Bill Gates Supports Gorilla Conservation

According to All Africa news of 4th Aug 2010, one of the world’s richest people, Bill Gates was in Uganda for his second gorilla tracking Uganda adventure in the Impenetrable forests of Bwindi Gorilla Park. It was reported that Bill Gates and his wife Mellinda Gates were in Uganda from August 9 to 12, 2012. Mountain gorillas are critically endangered with only 720 left worldwide and these are inhabited in Virunga mountains, share between Uganda, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

In Bwindi National park where Bill Gates was, there are about 480 gorillas which are half of the world’s total population. The other half is shared between Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Gorilla Tracking is rapidly growing in Uganda and Rwanda. However, DR Congo is facing some challenges of political unrests of Bosco Ntaganda rebels in Virunga National Park.

Bill Gates is popular for being one of the richest people in the world and the Co-founder and the current chairman of Microsoft.  On all his visits of Uganda gorillas, he has done a great effort of funding the protection of endangered species. Early before his arrival and the wife, there was an advance team in Kisoro district near Bwindi National park to prepare where these guests were expected to launch their gorilla trekking safari.

This 56-year world entrepreneur was last in Uganda on a gorilla trek in 2004. Then, he came back in August 2012 for another gorilla trek. UWA official in Kisoro who preferred anonymity declined to divulge more details about the visit of Bill and Mellinda Gates in Bwindi National Park, Uganda. Also known as the Pearl of Africa, Uganda is so beautiful with many tourist attractions. The country first opened up its doors to tourists for Bwindi Gorilla Trekking in April 1993. Since then, Uganda tourism industry has been substantially boosted by annual revenue from the national park tucked away in southwestern Uganda.

The success of Uganda tourism is supported not only by mountain gorillas but also by over 10 National Parks and wild game reserves. Among these include Murchison Falls National park (The biggest), Queen Elizabeth National park, Kibale Primates Forest, Semilik National Park, Mount Rwenzori N.P, Mgahinga, Mount. Elgon, Kidepo Valley, and Lake Mburo National Parks and many wildlife reserves. These boost a number of tourism activities such as wild game viewing safaris, fantastic boat cruise, chimpanzees, and other primates tracking, forest walk, mountain climbing, community tours and many others.


Airport Guest House Entebbe Uganda

Airport Guesthouse is located on Plot 17 Mugula Road, Entebbe in Wakiso district. The guesthouse has 10 rooms in total, 6 rooms with big double beds and 3 rooms with 2 single beds in each plus 1 room with 3 single beds.

airport-viewThere is also a family house which can accommodate 5 visitors with a living and dining room. Late arrivals, tired, hungry visitors can have a stop at Airport Guest House for meals, refreshments or dinner before proceeding with their Journeys to other parts of the country. Even those willing to catch their flight very early morning can spend their night here to avoid missing their flight, the next day.

Another offer is that the lodge provides free airport transfer and pick up at any time of the day or night. Airport Guesthouse Entebbe is also ideal if you just want to spend a few days relaxing away from the noise of busy Kampala. While in Entebbe you can undertake many different activities like visiting the Uganda Wildlife Education Centre which is 30-minute walk or 10 minutes drive from the guest house, The visit to the lush Botanical Gardens for swimming or boat trip is also awesome, Visitors can also visit the Ngamba Island to see the orphaned chimpanzees on a speed boat for visitors on a fixed time or slow boat for those willing to stay for more days, birding safari to the Mambamba Swamp for the rare Shoebill stork and many more swamp birds, transfer to Zika Forest which has peculiar tranquility that is foreign to other forests. Zika forest has five canopies, red-tailed, and grivet monkeys, the dwarf bushbaby, the Potto and the African and palm civets, Butterflies and moths species among others.

Bold visitors can transfer to the Uganda Reptile Village to view reptiles like snakes, crocodiles among others. The Uganda Reptile village was founded in 2003 by a group of community youths within Bunono village in Entebbe, Uganda with the aim of protecting the endangered reptiles within Uganda’s ecosystem.


Fort Murchison Lodge Murchison Falls National Park – Uganda

Fort Murchison is set in the former Aswa Lolim Game reserve, just outside the northern park boundaries of Murchison falls Wildlife National Park. It is set in beautiful surroundings and looks out on the majestic Albert Nile. Fort Murchison revokes the idea of a well-maintained isolated outpost from times where Arab traders frequented the African hinterlands and legendary explorers led expeditions in search of the source of the Nile.

fort-murchison Murchison Falls National Park is Uganda’s largest National Park and this gives Fort Murchison the upper hand to host a large number of visitors. Activities like game drive, Boat cruises on Kazinga channel, nature walks, tree climbing lion search safari among others.

Fort Murchison offers comfortable accommodations to suit all budgets- therefore, it is pocket-friendly- be it in our beautiful rooms, our comfortable thatched tents, or the lazy camping tents, a great value for money is guaranteed. The rooftop terrace is the perfect spot for your sundowner drink.

After enjoying the breathtaking views of the Albert Nile, guests descend towards our restaurant where a fine 4-course diner awaits you. The restaurant décor has a Swahili touch and is decorated with pictures and drawings from the first explorers’ adventures.

At the lodge, visitors are provided with bread made at the lodge. Vegetarians are also catered for since the lodge started their own vegetable garden and have planted plenty of fruit trees going from citrus, mango, and pawpaw to jackfruit, passion, avocado trees among others.

fort-murchison2Solar energy is used at the lodge and several solar fridges and freezers are used. We kindly ask you to let us know in time if you have any dietary requirements so that we can prepare your meals accordingly.


Travellers Rest Hotel Kisoro Uganda

Travellers Rest Hotel – Kisoro – Southwestern Uganda

Travellers Rest Hotel is located just outside Kisoro, in the extreme southwestern corner of Uganda on the borders with the Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda, offering a perfect base for gorilla trekking in the area. The hotel is built in a somewhat colonial style and was entirely renovated in 1999. It has 12 rooms at affordable costs, and it offers a cozy environment to relax in after gorilla treks or day visits to the nearby community.

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Near the Hotel is a beautiful garden hosting a variety of bird species – so, visitors can as well do birding here! Sitting on the terrace you can smell the sweetish perfume of the honeysuckle, and in the evenings, when it gets cooler, you can warm yourself by the fireplace, outside, or in the lounge.

From far away the huge cones of the Virunga volcanoes dominate the landscape and beckon as you approach. The surrounding landscape is of astonishing beauty. The Volcano Mountains offer spectacular views on the Rift Valley and the emerald-green Lake Mutanda in the distance- a lot of tourist attractions at Lake Mutanda and they include Bird species like kingfisher birds, kites, ibis, the Crested Crane, Weaverbird nests are a common site, snake, chameleon, monitor lizard and frog species among the reeds along the lakeshore. The mammals unique to Lake Mutanda include the African clawless otter, Hippopotamus was endemic to the area, but were last sighted at Lake Mutanda in 1994 so, a visit to this lake is awesome too.

From the Travellers Rest Hotel, a number of tourist activities for visitors can be undertaken include biking to explore the nearby surroundings, walking to the local market in Kisoro or climbing one of the volcanoes, Mountain gorilla trekking in Mgahinga National Park or Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in Uganda or cross to Rwanda and visit the Virunga Mountains in Rwanda or en route visit the beautiful twin Lakes: Burera and Buhondo.


Gorilla Valley Lodge Rates, Bwindi Forest in Uganda

Gorilla Valley Lodge- Bwindi Gorilla forest-Uganda

gorilla-valley-campGorilla Valley Lodge is strategically located on the Southern edge of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park on a hill near Rushaga, close to Rushaga Uganda Wildlife station. This is one of the Lodges with excellent services provided to all visitors.

The Lodge has 12 excellent rooms with spacious private bathrooms, Toilets, Dining/Waiting area beautifully situated in lowland evergreen Forest allowing breathtaking views of the African Eden, rich with wildlife, and at a close distance the majestic Virunga Volcanoes.

Every room has been lovingly furnished with twin beds and decorated in a modern retro style to suit the ecosystem. Bwindi Impenetrable National park holds the country’s tourism sector by hosting the chief tourist attraction of Uganda- Mountain Gorillas. To that note, therefore, there is no doubt, Gorilla Valley accommodates a large number of visitors.

Gorilla Valley Lodge is a slice of wilderness paradise far from the madding crowd; a place of renewal and reconnection with the natural world. And trust, one could never get closer to Bwindi! While at the Lodge, lucky visitors can be visited by the gentle giants of the forest- Gorillas and can be seen at your veranda while seated in your chair taking tea.

On the highest part of the hill is the location of the main building with a restaurant and bar. From here the view is amazing! In our lounge, you can relax by the fire but you can also make yourself comfortable on the veranda. In the restaurant, we offer the best of two worlds: an international buffet prepared by a professional Ugandan chef.

beds-gorilla-valleyActivities while at Gorilla Valley lodge include, Gorilla trekking, Nature walks to waterfalls, birding in the forest, cultural exploration in the Batwa community, Biking through Bwindi community, chilling off, and Gorilla Habituations.

Proposed Itinerary for 3 days Uganda gorilla safari with 2 nights at Gorilla Valley Camp/lodge

Day One: Transfer to Bwindi National Park

Breakfast at your hotel around Kampala or Entebbe, leave by 8:00 AM to western Uganda with a stopover at the Equator for photographs, en-route lunch in Mbarara Town, dinner, and overnight stay at Gorilla Valley Lodge in southern Bwindi National Park

Day Two: Mountain Gorilla Tracking Adventure

Heavy breakfast followed by a briefing from the park headquarters about mountain gorilla trekking in Bwindi National Park, the trek is quite strenuous and takes between 2-7 hours in the forest. This will depend on how the gorillas move in their natural habitat as they search for food. The evening can be for a community walk or forest walk, or drive to Lake Bunyonyi.

Day Three: Departure

Breakfast and drive back to Kampala / Entebbe Airport (8 to 10 hours drive). Or we can cross the border to Kigali International Airport in Rwanda, this is only 3 to 4 hours drive. This marks the end of your safari.

gorilla-valllye-lodgeCost of the 3-days gorilla safari with 2 nights at Gorilla Valley Camp

This will cost 1095 US Dollars, based on 2 persons and it includes a gorilla permit per person (600 US dollars each), private transport from Kampala and back, en-route meals and bottled mineral water for refreshment, 2-night accommodation at Gorilla Valley Lodge with meals, services of a professional English speaking driver/tour guide. Excluded are flights, accommodation in Kampala, and other personal expenses like tips for staff. If you are on a tight budget, you can choose not to book a guided trip and take a self-drive safari to Bwindi forest to see the gorillas. In this case, you can rent a 4×4 car in Kampala cheaply from tour operators on Kampala from US$40 per day (Toyota Rav 4) and US$70 per day Toyota Prado. For more information about escorted and self-drive safaris, send an email to info@cheapgorillasafaris.com.


The Gorilla Naming Ceremony (Kwita Izina) in Rwanda

Mountain Gorillas are one of the few remaining animals in the world however, we are fortunate that there are some newborn Gorilla babies in Rwanda. There are to be named on June 22 during Kitwa Izina.

This is the 9th Kwita Izina edition to be conducted in Musanze area under the theme ‘Celebrating nature and empowering local communities.’ This time we have twelve babies and one new gorilla family will be named during the 9th edition event. This will be preceded by the launching of community projects around Musanze area.

The Rwanda Development Board’s head of tourism and conservation, Rica Rwigamba, said it will be an occasion for Rwanda to increase its visibility and promote its culture. “At this function, many tour operators from different parts of the world are invited to attend this ceremony. This will help the country to win fame and let people become more aware of the country.

Virunga National Park is shared by the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, and Uganda; it is home to an estimated 480 gorillas. Book yourself a 3-day gorilla trek to Volcanoes National Park between 21st and 23rd June to be able to participate in the 2013 Kwita Izina (Gorilla Naming ceremony) in Rwanda.


Mburo Eagles Nest in Lake Mburo wildlife park- Uganda

eagles-nestMburo Eagle nest is found near Lake Muro National Park- this is the smallest National Park in Uganda but hosts a large number of wild animals and birds but the most common animals here are the zebras. Mburo Eagles Nest which is located on a high hill bordering Lake Mburo National Park- Being at the hill, Eagles Nest offers an excellent view of the park – almost the whole park is visible from this tented camp.

In the middle of the camp is the reception /restaurant/ bar building. During your dinner, you will hear the sounds of the bush: roaring lions, chirping crickets, and grunting bush pigs.

The Lodge only offers 10 tents with their own private bathroom with eco-toilet and bush shower. The tents are furnished with twin beds and have solar lights and charging systems for the visitors to charge their cameras – just seat at the veranda and view how beautiful lake Mburo is plus its inhabitant game. For every visitor, morning breakfast accompanied by coffee and tea is a must!! Then have game drives to catch up with the early raisers before returning to their hiding places. Expect to encounter Zebras, Hippos, Impala, and kobs among others.

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Other activities like a boat ride are organized on Lake Mburo, birding in the park, Horseback riding to view the animals at a close range, nature walks among others.


Kibale Forest Camp Uganda

Kibale-forest-camp-tentKibale Forest Camp – Kibale chimpanzee forest -Uganda

Are you planning a chimpanzee-tracking safari in Kibale forest, then think of staying at Kibale Forest Camp- well situated in a patch of evergreen forest, just outside the southern part of the National Park. It borders the Magombe swamp, known for the Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary- this is primate paradise! –It is a 10 minutes drive to Kanyanchu Visitor Center –the chimpanzee trekking starting point- so visitors who need earlier report at the briefing point are advised to spend the previous night at Kibale Forest Camp.

Where better to capture the thrill of a howling black and white colobus or to listen to the wood owl calling his partner, than from the comfort of your tent in Kibale Forest Camp? Get absorbed by forest smells and sounds, spot primates swinging through the trees, and observe rare birds and beautiful butterflies fluttering around. Have a break from your daily concrete jungle life and experience the real thing.

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Kibale Forest Camp offers an affordable classic canvas experience in the form of 10 African safari-style tents tucked away in a lush forest. A budget alternative is our lazy camping on our campsite. Complemented by excellent food and drinks served in a cozy grass-thatched restaurant, the camp forms your perfect base if you are looking for an affordable and comfortable place from where to explore the area.

Not only providing satisfying accommodation to visitors but also arranging Chimpanzee trekking or habituation, birding tours, community excursions, nature walk, cultural exploration among others.


Bush Lodge in Queen Elizabeth National park- Uganda

Bush Lodge is excellently situated in Queen Elizabeth National Park this is the second largest National park in Uganda and one of the leading Park in hosting a large number of tourists. To that note, Bush Lodge also accommodates a large number of visitors.

bushlodgeIt is eco-friendly and matches the natural setting of the park not to affect the wildlife.  Surrounded by the National Park and bordering the Kazinga channel, the lodge has a truly unique setting.  While here, visitors enjoy the unique sounds of animals like Hippos and Hyenas alongside birds’ sounds. The Bush Lodge finally offers a safari camp that is affordable and authentic. Expect a great outdoor safari atmosphere, a close-to-nature experience with excellent food, and friendly service.

The Restaurant and Lounge are set to overlook the Kazinga Channel and to have the Rwenzori mountain range as a backdrop while enjoying excellent food and drinks. In the evening, you can be arranged a candle dinner. Paraffin lights and a campfire create a cozy setting from where your 4-course dinner will be served.

Early morning breakfast is accompanied by sweet coffee or tea, packed breakfasts or lunches can all be organized according to your planning of the day. When booking accommodation at Bush Lodge, endeavor to send your special dietary to enable proper arrangement. More so, you can order the arrangement of special functions like birthday parties, honeymooners’ parties, Jubilee celebrations among others. Bush Lodge is a home away from home!

Bush Lodge is located outside Queen Elizabeth National Park and offers the most affordable accommodation in the park. Animals like elephants usually visit the park, you can have a chance to see animals like Elephants when they visit the park. Also, you can have lunch with a very beautiful view of Savannah grassland while seeing animals grazing.


8 Day Budget Camping Safari in Uganda – Self Drive Holiday

Budget Uganda Safari Overview

The 8-day camping safari in Uganda covers the country’s most popular tourist destinations to start Bwindi Gorilla Park in southwestern Uganda, then Queen Elizabeth national park, Kibale forest and end with the magnificent Murchison Falls national park in Northwestern Uganda. You can choose camping throughout the trip, or mix with some budget lodges with en-suite bathrooms and toilets. This can be a guides/escorted or self-drive tour. Below is a detailed day by day Itinerary;

Detailed Itinerary; 8 day Uganda camping safari

Day One: Transfer to Bwindi National Park (7-10hrs)

Your professional tour guide will meet you at your hotel in Kampala and set off for Bwindi national park. The journey goes through many small towns, villages, and roadside markets that offer a chance for photographing, en-route stop at the equator for photographs, lunch in Mbarara town at Agip Motel, arrive at your lodge in Bwindi by early evening for dinner, and overnight at Buhoma community rest camp / Broadbill Forest Camp, Four Gorillas Lodge / Ruhija Community Rest Camp.

Day Two: Mountain Gorilla Trekking Adventure

gorilla-babies-playingMorning breakfast followed by an assembly at the park headquarters (with packed water and lunch) for briefing about gorilla trekking. The trek takes between 1-7hrs before meeting these gentle Giants camouflaged in thick vegetation. You will be allowed to stay with the Giants for a maximum of 1 hour, get back to the lodge for late lunch. Time permitting, take a community walk to nearby Batwa people (Pygmies), dinner, and overnight as on Day 1.

Day Three: Transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park

Morning breakfast at the lodge, followed by a scenic drive to Queen Elizabeth National Park. The journey goes through small trading centers in rural areas of Uganda. We shall have a wonderful game drive in the Ishasha sector, famous for tree-climbing lions alongside other wild animals like Elephants, Buffaloes, Warthogs, and several antelope species, overnight at Kyambura Tented camp / Simba safari camp / Mweya Hostels.

Day Four: Game drive and a fantastic Boat cruise

A cup of tea will be followed by a fantastic game drive to catch up with early raisers and predators returning to their hide-outs. Expect an encounter with wild animals such as the Africa Lion, Elephants, Buffaloes, Warthogs, Baboons, and sometimes leopards among others. Return to the lodge/camp for late breakfast, relax as you wait for lunch, after which, you embark on a fantastic boat cruise on the Kazinga channel, famous for the highest concentration of Hippos in Africa with Huge Nile crocodiles, Elephants, and Buffaloes seen basking along the shores. Return to the lodge by sunset, campfire in the evening, dinner, and overnight as Day 3.

Day Five: Transfer to Kibale National Park, Chimpanzee tracking

kibale-island-chimpsBreakfast followed another game drive through Queen Elizabeth National Park as we transfer to Kibale National Park, home to 13 primate species that include Chimpanzees, Red-tailed Monkeys, L’hoest’s monkeys, Giant forest hog, colobus monkeys, blue monkeys, and many others, with about 350 bird species. Here you also find mammals like forest elephants and buffaloes. Get ready for Chimpanzee tracking after lunch, dinner, and overnight / camping at Chimpanzee Guest House.

NOTE: If you want chimpanzee habituation, the program will slightly change. Please inquire about this arrangement.

Day Six: Transfer to Murchison Falls National park

Breakfast and hit the road to Murchison falls national park, we shall have lunch in Hoima Town, proceed via the beautiful Butia Escarpments, arrive at the park by late afternoon, then take a visit to the top of the falls where the River forces itself through a narrow gorge 7 meters wide, flowing down 45meters. The scenery here is so wonderful, dinner and overnight / camping at Red chili Rest Camp, Shoebill campsite or Yebo Campsite.

Day Seven: Game drive and boat cruise to the bottom of the falls

Breakfast at the lodge followed a fantastic game drive in search for a wide variety of animals such as lions, leopards, Giraffes, Buffaloes, elephants, and many antelopes. Return to our campsite and relax as we wait for lunch. Then embark on a fantastic boat cruise to the bottom of the falls. Expect to see elephants and buffaloes drinking water on the shores, huge crocodiles, Hippos, and over 300 bird species. Return by sunset, campfire in the evening, dinner, and overnight.

Day Eight: Departure

Breakfast at the lodge, followed by transfer back to Kampala. This is a 5-6hrs drive and we shall be in Kampala by later afternoon. If interested, we can have an en-route visit to Zziwa Rhino sanctuary, and depending on your departure flight schedule, you will be transferred to Entebbe International Airport or dropped off at your hotel in Kampala or Entebbe for dinner and overnight.