11 Days Uganda safari, Pian Upe wildlife and cultural tour | North-East waterfalls adventure
This 11 Days Uganda safari, Pian Upe wildlife and cultural tour will take you to the North Eastern circuit of Uganda that is less travelled. It will show you Jinja, the adventure capital of East Africa and Source of the world’s longest river; The River Nile, Sipi falls for the beautiful waterfalls tour, Pian Upe wildlife reserve and connect to Kidepo Valley National park which was named as Africa’s best wildlife park and wrap it up with the Mighty Murchison Falls.
Highlights of this 11 Days Uganda safari
- Sipi Falls
- Cultural tour
- Safari game drives
- Hike to the top of the falls
- True wilderness
Day 1: Entebbe – Kampala: Travel Time: 42 km, 1 hour
Arriving at the airport you will be warmly welcomed by a representative of Gorilla Link Tours, and transferred to your hotel in Kampala.
Suggested optional Activities in Kampala
- Kampala guided city Tour: Today you may explore Kampala on a walking tour or vehicle drive tour. This will greatly depend on the time you will arrive at the airport. You will explore the city with organized chaos and the historical, cultural, religious and political sites of Kampala The cultural sites include the King’s palace of Buganda kingdom, Kasubi tombs. You will also discover the Bahai temple. There are 7 Bahai temples in the world and one of them is in Kampala.
- Foodie Time: Get out of your hotel, go eat out. Taste the ‘Rolex’ and learn more about some of the traditional foods like yummy chicken luwombo. Don’t forget to include delicious Indian and Ethiopian food.
Journey Time: 1 Hour
Accommodation: Cassia Lodge
Meal Plan: No meals inclusive
Located in Kampala, Cassia lodge offers stunning views of Lake Victoria-the second world’s biggest water body, in beautifully furnished rooms that have a lake view lodge, satellite TV, fridge, a telephone, wireless internet, twenty spacious rooms, and a swimming pool. The food is excellent and caters for everyone. It is perfect for the day a traveller arrives in Uganda or the last day before flying back.
Day 2: Transfer to Jinja the Source of the Nile
After early breakfast, you will be transferred to Jinja town, which is also the source of the world’s river Nile that ends up to the Mediterranean Sea. You will stay at Source of the Smile hotel, an intimate hotel with a swimming pool
Journey Time: 2 ½ hours
Accommodation: Source of the Smile Hotel.
Meal plan: All meals
Below is the list of optional activities you may choose to go for or you may choose to relax at the lodge. Kindly note that optional activities will be paid by the client on site
- White water rafting – full day US Dollars 145 / half day US Dollars 125
- A horseback safari – US Dollars 50 for 2 hours / USD 70 for 3 hours
- Quad-biking – US Dollars 70 for 2 hours / US Dollars 90 for 3 hours
- Kayaking on river Nile- US Dollars 120
- A sundowner boat cruise on the Nile- US Dollars 35
- Source of the Nile visit
Day 3: Transfer to Sipi Falls – Afternoon Sipi falls tour
Today after early breakfast, you will be picked up from Kampala and you will be transferred to beautiful Sipi Falls that are 1800m above sea level in Eastern Uganda.
The sipi falls are formed by Sipi River that flows at the base of Mount Elgon, which lies between the boarder of Uganda and Kenya. Some of the Sipi falls are as high as 100M high and an adrenaline junkie can abseil down these falls. Surrounding the falls are community walking paths and hills covered up with Arabica coffee tree.
After lunch, be ready for the Sipi Falls tour. You will go for a 3 hour tour that will be guided by a local guide who talks about the history, culture, flora and fauna of the Sipi Falls area.
You will stay at Sipi River lodge that has stunning views of one of the gentle flowing Sipi falls.
Journey time: 5 hours
Accommodation: Sipi River lodge
Meal plan: Lunch and dinner
Sipi River Lodge, a semi-luxe lodge which is located in Eastern Uganda with stunning views of one of the sipi falls is one of the most beautiful, comfortable and intimate lodges to stay in while in the Sipi area. From the lodge, you can explore the second of the three Sipi waterfalls and caves.
The lodge has a beautiful restaurant with real good food, and a cosy fire place to warm you up in the chilly evenings.
There are three spacious self contained cottages and non self contained bandas which are more affordable but offer the same standards
Gorilla Link Tours can arrange rock climbing and abseiling descents of the main Sipi falls. There are a variety of climbs to suit all standards, made up from 10 sport climbing routes bolted into the cliff face adjacent to Sipi falls. Abseiling options range from easy 25m descents all the way to 100m waterfall descent.
Day 4: Transfer to Pian Upe – Afternoon cultural community visit Tour
Today after breakfast, you will be transferred to Pian Upe wildlife reserve for a cultural and wildlife experience. Pian Upe is one of the less visited wildlife reserves in Uganda but this reserve has got so much to offer to a traveller. Expect to see antelopes that include the roan antelope, zebras, buffaloes, dik dik, jackals and lots of savannah birds and of course the Ostriches and the bonus being the cheetahs which are only
You will arrive at the reserve, check into your bandas, have lunch and after lunch you will go for a cultural community visit to learn about the ways of the people that live here. You will learn about their traditional marriages and weddings through performances, traditional dances and how they raid cattle, a very important activity to them.
In the evening, you will return to the camp area, have dinner and sit around the camp fire.
Accommodation: UWA bandas – Basic but self contained.
Meal plan: All meals
UWA bandas are basic, self contained and clean but don’t expect so much. The reserve is not yet popular and not yet developed for tourism. There are self contained tents and self contained thatched cottages but offer a true wilderness experience with stunning views of the reserve and the hills. The meals too are very basic.
Day 5: Sunrise game drives – sunset game drives
Today after early breakfast, you will go for a guided morning game drive. Look out for the early risers including the hunting cheetah. Other animals to keep your eyes on are the jackals, roan antelopes, zebras, buffaloes, dik dik, hyenas, baboons, patas monkeys and many others.
You will have lunch, relax and later go for the sun rise game drive
You will return to your accommodation for dinner and overnight
Accommodation: UWA bandas
Meal plan: All meals (The meals are also very basic)
Day 6: Transfer to Kidepo Valley National park
Today after early breakfast, at 7am you will be transferred to Kidepo Valley national park. You will arrive at the park in time for lunch at your lodge. Kidepo Valley national park is a true definition of Africa’s wilderness and home to the biggest number of buffaloes in the world. It was named as 3rd best Africa’s national park. Many animals and birds live here. Expect to see zebras, elephants, giraffes, jackals, Klipspringer, reed buck, Jackson’s hartebeast, the shy porcupines, pangolins, lions, ostriches and cheetahs- the only national park with cheetahs in Uganda.
You will relax at the lodge, have dinner and overnight
Journey time: 7 hours
Accommodation: Kidepo Savannah Lodge
Meal plan: All meals
Kidepo Savannah Lodge is located a stone throw away from Kidepo Valley National park, only 500M away from Kalokudo gate. The lodge offers stunning views of the Narus valley, Mount Morungole and the mountains ranges sighted at a distance. The lodge is inspired by the Karamajong homesteads the Manyattas and the colourful blankets.
It has self contained safari tents and comfortable lazy camping tents for the budget option.
Day 7: Full day game drives – Nocturnal game
Today after a very heavy breakfast, you will go for an exciting sunrise game drive across Kidepo Valley National park. Look out for the many animals that are inhabited here. You will see lions, elephants, giraffes, and massive numbers of buffalo the savannah, hills, small forests, dry river beds and always the rings of mountains around you. You will see lots of animals. You will have a game drive to Karankorog with lots of wildlife on the way.
You will come back for lunch at the lodge. After lunch, you will go for an evening game drive at the Narus valley which attracts many animals for water.
Return to lodge, have dinner and after dinner you will go for a nocturnal game drive for nocturnal animals. This is also the best time for lions to hunt for their food. This is a guided activity too and you will return back to the lodge for overnight.
Accommodation: Kidepo Savannah lodge
Meal plan: All meals
Day 8: Cultural visit – Transfer to Gulu.
Today after early breakfast at the lodge, you will be transferred for a cultural visit tour. You will be introduced to the date-to-date lives of the Karamajong and you will have an opportunity to about this tribe that has refused to change to what the world expects of them. You will visit their homesteads called the Manyattas and also the kraals where their goats, sheep and cattle are kept.
You will proceed to vibrant Gulu town with en route lunch and will get at your tonight’s accommodation in time for dinner and overnight
Journey time: 7 hours
Accommodation: Churchill Courts
Meal plan: All meals
Day 9: Transfer to Murchison Falls National park.
Today after breakfast, you will be transferred to Murchison falls national park. The park is named after the powerful Murchison falls and it is the biggest national park in Uganda. This park used to have rhinos before they were wiped out by poaching but Ziwa Rhino sanctuary is making effort to bring back to rhinos. The park has so much to offer from boat safari at the bottom of the Murchison falls, Chimpanzee tracking in Budongo forest, game drives which offer a traveller an opportunity to see the big and small game and the numerous birds. The highly sought after bird is the bizarre looking shoe bill stork which can be seen on a boat trip to the delta.
You will cross the ferry to your lodge tonight that has scenic views of the Nile
Journey time: 6 hours
Accommodation: Pakuba Safari lodge
Meal plan: All meals
Pakuba Game lodge
A wonderful safari game lodge found in the Murchison Falls National Park, the lodge has been refurbished with a touch of class. It has 11 Guest rooms which are self-contained. It offers a warm and inviting atmosphere and it’s a home to a wonderful selection of birds, all the general plains game from Giraffe to Impala and innumerable species of reptiles and insects. The area is blessed with a temperate climate all year round. Accommodation is luxurious and all rooms have bathroom en suite and a terrace.
Special diets requirements are available on request.
Day 10: Morning game drive – Afternoon boat safari -Top of falls
Today after heavy breakfast, your guide will take you for a sunrise game drive in the savannah plains of the park. Many animals are residents in Murchison Falls national park and cannot be missed on a safari game drive viewing. These include the lions, elephants, buffaloes, giraffes, hippos, warthogs, harte beast, hyenas, jackals and leopards. For travellers passionate for bird watching safari, look out for the secretary bird, Abyssinian ground hornbills and countless many others.
From the game drive, you will come back to the lodge for lunch, after lunch at 2pm; you will go for a boat safari at the bottom of the mighty Murchison falls. Here, the Nile forces itself through a small 7 meter gap
In the afternoon, go for a boat trip to the base of Murchison Falls, where the Nile thunders through a small 7 meter gap dropping heavily 43 meters into the Nile to Lake Albert. At the banks of the river, you will see Nile crocodiles relaxing at the ‘crocodile restaurant’, countless hippos enjoying the water, elephants, giraffes and many other animals that come to the river for water.
After the boat safari you will hike to the beautiful top of the falls. The views here are very scenic and breath taking and you will have great photos taken on each highlight stop as you hike 45 minutes to the top of the Murchison falls.
Accommodation: Pakuba Safari Lodge
Meal Plan: All meals
Suggested optional activities topped up or paid on site by clients:
Chimp tracking in Budongo forest
Located in the southern part of Murchison Falls National Park, Budongo Forest is home to the biggest number of man’s closest cousins; the chimpanzees. You can only go for chimpanzee tracking at Kaniyo Papidi which has habituated chimp troops ready to be tracked. Budongo forest also has red tailed monkeys, vervet monkeys, blue monkeys and olive Baboons. The forest is also popular for bird watching safaris.
Cost for chimp tracking per person: US Dollars 95.
Hot air balloon safari
Very early in the morning, you may go for another optional activity in Murchison falls; the hot air balloon safari where you get to experience the park with a bird eye’s view. You will have great views of River Nile, the Murchison falls and Lake Albert. You will also see lots of animals from above and sunrise rays over the park. After the safari, you will have an exclusive bush breakfast which is included in the cost.
Cost for hot air balloon safari per person: $380 US Dollars p.p.
Day 11: Rhinos on foot – Transfer back to Entebbe
Today after breakfast, you will cross the ferry and head back to Entebbe with en route Rhino tracking at Ziwa rhino sanctuary. You will have lunch at the Rhinos sanctuary or at Kabalega dinners. With ranger guides, you will track rhinos and learn more about them and the intensions of the sanctuary.
You will proceed to Kampala or Entebbe arriving late in the evening in time for your flight back home.
End of safari
Book now and inquire for rates
Points to note
- This tour can depart any day, even on short notice
- Reservations are made after deposit payments
- If the lodge in the itinerary is fully booked, an alternative lodge with the same service standards is reserved after consulting you
- Accommodation on the last day is not included but can be booked on request
- We will use 4 x 4 WD safari vans or safari land cruiser
- All activities as per the itinerary
- English speaking professional guide
- All meals as per itinerary
- All fuel for the tour
- Government taxes
- International airfare
- Expenses of personal nature
- Optional activities
- Activities not mentioned in the itinerary