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9 Day Birding Uganda Tour

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9 Day Birding Uganda Tour

The 9 days Birding Uganda Tour takes you to the wonderful must see Uganda Bird Watching destinations. The tour has been purposely structured to ensure high bird species count and our interest will be the Albertine rift endemics in Uganda. The tour offers stunning landscapes and fantastic sightings.

Bird watching destinations

Mabamba Swamp

Our first birding site will be Mabamba Swamp, the best place to see rare Shoebill Storks in Uganda. Apart from the rare shoebill, there are many other bird species to see on this tour such as Allen’s and Purple Gallinule, Grey herons, Jacanas, Ruffaus Bellied Heron, Squaco, Purple and Goliath Heron,  Globally threatened Pallid Harrier and Blue Swallow a migrant species, egrets, ducks etc.

 

Lake Mburo National Park

Thereafter, you will visit Lake Mburo National Park which is located in the Southern part of Uganda in Kiruhura district. The park is known for its large herds of zebras, Impalas, Elands, Topis, and buffaloes among other species. The park is home to over 68 mammal species like zebras, elands, impalas, buffalos, Defassa waterbuck, oribis, leopard, hippo, hyena, and reedbuck.   Here, you will encounter the 350 bird species including the Red faced barbet (only seen here), African Fin Foot, mosque swallow, black bellied bustard, bare-faced-go away bird, Ruppell’s starling, African wattled lapwing, pied kingfisher, Malachite kingfisher, Saddle-billed stork, Yellow-breasted apalis among others.

 

Mgahinga Gorilla National Park

Moving forward, you will visit Mgahinga the smallest National Park in Uganda. It is located in the virunga ranges Kisoro district. Mgahinga Gorilla National Park boosts of being the only park in Uganda where one can trek the Golden monkeys and also the Silverback Gorillas. The park boosts of about 76 mammal species including  forest elephants, buffaloes, bushbucks, black fronted duikers, giant forest hogs, golden cats, bush pigs, rodents, bats  and also it is a home to 180 bird species including the rift Albertine Endemics these include handsome spurfowl, dusky crimson-wing, red-throated alethe, Kivu ground thrush, Rwenzori turaco, Rwenzori batis, Rwenzori double-collared sunbird, collared apalis, mountain masked apalis, Archer’s ground robin, stripe-breasted tit, blue-headed sunbird, regal sunbird, strange weaver, montane nightjar, red-faced woodland warbler and Grauer’s swamp warbler.

 

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

After Mgahinga National Park, you will then visit Bwindi Impenetrable National Park (UNESCOs World Heritage Site) is the best birding spot is Africa. The Park is located in South Western Uganda. The park is home to almost half of the World’s population of Mountain Gorillas which gives a great opportunity for Gorilla Trekking and Habituation in the park’s sectors like Nkuringo, Buhoma, Ruhija and Rushaga. The park harbors 120 mammal species like Elephants, duikers,  yellow-backed duiker,  buffaloes, golden cats, bush pigs, giant forest hogs, black-fronted Duiker, clawless  More than 350 bird species have been recorded with 23 out of 24 Albertine Rift endemics which include African Green Broadbill, regal sunbird, handsome francolin, purple sunbird, red headed blue bill, African blue cuckoo , breasted sunbird, Ruwenzori turaco, Shelley’s crimson, African green pigeon, African harrier hawk, Cinnamon-chested bee-eater, Crowned hornbill, Giant kingfisher etc.

Trip Highlights;

Day 1: Entebbe International Airport – Arrival for the Uganda Birding Tour

Day 2: Birding Mabamba Swamp and Transfer to Lake Mburo national park

Day 3: Lake Mburo National Park – Birding and Transfer to Mgahinga Gorilla National Park

Day 4: Birding in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park

Day 5: Birding in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park – Transfer to Bwindi Impenetrable forest National Park

Day 6: Birding to Ruhija sector in Bwindi impenetrable Forest National Park

Day 7: Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park – Birding to Buhoma via ‘The Neck’ in Bwindi forest

Day 8: Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park – Gorilla Trekking and Birding at Buhoma

Day 9: Transfer back to Kampala city or your hotel

Detailed itinerary

Day 1: Entebbe International Airport – Arrival for the Uganda Birding Tour

The 9 Days Birding Uganda Tour starts with a pick up from Entebbe International Airport where our professional driver guide will warmly welcome you to the Pearl of Africa thereafter, he will transfer you to your hotel in Entebbe where you will spend the rest of the day relaxing. Depending on your arrival time, you have an opportunity to see birds in Entebbe botanical gardens as an introduction to Uganda birding for a variety of species.

Main Destination: Entebbe International Airport

Accommodation Option:

Mid-Range      Latitude 0 Degrees or Similar

Meals Plan: Breakfast and Lunch as well as Dinner

Drinking Water and Fruits Throughout the journey

Day 2: Birding Mabamba Swamp and Transfer to Lake Mburo national park

Wake up early in the morning for your delicious breakfast and start your day 2 of the 9 Days Birding Uganda Tour with a drive southwards to Mabamba Swamp Wetland located on the fringes of Lake Victoria. On reaching the swamp, you will embark on a canoe ride in search for the incredible Shoebills that are usually found patching in the floating vegetation or flying in the air. We’ll also see a variety of other bird species like swamp flycatcher, African pygmy goose, herons, egrets, ducks, plovers, gulls, Kingfishers, warbler, swallows etc. After here, transfer to Lake Mburo national park to continue birding. You will have a stopover at the Equator for lunch and photography.

 

Main Destination: Lake Mburo National Park

Accommodation Option:

Mid-Range      Rwakobo Rock Lodge or Similar

Meals Plan: Breakfast and Lunch as well as Dinner

Drinking Water and Fruits Throughout the journey

Day 3: Lake Mburo National Park – Birding and Transfer to Mgahinga Gorilla National Park

After an early morning breakfast on Day 3 of the 9 Days Birding Uganda Tour, we will visit Rubanga forest and also boat cruise for 2 hours on Lake Mburo, Here you will encounter bird species like Red faced barbet (only seen here), African Fin Foot, mosque swallow, black bellied bustard, bare-faced-go away bird, Ruppell’s starling, African wattled lapwing, pied kingfisher etc. you will also have a chance to see crocodiles, hippos. After the you will embark on a 3 hour birding encounter by a vehicle to see grey crowned cranes, black bullied bustard, and Red headed lovebird etc. Thereafter, you will have lunch and then transfer to Mgahinga Gorilla National Park.

Main Destination: Mgahinga Gorilla National Park

Accommodation Option:

Mid-Range      Travellers Rest Hotel or Similar

Meals Plan: Breakfast and Lunch as well as Dinner

Drinking Water and Fruits Throughout the journey

 

Day 4: Birding in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park

After an early hot breakfast on Day 4 of the 9 Days Birding Uganda Tour, drive to Ntebeko Camp from where we shall start our birding as we trek to one of the most scenic areas in Uganda. We take the gorge trail that loops half way up Mt. Sabinyo, through a variety of montane habitats habouring the Dusky Turtle Dove, Rwenzori Turaco, Cape Robin-Chat, Kivu Ground Thrush, White-eyed Slaty and White Tailed Blue Flycatcher, Olive Wood-pecker, White-starred Robin, Mountain Yellow Warbler, White-napped Raven, Lagden’s Bush-Shrike, Yellow-crowned Canary, Streaky and Thick Billed Seedeater on our birding today we shall have a bigger focus on the shy Shelly’s Crimson-wing among other birds. Dinner and overnight stay.

Main Destination: Mgahinga Gorilla National Park

Accommodation Option:

Mid-Range      Travellers Rest Hotel or Similar

Meals Plan: Breakfast and Lunch as well as Dinner

Drinking Water and Fruits Throughout the journey

Day 5: Birding in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park – Transfer to Bwindi Impenetrable forest National Park

Mgahinga gorilla national park has about 180 bird species which include Albertine rift endemics. Today we traverse a variety of montane habitats along the Gorge trail seeking out the different bird species unique to this region. The species to search for include; The Dusky Turtle Dove, Cape Robin-chat, Brown-crowned Tchagra, Bronze Sunbird, Black-headed Waxbill and Streaky Seedeater. While on your day 5 of the 9 Days Birding Uganda Tour , we may encounter the Handsome Francolin, Kivu Ground Thrush and Cinnamon Bracken Warbler, White Starred Robin, Greater Double collard Sunbird, Rwenzori Turcaco, Rwenzori Batis, Archer’s Robin Chat, Olive Pigeon, and Black headed waxbill, Western Green Tinker bird, Malachite Sunbird, Cape Robin. Transfer to Bwindi Impenetrable forest National Park for dinner and overstay.

Main Destination: Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

Accommodation Option:

Mid-Range      Gorilla Mist Camp or Similar

Meals Plan: Breakfast and Lunch as well as Dinner

Drinking Water and Fruits Throughout the journey

 

Day 6: Birding to Ruhija sector in Bwindi impenetrable Forest National Park

Bwindi Impenetrable forest is the richest forest in East Africa in relation to its trees, butterflies and birds. The bird list for the park currently totals 350 species. Day 6 of the 9 Days Birding Uganda Tour, The forest has 10 of the 26 globally threatened species in Uganda, 5 of which are vulnerable and boasts a number of Uganda’s Albertine Rift endemics. In Ruhija, we hope to sight; Rwenzori Batis, Collared Apalis, Montane Sooty Boubou, Banded Prinia, Mountain and Yellow-streaked Greenbul. Shelley’s Crimsonwing, Mountain Illadopsis, Archer’s Robin-chat, White-starred Robin, Strange Weaver, Blue headed, Purple-breasted and Regal Sunbirds. We will have stopover at Echuya forest for birding opportunities and possible sightings of Albertine rift endemics. You will return to the lodge for lunch.

 

After lunch, we continue with birding in Mubwindi Swamp trail where initially the birds on the trail are similar like those encountered before but more time spent will provide opportunities for the rare and localized Grauer’s Broadbill. Other species to lookout for are; Yellow-billed Barbet, Black-billed Turaco’s, Bar-tailed Trogon, White-headed Hoopoe, Montane Oriole, Pink-footed Puffback, Lagden’s Bush-Shrike, Waller’s Starling, 9 Days Birding Uganda Tour, localized Grauer’s Rush Warbler, Dwarf Honey-Guide, Rufous-breasted Sparrow hawk, Oriole Finch. Dinner and Overnight.

Main Destination: Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

Accommodation Option:

Mid-Range      Gorilla Mist Camp or Similar

Meals Plan: Breakfast and Lunch as well as Dinner

Drinking Water and Fruits Throughout the journey

Day 7: Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park – Birding to Buhoma via ‘The Neck’ in Bwindi forest

After breakfast on day 7 0f the 9 Days Birding Uganda Tour, you will start a drive to Buhoma in the southern part of Bwindi birding en-route. During the drive you will have stopovers we make, expect to see the Black Bee-eater, calling out the Red-throated Wryneck and finding it would be a great addition, Mountain Wagtail and the Cassin’s Grey Flycatcher, White-starred Robin, Olive Thrush, Red-faced Woodland Warbler, Grauer’s Warbler, MacKinnon’s Fiscal, Collared, Mountain Masked Chestnut-throated, and Grey Apalis, Stripe-breasted Tit, Sharpe’s Starling, the elusive Regal and Purple-breasted Sunbird, Strange Weaver, Dusky Twinspot etc. Dinner and Overnight.

Main Destination: Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park (Buhoma Sector)

Accommodation Option:

Mid-Range      Ride 4 a Woman or Similar

Meals Plan: Breakfast and Lunch as well as Dinner

Drinking Water and Fruits Throughout the journey

Day 8: Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park – Gorilla Trekking and Birding at Buhoma

Upon waking up by the beautiful sounds of the birds singing in the sky, you will start day 8 of your 9 Days Birding Uganda Tour with an early morning breakfast. Wear appropriate clothing for the day like a long sleeved shirt, a pair of karky or jean trousers, a round cap, water proof boots to protect you against the falling tree branches of the Impenetrable forest and also in case of bad weather,  Pack some snacks and water to help in keeping you hydrated during the trek.

Gorilla Trekking and Birding at Buhoma

Proceed to the park’s headquarters for a briefing on the Do’s and the Don’ts while you are with the mountain gorillas, you will also be assigned a park ranger who will guide you during the trek and also a gorilla family to look out for and then start the search for the mountain gorillas which will take about 1 to 5 hours depending on their location.

 

During your trek, you will encounter various primate species like the black and white colobus monkeys, red tailed monkeys, grey mangabeys, and blue monkeys and also bird species like handsome francolin, red headed blue bill, regal sunbird, breasted sunbird, African blue cuckoo, Rwenzori turaco, Shelley’s crimson, purple sunbird among other bird species. On finding the gorillas, you will be allowed to spend only one hour with them as you learn about their ways of life, how they feed and take care of their young ones, how they communicate among others. Feel free to ask as many questions as possible about these gorillas and take memorable pictures and then you will return back to your accommodation for lunch.

 

Later, proceed Buhoma section of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park that run through the forest offering excellent viewing points. The bird species to look out in these trail include; Brown, Blue-headed, Northern Double-collared and Grey headed Sunbirds, Black Bee-Eater, Kivu Ground Thrush, Cinnamon-chested Bee-eater, and Common Stonechat, Black throated Robin chat, Barred Long tailed Cuckoo, Black throated Apalis, Mountain Masked Apalis.

Main Destination: Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park (Buhoma Sector)

Accommodation Option:

Mid-Range      Ride 4 a Woman or Similar

Meals Plan: Breakfast and Lunch as well as Dinner

Drinking Water and Fruits Throughout the journey

 

Day 9: Transfer back to Kampala city or your hotel

Today marks the last day of the 9 days Birding Uganda Tour, you will start your journey to Kampala or your hotel. You will have an enroute stopover for lunch in Ajip motel or Igongo cultural center.

Main Destination; Entebbe International Airport

Accommodation Option: On

Meals Plan: Breakfast and Lunch as well as Dinner

Drinking Water and Fruits Throughout the journey

The Safari Package Includes:

Return airport transfers (pick up and drop off)

Private transport for 9 days in a well-modified safari Extended land-cruiser (4WD,air-conditioned and pop-up roof)

Flue for 9 days

English safari driver guide for 9 days

Mid-range accommodation for 8 night on full board (Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner)

All en-route meals and bottled mineral water throughout your tour

All park entrance and activities feel and all applicable government taxes

Afternoon game in Lake Mburo National Park

1 Mountain gorilla trekking permit in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park (Buhoma sector )

A visit to the Equator land mark

Batwa Community Encounter

Meals Plan: Breakfast and Lunch as well as Dinner

Drinking Water and Fruits Throughout the journey

The Safari Package Excludes:

International and domestic flights

Country entry visa

Personal travel insurance

Items of personal nature/laundry/telephone charges

Souvenirs and gifts, Tips

Alcoholic and other soft drinks (sodas, special juice order at the lodge and wines)

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