Where to see giraffes and gorillas in Uganda and Rwanda
Where to see giraffes and gorillas in Uganda and Rwanda. Mountain Gorillas in Uganda and Rwanda are some of the highly demanded to see wild animals. They can only be seen in Bwindi Impenetrable National park and Mgahinga National park in Uganda. In Rwanda Volcanoes national park is the only home for the mountain gorillas. Because of the feeding nature of the mountain gorillas, they can only thrive in the Virunga area.
Rothschild Giraffes can be seen in the game parks of either Uganda or Rwanda. They can also be relocated to other parks as long as there food is present. They easily adopt to the new environment where they are rehabilitated.
Most Popular Safaris
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- 11 Days Uganda- Rwanda Tour
- 6 Days Nyungwe & Lake Kivu
- 3 Day Rwanda Gorilla Tracking
- 4 Days Gorillas and Golden Monkeys
- 5 Days Gorillas & Nile River Source
In Uganda, the giraffes like in Murchison Falls National park, Kidepo Valley National park, rehabilitated to Lake Mburo National Park. They can be seen at the Uganda Wildlife Education center too just a few meters from Entebbe International Airport.
Rwanda giraffes can be spotted in Akagera National park. This national park was affected by poaching and the Rwanda genocide of 1994. Its land was encroached on after the genocide and most of the wild animals there hunted for wild meat until all wiped out. Rwanda is trying to reinstate the Akagera National park wildlife glory.
How To Do Gorilla Trekking And Giraffe Safaris in Uganda Or Rwanda
Uganda safari Itinerary To Bwindi Impenetrable National park and Murchison Falls National park
Day 1 drive To Murchison Falls National Park
Early in the morning, your ranger guide will pick you from your overnight hotel and drive to Murchison Falls National Park. The drive is about 5 hours or 6 hours. From Entebbe Airport Murchison Falls National park is about 340 km while from Kampala its about 300 km.
You drive on Gulu road northwards to Bwaise then pass Bombo the famous Luwero triangle.
Enjoy the great view of amazing River Kafu along the way, great landforms and do much more. You may make an optional stop at the Ziiwa Rhino sanctuary where black Rhinos are being rehabilitated in Uganda after they were wiped out in 1980s Uganda political insurgencies. The sanctuary is about 150 km along this route and Rhino viewing is guaranteed.
Get into the park and enjoy a game drive where you may get to see animals like giraffes, herds of elephants, buffaloes, water bucks bush bucks and others.
Check in and relax at your Accommodation
Day 2 Game Drive And Launch Trip In Murchison Falls National park
Rise up early for the game drive on the Northern banks of River Nile. The Buligi area is the prime spot for game drives in Murchison Falls National Park. Taking a drive through the scenic Buligi area west of Paraa to the delta point may take around three hours.
When you take the morning game drives, you may get to see early risers emerge from there night hideouts while nocturnal return to there day hideouts. You may get to spot the high up Rothschild giraffes, herds of cape buffaloes, Jackson’s hartebeests, oribi, lions, leopards and others.
In case you are an ornithologist, you may get to spot birds like Gull-billed Tern Sterna, lesser Grey Shrike Lanius Minor, Lesser Moorhen Gaffinula Angulata, Mottled Swift Apus aequatorialis, Ringed plover Charadrius hiaticula, Shikra Accipiter Badius and others.
A Launch Trip to Murchison Falls is the highlight of all wildlife shows in Murchison falls National Park. Along the way you may get to enjoy riverine wildlife including giraffes that move to the banks to quench thirst. Watch out for serried crocodiles at the crocodile restaurant, schools of hippos and so much more. Numerous birds grace the shoreline so watch out for there presence.
As Murchison falls come into view, you feel a change in the water turbulence, a foamy appearance floats on top of the water and you hear loud roars from the plunging River Nile water. Finally, the falls come into view and you watch vigorous Victoria Nile waters squeezing through a narrow bend to burst out and make a thundering sound.
Take photos and return to your lodge or opt for a trek to the top of the falls. This adrenaline stimulating moment gives you the view of River Nile as it passes over a bed of rocks before going through the gorge.
Get back to your lodge to relax
Day 3 Drive To Bwindi Forest National Park
This is a very long drive from Murchison Falls National Park to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. You may opt for a fly- in trip to Bwindi Impenetrable National park or break with a stop to Queen Elizabeth National park or Kibale national Park.
Enjoy the landscape you pass by and the Uganda Oil city along the way.
Arrive in the late evening time of the day to check into your lodge.
Day 4 Gorilla Trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
After breakfast, carry your gorilla trekking gears to the briefing point. Do not forget a mask or hand sanitizer because its one of the requirements to do gorilla trekking. You will be divided into a group of maximum 8 people to trek a given gorilla family.
Hire a porter in case you need one and follow the ranger guide’s instructions given during briefing. The ranger guide follows the pace of the slowest trekker. This is to ensure that no one is forgotten in the wilderness.
Look out for other forest dwellers like black and white colobus, red-tailed monkeys, grey-cheeked mangabey, pottos monkeys, L’hoests, olive baboons and others.
For keen birders, you may get to see over 100 bird species including Albertine endemics including those on the IUCN red list. Some of the birds you may get to see include Shelley’s Crimmsonwing, Mountain Masked and chestnut-throated Apalises, African Hill Babbler, Archer’s Robin-chat, Red-throated Alethe, Rwenzori Batis and strange Weaver and others.
Day 5 Departure Day
After enjoying the giraffes and mountain gorillas in the wilderness get back to the road to catch up with your home bound flight.
The Rothschild giraffes are wild animals that cannot be controlled or choreographed for human presence so having an open mind during the game drive to locate them is necessary.
The mountain gorillas are habituated to be in the presence of human for just one hour so fully utilize this time to watch and take as many photos as you wish to keep memories of gorilla trekking. This is a once in a lifetime adventure so you need to enjoy every moment with the gorillas.
You have to buy a Uganda gorilla trekking permit to see the mountain gorillas and pay park entrance fees to enter Murchison Falls National Park. Park entrance is per person and lasts only 24 hours.
Rwanda the Mountain Gorilla and Giraffe Safari
Day 1 Drive To Volcanoes National Park
Your driver guide will pick you from the Kigali Airport or Hotel and drive to Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda. Enjoy the drive as you goes through undulating hills of the land of a thousand hills.
Watch out for the lush green cover on the hills, enjoy the cool breeze and the alp like highlands along the way.
Check into your lodge
Some of the accommodations you may select from for gorilla trekking in Rwanda include Sabyinyo Silverback lodge, Mountain Gorilla View Lodge, Kinigi Guest House, Hotel La Palme and others.
Day 2 Gorilla Trekking In Volcanoes National Park Rwanda
Carrying your gorilla trekking gears, head to ORTPN for briefing. Do not forget to wear your facemask, covid-19 inoculation certificate or covid-19 negative results taken 72 hours before the trek.
You will be divided into groups of maximum 8 tourists who follow the ranger guide to trek a particular gorilla family. He or she follows the pace of the slowest trekker. Remember to hire a porter in case you wish be helped during the trek.
In case you wish to take a long call, ask the ranger guide to dig a hole of about 30 centimeters deep. Cover everything well beyond recognition so that the primates cannot exhume it.
Look out for others primates like black and white colobus, vervet monkeys, red-tailed monkeys, olive baboons, L’hoests, Blue Monkeys and others
Keen birders may have the chance to see birds like Rwenzori Turacos, Dusky Crimsonwings, Shelley’s Crimsonwings to mention but a few.
When you finally get locate the mountain gorillas, do not surround them but step at a distance of about 8 meters from them. take photos with flash less sound proof cameras because they are usually agitated by new sounds in there presence.
You have just one hours with them because they have been habituated to be in human presence for just that one precious hour.
Slowly retreat away from them and return to your lodge to relax.
Day 3 Drive To Akagera National Park In Rwanda
Rise up for breakfast and your driver guide picks you from yours lodge to drive to Akagera National park. Enjoy the amazing views of Rwanda along the way.
Arrive in the park with an open mind because the Giraffes are being rehabilitated to live in the park so there population is still low.
Look out for other animals like zebras, waterbucks, buck bucks, cape buffaloes, rhinos, Uganda Kobs, elephants and others.
Check into your lodge and relax.
Day 4 Game drive In Akagera National Park
Rise up for breakfast and head into Akagera National Park for game drive. As you search for the giraffes, look for other animals too like warthogs, waterbucks, bushbucks, impalas, Uganda kobs, herds of cape buffaloes, elephants to mention but a few.
A number of birds also love enjoying the freebies of Akagera National Park so keen birders you may have chance to spot birds like Barred long tailed cuckoo, Dohert’s and Lagden’s Bush-shrikes, Archer’s Robin-chat, Red-throated Alethe, African fish eagles
Taking a boat trip on Lake Ihema gives, you time to relax while enjoying the cool breeze from the lake. Watch out for the numerous animals that love feeding from the lake Banks and an array of lakeside birds.
Return home after enjoying the park features and wildlife
Day 5 Depart For Kigali Airport
Having enjoyed you Africa safari trip to see the mountain gorillas in Volcanoes National park Rwanda and Giraffes in Lake Akagera, pack your belonging to catch up with your flight back home. In case you have some time you can take an optional Kigali city tour including the visit to the Rwanda genocide memorial.
Rules Of Gorilla trekking In Uganda And Rwanda
- Do not Visit the mountain gorillas in case you have a communicable infection like flu, cough, corona virus Ebola and others. These primates are susceptible to human infections.
- Never enter the Park without a ranger guide to do gorilla trekking
- Do not spit on the vegetation because this is food for the mountain gorillas.
- Keep a distance of about 8 meters from the mountain gorillas when you locate them. This is to prevent passing any infection to the gorillas and you getting it from them.
- Littering the forest is forbidden because it alters the nature of the feeding ground for the mountain gorillas.
- Surrounding the mountain gorillas is prohibited because its makes them feel ambushed
- Using flash photography is forbidden and the camera must be sound proof.
- Never eat or smoke while in front of the mountain gorillas because they may be forced to grab it from you. These are wild animals that must search for own food and not depend on human provision.
- Never spit on vegetation because you may pass an infections germ to the gorillas. It is also unhygienic because other trekkers will feel disgusted.
- When with the mountain go0rillas do not make noise because this scares them. the silverback is always on the watch so in case he and the family are agitated, he may call them to hiding.
- Only one hours is allowed with the mountain gorillas when you locate them so utilize it very well and take as many photos as you wish for memories of this great Africa primate tour.
- Retreat slowly after exhausting that one hour of gorilla trekking.
- Ensure you follow the instructions given by the ranger guide during gorilla trekking and briefing.
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