Frequently Asked Questions About Safari in Uganda
What is the Best time for a safari in Uganda?
Uganda safaris and tours are favorable all year round with temperatures in the country averaging 26°C during the day and 15°C at night. The best time for a Uganda safari tour is during the dry season when the rains are less, grass is shorter, and photography is clearer. The high peak season and hottest months are January and February and June to September. However, Uganda safari holidays in the wet season are also possible, albeit slower, and visitors may not enjoy outdoor activities as much due to the rains
Why Choose a Uganda Safari Tour?
Uganda is committed to conservation and the protection of its wildlife. By choosing one of a Uganda safari tour, you are contributing to the conservation efforts of the country. Secondly, Uganda safaris and tours are relatively affordable compared to other African countries, making it an ideal destination for budget-conscious travelers. The real advantage of Uganda safari parks is that they are not anywhere near as crowded as those in Kenya or Tanzania. You meet very few other vehicles on game drives — in some cases, you even have the parks almost to yourself!
How to Book Your Uganda Safari Holiday?
Booking a holiday to Uganda involves a few steps starting with getting in touch with a reputable safari operator in Uganda. Most companies will have a number of tailored Uganda safari packages which you are open to choose from.
Do you prefer to arrange your own agenda? A reliable Uganda tour operator should be able to accommodate your plans and wishes to come up with a safari package that should meet your preferences.
Upon finding a Uganda safari that meets your interests at an agreed price with an Uganda safari company, you will be required to make a deposit of this price to confirm your Uganda safari booking. This deposit lies anywhere between 30% to 60% depending on how much your safari operator will require to make initial booking payments for your safari.
Expect to make the final deposit for your Uganda safari tour less than a month to your travel date. This will conclude your final booking process. From this point, you can then prepare for your safari to Uganda.
Preparing for your Safari in Uganda
Preparing for your safari in Uganda is something that you should do in less than 3 months from your arrival date. The preparation stage includes; booking your international flight to Uganda (Fly to Entebbe International Airport), applying for your Visa, checking for your yellow fever vaccinations, and packing for your safari
Apply for your Uganda Visa
First, and most importantly is applying for your Visa to Uganda, this can easily be done online through application. If you will be visiting Uganda alone, the single entry tourist Visa is what you will require. For visitors seeking to visit Uganda with extended trips to either Kenya or Rwanda, applying for The East African Visa will grant you entry to all the 3 countries.
Yellow Fever Vaccination
It is important to note that all visitors to Uganda are required to be vaccinated against yellow fever with proof of vaccination. You will be required to present a yellow fever vaccination certificate at immigration. This certificate is considered valid from 8 days from your vaccination and remains valid to up to 10 years from the time of your vaccination.
What to Pack for your Safari in Uganda?
There isn’t anything special required for your safari in Uganda apart from the few basics including the following;
- Passport (with printed visas)
- Covid 19 Vaccination Certificate
- Yellow Fever Certificate
- Air tickets/vouchers
- Money pouch Credit cards
- Cellphone and Charger plus a Power bank
- Sunglasses/guard Spare prescription glasses/contacts
- Copy of prescription(s)
- Eyeglass case
- Small flashlight (torch) and extra batteries
- Sewing kit Small scissors
- Tissues (travel packs)
- Handiwipes (individual)
- Anti-bacterial soap
- Deck of cards
- Reading materials
For safari wear, you should consider khaki earth tones (these neutral colors repel heat and so a good job disguising any patches of African dust and dirt) Keep away from the bright color options (black and blue too) they do attract Tsetse flies. In terms of fabric, light and breathable material makes life a lot more comfortable.
- Sandals or lightweight shoes
- Water proof hiking shoes (not white for trekking and walking safaris)
- Wide-brimmed hat and a cap
- Windbreaker Sweater or fleece
- Rain Jacket
- 2–3 pr. Safari pants with one that is water proof for gorilla trek
- Hand Gloves for gorilla trek
- 2–3 pr. Safari shorts
- 5 pr. safari/sports socks
- 3 short-sleeve safari shirts
- 3 long-sleeve safari shirts
- 1 pr. casual slacks or skirt 1 or 2 blouses
Is Uganda Good for Safaris?
Uganda safaris are an excellent choice if you looking for an ultimate safari experience (the big five) with lesser tourist traffic. Uganda as a country is Africa summed with almost all the best that the continent has to offer. Uganda safaris and tours take you home to one of the highest number of apes in the world.
The endangered mountain gorillas are found here among other lucky two countries(Rwanda and DRC) in the world, chimpanzees are also tracked here and do exist in huge numbers. The Rwenzori Mountains that form Africa’s highest existing mountain ranges welcome adventure lovers, Africa’s largest freshwater lake, Lake Victoria, that also exists with a fair share in Uganda.
In addition to Africa’s best attractions, Uganda is also home to the source of might River Nile, Africa’s longest river, and with over 1041 recorded bird species, this makes Uganda one of Africa’s best birding destinations.
How Much do Uganda Safaris Cost?
The cost of a Uganda safari tour varies with the type of safari you are looking for; types of Uganda safaris range from budget, midrange to luxury safaris accommodated in tented camps and lodges.
The price for a safari holiday to Uganda as offered by your tour operator or agent covers for accommodation, park entrance and permits, transport, meals and game activities.
Accommodation Safari Lodges and Tented Camps in Uganda
Accommodation for your safari in Uganda will range from budget, midrange and luxury lodges and tented camps. For a safari accommodated in budget lodges and tented camps, the cost lies anywhere below USD 60 per person sharing room for a night on a full board basis. If you will be traveling alone, expect to pay single room supplement.
Midrange lodges and tented camps in Uganda cost anywhere between USD 100 to USD 150 per person sharing room for a night on a full board basis. Similarly, if you will be traveling alone, expect to pay single room supplement.
Uganda Safaris and tours accommodated in luxury lodges and tented camps are the most expensive trips. Lodges and tented camps in Uganda offer a high-end price ranging above USD 250 per person sharing room for a night on a full board basis. If you will be traveling alone, expect to pay single room supplement.
Park Entrance and Permits
Park entrances to Uganda safari parks are your tickets to guarantee you entry to the parks and game activities. Permits are applicable for gorilla, chimpanzee, and golden monkey trekking in Uganda.
The park entrance fee to National parks in Uganda lies anywhere between USD 40 to USD 45 per person charged per 24 hours in the park. A gorilla permit costs USD 700 per person, whereas a permit for the gorilla habituation experience costs USD 1,500 per person.
A Chimpanzee trekking permit costs USD 150 per person for tracking the apes in Kibale National Park. A cheaper option is to trek the chimps in Kyambura in Queen Elizabeth National Park at a lower cost of USD 100 per person. The permit to track golden monkeys in Uganda found in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park costs USD 200 per person.
It is important to note that due to the high demand for permits, booking in advance of 3 months or more to your trekking date is advised. This is to ensure availability. Unlike the permits, park entrances is paid on arrival and don’t require any advance booking.
Transportation and Game Drives
The average cost for transportation and game drives per day lies anywhere between USD 150 to USD 350 per day depending on the season and type of vehicle. This cost covers the vehicle hire, driver/guide, and fuel. To cut down this cost, group sharing is recommended as these 4×4 safari vehicles that accommodate a capacity of 4 to 7 occupants.
Generally, we advise that you deal with a tour operator in Uganda to get the best out of your cost for a Uganda safari tour. A reputable Uganda safari Company will offer you an all-inclusive quote for your trip to also handle the entire booking process for you at a cost lower than what you would spend if you decided to book on your own.
Is Uganda Safe for Safaris?
Uganda as a country has enjoyed almost 3 decades of a peaceful reign led by His Excellency Yoweri Kaguta Museveni. Visitors to Uganda have less to worry about than they have to do in other countries which makes the country safe for a safari tour to all corners of the country. In addition to the peace, the people of Uganda are well known for their extreme hospitality and love for welcoming visitors to their beautiful country.
What to Expect from Uganda Gorilla Safaris?
Gorilla trekking in Uganda is one of the most extraordinary wildlife excursions on the planet. It’s an adventure that will test your physical endurance, stimulate your senses, and leave you awestruck.
The trek starts early in the morning, and you’ll join a group of eight people maximum, accompanied by a skilled ranger guide. The guide will lead you on a hike through the dense forest, where you’ll encounter local wildlife such as monkeys, birds, and tree frogs. The trek can take anywhere from one to eight hours, depending on how far the gorillas have moved from their previous location.
Once you reach the gorillas, you’ll be allowed to spend an hour in their presence, observing their behavior, interacting with them, and taking pictures. It’s an unforgettable experience that not many people get to do.
What Does Chimpanzee Trekking in Uganda Look Like?
Chimpanzee tracking is a very popular activity on Uganda safaris, the chimps in Uganda are popularly tracked in Kibale Forest National Park. Other destinations to track the apes include Kyambura Gorge in Queen Elizabeth National Park and Budongo Forest in Murchison falls National Park. The highest number of them being in Kibale Forest National Park makes it the most tracked destination featured in many Uganda safari tour itineraries.
The chimpanzee experience offers you a one-hour observatory interaction experience with these apes. Unlike the gorillas that a way too gentle, the chimps are more lively and playful with makes them more interesting to watch as they put on a show swinging through trees, fighting or mating
What Wildlife Can I See on My Uganda Safari?
There is a sheer diversity of wildlife in the various National Parks in Uganda, but with a whopping 500 species of mammals, the country has an amazing diversity. The big five list can be completed with a visit to the wildlife Parks and an extended trip to Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary for the rhinos. Uganda is also home to the remaining mountain gorillas, Chimpanzees can also be tracked here in their natural habitat. With a wide variety of over 1000 bird species, this makes Uganda one the best birding destinations for bird lovers.
How Much do you Tip in Uganda?
Tipping in Uganda is not expected but wages are not so good as compared to your home country standards, therefore a tip will be well appreciated. A good tip in Uganda varies; for a driver or safari guide/driver USD 15 per day, at a restaurant USD 1 is good whereas on safari, tipping the rangers or activity leaders USD 10 is a good tip.
What are the Tips for a Successful Uganda Gorilla Safari?
To ensure that you enjoy your gorilla safaris in Uganda to the fullest, you need to keep these tips in mind:
- Book your permit in advance– Gorilla trekking permits are limited, and they sell out fast. Make sure you book your permit several months ahead of your travel plans.
- Dress appropriately– The gorilla habitat is in a rainforest, so be sure to wear sturdy, waterproof boots and long pants tucked into socks to avoid tsetse fly bites.
- Be in good physical condition– Gorilla trekking involves hiking steep and rugged terrain. You’ll need to be physically fit and have good balance.
Uganda gorilla safaris offer an unbeatable opportunity to witness these majestic creatures in their natural habitat. With strict regulations and conservation efforts in place, Uganda’s gorilla trekking is a sustainable and exclusive adventure that is sure to leave you with lifelong memories. So, pack your bags and embark on a trip of a lifetime- the gorillas of Uganda are waiting for you!