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UG3 East Africa Exposition TOUR

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TOUR HIGHLIGHTS:

Dian Fossey's Parc National des Volcans; Bwindi Impenetrable Forest; Kazinga Channel cruise; Maasai Mara's endless plains; Karen Blixen "Out of Africa" Museum; Snows of Kilimanjaro from Kenya's Amboseli Park; Ngorongoro Crater: natural wonder

  • DATES & PRICES
  • FULL ITINERARY
  • MAP & HOTELS
  • TRIP INFORMATION

Dates & Prices

To book this tour, please refer to the sidebar ►

Prices are in US Dollars (USD), before taxes (if applicable) - All pricing reflects per-person Land Only expenses, however, we can book flights from virtually every city. Please call us for an air quote.


Start DateEnd DatePriceMore Info
Sat 05 Sep 2015Thu 01 Oct 2015 $13960
Sun 03 Jan 2016Fri 29 Jan 2016 $13690
Sat 03 Sep 2016Thu 29 Sep 2016 $13960

Optional Single Supplement: $2345 (number of singles limited).
This tour may require a mandatory single supplement charge of $1173, if twin-sharing accommodation is unavailable.


Tour Overview


Uganda, a country that has been striving to put its troubled past firmly behind it, has recently been emerging as one of Africa's most exciting and rewarding tour destinations. After getting orientated in Kampala, we explore some ancient tombs, museums and Hindu temples, before heading away from civilisation to marvel at Uganda's most prized possession: its natural environment. Trips to Kibale Forest National Park, famous for its families of habituated Chimpanzees, and Queen Elizabeth II National Park, a designated UNESCO protected site, put us in prime position to view Colobus monkeys, elephants, buffalos, lions and leopards, where visiting Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park yields good opportunities to catch sight of mountain gorillas. It is, however, in Rwanda's Parc National des Volcans that we experience the ultimate mountain gorilla adventure. On the steep slopes of a magnificent, rainforest-blanketed mountain range, we have the chance to follow in the footsteps of conservationist Dian Fossey and track one of five families of gorillas. Though the gorillas are by no means tame, they have come to tolerate the presence of humans for short spells; the perfect conditions for close interaction with wild animals.

Our extraordinary East Africa tour continues in Kenya and Tanzania, two destinations that are most closely associated with the finest safari opportunities. In Kenya, we explore no fewer than five national parks and reserves, including Maasai Mara National Reserve -- often considered the best of Kenya's parks -- and Amboseli National Park -- famous for its large elephant population. Crossing into Tanzania, our trips through Ngorongoro Conservation Area and Serengeti National Park have us watching out for the 'Big Five' and a host of other teeming wildlife, but so abundant are they, we won't have to look too hard to find them.

Regions visited: East Africa
Countries visited: Uganda; Rwanda; Kenya and Tanzania


Full Itinerary

To book this tour, please refer to the sidebar ►

Day 1 Arrive in Entebbe, Uganda
Today we arrive at Entebbe International Airport (the airport serving the capital) and transfer to our lodge nearby.

Overnight in Entebbe.

Meal plan: dinner

Day 2 Entebbe - Murchison Falls National Park
This morning we travel by road northwards and stop at the Ziwani Rhino Sanctuary, track the rhinos, and have lunch. We then proceed to Murchison Falls.

The falls mark the spot where the River Nile, on its journey from its source at Lake Victoria to join Lake Albert, is suddenly channeled into a gorge only six meters wide and cascades 43 meters below. The earth literally trembles at Murchison Falls -- one of the world's most powerful natural flows of water. Named them after Sir Roderick Murchison, president of the Royal Geographical Society, the falls also lend their name to the surrounding Murchison Falls National Park.

Overnight in Murchison Falls.

Meal plan: breakfast,dinner

Day 3 Murchison Falls Park
We begin the day with an early morning game drive on the Buligi, Albert or Queens tracks north of the river Nile. Here we have the chance to observe those animals closely associated with the African savannah like lion -- leopard, giraffe, antelope, elephant, and warthog.

After lunch we have a cruise on the Nile River. The cruise takes to the bottom of the thundering falls where you will see huge crocodiles, hippo, buffalo, elephant and a variety of water birds like herons, cormorants, ducks, bee-eaters, kingfishers, skimmers, fish eagle and the rare shoebill.

We return to the lodge for dinner and overnight.

Overnight at Murchison Falls.

Meal plan: breakfast,dinner

Day 4 Murchison Falls - Kibale Forest National Park
Early this morning, as we exiti the park, we will stop at the top of Murchison Falls for a view before we continue by road to Kibale Forest National Park, famous for its families of habituated chimpanzees. The park it is home to an astonishing number of 12 species of primates, the highest density in the world!

Overnight at Kibale.

Meal plan: breakfast,dinner

Day 5 Kibale - Queen Elizabeth II National Park
This morning we trek to see chimpanzees. Then we'll have a walk through the Bigodi Swamps. The Kibale Association manages the Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary for Rural and Environmental Organisation, formed in 1992 with the aim of achieving social and economic development for local communities. While on our guided walk around the swamps, we can distinguish many from the approximately 137 bird species found here, including the Snowy Headed Robin Cat, Black and White Casqued Hornbill, Emerald Cuckoo and a variety of weavers, warblers, greenbuls and sunbirds. There is also an abundance of butterflies, and rich in vegetation, such as wild palms, polita figs and the dominant papyrus.

We depart Kibale by road for the Mweya Peninsula in Queen Elizabeth II National Park, dominated on its northern border by the snowcapped peaks of the Rwenzori Mountains -- the famous 'Mountains of the Moon.' The varied ecosystems of this park, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve for Humanity, support a wide variety of species including elephant, buffalo, lion and leopard.

Overnight at Queen Elizabeth II National Park.

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch,dinner

Day 6 Queen Elizabeth II National Park
This morning we embark on a game drive in open savannah covered by acacia trees on the edge of the Albertine Rift Valley. We will search for the typical tree climbing Lions (among other things), a population which is found only in this part of the country. It is impressive to see the animals while they are resting on top of the fig trees.

This afternoon we cruise up the Kazinga Channel, a narrow band of water connecting lakes Edward and George. This is one of the most memorable experiences of a visit to Uganda, offering an opportunity to cruise amid members of Africa's largest hippo population. In addition to these giant semi-aquatic mammals, the launch affords unique opportunities to view other mammals and birds as they come to the water's edge to drink and bathe. Birding is excellent, and we expect to see species ranging in size from the tiny, brilliant Malachite Kingfisher to the giant Goliath Heron.

Overnight at Queen Elizabeth II National Park.

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch,dinner

Day 7 Queen Elizabeth II National Park - Bwindi Impenetrable Forest
We have a morning road trip through the Ishasha Plains and the East African Rift Valley to the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest with picnic lunches (+/-6 hours). We pass through high, forested hills and through deep-farmed valleys. The drive is reminiscent to what one would experience driving through central Europe -- indeed this region of Uganda is often referred to as "Little Switzerland."

Overnight at Bwindi.

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch,dinner

Day 8 Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park
Bwindi, a World Heritage Park, is home to just over half of the world's last surviving mountain gorilla population of 600 individuals. Today's trek* can take from one to six hours, sometimes more, at elevations in excess of 2270 m (7,500 ft) and over rough terrain. Although the hike can be physically demanding, the anticipation of the exciting experience ahead is invigorating, and the beauty of the forest and its inhabitants is fascinating. For more info, go to www.uwa.or.ug. Your gorilla permits are included in the tour price.

The area around Bwindi is an excellent place for watching primates and birds and you may catch a glimpse of the noisy but evasive Chimpanzees or the beatiful Hornbills and Turacos. The forest is home to 120 species of mammals, 346 species of birds, 202 species of butterflies, and 163 species of trees, making it one of the richest ecosystems in Africa.

*NOTE: Group participants MUST have a medical questionnaire signed by a physician indicating their fitness to undertake such an activity. This form will be included with your confirmation package and MUST be returned to us before your final documents are issued.

Overnight at Bwindi.

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch,dinner

Day 9 Bwindi, Uganda - Parc National des Volcans, Rwanda
Today we travel by road +/- 6 hours via Kisoro to Parc National des Volcans, Rwanda, a journey that takes us through the beautiful terraced hillsides that characterize much of Rwanda's landscape.

"In the heart of Central Africa, so high up that you shiver more than you sweat," wrote the eminent primatologist Dian Fossey, "are great, old volcanoes towering up almost 15,000 feet, and nearly covered with rich, green rainforest - the Virungas". Situated in the far northwest of Rwanda, the Parc des Volcans protects the steep slopes of this magnificent mountain range--home of the rare mountain gorilla -- and a rich mosaic of montane ecosystems, which embrace evergreen and bamboo forest, open grassland, swamp and heath.

Overnight near Parc National des Volcans.

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch,dinner

Day 10 Parc National des Volcans
This morning we take a short drive to the park headquarters where we are briefed by the guides of the Parc des Volcans before we start our gorilla trek. This 13,000-hectare national park protects the Rwanda sector of the Virunga Mountains, a range of six extinct and three active volcanoes which straddle the border with Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Bamboo forest is interspersed with alpine moorland, grassland and marsh.

Tracking the gorillas through the light mountain forest on the slopes of the Virungas is a magical experience. If you are lucky you will get to the gorillas, spend an hour with them, and be back at the base in time for a late lunch. Some gorilla families however are more elusive, and tracking can take a full day... especially when wet and muddy.

The Mountain Gorillas in the Parc National des Volcans are part of a worldwide population of just 740 individuals. The gorillas we are allowed to track belong to one of five habituated family groups. For up to five years each, these groups have undergone an extremely delicate process that has gradually brought them to tolerate the presence of humans for a brief period every day and allowed a few privileged visitors to interact with them in the wild.

The gorillas are by no means tame, and are completely wild animals. However, experienced guides will accompany us on our tracking, many of who have been involved in the habituation process themselves. The guides will use their knowledge of the gorillas' habits and information from the previous day to locate the group’s whereabouts. Because of this, the time taken to track the gorillas varies enormously, from as little as 1 hour to as much as 8 hours before one returns to base. Once the gorillas are located, our group will be allowed a maximum of one hour with them.

Please remember that the mountain gorillas are a wild animal and are not enclosed in any form and free to move as they please. For this reason actual sightings of the gorilla groups cannot be guaranteed. For more information on gorilla tracking in Rwanda, go to www.ortpn.gov.rw.

Overnight near Parc National des Volcans. Gorilla's Nest.

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch,dinner

Day 11 Parc National des Volcans
Today is a day of options. You may choose to trek another gorilla family,* OR take a trek up to the grave of Dian Fossey and the remains of the Old Karisoke Research Station (additional cost; rate included in your pre-trip notes). It is strongly advised that these options are pre-booked and confirmed at time of purchase of the main tour to ensure availability.

For those who loved the book and/or the movie ''Gorillas In The Mist'' the Dian Fossey trek could be a good option. Over the course of the morning you follow in her footsteps as you trek to Dian Fossey's grave and the many graves belonging to the poached gorillas, including that of Digit. For a more leisurely experience, trekking to the Golden Monkeys is highly recommended. In June 2003 the National Parks department first allowed permits to trek theses rare primates. A short walk to the edge of the forest to see the endangered Golden Monkeys is a rare treat. Watching these unique primates play and perform in the forest is mesmerizing.

* An additional gorilla permit for a second day trekking is an optional expense of approx $750 US per person, payable in advance only and non-refundable if you change your mind after the first day's trek.

Overnight near Parc National des Volcans.

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch,dinner

Day 12 Parc National des Volcans - Kigali
Today we drive back to Kigali. Prior to departure, you may do an optional hike to view a colony of golden monkeys (additional cost; rate included in your pre-trip notes).

In Kigali we will have a brief look at Kigali and the Genocide Museum, opened in 2004 to mark the tenth anniversary of the Rwandan genocide. While the genocide occurred as a result of a complex series of factors, it can only be seen as an absolute tragedy to Rwanda and its people. Time spent at the Genocide Museum is moving and important in understanding the sheer courage and resilience of this beautiful, tiny nation.

Overnight in Kigali.

Meal plan: breakfast,dinner

Day 13 Kigali, Rwanda - Nairobi, Kenya
Today we fly from Kigali to Nairobi.*

Part of Maasai land when the British arrived, Kenya's modern capital grew with the development of the railway. Derived from a Maasai word meaning "Cold Water," Nairobi is a pleasant mix of colonial British with modern and traditional African influences.

* NOTE: This flight is included if you purchase your international air through Adventures Abroad. Land Only passengers can purchase this for an extra $350 USD.

Overnight in Nairobi.

Meal plan: breakfast,dinner

Day 14 Nairobi - Ol Pejeta Conservancy
Today we travel from Nairobi, through the "White Highlands," so called because of the large number of Europeans who settled here, northwards to the lower slopes of Mt Kenya, rising to 5199 m (16,728 feet), Africa's second highest peak. Our drive will take us into the Central Highlands, the heartland of the Kikuyu people. This is a very fertile region, well-watered, intensively cultivated, and thickly forested. The land was coveted by the Europeans who began arriving in ever-increasing numbers once the railway through the area was completed. The settlers established coffee and tea plantations on the eastern slopes of Mt Kenya and cultivated wheat on the western slopes.

Our destination is Sweetwaters, a luxury tented camp clustered around a water hole and set in the pristine calm of the private Ol Pejeta Conservancy, a non-profit organization supporting endangered species, tourism and community outreach. Ol Pejeta is East Africa's largest Black Rhino sanctuary, the only place in Kenya to see chimpanzees, and holds some of the highest predator densities in Kenya.

This afternoon we'll enjoy our first game drive within the conservancy.

Overnight at Sweetwaters Camp.

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch,dinner

Day 15 Ol Pejeta Conservancy
Ol Pejeta is a mosaic of grass plains, wooded grassland, acacia woodland and evergreen thicket extending for over 350 square kilometers. The conservancy boasts an astounding variety of animals, including the "Big Five."

We will have morning and afternoon game drives today, as well as a chance to visit the Sweetwaters Chimpanzee Sanctuary -- the only place in Kenya where this highly endangered and remarkably intelligent species can be seen. The facility was initially established to receive and provide lifelong refuge to orphaned and abused chimpanzees from West and Central Africa. Here the chimpanzees are carefully nursed back to health so they can enjoy the rest of their days in the safety of a vast natural enclosure.

Overnight at Sweetwaters Camp.

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch,dinner

Day 16 Ol Pejeta - Great Rift Valley - Lake Nakuru National Park
This morning we travel to Lake Nakuru, a shallow soda lake in the Rift Valley. The Rift Valley was created millions of years ago under the strain of enormous volcanic eruptions which resulted in a giant split in the earth's surface from Syria to Mozambique. Lava flowed into the valley, forming escarpments on either side of the gigantic trough which can be up to 80 km (50 miles) wide, big enough to be visible from space. At the lake, depending on the water levels, we may have the opportunity to see up to two million flamingos, in addition to the over 340 species of birds that have been recorded in the Rift Valley!

Lake Nakuru is very shallow and can fluctuate up to five metres (12 feet) each day. When the water is low, you can see a white band of crystallized soda along the shoreline. This is also one of the best places in Kenya to view the rare White Rhino as we explore the park on our afternoon game drive.

Overnight in Lake Nakuru National Park.

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch,dinner

Day 17 Lake Nakuru - Maasai Mara National Reserve
Early this morning we depart from Lake Nakuru National Park and continue our journey through the Rift Valley, passing by Lake Naivasha and nearby Mount Longonot, a relatively young volcanic reminder of the Rift's violent past. We arrive at our lodge (via bad road) in the Maasai Mara National Reserve in time for lunch.

The Maasai Mara is a natural extension of the Serengeti eco-system and has an amazing concentration of wildlife. The largest population of lions in Kenya is found here, along with large herds of plains game. The Maasai Mara may also be the best place in Kenya to view cheetah. Later this afternoon we enjoy another game drive.

Time-permitting, we will stop and visit a Maasai village to witness the local way of life and meet its residents. If time does not permit, we will visit the village on our way back to Nairobi.

Overnight in the Maasai Mara.

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch,dinner

Day 18 Maasai Mara National Reserve
The Maasai Mara National Reserve consists of rolling grassland and is located at the northern end of the Serengeti Plain. Considered the best of Kenya's parks, it is on the pathway of the yearly wildebeest migration, which comes north from Tanzania about the end of June and returns to Tanzania around the end of September. "The Mara" sustains all of the "Big Five" -- lion, elephant, leopard, rhinoceros and buffalo -- as well as an astonishing wealth of herding animals and other wildlife. You can see the stately Maasai men and youth along the road tending their cattle and goats.

We have a full day in the reserve, with morning and afternoon game drives.

In the Mara you will also have an optional opportunity to ascend over the northern Serengeti at daybreak in a hot air balloon (optional expense). From over 300 m (984 feet) above, you will be able to view the vast land and the myriad animals that inhabit the Maasai Mara.

Overnight in the Maasai Mara National Reserve.

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch,dinner

Day 19 Maasai Mara National Reserve
We enjoy another full day with game viewing in Maasai Mara. Depending on the season and current game locations and viewing conditions, we may divide our day into morning and afternoon drives, or take our lunches with us in order to venture further into the reserve if conditions warrant.

Overnight in the Maasai Mara National Reserve.

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch,dinner

Day 20 Maasai Mara - Nairobi
After breakfast we depart for Nairobi. En route, just outside the capital, we visit the Karen Blixen Museum. Baroness Karen Blixen-Finecke emigrated from Denmark to Kenya in 1918 and, in 1937, wrote under the pseudonym, Isaac Dineson, "Out of Africa." The novel tells the tale of the Baroness's experiences on a Kenyan farm. Her home is now a museum, restored to the style in which she maintained it.

Overnight in Nairobi.

Meal plan: breakfast,dinner

Day 21 Nairobi - Amboseli National Park
Today we travel south from Nairobi to the Amboseli National Park. Just across the border from Tanzania, this park is situated on the African plain at the foot of snow-capped Mount Kilimanjaro, the continent's tallest mountain at 5894 m (19,300 feet). Here the cone-shaped mountain seems to hover majestically over the shimmering African plains.

The Amboseli National Park is also famous for its large herds of elephants. Here they cover themselves in red dust, giving them an even more imposing appearance. On this afternoon's game drive we hope to view animals grazing on the open plain with Mt Kilimanjaro providing the classic backdrop (weather permitting).

Overnight in the Amboseli National Park.

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch,dinner

Day 22 Amboseli, Kenya - Lake Manyara National Park, Tanzania
This morning we cross the border into Tanzania and travel to Lake Manyara National Park via the town of Arusha, the starting point for the northern safari routes of Tanzania.

Manyara is the smallest of the northern parks in Tanzania (330 sq km, of which two thirds is the actual lake) hosting a wide variety of vegetation, ranging from savannah to ground water forest to riparian habitats. The park is host to thousands of pelicans, ibis and flamingo that can be heard from afar. Other common visitors to this beautiful lake are hippos and the majestic African fish eagle, which can be seen swooping down from its perch to snatch a fish from the still waters of the lake.

After lunch at our lodge we will have an afternoon game drive in the park, located at the base of the Great Rift Valley escarpment and comprising of forest, woodland, grasslands, and swamps. Wildlife interest at Lake Manyara is not confined to bird life only; animals such as buffalo, elephant, giraffe, impala, hippo and a great variety of smaller animals also inhabit the park.

Overnight at Lake Manyara.

Meal plan: breakfast,dinner

Day 23 Lake Manyara - Serengeti National Park
This morning we enter the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, a beautiful rolling landscape with periodic views over the Ngorongoro Crater. Before descending onto the Serengeti Plain, we'll stop at a viewpoint overlooking the crater. The name "Serengeti" derives from a Maasai word meaning "Land-without-end." This is a land of superlatives, both in the vast landscape that surrounds you and the incredible biodiversity it supports. It is here that you have a chance to witness one of the most compelling natural dramas on earth -- the annual migration, a sight
unparalleled anywhere in the natural world. Our afternoon game drive provides an excellent introduction to this fantastic landscape and the biodiversity it supports.

Overnight in the Serengeti National Park.

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch,dinner

Day 24 Serengeti National Park
Today we have a full day of game viewing on the Serengeti. We will visit the "kopjes," a series of low, incongruous hills dotting the open landscape that often provide a vantage point for hungry predators contemplating the endless stream of hoofed animals parading past them. Depending on the season and the timing of the rains, up to 1.5 million wildebeest and a half a million zebra embark on a single-minded and perilous quest for water and grazing land. Following this spectacle, of course, are the meat-eating opportunists, hoping to capitalize on the physical toll this journey exacts on the desperate grazers. Even outside of "migration" time, large herds are still seen as they bear their young and feed, gaining strength for their annual return to the park's northern reaches. Resident species that do not migrate make for rewarding animal viewing in any season.

It may be possible to take an optional hot-air balloon safari over the plains at daybreak. Speak to your booking agent at the time of reservation.

Overnight in the Serengeti National Park.

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch,dinner

Day 25 Serengeti - Olduvai Gorge - Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Travelling back to Ngorongoro today we make a stop at Olduvai Gorge, site of the Leakey excavations in the 1960s and 70s that established this region as the prehistoric habitat of some of the earliest species of hominids with some finds dating back 1.8 million years. Experts in the life sciences have argued that the Olduvai contribution to the story of human origins remains unsurpassed by any other prehistoric site in the world. A small museum on site outlines the
unique geological and human history of the area.

Called the 'eighth wonder of the world' and stretching across some 8300 sq km, the Ngorongoro Conservation Area boasts a blend of landscapes, wildlife, people and archaeology that is unsurpassed in Africa. The volcanoes, grasslands, waterfalls and mountain forests are home to an abundance of animals and to the Maasai. Ngorongoro Crater is one of the world's greatest natural spectacles and its magical setting and abundant wildlife never fail to enthrall visitors.

Balance of the day at leisure to enjoy our lodge overlooking the crater.

Overnight in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area.

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch,dinner

Day 26 Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Today we enjoy a half-day tour in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area.* After an early breakfast we descend into the crater far below for a game drive in this incredible setting, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We explore the Ngorongoro Crater, 20 km (13 miles) wide and 700 m (2,300 feet) high where we may see the "Big Five" as well as many herbivores like wildebeest, gazelle, zebra and hippopotamus, as well as thousands of flamingos on Lake Magadi.

* In order to reduce congestion and stress on wildlife, the Tanzanian government limits
visitors to half-day visits of the crater. Depending on what time "window" we are assigned, our excursion may take place first thing in the morning, or later in the afternoon (both of which are equally advantageous for game viewing, given the relatively mild climate at this altitude).

Overnight in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area.

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch,dinner

Day 27 Ngorongoro - Arusha - Depart
This morning we descend the Ngorongoro Highlands, retracing our steps back to Arusha via a lunch stop at Gibb's Farm. Founded during German colonial times and still privately owned, Gibb's Farm is now a small hotel perched on the outer slopes of the Ngorongoro Highlands, surrounded by coffee plantations with long views over lush and beautiful agricultural country.

We pass again through the town of Mto Wa Mbu ('Mosquito Creek'), famous for its lively cosmopolitan atmosphere and red bananas, which taste the same as regular bananas but their skins are a startling bright red. We continue to Arusha to connect with homeward evening flights.

LAND ONLY PASSENGERS need to take into account our morning journey when booking their flights out of Arusha (JRO). Your departure should occur no earlier than 6:00 pm.

SAFARI NJEMA!

Meal plan: breakfast,lunch

Tour Map

To book this tour, please refer to the sidebar ►

*The red tour trail on the map does not represent the actual travel path.


Hotel List


The following is a list of sample hotels at some locations included on this tour. The hotels shown here are meant to provide a general sense of the standard of hotel we usually aim for; they are not necessarily confirmed for your chosen departure.


Paraa Safari Lodge

Rating: 4 Star Accommodation4 Star Accommodation4 Star Accommodation4 Star Accommodation
Location: Murchison Falls
Country: Uganda

Established in 1954, Paraa Safari Lodge is in Murchison Falls National Park. The lodge is located in the north west
... Uganda over looking one of nature's best kept secrets, the River Nile, on its journey from its source at Lake Victoria to join Lake Albert – here it is suddenly channeled into a gorge only six meters wide, and cascades 43 meters below. The earth literally trembles at Murchison Falls - one of the world's most powerful flows of natural water.

Paraa Safari Lodge offers a unique blend of comfort, relaxation and adventure. Each of the rooms is a haven of style and serenity, complete with balcony and private bathroom.

The safari décor of the lodge still reflects the bygone era of early explorers, enshrined with a modern touch. The luxurious pool overlooks the winding River Nile below, which was the setting for the classic Hollywood movie "The African Queen" (starring Katharine Hepburn and Humphrey Bogart). Enjoy a variety of excursions and activities; from exhilarating Safari drives to boat trips along the River Nile, ending at the foot of Murchison Falls. For the more adventurous, one can trek up to the top of the falls and marvel at the views through the mist. A variety of ecosystems and an impressive 451 species of birds awaits you here...

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Mweya Safari Lodge

Rating: 4 Star Accommodation4 Star Accommodation4 Star Accommodation4 Star Accommodation
Location: Queen Elizabeth II National Park
Country: Uganda

Mweya Safari Lodge offers visitors an unforgettable experience. Located on a peninsula within the heart of the Queen Elizabeth National
... Mweya Safari Lodge is surrounded by the magical Rwenzori Mountains aptly described as the 'Mountains of the Moon'.

To the east, lie the guardians of the birthplace of mankind, the Great Rift Valley hills, separated from the Mountains of the Moon by the meandering Kazinga Channel. Here the water flows endlessly into two giant lakes – Lake George and Lake Edward.

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Mahogany Springs Lodge

Rating: 4 Star Accommodation4 Star Accommodation4 Star Accommodation4 Star Accommodation
Location: Bwindi
Country: Uganda

Mahogany Springs offers privacy and serenity blended with optimal comfort in a spectacular setting. With some of the most luxurious
... in East Africa the feeling that you will experience when staying here is beyond compare.

At Mahogany Springs it is the little touches that make the big difference, from the tiny details in the design of the lodge through to the unrivalled service levels provided by the highly trained management team.

Mahogany Springs is the perfect base from which to begin you Gorilla Tracking or Bird watching adventures. The Gorillas have been to know to the visit the lodge and coming face to face with one of these peaceful creatures is an indescribable experience.

With more bird species per square kilometre than anywhere else in the world Bwindi is often described as bird watchers paradise and the fact that Mahogany Springs is set back on an open piece of land by the river ensures we have many rare species visiting us every day.

Come and stay at Mahogany Springs and it will live in your memory forever with a charming elegance that will leave you wanting more…

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Mountain Gorilla View Lodge

Rating: 5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation
Location: Parc National des Volcans
Country: Rwanda

Mountain Gorilla View Lodge is located approximately fifteen minutes from the park offices, at the base of Sabyinyo Volcano.

... the rooms are individual spacious cottages with a fire place, sitting area and en-suite bathroom. The lodge consists of thirty cottages nineteen with king size beds, five cottages have twin beds and varnished flat stone floors.

As the lodge is at altitude the evenings can get quite cold the staff will make sure that your cottage is lovely and warm by lighting your own fireplace.

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Lemigo Hotel

Rating: 4 Star Accommodation4 Star Accommodation4 Star Accommodation4 Star Accommodation
Location: Kigali
Country: Rwanda

With everything right where you need it. Be it luxury or comfort, we have it all in one package.Lemigo brings
... refreshingly unique experience to Rwanda. Conveniently located in Kimihurura-Rugando. It is just 10 minutes drive from Kigali International Airport. Relaxation reigns here amid a serene landscape. Set in a serene environment, the hotel is sandwiched between International Organizations of repute.
Rating: 4-star

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Sarova Lion Hill Lodge

Rating: 5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation
Location: Nairobi
Country: Kenya

Set on a plateau above Lake Nakuru, the lodge has 67 chalets all overlooking the lake. It is the perfect
... to experience one of the world's largest ornithological spectacles, the pink flamingo, or a rich concentration of wildlife including black and white colobus monkey and black and white rhino. Private shower, verandah, tea / coffee making facilities.


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Maasai Mara Sopa Lodge

Rating: 5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation
Location: Maasai Mara
Country: Kenya

Located on the slopes of Oloongams Hills, it is one of the first lodges to be built in the Maasai
... Game Reserve. Guests are drawn to this lodge built in an ethnic design, surrounded by a rich landscape, covered in fauna, from huge desert cacti to sweet smelling jasmine flowers, all within the fabled Maasai Mara game reserve. 50 traditional round buildings with thatched roofs, each with 2 rooms with private bath.

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Mara Serena Lodge

Rating: 5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation
Location: Maasai Mara
Country: Kenya

Located at the very centre of the famous ‘Mara Triangle' of the world-renowned Masai Mara National Reserve, the Mara Serena
... Lodge is the ultimate safari destination. Set high on a bush-cloaked hill with long views over the savannah and down to the winding coils of the hippo-filled Mara River, it stands centre-stage to one of Africa's most dramatic wildlife arenas, with a ringside seat for the ‘greatest wildlife show on earth', the legendary migration of the wildebeest.

Styled to echo the circular motif of a traditional Maasai manyatta, our Masai Mara lodge blends international sophistication with raw African beauty, while featuring twin rows of individual rooms, each with its own view of the famous Mara River. The central bar and dining areas enjoy spectacular views, as does the rock-surround swimming pool. Each uniquely-presented room is accommodated in its own stand-alone modular unit, with uninterrupted views, private balcony and spacious seating area. Activities include two daily game drives in custom-built traditional safari vehicles, ‘sundowners' in the bush, breakfast by the hippo pool, lunch in the wilderness, dinner in the bush, balloon safaris or relaxation and reinvigoration in the panoramic new Maisha Safari Spa and Gym.

World renowned for the breathtaking spectacle of ‘the greatest wildlife show on earth', the awe inspiring annual migration of the wildebeest, the Mara is Kenya's most visited protected area. Technically an extension of Tanzania's renowned Serengeti National Park, the Mara constitutes only 4% of the entire Serengeti ecosystem but its rolling grasslands, meandering rivers and towering escarpments offer one of the world's most rewarding and evocative wildlife arenas.

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Lake Manyara Serena Lodge

Rating: 5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation
Location: Lake Manyara
Country: Tanzania

Standing high on the bluff above Lake Manyara's gleaming alkaline waters, the Lodge commands panoramic views across the volcano-studded floor
... the Great Rift Valley. The circular, closely-thatched rooms echo the traditional Maasai 'Boma' style of construction. Each room has a private veranda and breathtaking views of the shimmering lake.


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Mbuzi Mawe Tented Camp

Rating: 5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation
Location: Serengeti National Park
Country: Tanzania

Scenically located in a glade, known as ‘the place of the klipspringer' (mbuzi mawe), and guarded by three million year-old
... towers, this luxury tented-camp in the Serengeti is unique. Cleverly located on one of the main annual migration corridors for over one million wildebeest, half a million zebras and gazelles, and their accompanying cast of predators it is also located at the very epicentre of one of the world's most famous national parks.


Our tented camp is located in the Western Serengeti, 335 kms from Arusha. By road: transfers by road from Arusha take approximately 8-10 hours.By air: the camp is adjacent to both the Seronera and Lobo airstrips and a ‘meet and greet' and transfer service is offered.

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Serengeti Migration Camp

Rating: 5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation
Location: Serengeti National Park
Country: Tanzania

This luxury camp is hidden amongst the rocky outcrops, or kopjes, in Northern Serengeti, exuding decadence reminiscent of Old Africa.
... lavish and spacious tents on wooden decks with either king or twin beds, comfortable leather armchairs, coffee and writing tables. The tents are en-suite with showers and double vanities, surrounded by a verandah with rocking chairs.


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Serengeti Sopa Lodge

Rating: 5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation
Location: Serengeti National Park
Country: Tanzania

Nestled in the acacia woodland on the edge of the escarpment overlooking the plains of the south-western Serengeti. 69 standard
... all with 2 queen size beds, carpeted, and tastefully furnished with local fabrics and pictures. The rooms have en-suite bathrooms and hairdryers.


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Gibbs Farm

Rating: 5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation
Location: Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Country: Tanzania

Immerse yourself in the peace and serenity of Gibb’s Farm. Overlooking the centuries-old Great Rift Valley and Ngorongoro Forest, Gibb’s
... was one of the first guesthouses in Northern Tanzania. Established as a coffee farm in the late 1920s and refurbished as a warm, rustic luxury inn, Gibb’s Farm is a welcome retreat for a few days’ respite while on safari or for an extended vacation or honeymoon getaway.

The main farmhouse and 17 cottages offer the warmth and charm of another era, with all of the modern amenities you could ask for. Inside, beautiful architectural details, such as the farmhouse’s original wooden beams, and colourful artwork reflecting the inspirations of local African artists greet you. Outside, the farm’s organic vegetable and terraced flower gardens provide a wonderful sanctuary for afternoon tea or a quiet walk to impart a sense of contentment and well-being.

Beyond the farm’s coffee fields, Ngorongoro Forest and the local village beckon. Experience a sense of place as you bicycle the back roads of Karatu, learn about Iraqw culture while visiting a local family or explore centuries-old waterfalls and elephant caves. To calm and restore, Gibb’s Farm offers indigenous Maasai healing treatments in the privacy of your room. After a full day of adventure, Chef Lisa Campbell’s delicious organic cuisine—fresh from our gardens, bakery and dairy—will replenish you.

Surround yourself with the rich traditions of East African life, exclusive to Gibb’s Farm, and share an eternal sense of history and community. Generations of local families have helped to create a truly special and authentic experience, based upon East African traditions and hospitality. Gibb’s Farm’s deep and long-standing connection to the community continues to inspire excellence and the farm’s sustainable, renewable practices serve as a model for living in harmony with nature.

During your stay you will often hear the Swahili word “karibu,” expressing the genuine, innate pleasure we take in welcoming our guests—an attribute at the heart of our hospitality.

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Ngorongoro Serena Lodge

Rating: 5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation
Location: Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Country: Tanzania

Perched on the jagged rim of the crater, wreathed in morning mist, camouflaged in river-stone and cloaked in indigenous creepers,
... Ngorongoro Serena Safari Lodge is a triumph of ecological and architectural fusion. Lit by flaming wall-lanterns, clad in gigantic volcanic boulders and decorated by the iron spears, bright-beaded robes and intricately carved artifacts of the Maasai, the Lodge is a unique blend of world-class luxury, timeless volcanic splendour and ethnic style.


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Ngorongoro Sopa Lodge

Rating: 5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation
Location: Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Country: Tanzania

Facing the always magnificent sunsets to the west, and located at the highest point on Ngorongoro crater’s entire rim, Ngorongoro
... Lodge stands well over half a kilometre above the crater floor and offers unparalleled views across this enormous caldera.

Themed around traditionally circular African houses with conical roofs, and decorated with examples of Africa’s rich tapestry of artistic traditions by way of rich woodcarvings and sculptures, the lodge harmonizes perfectly with its dramatic surroundings. But the drama does not just stop with the great outdoors: it also flows through the split level interiors of the main building which all offer an unsurpassed generosity of space while somehow managing to combine an almost magically welcoming ambience of both warmth and cosiness.

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Arusha Coffee Lodge

Rating: 5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation5 Star Accommodation
Location: Arusha
Country: Tanzania

Arusha Coffee Lodge is located within one of Tanzania's largest coffee plantations. It is designed around the original plantation house
... one the feel of the long bygone days. The rooms have mosquito netting hanging from a spacious wooden frame. The decor is inspired by the concept used in plantation houses: fire places, wooden floors, low lighting, and woven floor rugs. The bathroom is spacious, with basin, bath tub, shower, hairdryer and bath robe.

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Trip Information

To book this tour, please refer to the sidebar ►

Inclusions

Most meals included (local restaurants and hotels). All accommodation, transport, sightseeing and entrance fees for sites noted as 'visited' in the detailed itinerary, including 2 gorilla permits. Gratuities for driver-guides, restaurant staff, porters. Airport transfers for land & air customers arriving / departing on tour dates.

NOTE: Due to prepaid park fees and gorilla permits which are non-refundable once issued, this tour requires a higher than usual deposit amount at time of booking. Your $2000 per person deposit is 100% non-refundable non-transferrable once paid.

Exclusions

Tour Leader gratuities, one lunch, drinks, personal items (phone, laundry, etc), international (if applicable) and domestic air taxes, visa fees, and any excursions referenced as 'optional'. Airport transfers for Land Only customers. Optional trip cancellation insurance. Our post-reservation trip notes offer further guidance on shopping, visas, and locally payable departure taxes.

Seasonality and Weather

Transport and Travel Conditions

Some road journeys are very long and very rough, possibly dusty. We travel via well-maintained, rugged minivan with six passengers each, 4X4 in Tanzania. The same vehicles, with roofs that pop up, will be used for our game drives in parks and reserves. Please note that air-conditioned safari vehicles are non-existent in East Africa.

Accommodation

UGANDA / RWANDA have only re-emerged as tourist destinations in the last few years and their lodges and camps are not as luxurious as in some African countries.

KENYA / TANZANIA hotels and lodges used are 4-5 star properties with hot water, electricity, mosquito netting, dining areas, bar, swimming pools. Remote lodges are not air-conditioned though many are at higher elevations where heat is not a factor. Hotel porter service is available throughout (see 'Inclusions'). Single rooms are limited and likely smaller than twins. Many lodges are quite spread out and you will need to be able to walk up to 10 minutes from public areas to your room.

Staff and Support

Tour Leader throughout, local drivers & guides.

Group Size

10-21 (plus Tour Leader)