Arrival in Kigali
- Driving distance 4 km
Meeting with Silke, airport transfer, briefing
- Meal: -/-
- Overnight stay Hotel Chez Lando Standard room
Since my childhood I am passionate about Africa. Consequently, I studied African Studies after my first 6-month stay in South Africa and I came back to Africa many times. In 2019, I completed a field guide training course of several months in South Africa. Now I am also officially qualified and certified. Finally, I moved to Rwanda in 2018 where I am a permanent resident.
Travel inspires me the most. If, for example, I discover giraffes from my bicycle saddle or if I track down the shoebill in a dug-out canoe on my Active Safari, then I’m doing exactly the job I’ve always wanted.
Active travel does not mean having to forego comfort. You stay overnight either in lodges and hotels or in safari camps with electric lights, fixed beds and fresh linen. Private bathrooms are guaranteed. Muddy paths through thick bushes are part of our adventure on our Multi Active Safari, but clean accommodation and a warm dinner in the evening are a matter of course.
Important, the best travel times for an Active Safari in Rwanda and Uganda are the dry months of June to October and December to February, especially for wildlife viewing in all national parks. However, all other seasons also have their travel advantages.
Certainly, the main season in Uganda is June to September with dry, pleasant weather. Therefore, there is comparatively more tourism than in the rest of the season. To clarify, Uganda is not counting among the countries of mass tourism. Consequently, don’t expect overcrowded national parks. However, it is possible that you will no longer get a permit for gorilla tracking on Active Safari in high season. That is to say, a long-term reservation is absolutely essential for gorilla permits in the high season in Uganda and Rwanda.
Finally, the months of March to May as well as November are considered the low season in Uganda. Heavy rains occasionally result in some lodges being closed and trails in poor condition. If you wish an adventures Active Safari this is the time of the year, this is the time to come. First, Gorilla Permits are mostly available. Second, due to the daily rain, the air is free of dust and the volcanoes can be photographed crystal clear.
Arrival in Kigali
Meeting with Silke, airport transfer, briefing
The capital Kigali (approx. 1 million inhabitants) makes an astonishingly tidy and disciplined impression on every Africa expert. For example, do you expect dusty streets, honking vehicles and shacks in the shopping streets? Not even close! Furthermore, did you know that Kigali is the only African city without plastic bags and helmet-less motorcyclists? However, you will be amazed!
At first, after a short sightseeing tour on a serpentine tar road, you start your Active Safari to the “land of a thousand hills”. Thus, the impression of a country that could also be called the “Switzerland of Africa” is immediately confirmed. From a bird’s eye view, river meanders glisten in deep valleys, meandering through bright green banana forests. Even dairy cows with black and white patterns graze in lush green meadows! The well-known aluminum milk cans from the Alpine republic are, however, transported on bicycles…. As a visitor, you ask yourself: are we here in Africa or in Switzerland?
About 40 kilometers before Kibuyé, our first stage destination on this Active Safari, you take a short hike. The path leads through the rural hinterland with cassava fields, banana plantations and coffee bushes.
From the breakfast table you can already see your boat approaching in the glittering waves of the morning sun. The local wooden boat with benches, sun canopy and outboard motor takes you to the Congo-Nile Trail after a one-hour drive. A wild network of lonely paths and slopes leads along an African fjord landscape through lonely villages and gives hikers a direct insight into the everyday life of Rwandan farmers and fishing families. 26 species of fish and 370 species of birds, including crowned crane, cormorant and kingfisher are at home here. Local fishermen fetch perch, catfish and carp fish from their nets that they have brought with them from their nightly excursion. The landscape is breathtaking. A lovely, fertile agricultural landscape stretches along the east bank of Lake Kivu; in the west, on the Congo side of the lake (lake width 45 km), there is a 3000-meter-high mountain range like a gray wall that blocks the view of the “mysterious Congo”. Idyllic banks are ideal for a refreshing swim in the clear, schistosomiasis-free waters of Lake Kivu. Although the lake is 480 meters deep, its volcanic springs guarantee a pleasant water temperature all year round!
You will reach Gisenyi in the afternoon by boat and continue the journey by car. Foothills of the Virunga Mountains, a volcanic chain with a total of 8 peaks, lined up like a string of pearls, accompany you to Musanze. In the dry months of June to August, the highest of them, Mount Karisimbi, even gets a white snow cap and can therefore be compared with the famous “Killi” in Tanzania.
Today you have the choice of stalking golden monkeys, tracking mountain gorillas or hiking around the nearby Lake Ruhondo. The stalking of golden monkeys and gorillas is optional, the hike around the Ruhondo lake is included. Please note that for both options you have to rent a vehicle for US $ 100. These vehicle rental costs can of course be divided by the number of participants for the respective tracking.
You leave Musanze (1870m) towards the Uganda border and turn with our vehicle after approx. 11 km to the south-east. After a further 3 kilometers on a stony track through villages, dense banana forests and small rice fields, you get out of our vehicle and walk to Lake Ruhondo. During the approx. 45 minute lake crossing, there is a wonderful panorama of the Virunga volcano chain when the weather is clear. Muhabura (4127), Mghahinga (3474m), Sabinyio (3634m), Bisoke (3711m) and Mikeno (4437m) give an idea of the enormous geological forces that were active in the interior of the earth 900,000 years ago (Pleistozen) to affect these tower-like structures Press earth surface. Through a hilly agricultural landscape (maize, manioc, coffee, tea, sugar cane and vegetables) you reach Musanze on foot.
Golden monkeys, like mountain gorillas, are endemic to the Uganda-Rwanda-Congo triangle. They are a subspecies of the diademed monkey and are on the endangered species list. Bamboo forests at an altitude of over 1500 meters are their habitat. The golden-yellow fur and blue face make the golden monkey a very popular motif for photo enthusiasts. The requirements for Golden Monkey Tracking are identical to those for Gorilla Tracking (
Optional activity 100 US$ pP plus transfer fee 50 US$ pP
Get more information Golden Monkey Trekking
The most famous track in Rwanda, perhaps even the most popular track on the African continent, leads to the endangered mountain gorillas in the misty rainforests of the Virunga National Park. Face to face with the silverback – this is the tourist highlight of every trip to Rwanda. Depending on the position of the gorilla families, you can go from the accommodation via the briefing point directly into the forest or you can drive closer to the gorillas by car. In any case, you should be prepared for a four to six hour hike through the rainforest with a water bottle, packed lunch, long trousers and sturdy shoes. The terrain is steep, the track leads through dense rainforest and requires a healthy physical condition. The tracker should be able to master 600 meters in altitude within 3 hours. The following habituated (used to humans) gorilla families can be visited: Sabinyo, Group Thirteen, Susa, Amohoro, Umubano. The chance of seeing the mountain gorillas: 95%.
Optional activity 1500 US$ pP plus transfer fees 100 US$
Get more information Volcanoe National Park Gorilla Trekking
In the afternoon we cross the border into Uganda and reach Kisoro.
Today you start a three-day hiking program that takes you from Kisoro to Buhoma. On the entire route (around 50 km) you are on foot on footpaths and in a canoe – unaccompanied by vehicles – and should therefore carry your clothing and equipment with you in your backpack for the next 3 days. Optionally, you can rent a porter (US $ 10 per day).
Starting from the hotel, you leave the Mucha River in a westerly direction, crossing settlements and banana forests. After 1 hour (3 km) you will reach Lake Mutanda and board a dug-out canoe. Dug-outs are indigenous log canoes with no sun protection and backrests with space for 2-4 people, so they’re not very comfortable. But the quiet gliding on a mirror-smooth lake through a mountainous backdrop compensates for the loss of comfort, because only with a dug-out canoe can you enjoy this wonderful African lake landscape in peace and quiet (canoe trip 2-3 hours). If you need some “action”, you can also take a paddle yourself ..
When you arrive on the north shore of the lake, grab your backpack and hike north on a panoramic path. Again and again you will linger and admire the view of a volcanic chain over four thousand meters high in the south. Since leaving the canoes after three kilometers you have overcome an ascent from 1790 m to 2006 meters (3rd stage ascent) and will gain another 130 meters in altitude over the next 8 kilometers before the beaten path ends and leads to a piste with little traffic ( 3rd stage Panoramaweg). From now on you hike in sight parallel to the green spotted ridge of the 25,000 year old Bwindi rainforest – the home of the mountain gorillas! 6 kilometers later you will reach your accommodation in Nkuringo. After dinner, be shown a convenient location from which to see the red flicker of the active Nyragongo volcano!
Face to face with the silverback – the highlight of your trip awaits you today (option). It is not like the day before on a hiking trail through open cultural landscape, but “cross-forest-in” – always following the ranger and his trail through the dense forest. Ankle-high mountain boots with non-slip soles, long trousers, rain protection, lunch snack and enough drinking water are essential. A hiking stick and possibly gloves for thorny bushes to hold on to on slippery ground are an advantage
The gorilla track begins with an intensive briefing by the rangers on the correct behavior when visiting gorillas. Then you descend to the Kashasha River and up again to the Bwindi NP (430 m). After a distance and time that cannot be named, the ranger suddenly commands absolute calm and standstill with a hand signal – he points to a gorilla family in the undergrowth in front of you. The adults are licking each other, the boys frolic with each other. A silverback looks around, bored. He already knows the strangely excited visitors with their boxes clicking in front of their faces, so no reason for him to get excited! You can feel that the silverback controls the sudden appearance of its weak conspecifics quite calmly and confidently and leaves the visitors in peace. After an hour of family reunion with the gorillas, it’s back to your hostel.
For US $ 25, as an alternative to gorilla tracking, you can entrust yourself to a local bird lover who will show you some of the 350 bird species, 23 of which are endemic, on a 3-hour round tour (9:00 – 12:00, lunch at the lodge). can show (warbler with short tail, African, emerald green cuckoo, white-tailed crested flycatcher, gray bulbul, etc.).
A hike through the “Bwindi Impenetrable Forest” is something very special. Not many people on our globe can consider themselves lucky to be allowed to visit this natural paradise! “Bwindi” means darkness, “Impenetrable” impenetrable. You will soon discover that this dense, untouched jungle has truly earned its name and has been classified as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO since 1994 for good reason. It could very well happen that you happen to come across a gorilla family, because you are here in the home of the mountain gorillas. Forest elephants, brush-eared pigs, several types of duiker, striped jackfish and civet cats are also native here. There are also nine other primate species such as chimpanzees, baboons, monkeys, nocturnal monkeys, 350 species of birds, 14 species of snakes, and over 200 species of trees, ten of which are endemic. Fortunately, vehicles can only cover the connection from Kisoro to the north in a long detour. In this way, the unspoilt region and the gorilla reserve will remain with the hiker for some time to come.
In the afternoon you will reach the small town of Buhoma at the northern exit of the Bwindi National Park. To use the early morning hours of the following day for a game drive in the Ishasha Sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park, drive about 2 hours (55 km) to your hostel today.
From your accommodation it is only 3 miles to the Ishasha Sector Park in Queen Elizabeth National Park. On the “Northern Track” you will soon meet buffalo, elephants, antelopes, warthogs and baboons. After around an hour you will come across the Ishasha River, which forms the border with the Congo (DRC) and where numerous hippos relax from their nightly tour in the cooling water. Finally, stalk the main attraction of the park on the “Southern Trail”: tree-climbing lions that doze off in the midday heat on spreading branches of old fig trees during the hot midday hours of the day. You are at 900 meters above sea level and one of the driest and hottest places in Uganda!
After the Ishasha lion stalking, drive about 3 hours to Kyamboura Gorge. In the 150 meters deep Kyamboura Gorge, a moist biotope with dense primary forest has been preserved, which is home to hippos, forest elephants and 24 chimpanzees. The primate visibility is 60%. During the two-hour hike, you will get a real “Tarzan jungle feeling” in the intact primary forest!
Around 4 p.m. drive to the Kazinga Canal, where the call of the fish eagle and the grunt of the hippopotamus will greet you. You may also get a visit from “Old John”, an old bull elephant who regularly visits the camp.
NOTE: The timing of the hike through the Kyambura Gorge depends on the availability of the chimpanzee permits. The hike can also be done the following day.
In the early morning you start a classic auto safari. With a little luck you will meet elephants, lions, leopards, hyenas and Cape buffalo. In the afternoon we take a boat across the Kazinga Canal to the mouth of the Edward Sea. Lion, crocodile, buffalo, elephant, waterbuck, osprey, cormorant, pelican, crowned crane, hammercog, ibis, kingfisher, kingfisher, jacana, great egret, marabou stand on the bank like on a catwalk and can be photographed from the ship in peace .
A quick overland drive through central Uganda brings you to the Mburo National Park. On arrival the sun is already quite low. From an Eagle’s Nest you can enjoy the wonderful view over the African savannah landscape in the evening sun.
The following 3 days are bike days!
You start on a bike safari through Lake Mburo National Park. Warukiri Track, Kazuma Track and Ruroko Track are mysterious names for winding paths through wet marshland, acacia-covered hills up to magnificent hilltops with a fascinating all-round panorama. The animal-human encounter is full of tension and intensity for both sides. A zebra, impala or a topi can hide behind every bend, behind every bush. A giraffe family with 8 animals has even settled here since 2015. Those who are in good shape can climb the Kazuma Hill Lookout and find themselves in one of the most fascinating places in Uganda. In the afternoon you leave the park on a winding slope through acacia bush towards the north.
After a one-hour journey with fully charged bicycles, you set off on your bicycle saddle through slightly hilly terrain on a solid piste, which is lined with numerous banana fields. For refreshment you have the opportunity to buy meat skewers at local stalls or to try banana schnapps at a distilling station. As a cyclist, laughing people ask you to get off the saddle, buy bananas and chat with the young man in an Obama T-shirt or with a middle-aged lady who invites you to tea at her street vendor. Such hospitality and friendliness can only be found in these marginal areas!
Today we continue by bike through the vegetable garden of Uganda. Corn, bananas, pineapples, sweet potatoes, coffee, beans, tomatoes, cabbage and avocado grow along the way. Away from the hustle and bustle and traffic, today you can let the bikes run well on gently sloping and sloping terrain. After about 40 kilometers you load your bike and drive with our support vehicle to the shores of Lake Vikoiria, where a ferry is waiting for you to take you to Bugala Island. Bugala Island is the largest of 84 islands that are all part of the Sese Archipelago. Small villages, primary forest and freshly created oil palm plantations determine the landscape. The road leads on the ridge of the island to Kalangala, our day’s stage. At the foot of the Inselberg mountains, the waves of Lake Victoria glisten in the sun and you will certainly feel like taking a refreshing swim on the sandy beach of our hostel. Idyllic dinner on the shores of Lake Victoria.
In the morning you will take a crossing from the Ssese Islands to Entebbe on a car ferry. What would a travel program to Uganda be without Lake Victoria, the largest inland lake in Africa and the third largest lake in the world? The size of Bavaria and a catchment area of over 30 million inhabitants, the lake mainly serves as the “source” of the Nile for water supply up to Sudan and Egypt. This immense supraregional importance of the lake up to the Mediterranean should definitely be remembered on the crossing.
9.150 US$ one single room
5.380 US$ sharing one double room
5.950 US$ one SINGLE ROOM
4.200 US$ sharing one double room
4.570 US$ one SINGLE ROOM
3.630 US$ sharing one double room
4.000 US$ one SINGLE ROOM
3.630 US$ sharing one double room
4.000 US$ one SINGLE ROOM
3.630 US$ sharing one double room
4.000 US$ one SINGLE ROOM
Please fill out our booking request and we will respond with a tailor-made travel offer.
Please take out luggage insurance, travel cancellation insurance and travel repatriation insurance.
We charge the following cancellation fees
1. 50 days and before – no cancellation fees
2. 40-50 days – 10% cancellation fee of the travel price
3. 30-40 days – 20% cancellation fee of the travel price
4. 10-30 days – 50% cancellation fee of the travel price
5. 5-10 days – 80% cancellation fee of the travel price
6. No show – 5 days – 95% cancellation fee of the travel price