There are lots of information about safari holidays in Uganda; from where to go, when to go, things to do, what to carry, what to expect and so on. Below are helpful information to guide you plan your perfect safari holiday in Uganda.
At Kentz Safaris, we combine your safari holiday ideas with our extensive holiday planning experience to hand pick; well tested destinations and luxury accommodation that meet all your specific requirements. We take great pride in planning custom safari holidays in Uganda. Check out some of our safari packages below or contact one of our holiday experts, to structure a safari holiday for you.
A distance view of Bwindi impenetrable forest
Gorilla families at Bwindi national park
The beautiful landscapes full of wildlife at Queen Elizabeth National Park
What to see at Queen Elizabeth national park
The Murchison Falls from a distance
More picture of safari at Murchison Falls National Park
Some of the top end hotels and lodges at Kibale national park
More hotel pictures in Uganda
Safari is a Swahili word that means 'journey'; the word is usually used by tour operators to refer to wildlife watching tour in Africa. Safari holiday is no doubt the most popular type of holiday in Africa; millions of local and international tourist visit Africa to experience the beauty of a Safari.
There are two main types of Safaris; that is animal watching safari and bird watching safari. A typical wildlife watching safari would include visiting major national parks and reserves to watch thousands of wildlife that include the famous mountain Gorillas, the'Big Five', cheetah, crocodiles, Hippos, wildebeest, Giraffe among many other. Bird watching safari would include visiting lakes, forests and national parks to watch hundreds of different bird species; the two types of safari can easily be combined to one holiday itinerary. While on a safari; you can either choose to use an open roof 4x4 car or truck, or a guided walking and horse riding safari, or luxury flying safari that include; chartered flights, hot air balloon flights and helicopters.
To plan a safari holiday, You can either join a ready prepared group safari or plan your own (Tailor-made safari). Group safaris are usually led by one tour guide and a support staff, accommodation varies from luxury lodges and camps to standard hotels, group safaris are ideal for single travelers who wish to make new friends and the budget travelers(as they can share cost among the group members). The downside of a group safari is that it has a fixed start/end date, fixed destinations and activities are done as a group.
Most people prefer Tailor-made safaris, as they have the option to plan a safari that suits them; they can choose their start date, duration, areas to visit, type of accommodation and activities. The Cost highly depends on what you choose; it could be as cheap as a group safaris or expensive as luxury safaris, the choice is all yours. The options to plan your own holiday makes this type of safari famous and ideal for families, honeymooners and special holiday makers.
A well planned safari holiday can be exciting and full of memories that are forever cherished, to plan your safari; You need to pick out your major attractions carefully; what to watch, which game parks to visit, when to tour, type of accommodation and the cost.
For example if you want to experience the famous Gorilla trekking, you need to know when is the time to visit Bwindi Forest; which Camps or lodges are closer to the Forest and how much it would cost you. For the primates and the Chimps trekking, Big Five or other lesser known wildlife and birds species; you would need to know, where you can easily spot them, best season, accommodation and means of transport.
Other factors to put into account is the Budget, on this aspect you need to think about the type of accommodation; safari holiday accommodation varies from luxury 5 star Hotels to budgeted private and public tented camps. Once you identify the type of accommodation you prefer, you then need to decide on the mood of transport; whether you prefer flying from one park to the other and using a private open roof 4WD car to move around the park watching wildlife, or you prefer only using a private 4WD car, or a shared group van and mini buses. According to our own mode of transport analysis; most guest prefer using private 4WD cars just within the park and on short distance transfer, and scheduled or chartered flights on long distance transfers.
The best time to spot most wildlife is on the dry season, animal are easily spotted on the open plains and near rivers or water holes in search of food and water. In Uganda the dry season are between January-March and July-October, this is the best time to spot wildlife. April, May and November are considered to be shoulder season with lesser wildlife compared to the high season. Bird’s watching is best in October - December.
On a normal safari tour, you would wake up early for tea/coffee with snacks, before the sun rises head out for a guided wildlife viewing safari; at around 10am, the sun is usually hot and animals go into their hiding places ,so we return to the lodge/camp for breakfast and a brief rest.
At mid day, you are free to use the hotel’s activities, or enjoy reading your favorite book, take a nap, relax by the pool with a cold drink, or go on a cultural tour to the local villages. Afternoon activities starts at around 3pm by taking tea/coffee/juice with snacks and then embark on an evening safari, some minutes before 7pm you will return to the camp for a refreshing shower before your dinner at 8pm, after dinner you can choose to go to the bar or to the fire place. Most guests retire to bed at around 10pm.There are numerous Safari activities, this is just to give you a sense of how a normal day on safari could be.
This a nine days pure wildlife watching and primates trekking safari holiday in Uganda, that starts and ends in Kampala; it begins with a long drive to Murchison falls to watch wildlife and explore Nile River, followed by chimpanzee trekking in Kibale forest, wildlife watching at Queen Elizabeth
This is a 7 days Safari holiday full of real adventure; the holiday begin in Kampala, driving down to Kabale national park to watch primates and bird watching, then proceeds to Queen Elizabeth national park for wildlife safari and finally head down to the famous Bwindi impenetrable forest
This a 5 days a pure Wildlife and Chimpanzee trekking safari holiday at Queen Elizabeth and Kibale national park, driving from Kampala to Kibale; where you will spend the two days on nature walks and tracking the beautiful primates and then transfer to Queen Elizabeth to watch more
About Bwindi Impenetrable National Park Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is located on the southwest of Uganda; The Park is part of the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, bordering Democratic Republic of Congo next to the Virunga National Park and on the edge of the western Great Rift Valley shared by Rukungiri,
About Queen Elizabeth National park Queen Elizabeth National park is a notable Ugandan safari destination for wildlife tour, chimpanzee tracking adventures and birds watching safari. It’s Uganda’s most popular game reserve, its stretches from the crater foothills of the Rwenzori range in the north, along the shores of Lake
About Kibale National Park Kibale National Park is located in Kabarole and Kibaale Districts, approximately 320 km west of Kampala (Uganda's capital city) and 35Km south of Fort Portal. It’s the most accessible equatorial rainforest in Uganda. Kibale is approximately 766 Km2 and contains a diverse array of landscapes
About Murchison Falls National Park Murchison Falls National Park is located between Masindi District in western Uganda and Amuru District in northern Uganda. The park is approximately 300 kilometers (190 mi) drive from Kampala (Uganda's capital city). The park was named after Murchison falls, also known as Kabarega Falls; it’s
Whether it’s a holiday with your family, friends or a business trip; Uganda offer a great range of luxury accommodation, from the prestige 5 star Hotels, Lodges and Camps, to lesser remote tented camps and hostels. May it be a wildlife safari holiday, Gorilla and Chimps trekking, Water rafting and tour of River Nile or a business trip you are after; there is always accommodation for you. Check out some of the hotels below or contact our holiday experts to find you accommodation that suits you.
It is true that Budgeting for a safari holiday can be a hustle and painful. We at Kentz Safaris have broken down the cost in three categories (accommodation, transport and destination); to make it easy for you while calculating your safari holiday. The three categories determine the cost of a safari holiday and can vary quite substantially depending on what you choose.
The choice of a Safari accommodation is the most paramount factor when deciding on your holiday budget; the cost would vary from the class of hotel, its location, how secluded and private it is, how close it is to major attraction points, its reputation and services offered; hotels and lodges located inside national parks and private conservancy tend to cost more, because they have easy and more access time to watch wildlife. The other group is the small secluded lodges that accommodate small groups of friends, honeymooners and families; these groups of hotels tend to cost more because they are secluded and on less populated areas.
Destination is also a paramount issue; the parks entry fee vary from park to park, for example if you want to a Gorilla trekking in Uganda, the best place to tour is Bwindi National Park , it's a huge national park with the highest Mountain Gorilla population in the world and thus making it more expensive compared to Chimpanzee and primates trekking at Kibale national park or Gorilla trekking at Gombe Stream national park. Other places that would cost more are the private conservations compared to public national parks.
On the mode of transport, you are likely to pay more on luxury mode of transport like fly in safari and private 4WD cars compared to shared minibuses and vans or on an overland safari. And finally the high or low season would influence the cost of a safari as well; for example going to Bwindi or Queen Elizabeth National park on a high season or in summer will cost you more than going at other times of the year.Traveling on low seasons or last minute can also help you save some money and still view a great range of wildlife.
Packing for your safari holiday can be a difficult task, below are some tips to help you out while preparing for your dream safari holiday. First, you need a small bag (about 15kgs) to use while on safari, excess baggage can be stored in the hotel.
Cloths and shoes
Clothing colors are important while on a safari, we recommend you avoid bright and camouflage colors, put on neutral colors like khaki and olive. Good walking shoes and socks are a must to avoid discomfort and injury. Make sure you try them before your travel.
Trousers and Long sleeve T-shirts can be won in the early mornings and evenings when its cold and can also prevent you from the mosquitoes; the shorts and short sleeve T-shirts are best during the day when its hot and sunny; a swimming suit, a sunhat, sunglasses and a waterproof/windproof jacket.
Besides the personal supplies, other important supplies would include painkillers, Sun cream, insect repellents, a wildlife book, if you love reading (to read on your free time during the day), spare camera batteries and memory cards. For families with kids, you can park some games for the kids to play during the free time.
To make sure you enjoy your safari holiday, we recommend that everyone to have a binocular and a camera with all its appropriate extras such as lenses and cleaner.
To ensure we get exactly what we require, we strongly advice all our guest to make early arrangements at least 6 months in advance