Let’s go see Endangered Mountain Gorillas in Uganda on an 8-day small group safari with Africa Geographic Photographers Ernest Porter and Karen Blackwood! We are accepting only 8 guests, taking 4 per vehicle. We are award-winning photographers published in Africa Geographic, National Geographic Daily Dozen, Nature’s Best Photography, and more. We love ensuring that you will get quality photos, and we’ll coach you as much or as little as you like on this trip.
Day 1 (24 Aug 2019): Arrival day in Entebbe, Uganda. You will be picked up from the airport on arrival and then driven to our Kampala Hotel for a rest after the long flights. Overnight at Cassia Lodge, meals at your own expense. Please ask about an early arrival to try to photograph Shoebill Storks. If we get 3 or more interested photographers, we can add on a short trip prior to the Trek.
Day 2 (25 Aug 2019): Transfer to Kibale Forest NP–We will have breakfast and then travel to Kibale Forest NP in western Uganda. We will have an en route stop for lunch and photography. We should arrive in the afternoon for our 3-night stay at Crater Safari Lodge
Day 3 (26 Aug 2019): Today is a relaxed day to enjoy a Bigodi Wetlands Nature Walk, paddle around the lake in canoes, or just kick back at Crater Lodge. After breakfast, we will go on Bigodi Wetlands Nature Walk where we will view and photograph up to 8 species of primates, especially Colobus monkeys, as well as a number of bird species. We will return for a lunch break and can later go for a canoe ride along the lake. Meals and overnight at Crater Safari Lodge.
Day 4 (27 Aug 2019): Chimp tracking and optional Bigodi Wetlands Walk or canoes—After breakfast, we will drive to the park headquarters for a briefing about the chimpanzee trek after which we will enter the forest, where we will enjoy the sights and sounds of nature as we search for wild chimpanzees. We will encounter man’s closest relatives in their natural habitat. Chimps are comfortable around people, and will often sit quietly while you photograph them. After tracking, we will return to the Lodge for a lunch break. In the afternoon or evening you can opt for another Wetlands walk or a canoe ride. Meals and overnight at Crater Lodge. Afternoon and evening optional activities not included.
Day 5 (28 Aug 2019): Transfer to Queen Elizabeth NP & Kazinga Channel Boat cruise– After breakfast, we will drive to Queen Elizabeth NP via the crater lakes of Ndali & Kaseda. The drive is also a game drive, and we may see elephants, kob, topi, and more. We will have a lunch break and relax. At 4:00 pm, we will go for a Kazinga Channel boat cruise where we will view wildlife including Nile crocodiles, the largest concentration of hippos in Africa, buffalo, birds, elephants, and other species. We will cruise by a fishing village, where we may see people preparing the nets for the night’s fishing. We will be back at the Lodge in time for a delicious dinner. Meals and overnight at Enganzi Lodge
Day 6 (29 Aug 2019): Ishasha Sector Game & Transfer to Bwindi–We will have an early breakfast and transfer to Bwindi with an en-route photography intensive Game Drive in the Ishasha sector, where we may see elephants, Topi, birds, and if we are lucky, we will see the tree climbing lions hanging in fig trees. We will then head to Savanna Hotel for a lunch break, then continue to Bwindi’s Ruhija sector for our stay at Bakiga Lodge
Day 7 (30 Aug 2019): Gorilla tracking & Batwa tour- After breakfast, we will head to the park headquarters to be briefed about the do’s and don’t’s of Gorilla Trekking by our Rangers. We will take a packed lunch for the trek. We will head into the forested mountains, where we will meet the rare, endangered Mountain Gorillas. We will spend an hour taking photos, watching their antics and behavior, and enjoying the presence of of these magnificent apes, so closely related to us. Later in the afternoon, we will visit the Batwa community, where we will discover more about the local people’s culture. If we have time, we may also visit a local orphanage or school, or enjoy another cultural experience. Meals and overnight at Bakiga Lodge.
Day 8 (31 Aug 2019): Transfer to Kigali, Rwanda–After breakfast, we will drive down the mountain and across the Rwandan border to Kigali, Rwanda’s capital city. If we arrive early enough, we will tour the Kigali Genocide museum, and local markets which abound in photographic opportunities. Afterwards, we will head to the airport for goodbyes, or to your Hotel, depending on your schedule
Price is $3500/person double occupancy. We can accommodate single occupancy travelers, please email us at info@EagleEyeSafaris.com to inquire. Deposit is $1000 to ensure permits. Balance is due 60 days prior to the Gorilla Trek.
The Tour includes:
-Airport Pick-up and Drop-off
-Gorilla Tracking Permit
-Chimpanzee Tracking Permit
– One Bigodi Nature walk
– Canoe rides
– Park Entrance Fees
– Kazinga Channel Cruise
– Batwa Community Visit
– Accommodation on Safari from 25 Aug-30 Aug. Hotel in Kigali after safari is at your own expense
-Bottled Water on Safari
– Meals as per the itinerary
– Relevant government taxes
– Full-Time English-speaking drivers and guides
– Meals in Kampala
– Meals and accommodation in Kigali
-Drinks other than bottled water
-Yellow Fever Vaccinations (required)
-$25 Gorilla Trek Porter Fee (mandatory)
-Trip and Medical insurance (recommended)
– Activities not mentioned in the itinerary
-Anything not mentioned as included
Gratuities Guidelines (This is only a guideline. You may use USD, and we will stop at ATMs for Ugandan shillings):
-Drivers ($5-10/day, placed in a group envelope at the end of safari)
-Hotel Staff ($3-5/day; place tips in the Staff Box at reception)
-Chimpanzee Ranger ($10-15, depending on the quality of your experience)
-Bigodi Walk Guide ($5-10)
-Canoe Guide ($5)
-Boat Captain ($5-10)
-Gorilla Ranger/Tracker ($10-20, depending on quality of your experience) There will be a lead Ranger, and several assistant Rangers. You may opt to tip them as well, $5-10. They also appreciate snacks such as granola bars.
-Porter during Gorilla Trek (hiring at $25 is mandatory, gratuity $10-15 depending on level of assistance). He will also appreciate a snack.
We will stop at a safe ATM prior to departure so that you can get Ugandan Shillings. You will not need a lot, but if you plan to buy crafts at the market or from the communities, or snacks during gas/bathroom breaks, you will want to use shillings. You can not exchange Ugandan Shillings in the US. We have found that taking the equivalent of $50-100 USD from the ATM is suffiecient, and any extra can be left as tips before we leave Bakiga Lodge.