Grand East Africa Safari – 20 Days. With gorillas & wildebeest migration

20 Days / 19 Nights

Overview

This Grand East Africa safari package takes you on a mind-blowing journey to see the best of East Africa’s nature, wildlife, and gorillas.

You will go on the ultimate exploration of all the things that make East Africa special. Your trip will start in Uganda and then go to Kenya and Tanzania.

In Uganda, you will raft the waters and rapids of the Nile before going to track chimpanzees and mountain gorillas in the natural rainforest homes. You will also enjoy some classic wildlife viewing in the savannahs of Queen Elizabeth and Lake Mburo National parks.

In Kenya, you will explore the incredible Ol Pejeta Conservancy, Lake Naivasha, and Finally Masai Mara. In all the places, you will see all the savannah wildlife you can think of – including the last 2 northern white rhinos in the world.

In Tanzania, you will explore the various circuits of the endless Serengeti and its animals. You will then continue to explore the Ngorongoro crate for some more wildlife before ending your exquisite African safari experience in Arusha.

On this trip, you will not only see the chimps and gorillas, but you will also see all the other animals that made East Africa’s wilderness special. Take a look at our detailed day-by-day breakdown to better imagine how you experience this trip.

This trip can be arranged for groups and individuals who want to explore the very best of Uganda, Kenya, and Tanzania.

Detailed Itinerary

Here is the full day-by-day itinerary for this tour

Day 1: Arrival in Entebbe, transfer to Kampala

Our driver/guide will wait for you at Entebbe International Airport and welcome you to Uganda. You will then be transferred to your hotel for the night.

Accommodation: Cassia Lodge

Meal plan: Dinner

Day 2: White Water Rafting in Jinja, then back to Kampala

white water rafting

After an early morning after breakfast, you will be transferred to Jinja for a white water rafting experience on the Nile. The rafting can take a full or half day depending on your preference.

You will also visit Jinja town and some craft shops for souvenir shopping. You will come back to your accommodation in Kampala in the evening.

Accommodation: Cassia Lodge

Meal plan: Dinner

Day 3: Drive to Kibale National Park

After your early breakfast, your guide will drive you to Fort Portal town; a 5 hours journey from Kampala with stop-overs along the way. This town nestles in the shadow of the Rwenzori Mountains so be sure to have that amazing view.

Accommodation: Turaco Treetops

Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 4: Chimpanzee tracking in Kibale National Park

chimpanzee in Kibale

After an early breakfast, you will go to Kibale Forest National Park for your Chimpanzee tracking experience. Kibale is commonly called the primate capital of the world and you will see many other species of primates along with chimps.

The rangers are well-informed and you will learn so much about the forest’s plant and animal ecosystems. After finding the chimps, you will observe their interesting lives before returning to the starting point.

In the afternoon, you will visit the Bigodi swamp and the community around the Kibale Forest National Park.

Accommodation: Turaco Treetops

Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 5: Visit Caves & Crater Lakes, drive to Queen Elizabeth NP

After breakfast, you will go on a cultural tour of the Amabere ga Nyina Mwiru caves and the nearby craters. The caves and craters are located some 10 kilometers from FortPortal town and have a fascinating story of their formation, and their cultural significance to the people.

You will return to Fort Portal for lunch and then visit the Tooro Kingdom Place afterward.

In the evening we drive to Queen Elizabeth National Park following the backdrop of the Rwenzori Mountain range for most of the 2-hour drive.

Accommodation: Kasenyi Safari Camp

Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 6: Game Drive in Queen Elizabeth National Park

Queen Elizabeth National Park

After your breakfast, you will go for an early morning game drive in the park and try to spot as many animals as possible. There are great opportunities to see lions, leopards, buffalo, elephants, waterbuck and so much more.

In the afternoon, you will go on a boat cruise on the Kazinga Channel and into Lake Edward. The high concentration of hippos, birds, and other animals on the water’s edge makes this activity perfect for almost anyone, and unbelievable for birding and wildlife photography

Accommodation: Kasenyi Safari Camp

Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 7: Drive to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

Today, we’ll drive from Queen Elizabeth National Park to Bwindi Impenetrable National park. The drive takes you through the Kigezi highlands where you pass local villages, plantations, farms, and small towns.

The terraced hillsides, steep hills, and winding roads are part of the reason why this area is sometimes referred to as the “Switzerland of Africa”.

Accommodation: Rushaga Gorilla Camp

Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 8: Gorilla Trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

About Mountain Gorillas

Today is gorilla trekking day and you will wake up early to have breakfast and be at the park offices at 7:00 am. You will be briefed by the Park rangers on all the procedures before you can start your trek.

In groups of 8 and the rangers, you will go into the forest in search of the mountain gorillas that call this dense rainforest home.

The trek can be quite challenging but meeting the gorillas will make all that sweat more than worth it. You will spend 1 hour with the gorillas after which you will be led back to the starting point by your ranger guide.

A certificate is awarded by UWA at the end of every gorilla tracking experience. You will spend your afternoon relaxing at the lodge and enjoying the views of the forest.

Accommodation: Rushaga Gorilla Camp

Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 9: Drive to Lake Mburo National Park

Zebras in Lake Mburo

After breakfast, you will leave Bwindi for Lake Mburo National Park with a stopover in Mbarara for your lunch. Lake Mburo is the best and easiest place for seeing a lot of Zebras in Uganda.

You will see other wild animals such as buffaloes, hippos, crocodiles, elands, antelopes, and lots of birds as well as the local long-horned Ankole cattle in the nearby ranches.

Take an afternoon boat ride on the Lake & see a variety of birds and hippos too.

Accommodation: Mburo Safari Lodge

Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 10: Drive back to Entebbe, Fly to Nairobi

After your breakfast, go for a walking safari in the park in the company of a park ranger. On this walk, you will see many animals and birds, as well as feel the connection to the nature and surrounding landscape.

After your lunch, you will leave for Kampala with a stopover at the Equator line for some pictures and souvenirs. You will then continue to Entebbe International Airport for your onward flight to Nairobi.

Accommodation: Hilton Garden Inn Nairobi Airport

Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 11: Drive to Ol Pejeta Conservancy

Pick up from your Nairobi Hotel or at the airport by the latest 8:00 am. Board your safari land cruiser and drive through the lush central Kenya highlands, before proceeding north towards Mount Kenya.

Check-in and lunch at your tented camp, followed by afternoon game drives. Ol Pejeta Conservancy is home to the BIG 5. However, it’s mainly Rhinos and Chimpanzees that are protected here which are the main attractions.

At Ol Pejeta Conservancy, you will find the last 2 remaining northern white rhinos in the whole world.

Besides visiting Baraka the Black Rhino and enjoying game drives, one can also visit the Chimpanzee sanctuary.

Accommodation: Serena Sweetwaters Camp

Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 12: Drive to Lake Naivasha

After breakfast, board your safari vehicle and enjoy a game drive before departing to Lake Naivasha. Check-in followed by lunch.

Afternoon at leisure by the lake shores. You may book a guided nature walk at Crescent Island or a scenic boat ride that offers breathtaking scenery. Overnight stay at Lake Naivasha Country Club.

Accommodation: Lake Naivasha Country Club

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 13: Drive to Masai Mara National Reserve

Depart after breakfast for Masai Mara National Reserve. Check-in, lunch, and afternoon game drive when you begin your search for the wildlife found in Masai Mara.

Accommodation: Ashnil Mara Luxury Tented Camp / Base Camp Masai Mara

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 14 & 15: Wildlife Game Drives in the Masai Mara

Zebras and wildebeest in Masai Mara

You will spend the whole day exploring this world-renowned reserve during your game drives.

Your expert safari driver/guide with in-depth knowledge of the vast reserve will help you locate Lions, Elephants, Rhino, Leopard, Buffalo, Burchell’s Zebra, Hippos, Elands, Spotted Hyena, Topi, Hartebeest, Warthog, Black-Backed Jackal, Mongoose, Masai Ostrich, Secretary Bird, Marabou Stork, Martial Eagle, Vultures, Egrets among several other mammal and bird species that call Masai Mara home.

You simply need to have your animal checker guide ready and get ready for the adventure.

Between the months of June and September, Masai Mara hosts the world’s biggest wildlife spectacle; the annual wildebeest migration when over 1.2 million wildebeest and Zebra cross over from northern Serengeti into Masai Mara in search of greener pastures, especially the red oat grass which is a delicacy to the marauding gnus/wildebeest.

If you travel during these months, your guide will dedicate time to trailing the migrating herds both in the savannah and along the banks of the Crocodile-infested Mara River.

Accommodation:  Ashnil Mara Luxury Tented Camp / Base Camp Masai Mara

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 16: Drive to Northern Serengeti

After breakfast, collect your picnic lunch and depart for the seemingly endless plains; The Serengeti. You enjoy a three-hour drive to the Isebania border crossing point, clear with immigration’s, and proceed to northern Serengeti.

You will enjoy en-route game viewing in search of the BIG CATS that reside here.

Accommodation: Ole Serai Luxury Camp (Kogatende) / Mara Kati Kati Tented Camp

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 17: Wildlife Viewing in Northern Serengeti

serengeti lions

You will spend two full days exploring the northern part of the Serengeti as you search for major wildlife sightings.

This is where you can witness the great migration between June and October as they graze in the savannah woodlands and along the shores of the crocodile-infested Mara River with frequent River crossings between the south and north being witnessed regularly.

After the calving season in southern Serengeti between February and March, the migration moves to Seronera in Central Serengeti between April and May, before arriving north in June.

Big predators like lions, cheetahs, and leopards, and scavenging opportunists like jackals, hyenas, vultures, and Marabou Storks are always trailing the migration. Hence, you also have a chance of catching them in action.

Accommodation: Ole Serai Luxury Camp (Kogatende) / Mara Kati Kati Tented Camp

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 18: Drive to Central Serengeti

You will enjoy your breakfast and then depart for Central Serengeti about 4 hour drive with en-route game viewing. This afternoon, you will explore the most popular part of the Siringet- Seronera.

The abundance of both predator and prey here will amaze you as you cover different habitats and geographical areas during your game drives.

Accommodation: Ole Serai Luxury Camp (Turner Springs) / Serengeti Kati Kati Tented Camp

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 19: Drive to Ngorongoro Crater – Karatu

After breakfast, you depart to the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. En route, you may visit the Ol Dupai Gorge, the museum where archaeological collections by Louis and Mary Leakey are displayed in situ. This is an optional opportunity to learn about human evolution and early man.

This afternoon, you descend down the steep walls of the caldera for game drives along the crater floor. Lions, Elephants (including huge bulls), Cheetahs, Spotted Hyena, Black Rhino, Gnus, Jackals, Baboons, Buffalos, Flamingos (on the crater lakes), Hippos, and even the rare Caracal are some of the animals you might spot here.

You will then proceed to Karatu along the Ngorongoro highlands where you enjoy your dinner and overnight stay.

Accommodation: Ngorongoro Farm House Ngorongoro Farm House / Ngorongoro Oldeani Mountain Lodge

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 20: To Arusha Airport

You depart at Leisure for Arusha airport on a scheduled flight back home. This will mark the end of your Grand East Africa Safari holiday.

Meal Plan: Breakfast

Inclusions

The price of this tour includes the following items
  • Transport in a 4WD vehicle with a pop-up roof.
  • All fuel for the tour.
  • English-speaking Ugandan driver/guide.
  • Accommodation and Meals on Full Board.(Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner)
  • Park-entrance fees for all National parks
  • All activities described in the itinerary.
  • 1 Gorilla tracking permit per person.
  • 1 Chimpanzee tracking permit per person
  • Drinking water throughout the safari.

Exclusions

The price of this tour does not include the following items
  • International airfares.
  • Entry visa to Uganda, Kenya & Tanzania.
  • Meals that are not part of your accommodation.
  • A porter. (Helps to carry your backpack & push/pull you on the slippery slopes.)
  • Personal insurance (medical/travel)
  • Tips and gratuities to rangers, driver/guide, porter, hotel staff, etc.
  • All expenses of personal nature.(e.g. drinks, laundry, optional activities.)

Inquire Now

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