0

Gorillas & Game Parks

From £2020 for 16 days
Trip Overview
A close encounter with gentle giants on a gorilla safari in Rwanda is an extraordinary African experience that will always stay with you - and it's just one of the many wildlife spottings this unforgettable African overland adventure has to offer. Roam the verdant plains, rainforests, papyrus-fringed lakes and acacia woodlands of Kenya and Uganda's game parks to spot lions, rhinos, chimps, antelope, hippos, leopards and more in their natural habitats. The staggeringly beautiful African countryside will provide memories that last a lifetime.
Essential Info
Starts: Nairobi
Ends: Nairobi
Ages: Min 15
Theme: Overland
Trip Code: IYXOG
Countries visited: Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda
What's Included

Meals

15 Breakfasts included
15 Lunches included
14 Dinners included

Transport

4x4 Safari Vehicle,Overland vehicle

Accommodation

Camping (with facilities) (10 nts),Dormitory (3 nts),Hotel (2 nts)

Trip Highlights
-The Masai Mara National Reserve is filled with iconic vistas and animals – safari through it with an early morning and late afternoon game drive in our overland vehicle
-The chance to spot and get close to all of the Big Five in Queen Elizabeth National Park
-Seek out the rare mountain gorilla on a trek through Rwanda's steamy forests and spend an unforgettable hour in their presence
-Experience the two sides of Jinja, a riverside retreat at the source of the Nile but also the adventure capital of Uganda
Dates & Availability
Start date
End date
Direction
Price GBP
Availability
10th December 2016
25th December 2016
Nairobi - Nairobi
£2,400pp 
G
 
Limited
24th December 2016
8th January 2017
Nairobi - Nairobi
£2,400pp 
G
 
Limited
7th January 2017
22nd January 2017
Nairobi - Nairobi
£2,100pp 
G
 
Limited
21st January 2017
5th February 2017
Nairobi - Nairobi
£2,100pp 
G
 
Limited
4th February 2017
19th February 2017
Nairobi - Nairobi
£2,225pp 
G
 
Good
18th February 2017
5th March 2017
Nairobi - Nairobi
£2,020pp 
G
 
Good
4th March 2017
19th March 2017
Nairobi - Nairobi
£2,020pp 
G
 
Good
1st April 2017
16th April 2017
Nairobi - Nairobi
£2,040pp 
G
 
Good
6th May 2017
21st May 2017
Nairobi - Nairobi
£2,040pp 
G
 
Good
Show more dates
Itinerary & Notes
 
Day 1 - Nairobi
Jambo! Welcome to Kenya. Your Africa adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6pm. Please look for a note in the hotel lobby or ask reception where it will take place. If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time, you may wish to arrive a day early so you're able to attend. We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability). If you're going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. Have your insurance details and next of kin information available for collection at this meeting. If you have the time, soak up the cosmopolitan atmosphere of Nairobi. There are plenty of good bars and restaurants, while markets and shops have most things you could want or need, as well as various arts and crafts from the region. There's also the National Museum of Kenya, the Karen Blixen Museum (author of Out of Africa), or Bomas of Kenya (displays of traditional homesteads of several Kenyan tribes) open for exploration. Notes: Unfortunately petty crime has become fairly common in Nairobi and recently arrived visitors to the capital can often make for tempting targets. Your trip leader will verse you in a few worthwhile precautions at the welcome meeting. Some top tips are to get local advice on where to walk, keep valuables in a neck wallet or money belt or leave them secure in your hotel, and to not leave belongings unattended on chairs or the floor. Stay aware even when inside, as thieves and pickpockets have been known to operate indoors as well. There's no need to be paranoid, but appearing vigilant is a great deterrent to would-be thieves.

Additional Activities

Nairobi - National Museum
10 USD
Nairobi - Karen Blixen museum
14 USD
Nairobi - National Park safari walk
30 USD
Nairobi - Carnivore Restaurant
3600 KES
Nairobi - Bomas of Kenya
12 USD
Nairobi - Langata Giraffe Sanctuary
1200 KES
Day 2 - Lake Nakuru National Park
Take in spectacular views of the Rift Valley, Lake Naivasha and Elementaita on the drive north-west to Lake Nakuru National Park, situated in the heart of the Great Rift Valley. The drive will take approximately 3-4 hours. Arrive in time for a short evening game drive along the shore of the lake. Your exclusive camp, located outside the park, is well situated and has flush toilets and showers. Accommodation upgrades and WiFi are not available. Lake Nakuru National Park is a small and compact area based around a lake that makes a great location for spotting wildlife. Along with the other members of the Big Five, Lake Nakuru harbours many rhinos and will be the best chance to get a great picture of these magnificent beasts.

Additional Activities

Lake Nakuru - Game Drive
Included in Price
Day 3 - Eldoret
This morning head north-west towards Eldoret, one of Kenya's fastest growing towns, on a scenic drive through tea plantations (approximately 5 hours). Due to its high altitude, the town is an ideal training ground for middle and long distance athletes and is home to some of Kenya's most famous runners. Your campsite tonight has basic facilities with upgrades available.
Day 4 - Kampala
Today you will leave Kenya behind and cross the border into landlocked Uganda, travelling on to its capital city, Kampala (approximately 8 hours, though it could take longer depending on border crossings). With a population of over 30 million, Uganda is one of the five countries that make up the East African Community. It's a country of great cultural diversity and in recent years has been one of the most progressive in the region in terms of health education relating to HIV. As today is a long travel day, take a break from setting up camp with a stay at a hotel.
Day 5 - Kalinzu Forest
Travel to Kalinzu Forest National Park (approximately 9 hours). Some of inhabitants include chimpanzees, black and white colobus, baboon, red-tailed monkey, both blue and red duiker, bushbuck, waterbuck, giant forest hog, buffalo and elephants.Your camp tonight has basic facilities with no upgrades available.
Day 6 - Queen Elizabeth National Park
Take the optional excursion of visiting the Chimpanzees of Kalinzu Forest this morning or enjoy the sounds of the forest from the comfort of your tent. More closely related to humans than any other living creature, the chimpanzees are a delight to watch as they squabble and play in fruiting trees. Then take the short drive to Queen Elizabeth National Park. Once camp is set there's an option to take a boat cruise along the Kazinga Channel, well-known for pelicans, eagles and other wonderful birdlife, as well as its healthy population of hippos.

Additional Activities

Queen Elizabeth National Park - Kazinga Channel boat cruise
30 USD
Queen Elizabeth National Park - Chimp trek
70 USD
Day 7 - Queen Elizabeth National Park
Today we take a game drive through Queen Elizabeth National Park. During your time in the park it's hoped you'll see elephants, lions, leopards, buffaloes, Ugandan kobs and waterbucks.

Additional Activities

Queen Elizabeth National Park - Game Drive
Included in Price
Day 8 - Lake Bunyonyi
Today travel south to Lake Bunyonyi on the border with Rwanda (approximately 7 hours), with a stop along the way to stock up on supplies at a shop/market and ATM. Located in the south-west of Uganda, Lake Bunyonyi - meaning 'place of many little birds' - is home to some of the most picturesque scenery in the country. If time allows, explore the hilly, terraced shores of the lake. One of the best ways to admire the landscape is from the lake itself; hire a traditional dugout canoe (mokoro) and glide across the water, hopping between the little islands dotted around. They can be hard to master at first but great fun. Your campground has flush toilets, basic showers, WiFi access and upgrades possible.

Additional Activities

Lake Bunyonyi - Mokoro hire (per day)
20 USD
Day 9 - Kigali / Ruhengeri
Cross the boarder into Rwanda and set up camp at Ruhengeri, the gateway to the land of the gorillas (approximately 7 hours). You'll make a stop en route at Kigali and visit the very moving genocide memorial. There is also the option to hire an audio guide at the memorial to learn more about this dark part of recent history. Continue on to Ruhengeri, the entrance to Volcanoes National Park, the oldest national park in Africa, which was created to protect the habitat of the gorillas. There are two days allowed for gorilla visits as you are assigned a trekking group/time on your permit. The group may be split up into different trekking groups during the day, or even over two days, depending on the time of permit issue and group size. There is a maximum group size of eight on each gorilla visit. Depending on availability, you will stay in dormitories at a local church mission. If the dormitories are not available you will camp for these 3 nights.

Additional Activities

Kigali - Genocide Memorial Visit
Included in Price
Kigali - Genocide Memorial Audio Guide
15 USD
Day 10 - Gorilla Trek
Joined by a local guide and trackers, climb through rugged mountain terrain to meet the eyes of these rare animals. This region is one of the last remaining sanctuaries for the mountain gorilla. No more than eight per day can visit any one habituated family and visits are strictly controlled to minimise the possibility of disturbance or transmission of disease to the animals. Tracking gorillas in the dense forest can sometimes be wet, muddy and uncomfortable. The terrain is by no means easy either, so it can be pretty strenuous and often humid, but the sheer thrill in coming across a habituated group of gorillas, dominated by a great male silverback, more than outweighs any difficulty. You need to be prepared and fit enough to walk up to 4 hours - up and down hill. You can usually get very close to the mountain gorillas, who are placid and gentle, and watching their movements is like seeing a mirror image of yourself. Be mesmerised as you watch them eat, sleep, groom and play – the giant silverback surveying the scene as the smaller ones laze in the trees or play like children. Your visit with the gorillas will last one unforgettable hour.

Additional Activities

Volcanoes National Park - Mountain gorilla trek & permit
Included in Price
Volcanoes National Park - Nature walk Rwanda
55 USD
Volcanoes National Park - Additional gorilla trek and permit
1140 USD
Ruhengeri - Venge Village walk
35 USD
Volcanoes National Park - Dian Fossey's Memorial
90 USD
Volcanoes National Park - Golden Monkeys Trek Permit
115 USD
Volcanoes National Park - Full Day Mt. Bisoke Hike
75 USD
Day 11 - Gorilla Trek
When you are waiting for, or have completed, your gorilla visit, your leader will provide you with options and ideas on how you can spend your free day in the area around Ruhengeri. You can head out on more rainforest hikes to see monkeys, on nature walks, a hike up Mt Bisoke or a walk to the memorial for naturalist Dian Fossey. Please keep in mind that the prices of these optionals are not inclusive of transport costs to and from the activity. Your guide will organise transport for you to be paid locally. Notes: You can also arrange to partake in an additional gorilla trek on your free day. If you wish to trek on both days, we highly recommend pre-purchasing the additional permit well in advance to avoid disappointment. Please speak to your booking agent about arranging this.The additional gorilla permit is offered as a pre-booked service which will guarantee you a place. If you would rather wait and try to get a better price by booking this locally on the ground, you are welcome to, but keep in mind that gorilla permits often sell out.

Additional Activities

Volcanoes National Park - Dian Fossey's Memorial
90 USD
Volcanoes National Park - Golden Monkeys Trek Permit
115 USD
Volcanoes National Park - Full Day Mt. Bisoke Hike
75 USD
Volcanoes National Park - Nature walk Rwanda
55 USD
Volcanoes National Park - Additional gorilla trek and permit
1140 USD
Ruhengeri - Venge Village walk
35 USD
Day 12 - Mbarara
Much of today will be spent travelling as you return to Uganda and complete border formalities. It's possible for most nationalities to purchase a re-entry visa at this land crossing but please check before travelling. Then it's on to the pit-stop town of Mbarara near the shores of Lake Victoria for the night (approximately 8 hours including border crossings).
Day 13 - Jinja
Today you'll continue your journey inland, travelling to Jinja via Kampala. Stop at the equator and then at Kampala - a great place to wander around on foot, exploring its markets and shops (approx 7 hrs). Jinja is one of the highlights of any visit to Uganda, a riverside retreat at the source of the Nile but also the adventure capital of Uganda. Camp at a scenic riverside site with showers, flush toilets, WiFi and ATM access, and upgrades possible.
Day 14 - Jinja
Located at the source of the Nile as it leaves Lake Victoria, Jinja is a place for the adventurer, the adrenaline junkie and the eco-traveller who wants to do something really worthwhile in a beautiful area. Maybe get active with some excellent white water rafting.

Additional Activities

Jinja - River Nile whitewater rafting (half day)
125 USD
Jinja - River Nile whitewater rafting (full day)
140 USD
Day 15 - Eldoret
Today you'll begin the journey back to Nairobi, dropping by the town of Eldoret once again for an overnight stop along the way (approximately 8 hours). Tonight's camp has basic facilities with upgrades available.
Day 16 - Nairobi
On arrival in Nairobi you'll be dropped at your finishing point hotel (approximately 7 hours). No accommodation is provided for tonight, but we are able to book you additional accommodation in Nairobi. Please ask at time of booking. If you are staying on a bit longer then perhaps book the Nairobi by Night Urban Adventure to have a final night with your new friends.
Similar Trips
Trip Code: DFEA
From: £1.0E+37
17 days
Trip Code: IYGOK
From: £
8 days
Trip Code: IYGOT
From: £
8 days
Related Blog Posts
Reviews
We're still waiting for reviews to come through for this adventure. Why not book on this and review it for us?