Uganda safaris, tours & holiday packages
East African savannah meets West African rain forest
The place to enjoy forests, lakes, gorillas, chimps, birds and adventure
Uganda is a world in one country, from snow-capped mountains and green hills to misty forests and crystal clear lakes – truly a gem in Africa.
There's gorilla trekking in the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, chimpanzee treks at Kibale, plains and savannah game viewing at Queen Elizabeth National Park or Murchison Falls, even giant forest pangolins, strange bushbabies and a wealth of birds. But you don't have to be a safari lover to enjoy the country; if you love adventure and adrenalin sports you can climb the Rwenzori mountains, trek on Mount Stanley, or enjoy a river experience on the Victoria Nile.
Popular Uganda safaris
These popular itineraries can be customised to match your budget and travel dates
This is a safari for the serious birder wanting to see exciting new bird species, as well as chimpanzees and mountain gorillas
per person11 days
See mountain gorillas, chimpanzees, golden monkeys and tree-climbing lions, take a boat cruise and visit Rwanda's genocide memorial
per person12 days
A unique destination in every sense, with incredible primates, beautiful old-world forests and a combination of ecosystems, Uganda is more affordable on a per person per day basis than many other African safari destinations. It's a must see for every safari enthusiast. You won't see as many new or endemic species anywhere else in Africa.
More on Uganda holidays
Uganda is a diverse country for anyone interested in primates, birds, walking or trekking and value for money. It's relatively affordable compared to Tanzania or Kenya, and mountain gorilla permits are less expensive than in Rwanda. In Uganda, East African savannah and woodland meet West African rainforest, making for a unique blend of vegetation and wildlife species.
Typical Rift Valley type instability and fairly recent volcanic activity has created plains on the rift valley floor but also mountains and forest, as well as the lakes of Victoria, Albert, Edward and George. Uganda has the highest concentration of primates in East Africa, with two ape species, eleven true monkey species, five colobus monkey species, five bushbaby or galago species and the eastern potto.
It also has the largest number of bird species (1060) in East Africa. In fact, half of all Africa's bird species can be seen in Uganda, including the much sought-after shoebill (recently classified as a pelican species).
Know before you go
Learn some Luganda. English might be the official language, but Luganda is spoken throughout.
You can eat your weight in green banans; a staple part of the city’s diet. Included in the local staples are spinach, sweet potato and matooke. Luwombo is a meat stew that is steamed in banana leaves and is particularly loved.
Visit Owino Market in downtown Kampala - it’s the biggest open air market in the country.
March to May is the best time to visit Mgahinga Forest to see Gorillas, it’s also a little cooler.
You will most likely land in Entebbe and then head over to your destination. This is the perfect time to take advantage of spending a few days in Kampala to soak in Uganda’s city life.
You must take precautions for malaria and other vaccinations.
Top hotels and establishments accept USD and Visa payments, otherwise the local currency is UGX (Uganda Shilling) which you can buy at various Forex Bureaus.
Avoid touching people of the opposite sex in public, it could offend (particularly in busy cities).
Avoid taking taxis without a meter.
Avoid unbottled water.
Most of the country is 1000m in altitude and relatively flat, apart from the mountain ranges.
Uganda is one of Africa’s most well watered African countries (25% is covered by lakes, rivers and wetlands) - the landscape is lush and green with the north being semi-arid.
This makes for an amazing biodiversity.
Queen Elizabeth and Murchison Falls offer classic game viewing, but the highlight has to be gorilla trekking in Bwindi Forest.
When to go
Gorilla Trekking: the best time for this is during the country’s dry seasons (Jan - Feb and Jun - Sept).
Game viewing: best done at the end of the dry seasons when wildlife is concentrated around water sources.
Avoid a Ugandan safari entirely during the heavy rainfall season (April and May).
What to pack
Your Visa and any legal documentation pertaining to your trip. Make extra copies just in case you lose or misplace the originals.
Comfortable clothes including an anorak or something warm to protect from rain and boating activities where water is involved. A pair of zip-off pants to accomodate any weather changes. Don’t forget your swimming costume, as most lodges have swimming pools.
A pair of hiking shoes, comfortable sandals/walking shoes and socks for protection from stinging and biting creatures on ground level, as well as blisters.
The African sun is harsh, so pack in your sunblock, polarized sunglasses and a hat.
Over-the-counter medication such a mild painkillers, plasters/bandage and antibacterial lotions in case of scratches or scrapes, are wise items to include. Insect repellent is a must and any malaria medication your healthcare practitioner has prescribed for the duration of your trip.
Your camera, extra memory cards for all your fantastic shots and a pair of binoculars, which are a great investment.
Weather and Climate
Uganda is landlocked with no access to the sea and is a country characterised by a plateau with a rim of mountains. The climate is tropical and generally rainy with two dry seasons (Dec to Feb, Jun to Aug) and is semi-arid in the northeast.
Safari / Holiday Styles
Adventure and safari holiday.
Where to stay
Our Recommended Accommodation
Mahogany Springs offers privacy and serenity blended with optimal comfort in a spectacular setting. With some of the most luxurious…
With elegant furnishings and a warm, inviting feel, the hotel’s decor and rooms create a luxurious atmosphere. The outside terrace, with its…
The Nkuringo Gorilla Camp is to be found located at 2161m ASL on the Nteko ridge overlooking a beautiful swath of the world renowned Bwindi…
The Haven is a peaceful and relaxed River Lodge, rated as one of the best accommodation in Jinja region. Enjoy the tranquility and the…
Uganda's location on Google Maps
Frequently Asked Questions about Uganda
June to August and December to February - during the dry season. Great wildlife viewing - animals congregate around the lake. The Migratory birds are also present. go there.
The best time to climb the mountains is from June through to August - from December to February. go there.
December to February and June to July is the best time to visit Kibale Forest National Park - during the dry season. However, you may also see the migratory birds. go there.
January to February and June to July during the dry season is the best time to view the wildlife. It’s easier to spot the wildlife since they gather around the water sources - however, Migratory birds can be seen as well. go there.
Trekking for gorillas in Uganda or Rwanda is very similar and provides the same kind of life-changing experience. However, Uganda has more gorillas so there will be a better chance of not being disappointed as you will are likely of a… go there.
Reviews on our Uganda safaris
Discover Africa planned our safari to East Africa and we were certainly in the right areas at the right time, our itinerary was well designed to maximize time with the migration and related sightings - logistics ran smoothly and all in all…
from South Africa
Christine and Mark de Witt
Whether you're going to Rwanda's Volcanoes National Park, or the Bwindi Impenetrable forest in Uganda, these East African countries are perfect for an intrepid gorilla trekking safari. Beautiful and safe, we highly recommend embarking on… read more
Many will remember the popular 1988 film ‘Gorillas in the Mist’ for its heart-wrenching narrative about the plight of Mountain gorillas living in the African jungle areas of Rwanda, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Based on the… read more
Situated in the south-western part of Uganda, the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest is a captivating forest, home to a plethora of birds, uniquely-adapted forest elephants, and lush foliage. The rich and diverse ecosystem supports the mountain… read more