21 days of birding to all habitats in Uganda


Day 1: 
Arrival and transfer to the Imperial Resort Beach Hotel, one of the best accommodations in Uganda built with an American design, including a gym, swimming pool and sauna are available. Rest in the morning and have an afternoon/evening garden birding introduction in the hotel surroundings.

Day 2:
After an early breakfast, drive to Mabamba Swamp, 50 km west of Kampala. Stop en route in Mpigi Swamp for papyrus rarities. Open your eyes to a White-Winged Warbler, Papyrus Gonolek, Yellow-backed Weaver, Northern Brown-throated Weaver, Blue-Headed Coucal, and other swamp specialties. Continue to Mabamba Swamp, where most of the birding is seen on a canoe. Look out for the Shoebill Stork both in the sky and down on the marsh. Also see the Swamp Flycatcher, African Purple Swamphen, African Water Rail, Common Moorhen, Lesser Jacana, African Jacana, African Pygmy Goose, White-Faced Whistling Duck, Squacco Heron, Blue-Breasted Bee-eater, Winding Cisticola, Goliath Heron, and Black Crake, to mention but a few. Return to your hotel for dinner and overnight stay.

Day 3:
After breakfast leave for Murchison Falls National Park. Lunch at Court View Hotel. Continue birding and check in at Para Safari Lodge in the evening, across from the Mighty Africa’s longest river – the Nile. Birding on the way is also productive. The drive takes you through savannah, tropical forest and ponds. Luck may bring you an encounter with the most sought-after White Crested Turaco, Bruce’s Pigeon, Purple Starling, etc. Depending on the weather, it is possible to  birdwatch at Kanio Pabide in the afternoon. This is the only place in Uganda for the Puvel’s Illadopsis, and the Rufous-Sided Broadbill is also sometimes present.

Day 4:
Murchison Falls National Park: Start early with a boat trip birding the delta or -- depending on the then-current report from the bird guides network -- on a game drive. Packed lunch may give us an opportunity to enjoy more birds through the day. We relax later in the day and may opt for an evening drive for Nightjars. 

Day 5:
We cross the river after an early breakfast and bird to the top of the Falls where the Nile River, 300 meters in width, narrows to an estimated 7 meter gap. We bird on the way back to Para Lodge. Key birds here include Egyptian Plover, Shoebill, Red-Winged Grey Warbler, Rock Pranticole, Secretary Bird, Bat Hawk, Denham’s Bustard, Pels Fishing Owl, White-Crested Turaco, Vinaceous Dove, Senegal Thicknee, Bruce’s Green Pigeon, Chestnut-Crowned Sparrow Weaver, Carmine Bee Eater, Night Jars (pennant-winged  and standard-winged), White Rumped Canary, etc. 
Day 6:
Start after an early breakfast and bird on the way to Budongo Forest. Birding the escarpment overlooking Lake Albert is wonderful. We stay at  Court View Hotel, about 30 km away from the forest. This is the nearest good accommodation in the area. 

Day 7:
After breakfast we proceed to bird BudongoForest. This forest is home to chimpanzees and about 350 bird species, reptiles and shrews. The birds include Sabine’s Spine Tail, Cassins Spine Tail (rare), Pygmy Crakes, Kingfishers (Chocolate Backed, Blue-Breasted, Dwarf), White Spotted Fluff Tail, Ituri Batis, Pulvus Illadopsis, Brown Twin Spot, Cameroon Somber Greenbill, Cassins Hawk Eagle, Crowned Eagle, Yellow Crested Woodpecker, Forest Robin, Little Green Sunbird, Grey-Headed Sunbird, African Dwark Kingfisher, Olive Green Camaroptera etc.

Day 8:
Leave early for Kibale Forest National Park. This is a rather long drive but there are worthwhile birding spots . Check in at Ndali Lodge, a British-designed country lodge located above crater lakes surrounded by breathtaking scenery where birding is very productive. In general Kibale forest birds include Grey-winged Robin, Blue-Shouldered Robin Chat, Yellow-Spotted Barbet, Black Billed Turaco, White-Tailed Ant Hill, White-Naped Pigeon, Green-Breasted Pitta, Red-Chested Flufftail, African Pitta, Joyful Greenbul, Cabanis Greenbul, Grey-Throated Flycatcher, White-Bellied Crested Flycather, Masked Apalises, Nahan’s Franclolin, Tiny Sunbird, White Collard Olive Back, etc. Also this forest is home to 13 primate species. 

Day 9:
 Kibale Forest National Park. Whole day  of chimpanzee tracking and birding the forest. Evening birding optional. 

Day 10:
After breakfast we bird en route to Semliki Forest National Park. This park is situated in the remote corner of the extreme west of Uganda, in Bundibugyo District. It lies on the Uganda-Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) border within the western arm of the East African Rift Valley. The park marks the eastern extension of the vast Ituri Forest and forms part of the forest continuum formed during the climatic upheavals of the Pleistocene. This is one of the richest areas for both flora and fauna in Africa, particularly birds. We stay at Semliki Lodge. 

Day 11:
We leave early for Semliki Forest with packed lunches. Whole day forest birding. We drive back to the lodge.

Day 12:
Early morning birding, then travel in the afternoon to Queen Elizabeth National Park. Serious birders may be interested to know that the one-day record for bird sightings in QENP is 296 species out of the 604 recorded in the Park. An excellent variety of birds can be seen here, including pelicans, skimmers, kingfishers, > thick-knees, storks, martins, swallows, weavers, raptors, canaries, kites, and many grassland specialties. Birding in the park begins early in the morning on the open savannah. Return to the hotel for lunch. In the afternoon enjoy birding Kazinga Channel, which joins Lake Edward and Lake George, by boat. Return to the Mweya Safari Lodge for Dinner and an overnight stay.  


Day 13:
Queen Elizabeth National Park. Start early in the morning for the game drive in what is the second largest park in Uganda. Lunch at the hotel and leave for the afternoon launch trip to the Kazinga Channel. Key species include Black Bee-Eater, Shoebill, White-Winged Warbler, White-Winged Black Tern, Martial Eagle, African Skimmer, Papyrus Canary, Papyrus Gonolek, Black-Rumped Button Quail, and Verreaux‘s Eagle Owl. 

Day 14:
Drive to Bwindi through the southern sector of QENP where there are chances of seeing the tree-climbing lions. Evening birding around the forest margins of the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, the only virgin tropical rainforest in the region. We stay at Kitandara Luxury tented camp or Gorilla Resort. Local birds include the African Broadbill, Short-Tailed Warbler, Kivu Ground Thrush, Red-Throated Alethe, Rwenzori Turaco, Grauers Warbler, Archers Ground Thrush, Striped Breasted Tit, Dwarf Honey Guide, Sunbirds (Regal, Purple-Breasted, Blue-Headed), Yellow-Eyed Flycatcher, Red-Faced Woodland Warbler, Yellow-Footed Flycatcher, Crimson Wing (Dusky and Shelly’s), Dusky Twin Spot, Rwenzori Batis, Handsome Francolin, Apalis (collared and mountain masked).

Day 15:
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. Take your picnic lunch for a whole day birding in the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest for more glimpses of the wonderful assortment of birds in this region. 

Day 16:
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. Whole day gorilla tracking. 

Day 17:
Transfer to Ruhiija. Accommodation here is very basic. Meals are served by our professional mobile catering unit.  
Day 18-19: Ruhiija. Whole day birding. Birding is on the mountains and sometimes steep slopes. 

Day 20:
After breakfast, we leave Bwindi area and depart for Lake Mburo National Park. We stay at Agip Motel in Mbarara. 

Day 21:
We leave at dawn for the park game drive. This small park is home to the African Fin Foot, Tabora Cisticola, Green-Backed Woodpecker, Coqui Francolin, the most sought Red-Faced Barbet etc. We proceed to Kampala and check in at Imperial Resort Beach Hotel, ending our tour.