Gorilla Safari Extension
eye-to-eye with the gorillas — no plexiglas separating you
You will enjoy four luxurious days in the Volcanoes Bwindi Lodge, taking in the exotic surroundings and tracking the Rushegura gorilla group. The excitement of the tracking and getting the first glimpse of a gorilla is simply indescribably. This trip is a great way to extend your climb of Kilimanjaro or a trek in Kenya.
With the gorillas location known by the trackers, you’re almost certain to see these magnificent animals. You strike out early in the morning and depending on the gorilla group’s location, you’ll walk anywhere from less than an hour to three or more hours in the lush Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. Before and after your day of tracking you’ll enjoy the comforts of the lodge.
The land around the lodge acts as a buffer zone between the expanding village of Nkwnda and the forest, reducing human-wildlife conflict and crop-raiding by the gorillas on local farms. A series of trails through the property allow you to savor the primeval tranquility of the forest, its wildlife and the stream flowing through it. There is even a small waterhole in the river where you can take a refreshing dip! Gorillas, birds and other primates can be heard and often seen in the forest, and the gorillas often sleep at the lodge! A walk through the grounds and the tea gardens is magical.
Originally opened in 1999 as a basic tented camp, Bwindi Lodge is now the most stylish and comfortable eco-lodge in the Buhoma part of Bwindi. Each of the 8 bandas (rooms) has its own balcony and opens out onto the misty “impenetrable” forest. From here you can also explore the village, meet some school children, and visit a Pygmy village and learn about their customs.
The total number of days for your trip includes all travel to and from your destination, with some exceptions. Dates listed on the website start with a departure date from the U.S. and include the day you arrive home. For this trip you will need to arrive in Entebbe, Uganda on Day 1. You will transfer to the 8:30 am or 12:30 pm flight to Kihihi.
Leave on Day 4 with the 10:55 am or 14:05 pm return flight to Entebbe and connect in time for your return flight.
Please contact our office for any help needed with your flight schedule.
Day by Day
Arrive at Entebbe airport and transfer to your 8:30 am or 12:30 pm flight to Kihihi. Once there you will be welcomed by your expert guide who will provide knowledge and assistance throughout your journey. Transfer to Buhoma and Volcanoes Bwindi lodge. Rest and before dinner explore the lodge grounds with its clear mountain stream or visit the local village.
First Gorilla Tracking Opportunity
After enjoying an early breakfast, you set off gorilla tracking. Trekking through the steep, densely forested hills and then finally coming across the gorillas camouflaged in the vegetation is an inspiring and privileged moment. Tracking in the Bwindi forest requires stamina and can often take most of the day. Alternatively there are other activities and excursions on offer in and around the national park and include:
Taking a guided walk in the rainforest, home to several endemic bird species, clouds of butterflies and rare plant life. This walk offers excellent photographic opportunities and the knowledgeable guide will provide a great insight into this globally important habitat.
Walking through the local village, and learn about community life and Bwindi Community Hospital that started as a health clinic under a tree and now provides vital medical and educational services to over 60,000 people. Also take a tour of our local tea processing operation at the lodge which enables guests to see the various different methods for tea growing and at the end of the tour taste some of our own grown tea! The Volcanoes Safaris Partnership Trust supports both projects.
Discovering the traditions of the Batwa Pygmies, and learn about the native tribal inhabitants of the forest. The indigenous people of Bwindi forest, though no longer resident in the forest, still practice many of their traditional hunter-gatherer skills.
Second Gorilla Tracking Opportunity
Either go gorilla tracking again (additional permits required, upon payment of supplement, subject to availability), or opt for one of the other, gentler but equally rewarding alternatives available (see above).
Depart / Bwindi Lodge
Leave with the 10:55 am or 14:05 pm return flight to Entebbe and connect in time for your return flight.
Note on Itinerary: Although we do our very best to follow the schedule listed, this itinerary is subject to change due to availability and other reasons beyond our control.
Gorilla Photo Source
No Experience required. Little or no walking is required.