ViapoAfrican Safaris

                                      THE BLOG OF UGANDA & RWANDA

UGANDA

Why visit Uganda?

Uganda the pearl of Africa is emerging as one of the top safari destinations to visit in Africa, Uganda is known as the pearl of Africa and it’s filled with rich bio diversity added to its friendly people which makes it to be “Gifted by Nature”.

On your safari to Uganda, you will get chance to meet friendly people with different cultures. The pearl of Africa has variety of cultures with each having different and unique language, dress codes, traditional practices, songs as well as cultural dances.

ViapoAfrican safaris will take you through Uganda to visit the mountain gorillas and lots of wildlife in 10 National Parks. Gorilla trekking, game viewing of wild animals like elephants, antelopes, tree climbing lions, buffaloes and more in National Parks. Boating safari and water sports on Lake Victoria, Kazinga Channel, River Nile and Lake Bunyonyi. Hiking and climbing is done in Rwenzori Mountains, Mount Elgon and Gorilla National Park of Mt.Gahinga, Sabinyo and Muhavura. We design every itinerary to suit your time, budget and preference. Uganda has a variety of wildlife species within its many fantastic national parks which include; Murchison falls National Park famous for its beautiful scenic waterfalls and boat cruises on Nile, different mammal species and bird species, Bwindi impenetrable National Park commonly for the mighty mountain gorillas, Queen Elizabeth National Park the famous for variety of wildlife species and the fantastic Kazinga channel, Kibale National Park the home of primate species including the chimpanzees, Rwenzori national park famous for mountain climbing/hiking and wildlife species, Semuliki National Park known mainly for birding, Mt Elgon National Park famous for mountain climbing and nature walks, Lake Mburo National park also famous for harboring Zebras and Impalas not common in other National Parks in Uganda. Visitors can spend the entire time in Uganda while enjoying different activities including white water rafting done on source of Nile’s high rapids, bungee jumping, wildlife viewing on several game drives, visits to water falls, cultural visits, mountain climbing, canoeing, boat cruises, guided nature walks, forest walks and bird watching carried out in all the national parks.

When to go for a safari in Uganda?

This is one of many questions asked regarding any safari in Uganda, the common answer to this question is; you may visit Uganda at any time of the year! However the difference may vary in Price since there two different seasons; i.e. the peak season of June to September and December to February. With this season the price of both gorilla permits and lodges is high since it’s a high season. The low season is from March to May and September to November, the prices of gorilla permits and lodges is low.
However, the guests are encouraged to travel at any time of the year and the rains shouldn’t prevent you from coming for safari. You will as well need the right tour wear for gorilla trekking like the rain jackets, boots, long sleeved trousers and long sleeved shirts. During the low season of April, May and November. It’s also recommended that tourists should visit the country during the dry season which are from January to February and then June to September, this is because game viewing is best done during the dry season when many animals gather around the water holes. Bird watching can also be done throughout the year, but most preferably from November to April when there are many migrant species in the country.

How much is a safari to Uganda?
Uganda Safari costing mainly depends on type of accommodation (Luxury, Mid-Range and Budget) and activities that you choose. Wildlife safaris to Murchison, Lake Mburo, Kidepo Valley and Queen Elizabeth National Parks can slightly be cheaper to travelers because they do not include gorilla permits. Those willing to travel in groups, the safari price becomes low and you end up saving some money if you are travelling two or more people

What’s the weather like while on a Ugandan safari?
Weather is among the reasons why many people have continued to come to Uganda. A perfect weather has made Uganda among the leading tourist destination in Africa. Uganda in general experiences a temperate type of climate which makes it easy for the tourists to enjoy the many different tourist activities throughout the year. These include; gorilla trekking, bird watching, wildlife viewing, chimpanzee trekking and many more.
Uganda having this perfect weather also depends on many factors and among is the strategic location of the country on Equator and the geographical altitude that provides it with an ever green attribute characteristic. Because of its conducive weather all around the year, many enthusiastic adventurers have visited the country in order to explore its beautiful weather and its unique attractions.

What to see while on Uganda safaris?

Gorillas:

This is the main highlight of Uganda adventure safaris. It’s also the main reason why people travel from their home countries to Uganda. You engage in gorilla trekking as you take pictures and observing their way of life within the forest, the gorilla silverback taking care of its family. You can see the gorillas of Africa, in Bwindi Impenetrable and Mgahinga National Parks

Wildlife:

These can be viewed in all the national parks of Uganda and tourists have a chance to enjoy the big five and the herbivores including the giraffes, zebras, antelopes, hippos, and Nile Crocodiles. Get to visit the mountain gorillas found in Bwindi Impenetrable National park as well as chimpanzees and other monkey types you find in Kibale National Park and Queen Elizabeth National Park. Besides wildlife species, you will also have chance to view the many bird species including the rare shoebill stock while on a safari.

Chimpanzees:

Chimpanzee trekking is an exciting activity which provides a unique experience to guests. It’s also a very magical and exciting! See chimpanzees in conserved forests, zoos and others in the sanctuaries. It’s always an exceptional experience meeting these chimps eye to eye, you can spend time with them and observe them as they feed, care for their young ones and also climb from tree to tree. These can be trekked in Kibale National Park, Queen Elizabeth National Park in Kyambura Gorge in Maramagambo Forest and in Budongo Forest in Murchison falls national Park. Chimpanzee habituation can also be done from Ngamba Island Sanctuary located on Lake Victoria.

Birds:
Uganda is famously known as a birding paradise since it has over half of bird species in Africa, this made it the best bird watching safari destination in Africa and the world at large. With its unique vegetation of tropical rain forest and savannah in the east. Among these birds include green broadbill, Black and white casqued Hornbill, great blue turaco and the endemic bird species to rift valley of East Africa. It’s only in Uganda where you can view the most adored African species like shoe bill stock, a large ancient looking bird which lives in the swamps and its prominent for its clog shaped Bill.

Below are the Important Birding Areas (IBA’s) in Uganda;

Bwindi impenetrable National Park, Queen Elizabeth National park, Kibale National Park, Mabamba swamp, Semuliki National Park, Murchison Falls national park, Nile River, Mgahinga National park and many more. In order to enjoy an adventure tour, combine your bird watching trip with gorilla trekking, especially on your visits to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.

Mountain Climbing:
Mountain climbing is one of the adventurous activities in Uganda, it’s mostly done on Rwenzori Mountains which is located in western Uganda on border of Democratic Republic of Congo and Uganda and Mount Elgon in Eastern Uganda. Mount Rwenzori was named after Mountain Ruwenzori commonly referred to as mountains of the moon. The highest peak is Margherita peak and it also ranks the Rwenzori as 3rd highest mountain range in Africa. These mountains are favorites to adventure hikers and they have got different vegetation regions, primates, birds and other interesting features.

Murchison falls:

These falls are in north western Uganda and it’s among the most magnificent water falls found in Uganda and it’s located on River Nile. Other safari trips include a boat cruise on the Nile where you will enjoy an up close experience with many water species including; the hippos, giant crocodiles as well as birds.

Beautiful Terrain:

This is also filled with beautiful country side as well as green undulating terrains filled with coffee and banana plantations. There are also traditional homesteads and cattle grazing. You will also enjoy many beautiful scenic drives, good to the eyes of any tourist on safaris to Uganda.

Source of the Nile:

This is located in Jinja town and it was discovered by John Speke, you can enjoy many different water activities on source of Nile, these include; white water rafting, swimming, bungee jumping, boat cruises, kayaking and many more.

Lake Bunyonyi
Lake Bunyonyi lies in south western Uganda between Kisoro and Kibale next to Rwanda. After your safari with gorillas, Lake Bunyonyi can offer a relaxing experience just before you head out of the country. The lake has many Islands including; Punishment Island, Bushara Island, Kyahungwe Island, Bwana, Nyuyeera, Bucaranuka Island and many more.  This lake is also referred to as Panorama which leads to the lord of the Rings. You can swim, have canoe ride, and do bird watching and exploring the Batwa Villages.

 

RWANDA

Why visit Rwanda

Rwanda the land of a thousand hills is a small landlocked country found in the Eastern part of Africa. It is a very beautiful country with so many natural wonders to see and exciting activities.

Are you planning a safari in Rwanda?

Here is a list of activities you should do and see when you visit the land of a thousand hills.

Gorilla Trekking Rwanda

 

Rwanda is one of three countries in Africa where you can find mountain gorillas. There are habituated gorilla families in Rwanda, all found on the slopes of the Virunga Mountains. Gorilla tracking in Rwanda is one of those things you need to do at least once in your lifetime.

Volcanoes National Park, Rwanda

Volcanoes is probably the most popular park in Rwanda. There are so many things to see and enjoy in this park. You can go gorilla trekking, golden monkey tracking, volcano climbing, volcano climbing and hiking, birding, nature walks, cave exploration, visiting Diane Fossey’s research camp and so much more.

Nyungwe Forest National Park

Nyungwe is a large track of Montane Forest with all so many wonders. It is an exciting place to explore. Nyungwe forest national park has a canopy walk through the forest; one of only three in Africa. This canopy walk is 50 meters above the ground.

Canopy walk in Nyungwe Forest

Even above the tree tops. In addition to the canopy walk, you can also enjoy hikes, chimpanzee trekking, nature walks, monkey trekking and birding- some of the best birding in Africa. Nyungwe forest should be a must on your Rwanda safari itinerary.

 

Akagera National Park

 

Akagera National Park is Rwanda’s only Savannah Wildlife Park. It is found on the Rwanda border with Tanzania. Everyone expects to have a savannah wildlife experience when they visit Africa, Akagera gives you this experience in Rwanda.

Akagera is an amazingly, scenic park where you have the opportunity to go on day and night game drives, boat safaris, nature walks, hikes, fishing, birding and village visits.

The amazing Lake Kivu

Lake Kivu in Rwanda is just the perfect place to wind down and relax after a full day or days of Rwanda safari activity. After mountain climbing, hiking, gorilla trekking, biking the Nile Congo trail, exploring Nyungwe forest and all the other activities you can possibly do while on Rwanda tours, you will need a good place to chill and relax. It is Rwanda’s very own inland beach and it doesn’t disappoint. Lake Kivu offers you sandy beaches, swimming, fishing, boating, wind-surfing, sail-boating, biking, nature-walks, cultural visits on, along or near Lake Kivu, you will not even miss the ocean beaches.

The Genocide Memorials of Rwanda:

Rwanda has a tragic history. In 1994, thousands of lives were taken in a brutal ethnic cleansing. The genocide tore the small nation into shreds but it has managed to rise from the ashes. No one ever wants to see such days again and the slogan never again can be seen in various places across the country.