Gorilla Express – 5 Night Safari
“6 day fly-in Gorilla & Wildlife Safari in Uganda”
“6 day fly-in Gorilla & Wildlife Safari in Uganda”
Short and sweet, this 6-day fly-in safari allows for ample time to track Mountain Gorilla’s twice! And game viewing in the wildlife prolific Queen Elizabeth National Park!
The perfect set-departure small-group Gorilla & wildlife safari for those travellers short on time but still want to experience two highlights of Uganda.
This safari starts with a night in Entebbe to relax and recover from international flights and connections. The following day you will then fly to Bwindi where you will spend the following 3 nights in the luxury Buhoma Lodge. From here you have the opportunity to track Mountain Gorillas (twice if you want!) and experience other fascinating activities in the area. There are optional community walks, forest walks and birding in the region (many special and endemic birds occur here!).
On day 5 the group will then travel by customized vehicle to Queen Elizabeth National Park, allowing time to visit the local Ishaha Community project en-route. Spending one night in the luxury tented camp Ishasha Wilderness Lodge, you will explore the famous Ishasha wilderness sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park on game drive activities. The area is well known for its local lions who like to climb and sleep in trees, so keen an eye out!
On this hosted FLY IN safari is included domestic flights to save those long journeys by vehicle. Luxury accommodation, friendly hosts, professional guides and custom made safari vehicles promise to make this the Uganda trip of a lifetime!
For those wanting to stay longer, view the extended Best of Uganda here.
Day 1: Entebbe – airport transfer. Overnight Hotel No. 5 or similar.
Day 2: Transfer to the airport for your flight to Bwindi – overnight at Buhoma lodge or similar. Optional afternoon forest walk or cultural visit may be enjoyed.
Day 3 & 4: Gorilla trekking may be done on day 3 or 4, depending on when permits are purchased. If you would like to trek twice, enquire at time of booking – permits will need to be pre-purchased.
Optional community walk/forest walk/birding. Overnight Buhoma.
Day 5: Travel to Queen Elizabeth National Park, allowing time to stop off at the local Ishasha Community project en route. Afternoon game drive in QENP. Overnight Ishasha Wilderness Camp.
Day 6: Depart to airstrip for flight to Entebbe.
This is normally an afternoon flight KIH to EBB, check when booking. Do not book INTERNATIONAL FLIGHT BEFORE 19h00.
On arrival at Entebbe International Airport you will be met by a representative and transferred to Hotel No.5
Set on the shores of Lake Victoria, Entebbe is a small town that is easy to explore on foot or local boda bodas (motorbike taxis). Explore the markets, hunt for souvenirs or crafts, meander through the Botanical Gardens or relax with a boat cruise on Lake Victoria. You’ll find a wide variety of restaurants, bars and clubs where you can sample the local beer, catch a game of football and meet the friendly locals.
Nestled in the leafy suburbs of Entebbe, Hotel No.5 is a stylish boutique hotel. With luxurious rooms facing onto the garden and swimming pool, this is a great option for guests looking for an intimate stay in a tranquil setting. Make yourself at home – unwind beside the swimming pool, pamper yourself with a spa treatment, or work up a sweat in the hotel gym. Attention to detail, outstanding dining and an attentive guest experience are synonymous with Hotel No 5.
This morning’s flight on a light aircraft to Kihihi airstrip takes just over an hour. Transfer through local villages and along mountain roads to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, a World Heritage site (a drive of +- 90 mins).
Considered the most diverse forest in Uganda, Bwindi is one of the richest ecosystems in East Africa and home to over 120 mammals, 345 species of birds, 200 species of butterflies and 160 species of trees. The park contains an estimated one half of the world’s population of the endangered Mountain Gorilla, making it an extremely valuable conservation site.
Set within the National Park and just steps away from the Gorilla Trekking headquarters, Buhoma Lodge offers cosy accommodation in wooden chalets with uninterrupted views of the pristine rain forest canopy. Renowned for its warm welcome and attentive service, Buhoma is an eco friendly lodge operating on solar power. Each of the ten wooden chalets has a private verandah and enormous windows, giving spectacular views over the forest. Awaken to chattering birds, and watch out for the occasional mountain gorilla that has ventured right in to visit the lodge.
Few words can describe the thrill of today’s lifetime experience! Coming face to face with mountain gorillas is a rare wildlife encounter that is exhilarating, humbling and enthralling. Experienced guides and trackers will accompany your party on an early morning trek into the dense rain forest on the steep mountain slopes. Please note that gorilla trekking is strenuous with treks ranging from 45 mins up to eight hours, at high altitudes in hot African conditions. The thrill of the hour you spend quietly observing these gentle giants once you find them is so worth the trek to get there! Although mountain gorillas are wild animals and sightings cannot be guaranteed, viewing success rates are over 95%.
Head back to Buhoma Lodge for a complimentary massage after your trek, or explore the surrounding Bwindi community.
* Please note that days 3 and 4 are interchangeable depending on when we can secure gorilla permits *
Those with additional pre-purchased permits will depart for a second gorilla trekking experience. Guests not trekking have the day free to explore the Bwindi area – optional activities include forest walks, a visit to a local school/orphanage/hospital or Batwa pygmy village, and some local curio shopping.
Depart Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park this morning and travel to Ishasha in the southern part of Queen Elizabeth National Park (a 2-3 hour drive), with a brief stop enroute at a community project near Ishasha Village.
Located in the western arm of the Great Rift Valley, the park is home to a wide variety of wildlife including elephants, leopard, lions, hippos, buffalo, Uganda kob, baboon, and many species of birds. With both a riverine and savannah habitat, the southern Ishasha area includes the massive Maramagambo, one of the largest surviving natural forests in Uganda, and is home to the tree climbing lions typically found in the area. Afternoon game drives will be enjoyed in the Ishasha area, looking for the huge herds of buffalo, elephant, Uganda kob and of course the famous tre-climbing lion typically found in the area.
This exclusive 10 tented camp offers the only luxury accommodation in the remote southern sector of Queen Elizabeth. Set on the banks of the Ntungwe River, the eco-friendly Ishasha Wilderness Camp is an idyllic retreat for people who truly enjoy remote wilderness. The thatched central lounge and dining area offers a comfortable area for guests to enjoy wholesome dining, although meals are often served ‘al fresco’ next to the river. The outdoor fireplace is the perfect place for guests to relax with sundowners and wind down after an exciting day’s game viewing.
Highly recommended to book in advance are the bush sundowners and the bush breakfast, both hugely memorable experiences in beautiful settings.
Transfer to the airstrip for your return flight to Entebbe. Please do not book an international flight out of Entebbe before 19h00 in case of delays.
|6 Day Gorilla Express – Guaranteed on min 2 pax||1 Jan – 31 Dec 2020|
|Per person sharing HIGH season||USD 3000 including flights ($500) EBB-KIH-EBB|
|Per person sharing LOW season
(April, May & Nov)
|USD 2765 including flights ($500) EBB-KIH-EBB|
|Single room supplement||USD 620 High Season
USD 450 Low Season
|Gorilla permits excluded||USD 600 USD 700 from Jul 2020|
|Forest walk & park fees Bwindi||USD 70|
|Community Visit – Bwindi||USD 30|
|Batwa (Pygmies) Community Visit||USD 85|
|2nd Gorilla permit incl purchase fee & trek transfer||USD 670 USD 770 from Jul 2020|
Please note – two gorilla trekking options are available on this itinerary. Please specify your permit requirements at time of booking.
On scheduled safaris, they typically buy permits for Buhoma & Ruhija, which are accessible from Buhoma area. One of the Buhoma families, and the Ruhija families, require a road transfer to the start point. (Ruhija transfer is at an additional cost to be advised at time of booking) This does not deviate from the enjoyment of the trek (and could be considered as enhancing your trip as you are seeing a different part of the region). Your permit may be booked for day 3 or 4, depending on availability of permits.
Guided forest walk Bwindi including park fees Bwindi
Ishasha Community visit Bwindi Bwindi
Batwa Pygmies visit Bwindi
2nd Gorilla trek including purchase fee Bwindi
Community project Ishasha
Bush breakfast at Ishasha Ishasha
Bush sundowners at Ishasha Ishasha
MURCHISON FALLS: River Nile, game drives, chimpanzee trekking, fishing, bird-watching. Suggested add on 3-4 nights.
KIBALE: Chimpanzees and other primates, forest walks, crater lakes. Suggested add on 2 nights.
JINJA: Source of the Nile, adventure activities including white water rafting, quad biking. Suggested add on 2-3 nights.
ENTEBBE: City life and local craft shopping, boat cruises or fishing on Lake Victoria, Botanical Gardens, Uganda Wild Life Education Centre/ Ngamba Island.
We offer 6, 8 and 10 day small group, set departures.
Yellow fever inoculation is compulsory & malaria prophylactics are recommended. For gorilla trekking it is imperative that you are healthy and free of any disease or virus – officials do have the right to refuse entry if you are found to have or show any signs of communicable illnesses. Should you opt to spend time participating in any UWEC Wildlife Integration programme, you may require additional inoculations and health clearances.
Most nationalities require a visa to enter Uganda. All visitors who require a visa should apply through the online application system prior to arrival at https://visas.immigration.go.ug. Cost is USD 50,single entry. Passports must be valid for a minimum of 6 months after return date of travel, or 12 months in the case of UK nationals, and have at least 3 blank pages in it. The newly established EAC Visa allows entry into Uganda, Rwanda and Kenya for one fee of USD100 – handy if you are visiting all three regions.
TRAVEL INSURANCE: Is compulsory for all guests.
Contact safariFRANK to get started on your safari of a lifetime!