Mountain Gorilla, The Big 5 And Great Migration Safari
Duration: 13 Day
Destinations: Rwanda, Uganda & Tanzania
- Price: $7117 per person
Budget Level: Mid-Range
Upon your arrival at Kigali international airport, you will be met by your driver guide and transferred to your Onomo hotel which is about 15 minutes from the airport for dinner and overnight.
Day 2: Buhoma-Bwindi impenetrable forest
After breakfast, we pick you up from Onomo and transfer you across the border from Rwanda to Uganda. Whilst today’s drive is around 5.5 hours long it is very scenic and you will get a sense of rural life in this part of the world. We will check you in immediately at Bohoma Haven Community Lodge and have lunch. After lunch, we stretch your legs after the long drive and visit a nearby Batwa Community. The Batwa (Pygmies) are the original inhabitants of Bwindi and are thought to be around 5000 years of forest dweller in Bwindi. Since the early 1990’s they are a displaced community and maintain their traditions and memories through cultural tours. Many people on this experience clearly remember an existence as forest dweller in the area and they will amaze you with their traditions and bush skills. Their small stature is said to be an adaptation to rainforest living. After the very interesting and fun Batwa Experience, we will return you to your lodge for dinner and overnight.
Day 3: Mountain gorilla trek
After breakfast drive to the Uganda Wildlife Authority Bwindi Park Headquarters. The early morning briefing starts at 8 am and hear the rangers will give you information on the trek, gorilla behavior, and rules. Then you head off into the Impenetrable Forest in search of these magnificent beasts. The advanced tracking group gives your guides an indication of where the gorillas where located last night, however, these creatures constantly move in search of food so the trek can take 2-6 hours in total. When you come across the Gorillas you will sense the excitement as you get to spend an hour with the troop you have come across. It is often described as one of the great natural animal encounters on the planet. There are only around 1000 Mountain Gorillas left in the world and Bwindi has almost 1/3 of them. After the trek, we return to your lodge for a freshen up and lunch before departing for the southern Ishasha Sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park which is about 90 minutes away. At Ishasha we will have a game drive and we have also organized the local safari veterinarian and guide to tracking the famous tree-climbing lions for you. Midafternoon we will exit Ishasha and continue north in Queen Elizabeth National Park. Dinner and overnight will be at Parkview Safari Lodge.
Day 4: Chimpanzee trek
After an early breakfast at we head of to Kalunzi Forest Reserve where the rangers will give you a trek briefing before we head off to find our closest living relative. The Kalunzi Chimpanzees are considered extremely reliable with a trekking success rate of over 95%. In Uganda today, Efforts to actually conserve the chimpanzees are extensively acknowledged and well supported. Actually, The Jane Goodall Foundation has played a major role in the overall conservation of not only these Chimpanzees but the Gorillas as well found in Uganda. You will most likely finish around 11 am. From here we begin the 5-hour transfer back to Kigali arriving around 5 pm. Dinner and overnight will be at Onomo hotel.
Day 5: Kilimanjaro/Arusha
After breakfast, you will be transferred to Kigali airport for your flight to Kilimanjaro international airport. You will then be picked up from Kilimanjaro airport and transferred to Kibo palace hotel for dinner and overnight.
Day 6: Tarangire national park
After breakfast depart for Tarangire, Tanzania’s third largest national park and sanctuary for an unusually large elephant population for game drive, with picnic lunch. Majestic baobab trees are an interesting feature of the park, dwarfing the animals that feed beneath them. Animals concentrate along the Tarangire River, which provides the only permanent water supply in the area. There is a great diversity of wildlife including lions, leopards, cheetahs and up to six thousand elephants. In the afternoon you will continue to Tarangire Sangaiwe lodge for dinner and overnight.
Day 7: Tarangire national park
The whole day spent doing a game drive in Tarangire national park, with early departure looking for active predators and other wildlife. All meals and overnight will be at Sangaiwe lodge.
Day 8: Mtowambu/Lake Manyara national park
After breakfast, you go on a walking tour in farming town Mtowambu. This village is unique in Tanzania since it is home to over 120 different tribes from across Africa and forms a colorful mix of customs. Your walking guide will take you to rice and banana plantations, a local beer factory, a school, and a carving factory. Discover the traditional way of life of the villagers. Later you will drive to Lake Manyara national park for a game drive with picnic lunch. In this small but very beautiful park with dense forest, you will have opportunity to see lots of monkeys, giraffes, elephants, impalas, dik-dik, flamingos in the lake and if you are lucky you may spot the rare tree climbing lions. In the afternoon you will continue to Ngorongoro Sopa lodge (this is the closest lodge to the crater with the greatest view of the crater) for dinner and overnight.
Day 9: Ngorongoro Crater/Central Serengeti
After breakfast, you will drive to the Ngorongoro crater for a game drive with picnic lunch. This is the best place to see the endangered black rhino (less than 1000 black rhinos are left in the wild in the world). The crater has also many other animals like zebras, wildebeests, hippos, gazelles, hyenas and many more. In the late afternoon, you will continue to Serengeti central bush camp for dinner and overnight.
Day 10: Serengeti National park (Central)
Morning and afternoon game drives in Central Serengeti with early departure looking for active predators and other wildlife. Serengeti is the park with the largest concentration of big mammals in the world and it is where you will see most of your exciting wildlife. The sightings will include prides of lions, cheetahs, leopards, elephants, giraffes, hippos, impalas, warthogs, topis, crocodiles and many more. Dinner and overnight will be at Serengeti central bush camp.
Day 11: Serengeti National Park (North)
After breakfast drive to north Serengeti with game drive en route Mara river bush camp for lunch. In the afternoon you will depart for a game drive along the Mara river. In this area you will have high chances to see the great migration (estimated to reach 3,000,000 animals now) crossing the Mara river while the crocodiles in the river try to attack them. All meals and overnight will be Mara river bush camp.
Day 12: Serengeti National park (North)
Morning and afternoon game drives in North Serengeti along the Mara river with early departure exploring the great migration crossing the Mara river. All meals and overnight will be at Mara river bush camp.
Day 13: Departure
After breakfast drive to Kogatende airstrip for your flight to back to Arusha for lunch. After lunch, we will transfer you to Kilimanjaro airport for your departure.
- All meals and accommodations during the entire stay
- A highly experienced safari guide
- Unlimited mineral water during the entire safari
- All park fees/permits for all the national parks
- Flight from Kigali to Kilimanjaro
- Flight from Serengeti to Arusha
- AMREF Flying doctors emergence rescue
- Arrival and departure transfers
- International flights
- Drinks at the lodges
- Any other things not mentioned above
Qn1: How many holidaymakers in one group?
- Apart from yourself and the people you decide to travel within your tour, there will be no one else. With the fact that our vehicles take a maximum of 7 travellers, more vehicles will be used in case of any added travellers in a group.
Qn2: What is the minimum age permitted?
- If you have kids of less than 4 years old, you may need to wait a bit before bringing them to the safari.
- Also, We strongly recommend children of 4-12 are with parents/guardians and the responsibility for each child should remain with you as a parent in the course of the safari
Qn3: Where will I stay during the night?
- You’ll have your accommodation in safari lodges and permanent tented camps inside the parks. The rooms are with en-suite bathrooms.
Qn4: How will I travel?
- On your safari, you’ll use our comfortable and safe 4WD Toyota Land Cruisers which have a lot of leg space and pop up roof for ideal wildlife viewing.
- Again our vehicles are fully equipped with first aid kits, fridges, binoculars and bean bags for camera support. With well-maintained and fitted HF long-range radios, the communication is made easy in safari.
- We appreciate that on the last day of your safari you might be a bit tired, on this regard light aircraft will take you back to where safari started. *For luxury safari*
Qn5: Where Should I get my meal? And what kind of meal is provided?
- We will provide you with meals as well as mineral water during the safari. However, we would kindly ask you to settle soft drinks and alcoholic beverages on your own. Our safari guide who will drive you in a safari will take you to the beverages shops if it’s your things.
- On safari, all meals are usually taken at your lodge or camp, and standards range from adequate to excellent.
- The good thing is, most lodges offer the option of a packed breakfast and/or lunch box, which are variable in standard, but does allow you to eat on the trot rather than having to base game viewing hours around meal times.
- I would advise you to specify in advance if you are vegetarian or have other specific dietary requirements and we will do our very best to cater for them.
Qn6: what should I pack?
- While upon booking we will provide you with a detailed packing list that will be helpful for you to decide what to bring,
- Shorts and a T-shirt, long trousers and warmer clothing will be required, I would advise women not to wear too short clothes (above their knees, too tight clothes or clothes that will not cover part of their bodies) as well as avoiding clothes with too bright colours (especially blue) as they can attract some insects.
- Binoculars and a good field guide, possibly a pair of sunglasses, cash, credit cards, passport and other necessary documents are important, not to mention other useful items including a torch, compact alarm clock and strong insects repellent.
Qn7: Any luggage restrictions in safari?
- Well, to make your safari as comfortable as possible, luggage is restricted with a maximum size of 25 cm x 30 cm x 62 cm (10″ x 12″ x 24″). I would highly recommend the luggage be packed in bag or rucksack which cannot exceed 15kg including hand luggage. Do not bring suitcases in safari.
- Flights won’t take heavy luggage too kind. The luggage limit for most local flight is 15 kg ($ 3 per extra kilo will be charged) and 25 kg for the international flights.
Qn8: Should I take some cash with me?
- Absolutely, extras like soft and alcoholic beverages, souvenirs snacks and tips should be settled with your cash.
- The most important thing I must remind you is to ensure that your USD bills must be printed not before 2004. It is unfortunate that earlier than 2004 printed bills won’t be accepted.
- You can use your credit card (visa and master card only) to make payments in some places but a 4%-5% fee will be charged while paying by credit card (most small hotels, shops and restaurants accept cash only but the big ones accept credit cards). You can also use your credit cards to get money from the ATMs (located in all the big towns), but they will only give you local currency.
Qn8: You mentioned about tips, how much should I give?
- Well, Tanzania has also a tipping tradition and tipping is usually given at the end of service. While we strongly advise that you do tipping (especially to the safari guides who play the most important role into the success of the entire tour), tipping is not mandatory and you should only give if you’re happy with the service you have received.
- Tipping guideline for your safari guide is $ 40 to $ 50 per car per day while in the hotels it is $ 15 to $ 20 per group per day put in a tip box. Porters are usually tipped separately and it is $ 1 per bag
Qn9: I am Curious to Know Visa Requirements
- Great, a valid visa is necessary.
- Depending on your nationality, you can get your visa ahead of time or buy it at the airport upon arrival.
- Some nationalities require their visa bought ahead of time so I would recommend you contact your respective embassy to get the latest visa regulations
Qn10: Are there any things I need to Know about Vaccinations for Tanzania Safaris?
- Absolutely, while you can read them herein details, (We can put a link for our post on vaccinations) the main concern is malaria. I strongly recommend that you take prophylactic drugs.
- If you are from a yellow fever endemic country or have stayed there for more than 6 hours, you will need to get a yellow fever vaccine.
- We will provide you with detailed travel tips that will also have more information on vaccinations including yellow fever countries list.
Qn11: I am afraid I won’t find proper ablution facilities at the campsites
I would like to ask that you cast that fear aside. There are fairly standard ablution facilities on all campsites so this should never worry you.