From primary school level, we have been studying that Uganda is the “Pearl of Africa”. This is true because the country is gifted by nature. Though Kampala has many hangouts, some times you need to get out of this congested city to some far places for a weekend. The country has many amazing places to visit and spend a weekend out of the city.
This weekend, Lets plan a 3 day gorilla safari to Bwindi Impenetrable National park. This park is located in south western part of the country, about 9 hour drive from Kampala along Masaka-Mbarara highway. The park is a world heritage site and the most famous in Uganda because it inhabits half of the World’s remaining population of the endangered mountain gorillas. Gorilla tracking is the main tourist activity. Bwindi Forest was the home of the indigenous batwa people (Pygmies).
What to do on the 3 Day Gorilla safari for a weekend?
- Gorilla Tracking Experience
- Stop of the Equator
- Mpambire Drum makers’ village tour
- Lake Buyonyi
- Canoe Ride
- Batwa Cultural Entertainment
Proposed 3 day Weekend Travel Program to Bwindi National park
Friday: Day 1: Transfer to Bwindi Impenetrable National park
Leave Kampala in the morning (7:00am) and take western direction along Masaka highway with enroute stop at the Equator for photographs, continue through Masaka to Mbarara town where you will stop over for lunch at Agip motel or Igongo cultural center. Continue with the journey through Ntungamo and Kabale, arrive to the park by evening, check in your lodge, refresh and get ready for cultural entertainment from the Batwa people, diner and overnight.
Saturday: Day 2: Gorilla Tracking, Transfer to Lake Bunyonyi
Wake up earl for breakfast and transfer to the park headquarters for an assembly, briefing and group allocation. Every one must have a gorilla permit that acts as permission to join the trek in search for the gorillas in their natural habitat. The gorilla permits mist be booked in advance from Uganda Wildlife Authority. It costs UGX250.000 for Ugandans, and US$475 for Foreign residents as well as US$600 for foreign non residents. Each gorilla group is visited by a maximum of 8 persons per day. This guided trek is quiet strenuous, going through steep and slippery jungle grounds, can take 2-7 hours depending on how the gorillas move in their natural habitat. You are advised to carry enough drinking water and some snacks because you can’t tell how long you are likely to hike. Once you meet the gorillas, you are allowed to stay with them for 1 hour, take photos (avoid using flash cameras), and record videos, enjoy gorillas feeding, mothers breast feeding and juveniles swinging on trees. Descend to the base for lunch, and organize to transfer to beautiful Lake Bunyonyi in Kabale for dinner and overnight.
Sunday: Day 3: Canoe Ride, Drive back to Kampala
Breakfast followed by canoe ride on lake Bunyonyi, visit different Islands before driving back to Kampala. Expect enroute stop over at Mpambire drum makers, arrive in Kampala by early evening.
End of the tour
What to carry on a Gorilla safari?
- Warm cloths because the place is cold at night
- Rain jacket because we expect rain any time
- Garden gloves
- Hiking boots / shoes covering up to ankle level
- Long pants
- Long sleeved shirts or Blouse
- A hut and sun glasses
- Insect repellent
Where to Stay on a Gorilla safari in Uganda?
Bwindi Impenetrable National park has many accommodation options to cater for different visitors with different budget levels. Here we find camp sites, low budget lodges, mid range /deluxe accommodation and super luxury lodges.