THIS IS WHAT YOU CAN EXPECT ON A TRIP AROUND UGANDA. (3)
It is a land of varied natural and cultural encounters that you will find nowhere else on earth. Consequently, a tour around Uganda is like a legendary tale of the people and the jungle. The rainforests, indigenous communities, extensive savannah, salt and fresh water lakes, the source of the longest river in the world, Rwenzori mountains with snow at the equator, all levels of accommodation facilities providing memorable overnight experiences, and many other countless attractions on a landscape inspired by all sorts of physical features. In brief, this is a snapshot of what you can expect and probably what you should not miss on the trip to Uganda;
1-The Mountain gorillas:
Uganda’s highlands in the southwestern part are home to more than half of the world’s mountain gorillas. These gorillas are specifically found in Bwindi impenetrable forest and on the Mgahinga Gorilla National Park; an extension of the Virunga volcanic ranges.
Of the estimated total population of 1063 gorillas by 2021, 459 are in Bwindi-Uganda and 604 in the three national parks of Mgahinga Gorilla National Park, Volcanoes National Park, and Virunga National Park in Uganda, Rwanda, and Congo respectively. Of the Ugandan population, up to 18 habituated gorilla groups are found in Bwindi and one in Mgahinga at the various gates.
A day with the gorillas means up to eight hours of trekking in the jungle as you track a chosen family of these giants. After finding the target family, you spend up to one hour taking one of the most memorable moments in pictures and physically as you learn their hierarchy and behavior. After the gorilla tracking experience, you choose to relax on Lake Bunyonyi in Kigezi highlands, dubbed the Switzerland of Uganda.
2-The big 5 and savannahs safaris:
When you want to relax in one of Uganda’s low-land savannah parks. Queen Elizabeth, Murchison Falls, Lake Mburo, Kidepo valley are some of such safari destinations in Uganda. Looking for wild animals is fun everywhere, but looking for the big five in these extensive savannah parks, with a perfect climate and landscape is a highlight of many trippers.
The wildlife wonders in Uganda are unmatched. The tree-climbing lions, the wildlife safari drives, glorious boat cruises with wild animals lined on the edges of the water bodies cooling off, tracking the cats and mongoose with the researchers as they tell you the most fascinating facts about these animals. You have chances of witnessing large herds of large mammals in unspoiled landscapes. The buffalos, elephants, giraffes, eland, hippos are all in their natural habitat.
Each savannah park is gifted with unique landscapes and cultures that make a good blend of these safaris. Kyambura underground forest, The chain of lakes in Lake Mburo below the Kigarama hills, Outstanding mountains, and valleys packed with wildlife in Kidepo, the crater lakes on Bunyaruguru highlands, the Nile delta, a cradle for wild animals. The salt mining experience that has been practiced the same way by hand over centuries, the farming, fishing, food and cuisine, dancing, and crafts production techniques of the local communities living next to the parks will all leave you inspired during the big 5 safaris in the Savannah.
3-The highest mountain range in Africa:
Rwenzori Mountain is a unique mountain in Africa. a mountain range formed by earth movement estimated to be 1000 sq km. Rwenzori Mountains overlook Queen Elizabeth National park and influence the climate in these surrounding National Parks; Queen Elizabeth, Kibale, and Semuliki.
Rwenzori is a unique landscape in all aspects. The mountain has permanent snow on mount Stanley. The highest point of this mountain is 5109 meters on margarita peak. During this trek, you will be participating in a range of world-standard trekking experiences. In the past, it was one trail on this mountain and trekkers had no choice of trail. Currently, several trails have been developed to cater to different interests. You will choose from trekking for a few hours, a day, or multi-days on this unique landscape. All trails going to the lower peaks don’t require trekking expertise while treks to the high peaks will require prior trekking skills and special equipment.
Even for those not interested in the mountains, Rwenzori has something to offer. The community living in the foothills is an ideal stopover. Here you will learn the local ways of life that show this subsistence farming community has employed traditional skills to survive in the foothills for years. In the communities, you will participate in village cultural walks, cooking tours, homestays, and forest walks looking for chameleons or just staying at the camp taking the beautiful views of the peaks.
4-The world’s largest caldera:
Resting on top of Mount Elgon, next to the border with Kenya, is Uganda’s oldest physical feature which is also the world’s largest volcanic base estimated to be 4,000km². It is the oldest and largest lone volcanic mountain in the region. Currently standing at 4321 meters high. However, Geologists estimate that Mount Elgon was at one time higher than Kilimanjaro many million years ago and is the oldest of the kind in east Africa.
A trek to the top or lower slopes of Mount Elgon is uniquely admired by travelers. There are multiday volcano climbing treks on multiple trails leading up to Wagagai peak at 4321m. These trails include the Sasa trail, Sipi trail, Piswa trail, and alternative hiking Combining several trails or doing the transboundary option between Uganda and Kenya. Other experiences include birding and nature walking. During the visit, you should not miss the magical Sipi falls on river Sipi where you can do rock climbing, abseiling, and the famous coffee experience.
On the way to or from Mount Elgon, you have an opportunity to take an adventure on River Nile, the world’s longest river. The options here include bungy jumping, rafting at different grades, tubing, kayaking, and other adventures such as ziplining over the Nile. This spot is a key highlight of many people when you participate in the local tours which include horseriding, cycling, quad biking, and visiting the source of the Nile, and or taking the Jinja city tour to learn the industrial history of Uganda.
5 – A range of community accommodation options to select from
The introduction of community-owned and run accommodation facilities has brought such an enriched mix of hotels and places to stay while in Uganda. The community-owned accommodations in Uganda are a plus to the true African experience. And it means people of all budgets can equally experience the pearl of Uganda. In the past, one had to stay in expensive hotels, a factor that prevented a big number from visiting.
You may have heard that Ugandans are such hospitable people, the weather is so good, their culture is unique in every Connor of the country and the food is good too. Staying with the people doesn’t only give you more to see and learn about this country but also will cut your budget to less than half of what you would otherwise plan to spend on the same holiday in hotels. This then makes Uganda a province for budget travelers, cultural lovers, nature lovers as well as luxury lovers.
6 -The primate capital of East Africa:
After the Rwenzori Mountains, is a good time to go to the Chimpanzee and primate capital in Kibale National Park. This is another rainforest that is packed with wildlife wonders. The connection heading here takes you through the crater lakes area, offering great trekking opportunities. These are not just crater lakes. You will be driving through a spot with over 50 crater lakes in one area. Side by side with the craters, you will find lodges, forests, and homes patched on the edges of these beautiful water bodies. In the crater lakes area, you can choose to participate in different community activities including; Fishing, cycling, village exploration, canoeing, or trekking to the top of the world or other trails.
Kibale National Park has the densest population of chimps in east Africa. You can choose to do ordinary chimp tracking to spend an hour with them or Chimp habituation experience where you spend a day with these wild chimps in their natural habitat to learn their behaviors. In both cases, you will be in the jungle with rangers interpreting everything about chimps. Observe the chimps to compare their behavior with humans and prove that they are the closest relatives with 99.8% same DNA as humans.
7-The world’s most powerful waterfalls:
Heading north you will be going to Murchison Falls National Park. It is the oldest and largest national park in Uganda. Covered with a mix of habitats, you will find forests, savannah, wetlands, and the Nile River as the main feature dissecting it. The largest rainforest here is Budongo with chimps, birds, and different sorts of wildlife. You will participate in game drives, game walks, boat cruises on the Nile, and assorted cultural encounters. You will be amazed by the power of the Murchison falls when you view the entire Nile river ramming in the 7-meter curve of the rock.
Murchison falls area also offers an opportunity of visiting the Rhinos in the Ziwa Rhino sanctuary. This sanctuary is the only one of the kind in Uganda after reintroduction to conserve these giants. At ziwa, you have chances to participate in birding tours, canoe tours, Rhino and other wildlife viewing activities, or looking for the shoebill stork.
8-The people of Uganda:
Between or next to the National Parks and other wildlife areas, you will have an opportunity of meeting the communities as you participate in their different local life aspects. Uganda has over 56 tribes and ethnic groups of people. Every tribe has a unique way of life from the food, ways of dressing, dialect, music, and dance, cuisine, and cooking. In all cases, the culture of Uganda is attached to the natural heritage. At every National park, you will be able to combine the local cultures with the wildlife experiences offered by the safaris.
The people of Uganda are probably the most hospitable. In the country, they mainly live in extended family attachments that collectively work for the common good in their society. The dressing code, music, delicious local foods, household lifestyles, and a good social environment will be a key highlight at every destination. If you want to get a close insight into the people and culture, you can choose to stay in the community lodges and homestay where you will be able to share more with them through the trip.
9-The crater lakes area of western Uganda:
Though crater lakes are spread across Uganda, the southwestern region has one unique area with over 50 of them clustered together. This is called the crater lakes area of Uganda. It extends on a short area between Kibale and Queen Elizabeth National parks. The area lays below the Rwenzori Mountains. This area offers great opportunities for scenic tours, camping experiences, trekking, and nature exploration activities. The crater lakes area is located in the same neighborhood as Uganda’s key National Parks. You can never get a better reflection of life in Uganda than the one you get from the crater lakes area.
This location offers the best Uganda experience meeting the people to see how they relate to wildlife and landscapes. You will have opportunities to participate in traditional fishing, canoeing, crafts making, and farming livelihoods.
The crater lakes are is located near Kibale and Queen Elizabeth National park. Before and after the crater lakes visit, you can have an opportunity to participate in park activities including chimp and primate tracking, wildlife safaris, boat cruises birding tours in these neighboring national parks.
10). Rainforest and Community tours:
This is the only community-owned and run, tourism business that brings together community experiences and integrates them with wildlife safaris. At Rainforest and Community Tours, we are honored to bring you to the true, pearl of Africa, to witness these beauties through the eyes of the local communities. For your ultimate safari in Uganda, please contact us today. We have plenty of safari ideas in the background, that our communities live every day. If you can’t find a trip from the ones listed on the website, we will tailor a perfect trip that suits your interests.