Our 19-day Uganda Birds & Gorillas birding tour is a very popular departure that showcases the country’s most famous and productive sites. On this combined birdwatching and wildlife safari, we spend time at four of Uganda’s core rainforest sites. These include Kibale, which protects an array of primates ranging from minuscule galagos to our closest living relative, the Chimpanzee (as well as being the best site for the near-mythical Green-breasted Pitta!). We marvel at the towering trees of the fabled Royal Mile, one of the premier forest birding sites in Africa, and five days are enjoyed in Bwindi Impenetrable Gorilla National Park, home to more than half the world’s surviving Mountain Gorillas and 23 of the Albertine Rift bird endemics. (We routinely record twenty of these localized birds, including one of the world’s rarest species, Grauer’s Broadbill.) Although the gorilla trek can be strenuous, staring into the eyes of a Mountain Gorilla from a few feet away is nothing short of a life-changing experience. Only a single Mountain Gorilla survives per ten million people, and to have the opportunity to meet these gentle giants and be part of their family for an hour is a very rare privilege indeed!
In the drier north-west of the country, we visit Murchison Falls National Park, where the Nile is forced through a tiny gap, forming the most powerful water surge on Earth. Boat cruises here allow us to watch and photograph the birds and animals that throng the river banks. We can also expect to find one of the world’s most wanted birds, the bizarre Shoebill. Straddling the Equator is the vast Queen Elizabeth National Park, boasting impressive crater-lake scenery, grasslands and forests, huge herds of elephant and buffalo, lions and leopards, and a boat cruise along the Kazinga Channel here is without doubt one of the most productive birding excursions in Africa! Over 500 bird species and a diverse array of iconic mammals can be expected on this unbeatable tour.
Please note: As we cannot guarantee the availability of gorilla permits, we suggest that you book very early if you would like to purchase one for the optional gorilla trek.
The listed Rockjumper leader may not accompany this tour unless a minimum of 7 guests are signed up. In the case of insufficient sign-ups, a professional and very experienced local guide will lead the tour instead.
Shoebill, Ring-necked, Heuglin’s & Nahan’s Francolin, Cassin’s Hawk-Eagle, Pennant-winged Nightjar, Grauer’s Broadbill, Red-faced Barbet, Green-breasted Pitta, Papyrus Gonolek, Lühder’s, Many-coloured & Bocage’s Bushshrikes, Red-throated Alethe, Ituri Batis, Great Blue Turaco, Dusky & Olive Long-tailed Cuckoos, Blue Malkoha, Black Bee-eater, Blue-throated Roller, African Dwarf, Chocolate-backed, Shining-blue & Blue-breasted Kingfishers, Grauer’s & Neumann’s Warblers, Uganda & Red-throated Woodland Warblers, Fraser’s Rufous Thrush, White-tailed & Red-tailed Ant Thrushes, Lowland Masked, Mountain Masked and Ruwenzori Apalises, Afep & White-naped Pigeons, Greyish Eagle-Owl, Red-chested Owlet, White-spotted Flufftail, African Finfoot, Brown-chested Lapwing, Grey-winged, Blue-shouldered & White-bellied Robin-Chats, Equatorial Akalat, White-bellied Crested Flycatcher, Magpie Mannikin, Joyful, Kakamega, Ansorge’s & Toro Olive Greenbuls, Red-tailed & Yellow-lored Bristlebills, Dusky & Grey-chested Babblers, Jameson’s Antpecker, Dusky Crimsonwing, Black-bellied Seedcracker, Red-headed Bluebill, Weyns’s & Strange Weavers, Mountain Sooty & Lowland Sooty Boubous, Forest & White-headed Wood Hoopoes, Speckle-breasted Woodpecker
Mountain Gorilla, Chimpanzee, Giant Forest Hog, L’Hoest’s Monkey, Central African Red Colobus, Leopard, Lion, Chequered Elephant Shrew
mid-altitude and montane rainforest, woodlands, acacia savanna, grasslands, wetlands, papyrus swamps
tropical with some rain expected, cooler in highlands
moderate pace with some longer walks and drives
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, Nile & Kazinga cruises, Murchison Falls, African art