This Uganda & Rwanda bird watching safari is mainly focused on woodland and forest birds. You will travel with a safari guide specialised in birding and be supplied with a checklist to keep track of what has been seen. You have the chance to tick off top species like the Green Breasted Pitta, Nkulengu rail, Papyrus Gonolek and Great Shoebill Stork. Come experience the rich bird-life of Uganda & Rwanda with us. Optional additions are chimps & gorilla trekking.
This Culture & wildlife northern Uganda safari includes:
- Mabamba Swamp
- Lake Mburo National Park
- Kibale Forest National Park
- Semuliki National Park
- Queen Elizabeth National Park
- Ishasha sector
- Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
- Mgahinga Gorilla National Park
- Nyungwe Forest
Day by day itinerary for our 17 days Uganda & Rwanda birding safari:
DAY 1: ARRIVAL FOR OUR UGANDA & RWANDA BIRD-WATCHING SAFARI
Arrival at Entebbe airport and transfer to the guesthouse to rest after the journey to be ready for the first ticks of this Uganda & Rwanda bird watching safari.
Overnight Tilapia Lodge
DAY 2: ENTEBBE BOTANICAL GARDEN & GREAT SHOEBILL STORK AT MABAMBA SWAMP
Birding in Entebbe botanical garden for the orange weaver, Golden backed weaver and other master builders of the Ploceidae family, Superb Sunbird, Bat Hawk and several garden birds exploiting this transitional habitat. Transfer out to transfer by ferry to the IBA wetland swamp of Mabamba for the Great Shoebill stork (a first highlight during this Uganda & Rwanda bird watching safari ) and marsh Harriers if time allow search for the beautiful painted pygmy goose and some birds as we continue towards Masaka town where we spend the night.
Overnight Brovad Hotel
DAY 3: WOODLAND BIRDING IN LAKE MBURO NP & BOAT-CRUISE FOR THE AFRICAN FINFOOT
We have an early transfer after breakfast en route to Lake Mburo NP we could swing to the kako Swamp for some aquatic birds, Hottentot Teals, Crakes, Cisticolas and Warblers. Several aquatic birds if its wet enough! Otherwise speed up to the woodland savannah dotted with acacia and shrubs for – more birds and 1-2 hrs boat cruise for best chance to tick off the African Finfoot, Shinning blue kingfisher and White backed night heron if lucky.
Overnight Rwakobo Rock
DAY 4: EARLY MORNING BIRDING IN LAKE MBURO NP AND TRANSFER TO KIBALE FOREST
Early morning game birding in Lake Mburo NP. Get up early focusing on the Rwizi track / acacia track/ equivalent. It’s a dense population of some rare birds here with chance to tick off Red Headed Weavers, Cuckoo Shrikes, Crested Barbet, Red Faced Barbet, Tabora Cisticola and some of our newest members on the Ugandan list here if lucky my favourite francolin could be seen. Transfer to Kibale area via Kamwenge for the Birds of Kibale area. More in the forest canopy colored aviation creatures-butterflies various bird species like the native Great blue Turaco.
Overnight Kibale Homestay
DAY 5: FOREST BIRDING IN KIBALE FOREST NP FOR THE GREEN BREASTED PITTA, CHIMPS TREKKING OPTION
Kibale Forest NP is a rainy forest rich in birds that will be explored on this day of the Uganda & Rwanda bird watching safari. Birding in Kibale forest for the Green Breated Pitta starts very early before day break. Continue birding for species like the native Great blue Turaco, Joyful Greenbul, Redheaded Bluebill, brown Illadopsis, Red-chested Owlet, Olive Long Tailed Cuckoo and the superb Black Bee–eater as we bird out towards the edge of the forest. Optional addition of Chimps trekking in Kibale Forest (inform us when booking if you wish to add this).
Overnight Isunga Lodge
DAY 6: BIRDING TOWARDS SEMULIKI NATIONAL PARK
Transfer to Semuliki national park birding along the forest depending on the previous day, it could be the Crater areas or Sebitoli forest edge depending on key needs. Transfer through Fort Portal and arrive to the open area scanning for the North west woodland species like the Stunning Bishops as we continue towards the forest for the rarest Hornbill species, hoping for the native Nkulengu rail, trying the spot Breasted Ibis, Orange Cheeked Waxbills and as we try the Owls before bed time.
Overnight Bumaga Camp
DAY 7: FOREST BIRDING IN SEMULIKI NATIONAL PARK, ARGUABLY UGANDA’S NR 1 BIRDING SPOT
Full day birding in Semuliki along Kirumya trail, Semuliki ox-bow lakes, it’s a full day experience starting early for the region endemics. As possibly Ugandas number 1 spot an IBA with most Congo-forest species stretching to this furthest Eastern end. The newly spotted resident on Uganda’s list Akun Eagles Owl, Blue Billed Malimbe, Western Bronze Napped Pigeon, Maxwell`s black Weaver, Congo Serpent Eagle, Red-billed Dwarf Hornbill, African Dwarf Kingfisher, the rare Capuchin Babbler, Red-thighed and Long-tailed Hawk are some mega ticks we are hoping to grip to with the smallest relative of the woodpeckers the African piculet a great attraction for our stay. Yellow throated & western nicatorin are found in the area showering us with their liquidating super call can be ticked off too on this day of our Uganda & Rwanda bird watching safari.
Overnight Lake Nkuruba nature reserve
DAY 8: CRATER LAKES BIRDING & BOAT-CRUISE IN QUEEN ELIZABETH NATIONAL PARK
Transfer through the crater areas with an eve targeting, the boat cruise and night jars. In the morning we transfer birding through the crater lakes area with chance for Sabines Spinetails, Honeyguide Greenbulls, Giant Kingfishers and Ross’s Turacoall in the environs of the forest can be viewed on a lucky day. Drive further south wards to reach Queen Elizabeth NP. In the afternoon we continue our 17 days Uganda & Rwanda birding safari by getting ready for the Classic highlights on the 2hrs Boat cruise on the famous Kazinga channel. This is a 36kms channel linking Lake George and Lake Edward. Here we can see land and water Adapted Hippopotamuses Yawning and some slashing canines to each other and the National Geographical society Killing machine the Nile Crocodile gaping along the Bankslots of waders, Pelicans and different gulls.
Overnight Pumba Safari Cottages
DAY 9: ISHASHA SECTOR SAVANNAH BIRDING & ON TO BWINDI FOREST
Target through Ishasha, Queen Elizabeth NP’s southern sector, for the savannah birds. The top vulture of the region Lappet faced vulture, try the Wryneck and Africa`s most spirited eagle the Marshal eagle, larks and a try to check on the rare Cassin’s Flycatcher on River Ishasha. The southern sector is famous for its tree-climbing lions so during our birding here we mights spot them up in the fig-trees. After lunch we transfer to Buhoma. If we arrive early we try the lower altitude birds here so tomorrow we just go deeper in the forest.
Overnight Buhoma community rest camp
DAY 10: BIRDING FOR LOWER ALTITUDE ENDEMICS IN BWINDI IMPENETRABLE NATIONAL PARK
Birding in the interior of the primary forest towards the water fall trail targeting highlights like the endemics newly described Willard’s sooty Boubou, Chapins flycatcher and trying the rare ground thrushes Abyssinian and Kivu as we hope for the Neumann’s Warbler. We have picknick lunch in the resting huts in the forest and expect to be back mid afternoon to relax after an exciting day of birding during this Uganda & Rwanda bird watching safari.
Overnight Buhoma Community Rest Camp
DAY 11: BIRDING “THE NECK” OF THE IMPENETRABLE FOREST TO RUHIJA, GORILLA TREKKING OPTION
Transfer to Ruhija via “the neck” birding in Bwindi forest, as we start to ascend up to our possible 2600 M above sea level through the impenetrable forest for the Black Bee-eater, African Swees, the Rare Motacilaclara, Brown Illadopsis and Black Billed Weaver. Stop over at the neck for trying out the rare Cassin Grey Flycatcher, Dusky Blue Flycatcher and try the Shinning Blue Kingfisher. Optional activity this day is Gorilla Trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable NP, inform us when booking if you wish for this addition.
Overnight Broad Bill Forest Camp
DAY 12: MUBWINDI HIGHLAND SWAMP
Ruhija Sector / Mubwindi swamp expedition. Albertin endemics day aiming to grip on the Rwenzori Batis, Dusky Crimsonwing, Blue headed Sunbird, Regal Sunbird, African green broadbill, Grauer’s rush warbler, Dwarf honey guide, Stripe-breasted Tit, Archers Robin chat, Black billed Turaco plus White browed crombec, tullbergs woodpecker, soaring buzzards and flocks of Stuhlmanns starlings with there aerial displays. This Impenetrable Forest is full of flora and fauna, birds, butterfly and plant species plus mammals like the little bohms squirrel, forest hogs, forest Elephants, Statungas, Duikers super and the best of natures forest sounds.
Overnight Broadbil forest camp
DAY 13: BIRDING OUT THROUGH THE BAMBOO ZONE TO MGAHINGA NATIONAL PARK
As we head out the road side raptors like the Common kestrel, Lanner falcon, Africa hobby and White napped raven will be our main birds as we drive to the Switzerland of Africa weavers, canaries, and rare sunbirds easily in one habitat. Birding around Muko, Nyamuliro swamp for papyrus yellow warbler, papyrus canaries, Easy birding around to Kisoro. Birding in the bamboo zone echuya forest with the Golden scenery of the Volcanoes at eye level in view as we drive down the meandering road to Kisoro volcanic stone town.
Overnight Tourist hotel Kisoro / Amajambere camp Mgahinga
DAY 14: FOREST BIRDING IN MGAHINGA
You will be impressed on how close and easy it could be on this morning with some Albertine rift endemics, Northern double Colored Sunbird, Rwenzori Turaco, Archers Robin-chats, Dusky Turtle Dove, Mountain Black Boubou, Lagden Bush Shrikes, Doherty’s Bushshrikes, Grey Winged Robin Chat, Cinnamon Bracken Warblers, White Starred Robin and if we are lucky we could get a chance for the rare Shelley’s Crimsonwing with trails for the Kivu ground thrush. After the forest birding we transfer to the boarder of Rwanda to enter the second country of this Uganda & Rwanda bird watching safari and connect to Muhabura hotel.
Overnight Muhabura Hotel
DAY 15: TRANSFER TO NYUNGWE FOREST
We transfer to Nyungwe forest via Kibuye lake side drive arriving in the afternoon and try the forest edge for birding in the evening. We are very keen here to reduce the regional endemics, trying the Owlet at Night, Willard’s sooty Boubou plus other species in the evening along the forest edge as we judge the next day focus.
Overnight Gisakura Guesthouse
DAY 16: BIRDING IN NYUNGWE FOREST
This morning we enter Nyungwe forest and bird the higher or lower altitude birds depending on the last response in the Albertin rift forest. The diminutive Neumann’s Warbler, Kungwe Apalis and the Red-collared Mountain-Babbler in Bigugu trail. Depending on the stay in the forest we spend the night in Huye.
DAY 17: FLIGHT DAY.
Transfer to Kigali for flight. We have reached the end of our Uganda & Rwanda bird watching safari . Plan for an afternoon/evening flight from Kigali or add a night to fly the next day.
‘IN CONSERVATION WE TRUST- DISCOVER YOUR TRAVEL DREAMS’
CLICK ON THE MAP TO ZOOM AND FOLLOW THE ROUTING OF THE SAFARI. EXACT ROADS USED CAN DIFFER DEPENDING ON THE GUIDES DECISIONS FOR BEST ALTERNATIVES AT THE TIME.
Tailor-made safaris: We work with private safaris that can be tailor-made to fit your wishes. Contact us and we adjust the itinerary to your preferences.
Price: The price depends on number of people and accommodation level. Contact us with your inquiry to get the best price for your safari.
Included: Accommodation, meals, safari car, fuel, guide, park entries, gorilla permits (if applicable) and activities mentioned in the itinerary. Plus water in the car and a couple of fruits along the way.
Excluded: International flights, visas, drinks, tips and personal expenses.
Accommodation: In general accommodation mentioned in the itinerary is good places on budget to mid-range level (with the exception of luxury safaris). The accommodation can be adapted to your price range of budget, mid-range or luxury. Of-course a mix is also possible. Take a look here for links to the website’s of the lodges we regularly work with.
Payment options: We accept international bank transfer, card payment through PesaPal (adds 3,5% charge) and cash payment if you are in Uganda.
For more info see our terms & conditions.
Combine two of Uganda’s great highlights, birding & mountain gorillas, during this 7 days Uganda birding safari. Explore some of the great birding locations of Uganda together with a specialised birding guide.
Uganda birding safari in a nice tempo in top IBA’s habitats with a specialised birding guide. This keen birding safari lets you bag top species in the south-west of Uganda as well as trek mountain gorillas.
Cover most of Uganda’s different birding habitats with top IBA’s as well as have time for classic safari and optional gorilla trekking. Go with our specialised birding guide to discover the amazing birds Uganda has to offer during this hardcore birding safari.
For more itinerary options take a look under “safaris” in the menu at the top of the site.