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6 Day Gorilla Jungle & Hiking Adventure

Created with Sketch. Entebbe, Bwindi Impenetrable Forest
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Duration

6 Days 5 Nights

Tour Type

Daily Tour

Group Size

6 people

Languages

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Overview

The 6 Day Gorilla Jungle & Hiking Adventure takes you on an enchanting exploration into the Eastern Africa mountain jungles, hiking the steep slops, through misty shrubs and age old huge forest trees, crossing water streams and following trails till you find a habituated family of mountain gorillas and spend an exhilarating  hour in their presence. The whole experience could change the way you feel about nature forever, at least that’s what’s accounts of those that have been there say.

To test your love for nature and the the natural forest jungle, you’ll also be challenged to cross the misty Bwindi Impenetrable forest jungle following a trail from Nkuringo (south of the park) to Buhoma (North of the park), a 7-8 hour hike with unparalleled experience with Africa’s oldest rainforest, meeting various primate species, birds, forest animals like elephants and celebrated animal and plant species on the trail. What better way to enjoy African than on this Gorilla Jungle & Hiking Adventure safari.

Dates

Since this is a private tour, come explore our world in your own style. Set your dates and we’ll book your accommodation and permits based on availability. Note that you can reschedule your trip up to 12 months ahead without extra charge.

Quick Itinerary

  • Day 1: Arrival in Entebbe and transfer to the Guest House – Exc. to Mabamba Swamps (Optional Extra) — Staying at Papyrus Guest House
  • Day 2: AeroLink Flight Entebbe/Kisoro – hike & canoe on Lake Mutanda – Nkuringo — Staying at Nkuringo Bwindi Gorilla Lodge — B, L, D
  • Day 3: Gorilla Jungle Tracking Nkuringo or Rushaga gorilla groups — Staying at Nkuringo Bwindi Gorilla Lodge — B, L, D
  • Day 4: Nombe Forest (birding), Community tour and Buninga Forest (encounter with the Batwa) — Staying at Nkuringo Bwindi Gorilla Lodge —
    B, L, D
  • Day 5: Jungle Hike across Bwindi Impenetrable Forest to Buhoma — Staying at th elegant Mahogany Springs Lodge — B, L, D
  • Day 6: Transfer to Kihihi – AeroLink Flight Kihihi/Entebbe — B, L
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HIGHLIGHTS

  • You'll fly from Entebbe to Kihihi then drive to Nkuringo.
  • Staying in: Papyrus Guesthouse (Entebbe), Nkuringo Mountain Gorilla Lodge and Mahogany Springs in Buhoma.
  • Trekking through Bwindi (main destination) to find the mountain gorillas
  • Africa jungle experience hiking across Bwindi from Nkuringo to Buhoma (7-8 hours)
  • Local flights, meals, transfers and accommodation are taken care of.

Itinerary

Expand All
Day 1: Arrival in Entebbe and transfer to Hotel/Lodge
Day 1: Arrival in Entebbe and transfer to Hotel/Lodge

Arrival in Entebbe as per your international flights and transfer to Papyrus Guest House by your private 5 Day Gorilla Adventure Safari driver/guide.

Optional Extra: Mabamba Shoebill Stock spotting In the afternoon (departure from the hotel at exactly 14.30/15.00 hours) departure by car and local canoe to Mabamba Swamp, one of the best places for spotting the rare shoebill storks. Of course some fortune is needed but rarely does one leave the swamp without seeing one! Many other water birds have chosen this area as their home so birding is always very interesting. Enjoy a relaxing sundowner on Lake Victoria and then return to the Guest House.

• Accommodation: Papyrus Guest House (Garden room)
• Meal Plan: Bed & Breakfast basis; Lunch & Dinner on own’s account

Day 2: Aerolink Flight Entebbe to Kisoro
Day 2: Aerolink Flight Entebbe to Kisoro

AeroLink Flight to Kisoro, hike and canoe across Lake Mutanda

Start your Gorilla Jungle & Hiking Adventure after an early breakfast and transfer to Entebbe International Airport for the AeroLink flight to Kisoro across central and western Uganda. The flight offers some of the greatest aerial views of the green blanket that covers western Uganda's countryside, mountain peaks, spectacular landscapes, hills, cultivated terraces, tropical rainforest, bamboo forests and the majestic chain of the Virunga Volcanoes.

Upon arrival, you private Gorilla Jungle & Hiking Adventure driver will brief you and transfer you to the start of the first nature hiking adventure. The activities for today will be conducted at your discretion and a little bit of physical will be required of your body.

You can either walk for approx. 90 minutes - 4km to Lake Mutanda Sheba’s Camp - or drive 30 minutes to the lake. You then “settle” in a dugout canoe for 2-3 hours of gentle relaxed cruising across the lake, enjoying the beautiful landscape.

After lunch at a restaurant on the lake shores, continuation on foot till Rubuguri (9km – 2/3 hours) where you meet up the vehicle and drive for another 10 km up to the Lodge in Nkuringo (approx 1 hour). Of course you can also be picked up by the vehicle at the lake and drive all the way up to the Lodge. Guests decide!

• Accommodation: Nkuringo Bwindi Gorilla Lodge (Private Cottage) • Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and Drinking Water

Day 3: Gorilla Tracking Adventure in Bwindi
Day 3: Gorilla Tracking Adventure in Bwindi

After a sumptuous breakfast, at around 7:45 am, with packed lunch and drinking water, your private Gorilla Jungle & Hiking Adventure driver/guide will transfer you to the gorilla Park Head Quarters trailhead for the briefing on the gorilla trekking dos and the don’ts. After the briefing, you'll be escorted by a guide and ranger with 6 other travelers into the African jungle for your gorilla adventure.

The beauty of this rain forest is spectacular. The area offers a dramatic, steeply forested landscape and is incredibly dense, but crisscrossed by numerous animal trails allowing access to tourists. The time taken and the terrain vary as per the movements of these great primates.

Hiking through the misty jungle, encountering different animal and plant species on the trail will keep you on the edge until you finally find the gorilla family. You'll be allowed one precious hour with the gentle giants, this is why you are there, make sure you savor every second in that jungle because a lot of emotions will be triggered. M

The gorilla tracking will be done at Nkuringo or at Rushaga (1 hr drive from Nkuringo), as per the gorilla permits obtained.

After your gorilla jungle encounter and out of the jungle, relax at the lodge and, for those who like, at 5.00 pm either stroll through the natives community center or drive up to the “Top of the World” - the name given to the football field, high up in Nkuringo which offers amazing 360 views over the peaks and forests around Nkuringo. A great way to stretch your legs after the gorilla tracking and to enjoy a sundowner.

• Accommodation: Nkuringo Bwindi Gorilla Lodge (Private Cottage)
• Meal Plan: Full Board

Day 4: The African Village Experience, Nombe and Buniga Forests
Day 4: The African Village Experience,  Nombe and Buniga Forests

This Gorilla Jungle & Hiking Adventure morning after a hearty breakfast, enjoy birding in Nombe Pocket Forest – it was part of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and it is still quite impenetrable, however it was cut off from it as people needed more land to live on and cultivate. It can be reached on foot (approx. 1 hour to go and 2 hours to come back) or by vehicle and the visit lasts approx. 2 hours, depending on your time interest.

Lunch at the lodge and at 2.00 pm and then you'll adventure to Buniga Forest Trail Walk, an informative project run by USAID and the local Batwa community.

The Batwa tribe was forced to leave their home in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park in 1991 when it was declared a UNESCO Heritage site for gorillas only. They had been living in the forest as nomadic hunter-gatherers for millennia, in perfect balance with the flora and fauna around. Moving out and suddenly living in communities with a completely different way of life has proven to be a huge challenge. They now survive as best as they can and earn a living explaining their previous life in the forest and their rich heritage.

You'll continue the walk through the community to visit the traditional herbalist and the black smith.

• Accommodation: Nkuringo Bwindi Gorilla Lodge (Private Cottage)
• Meal Plan: Full Board

Day 5: Jungle Hiking Adventure Across Bwindi Impenetrable Forest
Day 5: Jungle Hiking Adventure Across Bwindi Impenetrable Forest

After an early breakfast, start your unforgettable jungle hike (19km - 7-9 hours) directly from Nkuringo Lodge, following the Kashasha River Trail.

This is a full day walk where there would also be the opportunity to visit the Munyaga River Falls, hidden in the forest. However, if you prefer, you can also opt for the shorter jungle hiking and in this case you will be taken by vehicle along the Nteko Ridge till the junction of the Ivy River Trail with the forest (7 km) and they then start their hike from here (13km - 4-5 hours).

Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park is a vast unique natural reserve - monkeys, duikers, bush pigs and some of Bwindi's world renowned bird species plus many butterflies can be sighted. If you are very lucky you may even encounter gorillas! Once part of a much larger forest that included the Virunga Volcanoes in neighboring Rwanda, the park is nowadays an ecological island within a sea of villages and farmland, its conservation importance is immense.

The emphasis of this activity is for your walking guide to share his knowledge of the forest with you, it is not simply an A to B hike. The trail is also an important footpath for local people, particularly on market days, travelling from Nkuringo and Nteko to Buhoma, on the northern boundary of the park.

There is no road through Bwindi so vehicles driving between the two locations have an incredible 170 km bone jarring journey taking 6 to 8 hours. Upon arrival at the park headquarters in Buhoma, continue to your lodge in the outskirts of the national park for some relax and to enjoy the “other” side of Bwindi. If interested possibility to arrange a community walk directly with the guide for later in the evening (optional and to be paid locally).

• Accommodation: Mahogany Springs Lodge (Standard Room)
• Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch (lunch box), Dinner & Drinking Water

Included/Excluded

  • Nkuringo Bwindi Gorilla Lodge (Private Cottage) for 3 nights in full board
  • Mahogany Springs Lodge for 1 night (Standard Room) on full board
  • Papyrus Guest House (Garden Room) for 1 night on Bed & Breakfast basis
  • Lunch on Lake Mutanda on day 2
  • Snacks for the sundowner on day 3
  • Drinking water in the vehicle (1 litre per person per day) and while at Nkuringo Bwindi Gorilla Lodge
  • All the excursions and activities indicated in the itinerary (canoe ride, walks etc) under the supervision of an experienced English-speaking Walking Guide
  • Support of a private 4x4 vehicle with experienced English-speaking driver-guide, from the morning of day 2 to the morning of day 6 (6 seater)
  • Transfers in Entebbe, Kisoro-Nkuringo and Buhoma-Kihihi
  • Wi-Fi (in main areas of the Guest House and Lodge)
  • AMREF Evacuation Insurance cover
  • Government taxes
  • 1 Gorilla tracking permit per person, Park/Forest Fees and Batwa Fees (625 USD)
  • AeroLink Flights Entebbe – Kisoro (353 USD) and Kihihi - Entebbe (283 USD), to be reconfirmed at the time of booking
  • All drinks, including the drinks for the sundowner on Day 3
  • Uganda Entry Visa fee
  • International air flights
  • Any optional activity not indicated in above program
  • Laundry Services
  • Gratuities and Tips
  • Day-room use at Papyrus Guest House on Day 6
  • Any overnight in Lake Mburu N.P.
  • Baggage: there is a maximum allowance of 15kg per person – for the domestic flights excess baggage is subject to space availability and is charged USD3 per each extra kg

Tour Categories

Group Tour
Jungle Trekking

Tour's Location

Created with Sketch. Entebbe, Bwindi Impenetrable Forest

FAQs

Trip Terms and Conditions
A 30% deposit of the total tour price will be required to secure a booking, the balance being due 45 days before the tour departure date. Bookings not secured by the appropriate deposit will be released.

Cancellation between 90 and 45 days of tour departure will incur a 30% of tour price penalty charge. Confirmed bookings cancelled within 45 days of the tour departure date or no show will incur 100% of tour price penalty charge.

Availability of accommodation and activities is not guaranteed; reservations will be made after receiving confirmation of the final itinerary and the payment of the requested deposit. Should any of the quoted accommodations not be available, we reserve the right to substitute it with an alternative suitable option, which might affect the final quoted price.

All clients who participate in this tour must be adequately covered by medical insurance as well as travel insurance to protect them in case of unforeseen circumstances.

Rates specified for this tour are subject to change without notice, however every effort will be made to maintain them. In the event of any change of Government taxes or operating conditions that affect the rates we reserve the right to pass on these charges.
Gorilla Permit Cancellation Policy
**Different and separate from the tour cancellation policy

Gorilla Permits will be guaranteed ONLY upon receipt of the full deposit (US$600 per permit in 2019) since we need to immediately pay Uganda Wildlife Authority Offices in order to secure the permits.

Cancellations received on full payment:
• More than 90 days before the tracking date, 25% cancellation fee
• 89 to 46 days before the tracking date, 50% cancellation fee
• 45 to 9 days before the tracking date, 75% cancellation fee
• 8 to 0 days before the tracking date, 100% cancellation fee

Important: the minimum age required for gorilla tracking is 15 years and in case of flu or of any other airborne disease the person will be not allowed to meet with the gorillas.
What should I carry for this trip?
Good question. Quickly, you need to cover yourself when in the jungle. Long boots, long sleeved shirt, trousers to avoid bug bites, you need a rain jacket (rainforest, remember?), a caryon bad to keep your staff and garbage (not allowed to litter) and something for the cold nights. That's more like it.
Will you process my entry visa?
No but visa processing is done so easily online before you get into the country. Check out this link. https://visas.immigration.go.ug/

Alternatively what most visitors do is to get the visa at the immigration desk at the Airport after you land into the country. For US$100, it takes you just 5 minutes to do that.

Make sure you have a valid passport, a yellow fever vaccination card and anything your consulate would advise you.
How far is the destination from the airport?
Bwindi is about 9 hours drive from Entebbe International Airport. Fortunately for you, we'll take a 2 hour local flight from Entebbe to Kihihi and then take an adventure walk for 2 hours and drive to our destination 2 hours ahead. Remember to take in the views and keep your cameras close by. You my not want to forget what you see.
Should I be scared of the Gorillas or be concerned about security?
Noooo! You're are very safe in these parts of the country. You'll have rangers when you enter the jungles and gorillas are commonly known to be really gentle giants. They're habituated for your presences, remember?! But of course, there are some rules you'll be briefed about before you enter the jungle. Talk to our consultants to get a comprehensive briefing before you come.

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