda offers its all that you want on your Uganda safari. Come, explore the pearl of Africa and you will never be the same again.

Posted by admin in Blog, News, Uganda
Forest Walks in Bwindi Forest National Park

Forest Walks in Bwindi Forest National Park

Whether you call it nature walks or forest walks, the experience is all about penetrating the impenetrable forest of Bwindi forest national park by foot. A forest walk in Bwindi unfolds the full package in the park rewarding travelers with an exclusive feeling of a natural virgin forest, sweet melodies of birds singing up in the trees as well a close encounter with wild animals such as mountain gorillas, baboons, vervet monkeys, L’Hoest’s Guenon, nocturnal, duickers, giant forest hogs and bush pigs among others. Though many people to Bwindi take part in gorilla trekking, a few who have spared time to do a forest walk can testify how life changing the experience is. A forest walk is the best way to discover all the hidden treasures in Bwindi, which most clients have often missed out. To keep strong, hikers are reminded to carry enough drinking water, energy giving snacks and soft foods as well as dressing right in hiking boots, hand gloves, huts, long sleeved pants and shirts to deal with unpredictable forest weather. The popular hiking trails in Bwindi Forest National park include:

Munyaga river trail
Forest walks In Bwindi
This is one of the easiest trails in the forest, which last for roughly 2 hours starting at the end of Buhoma road via the Bizinge creek joining to the bank of Munyaga River. The trail is circular in a way that it rotates back to the starting point without necessary turning back. Munyaga river trail is best for birders and is a spot for most birds some of which are endemic to the forest along with a scenic view of river Munyaga which all provide travelers with a memorable experience. This trail can be self-guides due to its nearness and short tie required to reach the end point.

Waterfall trail
This hike takes roughly three hours to reach the waterfall. It was first slashed in 1970 with an intension of transforming it into a main road connecting to Kisoro town but was not accomplished. This trail exposes travelers to secrecies of Bwindi impenetrable forest in form of its natural vegetation, animals and bird life all encountered in the hiking process. Interestingly, the trail crosses river Munyaga three times in the deep forest before travelers reach three adjoin waterfalls.

Rushura hill trail
Bwindi Forest
This is the most strenuous hike in the forest which last for roughly 3 hours to the highest point of Rushura hill at an elevation of 1,915m/6,289ft) above sea level. The trail hikes through the terraced fields and forests and the top of the mountain provide travelers with spectacular views of the western rift valley, the national park, lake Edward, Rwenzori Mountains and the virunga volcanoes. What is interesting about this trail is that it ascends and descends via cultivated fields and new regenerating forest.

Muzabajiro loop trail
This trail is moderate to hike that entail traveler’s crossing over the Muzabijiro creek before ascending via canopy forest to Ruhubra hill.
Muzabajiro loop trail was caught by fire in 1992, which destroyed the then vegetation. However today, lush vines and slippery trunks of dead tress that offer breathtaking views of the national park cover up the trail.

River lvi trail
Forest walks in Bwindi
This trail heads to the southern part of the national park and is mostly used by the local people as they go to local gardens and markets. The trail takes roughly 6 hours in follow of the old road in the forest. In this trail, travelers are assured of encountering a lot that include local people, monkeys, bush pigs, birds and mountain gorillas among others. Hiking in this trail can either start from Nkuringo or Buhoma depending on where travelers are having a accommodation.

Bamboo trail
This trail is situated at the highest point at an elevation of 2,607m/8,550ft above the sea level at Rwamunyo forest taking approximately 6 hours to reach at the end point. The bamboo trail enable travelers to walk through different vegetation types which include bamboo forest, alpine vegetation until when you will the afro montane vegetation which is at the highest point.

Kashasha river trail
The trail stats in Buhoma ending in Nkuringo and takes 5-6hopurs to the end of the trail and is roughly 600 meters above the sea level.
Conclusively therefore, take part in forest nature walks in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park taking you to different tourism spots in the park hence rewarding you with a memorable experience.

Posted by admin in Blog, News, Uganda
Gorilla Trekking in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park

Gorilla Trekking in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park

When it comes to gorilla trekking in Uganda, Mgahinga gorilla national park is hardly mentioned. However, the national park is a hidden treasure, which few have discovered. Despite its small size (33.7square kilometers), Mgahinga gorilla national park is a unique tourism destination in Uganda, rewarding travelers with experiential, and adventurous travel experience. The gorilla national park occupies Uganda’s share of the Virunga conservation area bordering volcanoes national park in Rwanda and Virunga national park in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The national park is divided into different vegetation zones with the bamboo zone covering roughly 60% of the park along with the subalpine zone, moorland zone and the afromontane belt. Among things each travelers should see and do in Mgahinga gorilla national park include:

Gorilla trekking
Mgahinga gorilla national park
This is the most done activity in Mgahinga gorilla national park. Nyakagyezi is the only habituated gorilla group in Mgahinga gorilla national park comprising of 9 members, which include 2 silver backs, 3 adult females, 2 infants and 2 juveniles. Unlike in the past years when the family would cross over to the neighboring Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo, Nyakagyezi has presently settled in Mgahinga making it reliable for trekking. Just like in the adjacent Bwindi impenetrable forest national park, a gorilla permit a at a cost of 600usd and 450usd in the high and low season respectively is a must have for all trekkers. On each day, eights are available meaning that eight people are allowed to trek Nyakagyezi family every day. The unpredictable forest weather requires travelers to carry rain jackets, sweaters, hiking boots and hand gloves to ensure smooth hiking vi the steep slippery grounds. While with the gorillas, trekkers are reminded to keep a distance of seven meters away, keep a low tone, move at a low rate and littering in the park.

Golden monkey trekking
Mgahinga gorilla national p[ark
Mgahinga gorilla national park is the only destination to see golden monkeys along with volcanoes national park in Rwanda. Just like mountain gorillas, golden monkeys are one of the critically endangered species differentiated from other monkeys by the golden hair at the back. Travelers are reminded to be alert while taking photographs since golden monkey are playful animals, which jump continuously across tree branches. Physical fitness is very important since golden monkeys live up in the bamboo trees. Travelers spend four hours with golden monkeys, which provide them with extensive knowledge about the rare species. Interestingly, golden monkeys are trekked at a lower cost of 140usd for the permit including park entrance fee but the experience is memorable.

Volcano hiking
Mgahinga gorilla national park
Mgahinga gorilla national park shelters 3 of the eight Virunga volcanoes in the Virunga conservation area. The three volcanoes are Mt Muhabura, which is the highest and most strenous at 4,127 meters above the sea level and is translated as “guide” in Kinyarwanda. At the summit of Mt Muhavura is a crater lake surrounded by a swamp which sot many birds. The other volcanoes are Mt sabyinyo translated as “old man’s teeth” standing at an elevation of 3,645meters above the seal level. Mt sabyinyo has three peaks each of which has different levels of difficulty and wooden ladders have been put along the hiking trail and the final peak is the border between Uganda, Rwanda and the democratic republic of Congo. It takes roughly 8 hours to and from the summit of my Sabyinyo. The third volcano is Mt Gahinga which means “a small pile of stones” standing two at an elevation of 3,474 meters above the sea level and is the most hiked being less strenuous which take roughly 5-6 hours to and from the summit.
Interestingly, each volcano can be hiked to the summit in a single day with the help of porters who help to carry baggage. Hiking permits are accessed from the park headquarters on the day of hiking. For safety cautions and advice while hiking, a simple briefing is done before the start of the hike.

Batwa cultural trail
Uganda gorilla tour
This is an interesting event in which travelers are introduced to Batwa pygmies and their traditional forest life. The Batwa were permanent dwellers of the forest and were mainly fruit gatherers, hunters and warriors who depended fully on the forest for a livelihood. While in the experience, travelers are led into the forest by the Batwa pygmies who demonstrate their forest life and their traditional way of life. The demonstration include hunting, fruit gathering, hiding in Ngarama caves, collecting honey, making bush fires and singing which together provide travelers with great understanding of the Batwa. While in the cave, travelers are reminded to switch off their flashlights as listen to the ghostly singing. Interestingly, travelers are allowed to take part in some activities such as dancing, and hunting which make them feel as part of the community hence an experience for a lifetime. Also, taking part in the Batwa cultural trail is a way of supporting the local communities since 20% of the total among collected from traveler’s goes back to local communities.

Bird watching
Mgahinga gorilla national park
Sheltering over 115 bird species, Mgahinga gorilla national park is a paradise for birders. There are also migratory birds, which are only seen in the months of April, May, October and November, which make birding in the area interesting. The most spotted bird species in Mgahinga gorilla national park include white necked raven, pin-talled whydah, black kite, paradise flycatcher, ibis, speckled mouse birds, grey capped warbler, Double-collared sunbird, waxbills, alpine, Blue-headed Coucal, Archer’s Robi-chat, Yellow-vented bulbul, Olive pigeon, Olive woodpecker, kivu ground thrush, blue-headed coucal and Rwenzori night jar. More still, travelers enjoy the sweet sounds and melodies of birds singing up in the trees. The afro montane vegetation and the cool weather provide a convenient environment for birds.

Nature walks/forest walks
Mgahinga gorilla national park
Here travelers follow different trials into the forest guided by an armed experienced park ranger as they explore different forest zones. Nature walks provide travelers with a fresh feeling of a natural forest as well as providing them with an opportunity to encounter animals such as golden monkeys, gorillas, baboons, giant forest hogs, elephants, side-striped jackals and bush pigs among others. Forest walks last for roughly 5 hours depending on the fitness of an individual.

When to visit Mgahinga gorilla national park
The national park can be visited through out the year and all activities done. However, the dirty season between the months of June, July, august, September, December, January and February is the best time associated with less rains. The dry season is the best time for most activities such as hiking, gorilla and golden monkey trekking. However, wet season is the best time for budget travellers.

Conclusively therefore, visit Mgahinga gorilla national park rewarding you with a phenomenal experience.

Posted by admin in News, Uganda
Popular Reasons to Visit Uganda

Popular Reasons to Visit Uganda

A Safari to the pearl of Africa is surely a life changing experience that all travelers have. Which ever corner you travel to, some thing new and unique awaits to meet and exceed your travel expectations. A safari to Uganda is an experience of it own kind associated with beautiful sceneries, national parks, rich culture, hospital people, peace and security which all together make a satisfactory travel package in Uganda not hardly found in other tourism destinations.

Mountain gorillas
Uganda is a place to see the endangered mountain gorillas. There are roughly 880-mountain gorillas surviving in the whole world 400 of which reside in Uganda’s tropical rain forests of Bwindi impenetrable forest and Mgahinga gorilla national parks both in southwestern Uganda. This makes Uganda a unique tourism destination with the endangered gorillas hardly found in the universe. There are over 36 gorilla families in Uganda 13 of which have been habituated and opened for trekking. More still, the remaining population for mountain gorillas is shared by Rwanda in volcanoes national park and DR Congo in virunga national park. More still, Uganda’s mountain gorillas are trekked at a cost of 600usd in the peak season and 450usd in the low season. Besides trekking, gorilla habituation experience is another interesting thing not to miss out and is only done in Uganda worldwide. It’s a process of familiarizing wild gorilla to the presence of people done between 2-3 years. At present, two gorilla families of Bushaho and Bikyingi are undergoing habituation in Rushaga sector of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park.

Chimpanzees
Chimpanzee trekking is yet another interesting experience that brings you closer to the close relatives of human beings sharing approximately 99.9% of human genes. The tropical rain forest of Kibale forest national park is a home to the highest population of chimpanzees in Uganda and Africa as a whole. These inhabit the tropical rain forest of kibale forest national park and there are approximately 5000 chimpanzees inhabiting there. This therefore makes Uganda is a stop center for chimpanzee trekking. Besides chimpanzee, kibale forest national park offer you an opportunity to encounter other animal such as Colubuses, Olive baboon, Vervet monkeys, Grey cheeked mangabey, L’Hoest monkeys, Red tailed monkeys, Black and white Colubuses, and nocturnal animals such as Pottos and bush babies along with various bird species. A variety of wildlife in the national park makes the entire experience interesting and memorable. Chimpanzee habituation is also worth doing and is only done in Kibale forest national park.

Game/wildlife viewing
Mostly done in the open plains of Murchison falls National Park, Queen Elizabeth national park, Kidepo valley national park and Lake Mburo national park. A safari to Uganda exposes you to a variety of wildlife. The open savannahs provide spectacular views of various wildlife, browsing, grazing and hunting in the open grasses. Game drives one in morning and evening hours is the best time to see wildlife. A variety of animal both herbivores and omnivores are seen and these include Buffalos, lions. Leopards, elephants, zebras, giraffes, warthogs, waterbucks, cheetah and Oribis among others. A boat cruise at the mighty falls of Murchison and kazinga channel provide good views of wildlife on the shores of the lake.

Birding
Uganda is a home to over 1,050 bird species, which make it a haven for birders. Among the birding spots in Uganda include Mabamba bay wetland, Bigodi wetland sanctuary, Budongo forest, kazinga channel and Lutembe bay wetland sanctuary among others. The most spotted birds in Uganda include shoebill, papyrus Gonolek, swamp flycatcher, pied kingfisher, black kite, African jacana, lesser jacana, African marsh harrier, grosbeak, Veillot’s black weaver, Flamingoes, Ibises and yellow-billed stork among others. You are reminded to come along with binoculars for clear views and experienced guides help to explain in details about each spotted bird specie.

Culture
Not only does Uganda offer wildlife experiences but authentic culture. Uganda people are known for hospitality and easy to associate with. There are over 54 tribes in Uganda each with unique traditions and cultures. The Batwa pygmies in southwestern Uganda are the most visited people with unique traditions and cultures. While with the Batwa, travelers are introduced to the Batwa traditional forest life such as fruit gathering, hunting and traditional dances. Travelers also visit the Karamajong in Kidepo Valley national park northeastern Uganda. Travelers always take part in these traditional activities, which make them feel as part of the community an experience they cannot forget.

Conclusively therefore, travel to Uganda and enjoy a memorable expereince.

Posted by admin in News, safaris, Uganda
Explore Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary

Explore Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary

Much as bigodi wetland has always been a complementary to chimpanzee trekking in kibale forest national park, the site is much more than a swamp. Located just 6 kilometers from the kanyanchu information center, bigodi wetland sanctuary is a fascinating area sheltering over 200 bird species and various primates and mammals all which make a visit there surely interesting. The wetland is a community-based project managed by the kibale association for rural and environmental development (Kafred). Its from a Rutooro word “Kugodya” which means walking in a tired way. From the records, all people on reaching this place would appear exhausted and could not walk any further so had to first rest there before continuing. Travelers, researchers students and conservationists visit the swamp for various purposes.

KAFRED that is in charge of the wetland sanctuary is a community-based organization that supports eco-tourism enterprises objectively to ensure that local communities benefit from tourism. Among the unique features that make Bigodi wetland sanctuary a place to visit include:

Wildlife Viewing (primates, mammals, reptiles and amphibians)
wildlife in Bigodi wetlandThe wetland is not just a swamp but also a home to a variety of wild animals both primates and mammals. These include black and white Colubus monkeys, Red Colubus monkey, Blue monkeys, Baboons, Mangabey, Grey cheeked, Red tailed monkeys, L’Hoest monkey, Vervet monkeys, otters, push pigs, chimpanzees, sitatungas, mongooses and bush bucks among others. Visitors to Bigodi wetland follow various trails in the swamp led by experienced guides who help in spotting various animals. For safety, visitors are reminded to tuck their trousers into the stockings to prevent bites from termites such as red aunts.

Bird watching
Sheltering over 200 bird species 6 of which are endemic to the area, Bigodi wetland sanctuary is a paradise for birders.
Blue turaco in bigodi
The great Blu Turaco also known as a loyal lover is one of the unique birds with an intriguing story. The bird is believed to remain single for life after the loss of a loved one. The other birds residing in the wetland include purple breasted sunbird, African pitta, Abyssinian ground thrush, Collared Apalis, Black capped apalis, Crowned eagle, Green breasted pitta, Kingfishers, Weavers, Cuckoos, Hornbills, Papyrus Gonoleks, Flycatchers, Black bee eater, Little greenbul, Brown chested alethe, Blue breasted kingfisher, Yellow rumpled tinker bird, Dusky crimson wing, Black bishop, Western nictor, Spotted bardet, Brown throated wattle eye, white-spotted fluff tail, weaver birds and purple breasted sunbird. Birding is well done in guided forest walks led by experienced guides who help to spot birds and provide detailed information about each spotted bird.

Community visits
After touring the swamp, visitors always connect to the neighboring communities and visit various community projects all-originating from the wetland sanctuary. Among the visited groups of people include the Bigodi women group that consists of 40 members. These people make crafts such as beads, baskets, bags, and mats most of which are exported to Europe. Interestingly, the former poachers in Bigodi swamp and the entire kibale national park are the present guides who greatly support tourism and conservation in the area.
craft materials

Additionally, visitors transfer to Bigodi secondary schools, which was established and fully sponsored by the Bigodi wetland sanctuary project. The wetland projects have helped local communities providing them with various employments, which include water projects, health, resolving funds, health, should, sponsorship to church among others. This earns income to the local people hence improving their standards of living.
Conclusively therefore, a visit to Bigodi wetland sanctuary is a lifetime experience. All travelers should visit the wetland to promote conservation and tourism in the area.

Posted by admin in News, Uganda, WildLife
Uganda To Promote Domestic Tourism

Uganda To Promote Domestic Tourism

Entitled as the pearl of Africa by church hill Winston, Uganda has currently up stretched its tourism potential positioning as the fourth best tourism endpoint according to the UK based travel producer rough guide. Wide reaching, Uganda has been known as a tourism hub due to her safety and security which guarantees good health for most travelers coming from all parts of the world. According to the report, the leading tourism countries were India, Scotland and Canada respectively, after which Uganda shone as the next.

Uganda offers the un beaten kind of experience made possible by numerous descriptions ranging from cultural, historical, natural and manmade features. All these have attracted many people most especially the first time travelers. Uganda’ tourism sector has now revamped despite the poor performance in the past decades. Approximately 10% of the country’s total gross domestic product is earned from tourism, which has improved the country’s economy. Importantly still, over 10 million people both Ugandans and foreigners employed in the sector, which has in turn improved their standards of living.

However, not withstanding the sector’s fast growth, investigations have shown that domestic tourism is still low with limited participation of Ugandans in tourism. In order to address this, the ministry of tourism has pledged to increase on investments as far as endorsing domestic tourism is concerned in this year of 2017.

Additionally, local people are thought to have the extreme and aboriginal acquaintance concerning attractions and all tourism sites in their own country hence the best people to visit and encourage tourism. More still, it is believed that once Ugandans come to understand tourism in their country; they would then be in better position to spread the expression as well as supporting tourism industry all year round.

Last year, various government initiatives such as Tulambule as well as private initiatives including the Ondaba, travel month and koi koi were organized to boost domestic tourism in the country. However, the challenge is that as much as some Ugandans have developed a spirit of tourism, they prefer travelling to outside countries mostly for leisure but not in Uganda.
Therefore, much as the ministry of tourism has now aimed at marketing the industry with a strategic purpose of recruiting local tourists, Ugandans have an obligation of perplexing themselves so as to stimulate the gemstone of promoting domestic tourism they have in their midst.

All neighborhoods adjacent to protected especially national parks are given 20% of the total revenue earned from tourism. Recently, the Uganda wildlife authority (UWA) a body responsible for tourism in Uganda allocated shs936m to all bordering districts to Queen Elizabeth national park. This 20% shared by all local communities is alleged to advance the standards of living for the local people, which in turn promote positive feelings of local people towards tourism in their respective communities.

Proper planning has been owed as the only resolution to the continuous grievances that local people have had about the undesirable impacts of tourism. Wild animals such as elephants, hippos and buffalos which escape from the national parks wandering in people’s gardens and destroying people’s property has been a big problem facing local communities.

More still a criticism was raised that most tourism projects set up in local communities are not relevant to local people and do not help them in anyway which has obstructed them from taking part and supporting tourism. Therefore, it has been comprehended that for domestic tourism to grasp its full potential, all Ugandans must first escalate tourism as the means to improve their standards beyond statistics.

In conclusion therefore, a collective effort of all Ugandans together with all stakeholders is required so as to ensure the increased benefits of domestic tourism to all beneficiaries.

Posted by admin in News, Uganda

Infrastructural Improvement to triple Uganda’s tourists Arrival

Accessibility is very essential in a successful complete tourism system; this is because, travelers have to link up to diverse tourism sites and attractions driving along good road network. Leaving out the past times of civil wars and the emerged tourism sector, Uganda has currently picked up in tourism receiving flocks of travelers to various national parks and protected areas daily. Tourism has presently become a leading tourism exchange earner for Uganda bringing in more foreign exchanges for the country. Uganda’s tourism sector has also tried to export Uganda’s coffee and tea though with a small manufacturing base. Also through tourism, commercial quantities of oil were discovered in 2006 Uganda but have not yet started producing.

The government has done extreme in endorsing tourism for example by contracting with three international marketing firms so as to promote Uganda in Europe and North America. This has created some hope for the expanded tourism sector in Uganda.

However, despite the added population of travelers, Uganda’s targeted number of travelers has not been reached yet. Basing on the 2015 tourism statics by executive officer at the Uganda tourism board Stephen Asiimwe, Uganda received approximately 1.3 million travelers shared by all national parks. As of 2016, the number of tourist arrivals is hoped to increase to 1.5 million that will pull up the sector as a whole.

In the next five years (2021), the Uganda tourism board aims to triple the number of tourist arrivals to approximately 4 millions from the present 1.4 millions. The Uganda tourism board (UTB) is a body responsible for tourism marketing and new tourism development in Uganda.

The major tourism attractions in Uganda are all located in distant areas of the country. These include gorilla trekking in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park, a bounce of wilderness in southwestern Uganda adjoining the Democratic Republic of Congo. Besides, there is queen Elizabeth national park in western and Murchison falls in the north western, together with kidepo valley national park in the extreme northeast among others.

Due to their remoteness, it has always been difficult for travelers to linkup from the airport to these national parks. Travelling to tourism sites in Uganda entails long journeys approximately a full day, which hinders low time travelers from visiting the national parks.

Therefore, it has been realized that with improvements in transport networks connecting to all national parks and protected areas in Uganda, there is a great re-assurance for the increased number of tourists. In order to cope up with this, the government has considered developing road networks as the first priority. The main roads to assimilate are those connecting to the national parks, regional towns and other tourism sites across the country.

In addition to improved roads, revamping small regional airports to provide alternative and faster routes for travelers to easily access the national parks, protected areas and other tourism sites all over the country.

In conclusion therefore, Uganda is the best tourism destination with great potential to increase the number of tourists on a daily basis. Improved road networks and other means of transport are therefore recommended for a steady growth. Once this is put in practice, Uganda will be assured of receiving the highest number of travelers more than any other country in the world.

Posted by admin in News, Uganda
Wildlife Safaris in Queen Elizabeth National Park

Wildlife Safaris in Queen Elizabeth National Park

Situated in kasese district southwestern Uganda, Queen Elizabeth national park is the second largest national park in Uganda covering a total land area of 1978 square kilometers. River ishasha and lake Edward border queen Elizabeth national park in the west, Rwenzori and kasese foothills in the north, Kigezi wildlife reserve in the south, where as to the east in lake George. The national park was at first called Kazinga national park and was renamed queen Elizabeth national park in 1954 in honor of the queen of England who visited the national park. The national park has a wide vegetation cover composed of forest grasslands, acacia woodlands, bushy grasslands, swampy and lakeshore vegetation and open grasslands. The diverse in vegetation has favored the habitation of different bird species. Tourism in queen Elizabeth national park entails the following:

Game drives
This is the most done activity in the open savannah grasslands of the national park. Game drives are done in the morning and evening hours as herbivores graze whereas predators hunt down their preys. Travelers are helped by the experienced guides to spot different animals among which include waterbucks, elephants, buffalos, warthogs, Uganda kobs, impalas, elands, leopard, hyenas, and Giant forest hogs. Game drives rare extended to ishasha sector south of the national park for climbing lions and Topis. Guides help to explain the characters and basic details about each spotted animal which increase travelers understanding of wildlife in the national park.

Boat cruise
This is done at kazinga channel a 40 meters long and 8 meters deep channel that connect lakes Edward and George. While boat cruising, travelers have a clear view of different water animals such as the hippos and crocodiles resting at the riverbanks. More still, different bird species are spotted and these include hadad ibis, hammer kop, yellow-billed stork, African jacana. African king fisher, black crake, knob billed duck, sacred ibis, saddle billed stork and yellow wagtail among others. Boat cruise is done for two hours, which gives travelers a fresh feeling of the waters and air, which in turn refreshes their minds hence, a phenomenal experience.

Chimpanzee trekking
Done in kyambura sector of the national park, chimpanzee trekking is yet another interesting activity which should not be missed out by any traveler. While still in kyambura, travelers learn more about kyambura gorge and its atmospheric underground rainforest and other wildlife that inhabit there. Trekking is done in the morning at 8:00am or else in the afternoon at 2:00pm taking a range of 1-3 hours.

Where to sleep
There are several lodging and camping facilities that provide high quality food and sleeping services to travelers. These include Mweya safari lodge, Marafiki safari lodge, Ihamba lodge, Simba safari lodge, Kingfisher lodge, Kyambura game lodge and Jacana safari lodge among others. These facilities offer services ranging from luxury to budget hence attending to the interests of every traveler. The costs vary but the services are real excellent.

When to visit the national park
The time to visit the national park really depends on the interests of the traveler. The dry season is claimed good since vegetation this forcing animals to gather at the water spots hence easily spotted, trekking the chimpanzees also becomes easier since the trails are dry. However, the wet season is also good since the landscape looks beautiful and green and migratory birds such as the flamingoes can be seen in the national park during this time.

Conclusively therefore, queen Elizabeth national park is the second largest national park after Murchison falls national park. It offers extra ordinary experiences to the travelers, which is made possible by natural, cultural, historical and manmade resources, all which form a full travel package. All travelers should therefore visit the national park and are assured of a great and memorable experience.

Posted by admin in Uganda

Rushaga Gorilla Family receives new born Gorilla

Situated in Buhoma sector north of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park, Rushegura family was formerly part of the Habinyanja gorilla group. The family presently has approximately 19 members under the leadership of Kabukojo the dominant silver back and the other members are kyinvi, kibande, Buzinza, Nyamunwa, karungi as adult females, kalemezi the sub adult male, Ruterana sub adult female, Nyampazi, kanywanyi and kafuruka as juveniles, kibande and Karungyi as baby juveniles, Kyirinvi, Buzinza, Nyamunwa, Kibande and katabazi as infants. Recently, Rurena gave birth to a newborn baby expanding on the family.
The newborn baby was discovered by Mr Stephen Rubanga a veterinary technician in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park who found baby being held tightly by its mother Ruterana. This was during his early morning visit to the gorilla families and then the news was acknowledged by a local gorilla conservation non-called conservation through public health.

It is believed that after Mwirima’s failure to live peacefully with his brother Rwansigazi, the two had to separate and Mwirima formed his own family named Rushegura in February 2002. Mwirima took with him 12 members from the former family (Habinyanja).

The dominant silverback (Mwirima) was ambitious and worked very hard to expand his family. By 2010, the family had over 19 members gained through attacking other families and grabbing members adding to Rushegura group. Mwirima was well known for fighting and winning the battles; he once attacked Makara group and fought to the end emerging as a winner. Him and his family members then foraged in the battlefield commemorating his remarkable victory. In 2014, Mwirima passed away and kabukojo the then black back took over leadership up to present.

It is considered a blessing having a new baby born in the family; it’s worth a heaven sent opportunity ensuring the continuity of the family.
More still, it is a privilege to the trekkers as the baby gorillas are so exciting due to their playful characters during visitor’s encounter with the family.
Still in Buhoma sector, there are other two-habituated gorilla along Rushegura, which are Habinyanja, and Mubare family the first group to be habituated and trekked by the first visitors in Bwindi.

In conclusion therefore, mountain gorilla trekking is the best wildlife encounter in the whole world, travelers are ensured of a great experience by visiting Rushegura family and interacting with the newborn babies along with other family members.

Posted by admin in News, Uganda
Bikyingi Habituation Gorilla Group Welcome a New Born Gorilla

Bikyingi Habituation Gorilla Group Welcome a New Born Gorilla

The Bikyingi habituation gorilla group welcomes a baby gorilla early this September. The Bikyingi group is one is the two newly created gorilla groups in the Rushaga region of the park by the Uganda Wildlife Authority, still undergoing habituation and open to visitors interested in joining the gorilla habituation process, along side Bushaho group in Nkuringo sector of the national park. Gorilla habituation process open to visitors is only be done in Uganda’s Bwindi national park and no where else in other gorilla destination. Bikyingi’s new baby gorilla brought happiness; excitement and joy in the entire community of Bwindi impenetrable national park.

The Bikyingi group comprises of 21 members bringing the number to 22 now with 1 dominant silverback, 9 female gorillas, 2 juveniles and 10 infants. Discovered by one of the park rangers who were monitoring the gorilla groups in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. The Bikyingi gorilla group is found in the southern part of the national park in the Rushaga sector and it is currently going under habituation along side Bushaho group in Nkuringo sector of the national park.

In addition to that, the famous habituation experience is also done in the family. Here travelers spend more time (4 hours) with the gorillas that enable the travelers to gain a phenomenal experience.

The name Bikyingi was derived from the first area where the gorilla family was sited before its habituation process began. The dominant silverback is also called Bikyingi whereas the other members are not yet named since the habituation is still going on. By 2017, the habituation process will be complete and all the Bikyingi group members will have names. The members are presently shy to interact with the travelers since they are not fully habituated.

Bikyingi is the father to the newborn baby but the mother is not known, all the 9 adult females in the family have babies yet with no names, this make their identification difficult.

More still, the difficulty to know the real mother to each infant is because Bikyingi the silver back is very friendly to all babies and is always with them most of the times. All the babies only go their mothers for breast-feeding after which they go back to the dad (Bikyingi). The very young ones like this newly born only stay with the mums.

In conclusion therefore, 900 mountain gorillas in the whole world is still minimal, the born of anew born baby is therefore considered a blessing to the national park and the country as well.

Posted by admin in Uganda
Wildlife Safaris in Mgahinga National Park

Wildlife Safaris in Mgahinga National Park

The other gorilla park in Uganda, home of one mountain gorilla family the Nyakagyezi group, Mgahinga gorilla national park is situated in Bufumbira County in kisoro district southwestern Uganda. The national park sits at an altitude of between 2227m and 4127m and was gazetted in 1991 from being a forest that was used for permanent settlement by the Batwa people in kisoro district. The park boarders Rwanda in the south and Democratic Republic of Congo in the west.

It is so interesting that the Nyakagezi gorilla family in Mgahinga gorilla national park which used to migrate to the Democratic Republic of Congo has now settled and is fully in Uganda available for gorilla trekking in Mgahinga gorilla national park. The family consists of 9 members, 2 silverbacks, 3 adult females, 2 juveniles and 2 infants. Alongside the gorillas are other wild animals such as the rare golden monkeys, elephant and buffalo, blue monkey, the spotted hyena, the golden cat, Leopard, serval cat, side-striped jackal, giant forest hog, black-fronted duiker and bushbuck all interesting to the travelers.

Travelers to the national park are blessed with an opportunity to visit the neighboring local communities where they participate in different community activities and experience local life. These communities include Nyarusiza, Chahi and Muramba sub counties. The people there are Bafumbira and the few Batwa who were the forest dwellers, hunters and fruit gatherers before the forest was garzetted into a national park.

Still in Mgahinga national park are the three conical, extinct volcanoes, which are part of the spectacular virunga range that lies along the border of Uganda, Congo and Rwanda. The volcano slopes contain various ecosystems that are diverse and provide gorgeous scenery for the tourists. These volcanoes are believed to have risen as a result of volcanic eruptions, and to have formed through a deposition of layers of ash and cinders from successive lava flows.

With Mount Sabyinyo being the oldest volcano with the swamp crater of a bout of about 180m diameter at the summit, it is followed by Mount Gahinga and then Mount Muhabura which is believed to be the youngest volcano. The volcano has a crater lake at the top that has presently turned into a swamp. There are caves on the slopes of the volcanoes which were used as sacred places for the Batwa, and during the Batwa Trail are used for shelter from battles and a place to store looted treasures.

The physically fit can hike the volcanoes and Mt muhavura acts as a guide. It is approximately 4127m high and on reaching the summit, tourists have an opportunity to view the rest of the virunga volcanoes, Lake Edward in Queen Elizabeth national park, Bwindi forests and the peaks of Rwenzori Mountain, it takes a round 8 hours to hike the mountain.

Mount Gahinga is 3474m and looks like a pile of stones, hiking here involves passing through a pure bamboo forest and takes about 6 hours to hike. Mt sabyinyo is 366m and is shaped like the old man’s teeth. Hiking here offers three challenging peaks to climb in that tourists may get dirty in the process of hiking but get the memorable experience never to forget.

Concerning the vegetation types, Mgahinga gorilla national park is afromontane consisting the woodlands, bamboo and part of the virgin forest which has never been cut.

There are numerous streams of water flowing northwards from the mountains and these keep the areas cool and also provide water for the local communities especially in dry seasons.

The park is also a home to more than 79 bird species which are different from each other in their making and behaviors. Birding can be done during the forest walks and is as interesting as the travelers listen to the sweet sounds of birds singing in the tree up. This is really memorable and every traveler to Mgahinga should not miss out.

The batwa cultural trail is yet another interesting tourism activity in Mgahinga national park. The Batwa here demonstrate their forest life and how they used to hunt and offer sacrifices to the gods in the caves. They demonstrate their traditional dances, tell stories and poems with different meanings related to their life history. Travelers can participate in these dances and activities which provide them with great and memorable experience ever to remember.

In conclusion therefore, Mgahinga gorilla national park is the best but not exploited tourism destination. Every traveler looking for the unique, great memorable experience should therefore visit the national park and he/she will never forget.

Posted by admin in News, Uganda

Uganda Entry Visa Price sliced to Half – $50

Starting July last year, the Uganda entry Visa was doubled from $50 to $100 which has not been a competitive entry fee compared to all other East African countries which are charging $50 and less. This price is high forcing travelers o rather go for the single East African visa which gives entry to all East African countries except Tanzania.

It was realized that the higher charges for the single tourist visa in Uganda was a cause for the less number of single entry tourists to Uganda as compared to the neighboring countries especially Kenya and Rwanda. Therefore in order to address this problem of low tourist arrivals to Uganda, with effect from 22nd July 2016, the cost of a single tourist visa was halved in order to encourage more visitors to the country.

The ministry of Uganda internal affairs decided to cut down the charges of the single tourist visa from 100usd to 5ousd which is believed to attract many single entry travelers to the country, it has already started working. This request was made by the official from the tourism department and it has already started working, all counties bordering Uganda have been notified to effect the change.

It has been quite unfair for single entry travelers to Uganda in that the costs for the single entry visa has been equal to the cost of the single East African visa which allows a traveler to cross over to all other East African countries. Both visas have been at 100usd which has been un fair for real that ended up discouraging travelers from coming to Uganda if at all they were not interested in crossing to the neighboring East African countries.

However, travelers are reminded that although the charges for the single tourist visa were changed, the fees for other visas including the multiple entry visas and transit permits were not changed.

The pearl of Africa Uganda is one of the East African countries that agreed to use a single East African tourist visa alongside Rwanda, Kenya and Tanzania though Tanzania has not fully joined. All these East African countries have their side single tourist visa s for all travelers to their countries not crossing to other east African countries.

The East African tourist visa is sold at usd100 and it allows a traveler to cross to all east African countries without paying again, it can be obtained from any member country which is the first to visit. All other east African countries except Uganda have been charging a single tourist visa in their respective countries at relatively cheaper prices as compared to the single East African visa.

Many travelers have been opting for the East African visa which is valid for 90 days and would leave out a single entry visa to Uganda. Also, many travelers had not known that a single East African visa can be renewed after the expiry date; they would therefore end up missing out visiting some destinations because of the limited time to explore all East African countries and the unique features and natural resources in each country.

For all travelers visiting Uganda, the single tourist visa expires upon entering Uganda and all travelers are given a visitor’s permit valid for a month. However, after the expiry date, the visitor’s permit can be extended for a period of six months depending on the reasons given by the traveler. It is an advantage for the travelers who will purchase a single entry tourist visa in Uganda since it can be used for both tourism and business which is not the case with the single East African visa.

The Uganda tourism board has also made it more easier by putting in place the online visa application system which is a great advantage for the travelers in terms of time saving and limited costs as compared to getting a visa upon arriving at the airport. Travelers only visit the Uganda’s electronic immigration system and then to the page of visas. Immigration.go.ug, everything is done online and the traveler gets the confirmation and all the details on line before arriving in Uganda. This is a great achievement as far as tourism in Uganda is concerned.

As of 2015, Uganda received over 1.2 million tourists and the Uganda tourism board has embarked on a campaign by cutting the visa prices and on line visa application system in order to promote tourism in Uganda. Therefore, all travelers planning trips should take advantage of these opportunities Uganda has promoted for the greater, enjoyable and memorable experience.

Posted by admin in Uganda
What is Killing Uganda’s tourism potential?

What is Killing Uganda’s tourism potential?

Located in East Africa, Uganda the pearl of Africa is blessed with diverse natural and ,manmade resources which include mountains, forests, different vegetation types, cultural and historical sites diverse cultures and sub cultural groups, it is also a home for half of the rare endangered mountain gorillas located in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park and Mgahiga national park south western Uganda and many other animal such as elephants, lions, buffalos, rhinos, monkeys, baboons and different bird species for the birders, the pearl Africa borders Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Democratic Republic of Congo and south Sudan .

However, despite of the interesting tourism features in Uganda, the country has not realized its targeted proceeds from tourism for the several years past compared to its neighboring countries such as Kenya, Tanzania and recently Rwanda whom they share borders . The total tourism receipts for example in 2014 fell from shs56b to shs42.6b which is 24% of the total revenues collected, this was according to the Uganda wild life authority’s latest auditors general report 2013/2014. The limited benefits from tourism in Uganda are attributed to the following:

According to Jossy Muhangi, the public relations manager at the Uganda wild life authority, negative publicity of the country in the outside world countries (tourist origins) is the main cause for low growth of tourism in Uganda. Uganda is still known for insecurity because of the lord’s resistance army rebels mostly in the northern parts of Uganda which threatens most tourists and hinders them from touring to Uganda despite of its unique and interesting tourism features. Also, the fragile security situation in the Horn of Africa, especially in Somalia where al-Shabaab militants have created an undesirable environment hinder travelers to Africa and partly to Uganda killing tourism in the country.

More still, the outbreak of the epidemics especially Ebola in West Africa also limited tourism in Uganda, tourists were so much scared for their lives and safety from this dangerous epidemics that was spreading at a higher speed leading to the death of many people in the shortest time including tourists. Up to present, most travelers still know that Ebola still exists and cannot travel to Uganda hence killing tourism in the country.

In addition, the anti homosexuality law that was passed by the parliament of Uganda in 2013 had a great impact on the growth of tourism in the country, it is believed that most travelers to Uganda come from countries were homosexuality is a right for people and even some of the them participate in the game. This anti homosexuality law that was passed and signed restricted most travelers from visiting Uganda hence killing tourism in Uganda.

Also, the political rivals in Uganda led by the opposition parties has made Uganda especially in Kampala the capital and the main hub in the country un conducive for then travelers, the most opposing party is the forum for democratic party (FDC) and such rivals and fights with the police of Uganda discourages travelers to the country hence killing tourism in Uganda.

Conclusively, According to the Uganda tourism board spokesperson Vincent Mugaba, the lack of a clear cut strategy for promoting tourism both at home and abroad coupled with the unscrupulous expenditures on the unrewarding public relations promotions by the Uganda tourism board is the main cause. He also argued that Uganda is not the only country facing declining tourist numbers but also the immediate neighbors, like Kenya who actually spend a lot on marketing their countries. However, Uganda as a tourism destination is trying to tap every opportunity possible to market tourism so as to promote tourism in the country and cover up for the decline in the past.

Posted by admin in Uganda

Uganda Tourism Board asks government to cut on Visa Fees so as to attract Tourists

A Uganda tourist entry Visa today cost $100 equivalent to over Shs300,000 charged per tourists from the previous $50 doubled last year, which is actually the most expensive visa fee out of the rest of East Africa. On the other hand the single East African Visa, which grants visitors access to all East African countries including Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda goes for the same amount – $100. This makes destination Uganda a difficult destination to sale, with the unfavorable Visa rates which are too high. Uganda’s high visa fees scare away some tourists, opting to visit other East African countries where it is cheaper. In Kenya, Rwanda and Tanzania visa fees is $50 per tourist.

Destination Uganda has so much to offer tourists with a variety of adventure activities which attract tourists to this destination. Uganda’s biggest trade mark is the rare endangered mountain gorillas which can only be found in 2 other destinations in the entire world. At present tourists are looking at Rwanda’s volcanoes national park as a more preferred destination mainly because of ease of access. With just about 2 hours drive from the Kigali international airport, accessing Volcanoes national park is much more convenient for all types of travelers as compared to 8-9 long hours of drive from Kampala or Entebbe international airport. Rwanda is a much easier destination for budget, business travelers with less time.

Uganda still is blessed with numerous unique wildlife which can be seen in the different national parks spread around the country.
Uganda’s neighboring country’s of Kenya and Tanzania offer a more authentic wildlife adventure experience as compared to the experience in Uganda. Still, Uganda’s unique trade mark the mountain gorillas can also be seen in Rwanda, her neighbor.

With Ugandan visa prices being high, Uganda will be missing out on a large number of potential tourists and hence losing foreign exchange and general unemployment for local tour operators.

Posted by admin in Blog, Uganda

Best thrilling Uganda Adventure Tours

Uganda is known as the Perl of Africa, comprising of distinctive natural beauty and is among the leading safari destinations in East Africa. The country offers memorable adventure holidays with unique tourism attractions encompassing trekking endangered mountain gorillas, visit Murchison falls, adrenaline white water rafting at the source of the river Nile in Jinja, authentic culture, very good climate all year round. Uganda is totally a traveler’s dream destination and a must not miss out when in Africa.

The following are a must see Ugandan destinations

Murchison Falls Boat Trips
murchison falls national park
The Nile in mid western Uganda falls below a hard rock forming the famous Murchison falls. The falls form a mist and permanent rain ball and are among the top adventure attractions in the country. Tourists can view them while on launch cruises at the bottom or can hike and view them from the rock above.

What makes Murchison falls much more unique and attractive are the various wildlife species in Murchison falls national park that include elephants, hippos, crocodiles and number of birds that can be viewed by tourists on boat trips to view the great falls. Other outstanding wildlife species in the park include the lions, leopards, buffaloes and the rhinos at the Zziwa rhino sanctuary in Nakasongola.

Mountain Gorillas
gorilla safaris in bwindi
They are located in southwestern Uganda in Bwindi impenetrable and Mgahinga gorilla national parks. Mountain gorilla tracking in Bwindi or Mgahinga gorilla parks offers thrilling forest adventures with sightings of various wildlife species that include a number of primates like monkeys, birds and many others.

Mountain gorillas are very unique mammals with 95% DNA similar to humans and only remaining in Uganda, Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo. Uganda’s Bwindi impenetrable has half of the remaining mountain gorillas on the planet with 14 habituated gorilla families. Each mountain gorilla family can be trekked by only 8 tourists a day and mountain gorilla trekking permits are sold at $600 only.

Source of the River Nile Water Rafting In Jinja
Jinja water
The river Nile adventure is one most exciting tourism activities all adventure travellers and you just cannot skip it on your trip to Uganda. The White Nile in Jinja is referred to the adventure capital of east Africa with rapids that favors white water rafting activities to effectively take place in the area.

The Nile rafting in Jinja offers adrenaline activities in the great river Nile in its early stages. Rafting is an adventure for go getter and not faint hearted people because while on the grade 5 rapids, all of you may find yourselves in the waters of the Nile, there is no need to fear this because there is always a rescue raft team to get tourists out of the water.
This adventurous activity is open all kinds of people and can be enjoyed any day of the year.

Rwenzori Hike
Jinja water
Mountain Rwenzori is located in western Uganda and has the third highest peak Margherita on the continent on mount Stanley standing at 5,109 meters above sea level. The Rwenzori peaks are snow capped with a number of glaciers.

Hiking the Rwenzori is among the adventure activities that tourists in Uganda can engage in however it requires one to be physically fit and stable health wise well equipped with the necessary hiking gear especially heavy coats for warmth because the mountain top freezes below zero degrees.

There are well developed hiking routes uphill and potters who can be hired to carry luggage for the tourists going for the hike. The Rwenzori hike provides en route sightings of some of the rare wildlife species like the three-horned chameleon and a number of birds endemic to the Albertine region. Other wildlife species that can be viewed in the Rwenzori area include forest elephants, leopards, chimpanzees and many others.

Posted by admin in Uganda, WildLife

Uganda Wildlife Safari Tips

Now among the most visited wildlife safari destinations worldwide, Uganda offers ultimate experiences to tourists who visit the country with the aim of viewing wild animals in their natural ecosystems. Uganda is located in east Africa and its bordered by Kenya in the east, southern Sudan in the north, DRC in the west, Rwanda in the southwestern and Tanzania in the south. The following are what you may want to know before visiting this beautiful country.

Getting There
Getting to Uganda from the major neighboring countries can be done by road while those travelling from relatively far away countries can get there by air transport through Entebbe international airport located on the shores of lake victoria just a few kilometers from Kampala the major capital city of Uganda.

Getting Around
Movement within the country and to the major wildlife safari destinations is usually by road transport however some destinations like Kidepo valley national park located in the extreme northeast plus Bwindi and Mgahinga gorilla national parks located in southwestern Uganda can alternatively be accessed by air transport using charter planes that usually fly from Entebbe international airport or Kajjansi airfields. Getting to these 3 national parks by road is a little hectic and can take about 7 to 8 hours drive or even more.

Wildlife Places Of Interest
Uganda has 10 national parks most of which situated in the western part of the country. All the national parks in Uganda offer unique and exclusive wildlife experiences starting from the mountain gorilla experiences in Bwindi and Mgahinga gorilla national parks, the big four wild animals in Murchison falls national park, the tree climbing lions in Queen Elizabeth national park, the snow capped mountains in the Rwenzori national park plus the true African wilderness in Kidepo valley national park and so many others.

There are other wildlife destinations in Uganda like the Ngamba chimpanzee sanctuary located at the Ngamba Island in lake victoria, the Uganda wildlife education center located in Entebbe, the Zziwa rhino sanctuary located in Nakasongola district a home to the only white rhinos in the whole of Uganda, the source of the great river Nile in Jinja, the Mabira forest reserve along Kampala Jinja highway and many others.
Best Time To Visit

The country can be visited at any time of the year however visiting the different wildlife destinations especially national parks can be best enjoyed during the dry season from July to October and from December to January. These are usually the peak tourist’s season and it’s when most tourists prefer to do some wildlife activities like mountain gorilla trekking. Note that during these months, mountain gorilla trekking permits are sold at $600 while in the rainy season permits are sold at a reduced price ($350). The wet season usually runs from mid February to June and from mid October to the early days of December.

Where To Sleep
Uganda has a number of accommodation facilities in all the major towns and tourism destinations that usually range from budget, mid range and luxury. This means that one is always free to choose an accommodation facility where to stay depending on his/her income. In the national parks, there are campsites, cottages, tented camps and luxurious lodges that offer the needed facility by the tourists. If anyone chooses to visit a given wildlife destination, he should check the accommodation facility options around these areas which eases accessibility of the chosen destination.

What To Carry
Those going for mountain gorilla safaris or mountain climbing should get good and strong hiking shoes, jackets or sweaters, raincoats and waterproof pants, a pair of hand gloves and other necessities. Wildlife safaris in the savanna national park do not require much. A pair of sunglasses, binoculars can be recommended and of course one should not forget carrying a camera for taking photographs.

Posted by admin in Uganda

Unique Wildlife Experiences At Murchison Falls National Park

Murchison falls national park is among the top wildlife safari destinations in Uganda all thanks to the unique wildlife attractions it has. This is the largest national park in Uganda with a total land area of 3840-kilometer squares stretching from Bulisa district in mid western Uganda to Nwoya district in northern Uganda. Murchison falls national park is also the oldest national park in Uganda and its crossed by the great river Nile where it forms water falls (Murchison falls) the strongest falls in Uganda. this national park is among the most visited wildlife safari destinations in Uganda and even ever been visited by influential people in the world including sir Winston church hill and Theodore Roosevelt.

What To See While At Murchison Falls National Park

Wildlife
Being the largest national park, Murchison falls national park is a home to a variety of animals including over 500 bird species and about 76 mammals. The major animals in tis national park include the big four (elephants, leopards, buffaloes and lions), hippos, giraffes, hartebeests, oribis, crocodiles, warthogs, Uganda kobs, and a number of primates that include the chimpanzees in Budongo forest, baboons, vervet monkeys. The birds that can be viewed here include the rare shoebill stork.

The Murchison Falls
It was from these that the national park got its name. They can be best accessed via the Kanchumbanyobo park entrance got to via Masindi town. The top of these falls provides great views and its located 10 kilometers off the national parks main road. Alternatively, one can visit the bottom of the falls while on a boat cruise and hike to the top for more great views. The falls generally are very magnificent, form a great sound as the water pours down the hard rock, forms a mist a few meters high the ground and a permanent rain ball. They are surely attractions all tourists to the national park must not miss.

Victoria Nile
This is a section of the great river Nile that crosses the national park. The Victoria Nile harbors a number of wildlife including the Nile crocodiles, hippos usually along the riverbanks as well as a number of birds. Tourists usually enjoy a boat cruise along the waters of victoria heading to the waterfalls and to also view the major wildlife species in the national park especially those that prefer living in water.
The Nile Delta

This is where the Nile joins lake albert and its among the places tourists in Murchison falls national park must not miss. The delta can be got to on a boat trip and while at the delta, there are chances of viewing the major wildlife species in the national park especially the shoebill stork.

What To Do While In Murchison Falls National Park
Tourists in this national park can engage in a number of activities to discover the unique wildlife. The activities mainly include game drives along the major trails, a boat trip along the Nile, hiking to the top of Murchison falls, birding, primate tracking, nature walks in the Kaniyo Pabidi forest and sport fishing. Those interested in cultural tourism can also head to one of the local communities around the national park.

Best Time To Visit
This national park can be visited at any time of the year however some activities like game drives can be best experienced during the dry season with minimal disturbances of rain fall.

Where To Stay
There are a number of accommodation facilities in the national park that range from budget, mid range and luxury. They prepare standard meals and offer bedding services to tourists. Examples include red chili rest camp, Pakuba safari lodge, Para safari lodge, Kabalega wilderness lodge, Chobe safari lodge, Budongo eco lodge and many others.

Posted by admin in Uganda

Must Watch On A Uganda Wildlife Safari

Uganda is one place on earth where people seeking to see wild animals in the jungle can visit. It’s a landlocked country located in east Africa neighboring Kenya, Rwanda, south Sudan, Tanzania and Democratic Republic of Congo. The country has a number of tourist attractions and among the most selling and preferred tourism destination. Uganda must be among the must visit tourism destinations just because of her natural beauty and the unique encounters people are likely to have while in the country. The attractions in Uganda cannot be fully exploited in short time and therefore lets look at must watch attractions by tourists on a tip to Uganda.

Primates
Primates are the closest wild animals to human beings having over 98% DNA similar to humans. The major primates in Uganda include the chimpanzees in Kibale forest national park and the mountain gorillas of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park and Mgahinga forest national park.

Kibale forest national park has the highest number of chimpanzees in east and central Africa and the best place to go for chimpanzee tracking. There are trails in the park that tourists follow as they track chimpanzees and the tourists interested in getting closer to the chimpanzees can go for the chimpanzee habituation experience where they spend the whole day in the wild learning more about their closest relatives.

The mountain gorillas are the other primates that tourists should not miss meeting while on Uganda wildlife safaris. Mountain gorillas are very endangered species that are only remaining 900 on the planet. Half of the number (over 400) inhabits the jungles of Bwindi and Mgahinga gorilla parks and any one visiting any of the two national parks is guaranteed of seeing a mountain gorilla. Best mountain gorilla experiences can be experienced during the dry season and its always the peak season.

The Source Of The Great River Nile
River Nile is the longest river in the world and it starts its journey from lake victoria at Jinja in Uganda. The source of the Nile at Jinja was discovered in the 19th centaury by john Speke a European explorer and since then, the source of the Nile at Jinja became known to many people around the world.

There are boats that always take tourists around the giving them a chance to clearly view the source of the Nile. There are also many craft shops around where one can buy souvenirs for remembrances of their visit to Uganda.

Those interested in exploring lake victoria can also go for boat trips along the lake with sightings of a number of bird species. Adventurous tourists interested in thrilling experiences can explore the source of the Nile in locally made canoes. For remarkable experiences, tourists are advised to visit the source of the Nile in the evening hours in order to get a chance of viewing the sun setting over the Nile.

Other major activities that can be experienced by tourists along the Nile include white water rafting along the rapids in Jinja.

The Big Five Mammals
These mainly include lions, elephants, leopards, rhinos and buffaloes that can be seen in the Murchison falls conservation area. Lions, elephants, buffaloes and leopards can be seen within the national park during game drives and boat trips while the rhinos can be seen at the Zziwa rhino sanctuary located in Nakasongola and can be viewed en route to Murchison.

Leopards are nocturnal animals and can be best viewed during night game drives or very early in the morning when they are coming back from their major hunting areas.

There are many other attractions that tourists on Uganda wildlife safaris must not miss some of which include the unique bird species and above all the unique cultural practices by the people.

Posted by admin in Blog, Uganda

Mount Elgon Hiking Safari

Mountain is located in eastern Uganda near the border with Kenya. Standing at a height of 4,321meters above sea level, mount Elgon is the 7th highest mountain on the African continent but with the largest volcanic mountain base worldwide. The mountain is surrounded by unique ecosystems that are homes to a number of wildlife species. Because of this, it was gazetted as a national park to protect and conserve the available natural tourism attractions in has.

The mountain is a dormant volcano that stopped erupting several years ago. It however has very fertile soils that attracted various people around the slopes for agricultural purposes. As one of the leading tourist destinations in Uganda, many tourists visit mount Elgon and they engage in various tourism activities like:

Hiking
Hiking mountain Elgon to its highest point Wagagai is not very easy but it offers great and unforgettable tourism experiences with great views of Mbale the nearby town. The mountain has some of the well-developed hiking trails that a group of tourists can use uphill. While on the mountain hike, there are possibilities of viewing various flora and fauna at the different vegetation layers at certain heights of the mountain.
All those interested in hiking this famous mountain should prepare well and have the necessary equipment like jackets, sleeping bags, tents, raincoats snacks and others. Sweaters are very essential because the top layers have cold temperatures that go below 0 degrees at night.
Hiking mount Elgon enables a tourist view one of the world’s largest calderas.

Birding
While around mount Elgon, tourists can engage in birding tracking some of the beautiful birds in the area. Some of the birds that can be viewed include African blue flycatchers; white chinned prinia, Jackson’s francolin, bronze napped pigeon and many others. Most of the bid species can be viewed around trees or others freely flying in the air.

Cultural visits
The Bagishu communities that have unique African traditional cultures that offer amazing and remarkable experiences to the tourists surround Mount Elgon and therefore any tourist to the area should not miss out an activity by the Bagishu.

The Imbalu initiation ceremony is what makes the Bagishu culture very unique from other Ugandan tribes. The Imbalu initiation ceremony involves circumcising boys to transform them to real men (adulthood). This circumcision is done in the open with many on viewers and the boys being circumcised are not expected to cry or show any sign of fear to prove their braveness and manhood. A visit to the Bagishu also offers great chances of learning the local ways of life especially cooking some unique cuisines especially Kalamalewa (bamboo shoots)

Nature walks and a visit to Sipi falls
Sipi falls are located outside mount Elgon national park but are among the leading tourist attractions in the mount Elgon area. The Sipi has three major falls that pours over 69 meters, 87 meters and 100 meters high cliffs. The falls offer beautiful scenic views especially of the water while viewing it from the back in the cave.

Nature walks can be done around the forests and caves with en route views of a variety of wild life species the mountain has in stock. Those interested can visit the various caves at the mountain base for an overnight adventure.

Getting there
Getting to the mount Elgon area from Kampala takes about a 2-3 hours drive through Jinja to Mbale on a well-developed tarmac. It’s about 235 kilometers from Kampala.

Where to sleep
Mbale town has well developed accommodation facilities that offer standard services to the visitor’s. Examples include Mbale resort hotel, mount Elgon hotel, green gardens, new mount Elgon view hotels and many others. For those interested in sleeping in the national park premises, there are also a number of accommodation facilities that include Kapkwata guesthouse, Suam guest house, Kapkwai forest exploration center bandas, students hostel and campsite, Sasa river camp and many others.

Posted by admin in Blog, Uganda

Tracking the Mountain Gorillas

Tracking the endangered Mountain Gorilla is one of  the Most strenuous yet rewarding safari experiences one can ever have. Though this gentle giant ape is highly venerated, coming in close contact with it is not a picnic but rather a real voyage through the jungle with steep slippery hills and mist covered rain forests.

The mountain Gorilla (Gorilla berengei berengei) is an endangered ape whose population in the world has been estimated to be less than 800 individuals all living in Uganda, Rwanda and D R Congo. They often rotate with in the big chant of forest vegetation that cuts across the boarders of the mentioned 3 countries. From Bwindi and Mgahinga parks to Virunga and then Volcanoes, the last remaining Mountain Gorilla population finds its home.

where to track the Mountain Gorillas from

As mentioned earlier, this man’s evolutionary cousin can be tracked from the 3 countries although most commonly is Uganda and Rwanda since D R Congo is marred by insecurity and several rebel activities that may put the lives of tourist at risk.

A gorilla permit in Rwanda costs 750USD while in Uganda is at 600USD but some times goes down to 350USD in the low season (March-May). Tracking in either of the countries may give more less the same experience and the procedure and rules are the same.

In Rwanda, access to the Volcanoes national park is much easier with a shorter distance unlike the one in Uganda where Bwindi national park has a longer distance from the capital Kampala (about 6-8 hours drive).

Tracking the Gorillas

Accessing the Gorilla permits can be either from a tour operator/ travel agent or directly from the Wild life authority. However the later may be inconveniencing since you need to secure one in advance because the demand is very high and only about 9 groups of 8 individuals are allowed to see the Gorillas per day in Uganda with each group tracking one Gorilla family. This means that you need to secure your permit a month before the date of tracking in order to be on a safer side.

You should come along with tracking gear that may include gum boots, raincoats, jackets, long sleeved shirts/ blouses, and drinking water. Walking sticks are available for purchase as well as porters to help you carry your luggage. Rain may be expected at any time of the day since the area is a typical rainforest.

Tracking the gorillas requires a relatively good  degree of fitness since it involves walking up hills amidst dense shrubs  and cold conditions. Children below 12 years are not eligible for tracking the gorillas and any one with a communicable disease like flu or diarrhea is forbidden from tracking since it posses a threat to the life of a mountain Gorilla.

Tracking starts at 8am after the 7 o’clock briefing by the Senior park officials where you are given rules to follow during tracking and allocated a gorilla family to track . The time one spends on this expeditious activity is not certain since it is dependent on where the gorillas will have spent the previous night. It is normally estimated to be between 2 and 8 hours.

All your struggles and hustles will certainly be soon forgotten when you finally meet face to face with the Mountain Gorillas. You are guaranteed a full hour with them at a distance not closer than 5meters as you observe their feeding habits, grooming the young ones, mating and playing. You are allowed to take photos but with no flash lights.

After tracking, you may take a community tour to the neighboring communities to explore their culture and daily life style. Taste their local dishes, participate in bear brewing and traditional dances which will consummate your safari experience. The encounter with the Mountain Gorilla ranks among the absolute highlights of an African Safari.

Conservation Projects.

An American zoologist Diana Fossey who entered Rwanda in the 1960s studied the Mountain Gorilla life for 18 years and began one of the most remarkable and venerated efforts of saving the life of a mountain Gorilla which she discovered was on verge of extinction. She worked hard to fight poaching of these apes amidst sharp resistance from the illegal traders and poachers who eventually took her life.

At the time of her death in 1985, the world had heard her humanitarian call and began to respond positively by funding conservation projects that later saw the gazetting of the Gorilla national parks in Rwanda and Uganda.

The Uganda Wildlife Authority works hand in hand with the neighboring communities to enhance that the few individuals of this endangered species may survive and recover from the plight of endangerment in the near future. Its upon this basis that the money you pay for the Permit, part of it is used to facilitate conservation efforts and part is given to the communities that were affected in gazetting parks that shelter these apes.

Your gorilla tour in Uganda, Rwanda and Congo is not only a life memorable adventure but also a step towards Mountain Gorilla protection from extinction. Be part of the epic story to save your evolutionary cousin-the Mountain Gorilla.

Posted by admin in Blog, WildLife