Want to book Bwindi gorilla trekking safaris from Entebbe or Kampala? Before Rwanda increased their gorilla permit fees from $750 to $1500, most gorilla safaris from Uganda began and ended in Entebbe or Kampala. This is mainly because very few Uganda tour operators had thought of the Uganda gorilla trekking from Kigali. But just like any other form of arrangement, booking your Uganda gorilla trekking tour this way has ups and downs. We shall look at this in detail later on. Just in case you do not want to get into details, you can contact these Uganda tour and travel operators or select gorilla trekking companies for a quote.
Brief highlight about Gorilla Trekking in Uganda
Uganda is home to over half the remaining population of mountain gorillas. Rwanda claims the same but rule that out. I have been blogging about tourism for long and i know the facts. Uganda has more gorilla families and there is nothing to argue about it.
Gorilla trekking in Uganda takes place in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. Bwindi is the most popular and visited. Mgahinga has only one mountain gorilla family that keeps moving from Uganda to Rwanda, Congo and back.
Their movement has been minimal of late and tourists often track them. Bwindi has over 17 habituated gorilla families with more under habituation. The habituation process makes gorillas used to humans despite being wild animals.
Why should you book gorilla trekking tours from Entebbe or Kampala?
Just as said before, there is good and bad to everything and same goes to this. So lets look at the good side of booking Uganda gorilla trekking safaris from Entebbe or Kampala.
Cost: Such trips cost less! Most Uganda tour operators are based in Kampala hence, it becomes easier for them to pick you up and begin off your trip. Tours that begin from Kigali have two additional extra days and most operators consider this. The tour guide has to travel to Rwanda the day before so that they are able to pick you up the following day to begin your trip. On the last day of your safari, a guide cannot drop you off and drive back to Kampala on the same day. He will have to spend a night at a nearby town in Western Uganda and then drive back to Kampala or Entebbe the following day. This another extra day that you are most likely to pay for.
When you book your Uganda safaris from Kampala or Entebbe, the days are exact and it becomes more cheaper. If you stick to arrive from Kigali in Rwanda, then its recommended to book with a Rwanda tour operator or a Uganda safari company that has offices in Uganda and Rwanda. You can see some of these companies here: http://ugandatravelblog.com/travel-ideas/uganda-tour-operators/
Country Side: Uganda is a naturally beautiful country with so many great attractions. Some of these lie on the road to the gorilla trekking destinations. When you book your Uganda gorilla trekking safaris from Kampala or Entebbe, you will get a chance to glance at some of these natural beauties. A great stopover is at the Equator, a line that separates the Northern and Southern hemispheres of the Earth. There are lots of experiments to carry out here and you will get a chance to place your legs at different hemisphere and you will be at the middle of the world.
You will see the lush country side of Uganda and get to by pass a good number of towns, forests and lakes. You do not want to miss this because it is absolutely awesome.
A step into the Capital City of Kampala: When you go far away to a place, you will want to step into the capital city of the country you are in. Entebbe is the former Capital City of Uganda and Kampala is the current. These are both great places to stay in. Since Uganda gorilla trekking safaris from Entebbe / Kampala begin from here, you will have a chance to spend a night in any of these places before you start off your journey to the gorilla highlands the following day.
Why you shouldn’t!
Now that we’ve looked at the good side of booking your gorilla trekking safaris to begin from Entebbe or Kampala, lets take a look at the bad side of it.
Distance: Its about an 8 to 10 hours drive from Kampala to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest or Mgahinga Gorilla National Park with a few stop overs.
Not all tourists would want to sit in a vehicle for long hours. Some end up booking Uganda flying gorilla safaris to cut on distance especially women who go gorilla trekking when pregnant. If you are a fan of long drives, this is not a problem to you! You will definitely enjoy it.
Extra Costs on Accommodation: You cannot arrive in Entebbe and transfer to Bwindi on the same day unless your flight lands earlier than 9:00 am (EAT). For this reason, most clients end up booking their stay in Kampala or Entebbe on the first night then travel the following day.
The same applies for the last day if you cannot find any late night flights. You might have to book another night in Kampala and depart the following day. All these arrangements come at extra costs that the client has to meet. Some clients prefer this because it adds up on the total days of their trip. They even get a chance to do a city tour on the very last day before departure.
Missing out on flights: Clients that book their flights earlier than 6PM (EAT) are most like to miss out on them. You should book a late night flight for your departure. This actually keeps the guide driving at a good speed unlike scenarios that might force them to drive at a high speed, which is risky for tourists.
Fatigue: Imagine traveling by road from Bwindi to Entebbe for approximately 8 hours then you get on a 4 – 8 hours flight back home? This sucks! The fatigue is horrible. You wouldn’t want to go through this. Limiting your travel time will make you feel less fatigued.
If you may realize, you will feel more tired during your trip. Lets say you travel for 9 hours on day 1, trek gorillas (another tiresome activity) on day 2 and then travel for another 9 hours the following to catch a 4 – 8 hours flight home. If you want to begin from Entebbe, opt for scheduled flights if you can afford. They cost $273 one way. Two way comes to $446 but you are certain of spending less than 2 hours traveling to Bwindi. These gorilla trekking operators offer flying gorilla safaris in Uganda.
Wrapping it Up!
So do you want to book Uganda gorilla trekking safaris from Kigali or Uganda gorilla trekking tours from Kampala? Both options are good but come with their own flaws. Sometimes it also come to the way your tour is organized. Book your tours through these recommended Uganda travel companies.