...

Reimagining Travel

Established in 2023, Reimagining Travel is redefining the travel experience: by being on a mission to make travel more sustainable, innovative, and inclusive.

Our journey began 15 years ago with a vision of change, and now we’re officially here to rewrite the rules of exploration, for our purpose is clear: lead the travel industry towards sustainability, enhance the travel experience through technology and innovation, and promote responsible, ethical, and inclusive tourism.

Travel that benefits the environment, ecosystems and community.

Image Alt

Uganda Tours & Safaris

A Dream World in Real Life
Uganda africa, Uganda tourist places

Uganda Historical Background and Economic Overview

Uganda has been inhabited for over 50,000 years, with its indigenous people including the pygmy Batwa, a hunter-gatherer society displaced by the arrival of Central African cattle herders and farmers. The region's pre-colonial history was marked by the development of political dynasties, most notably the Buganda Kingdom. When Arab and European explorers, traders, and slaves arrived, Buganda was already well-established. Colonised by Britain, Uganda gained independence in 1962, but it wasn't until the mid-1980s, following the tumultuous regimes of Milton Obote and Idi Amin, that the country experienced social stability and economic growth.

Uganda’s economy is predominantly based on agriculture due to its fertile soils and regular rainfall. Cash crops like coffee, tea, and tobacco dominate the export market, but the majority of Ugandan agriculture is subsistence farming, engaging around 75% of the workforce. The country also holds significant mineral, gas, and oil deposits, which are poised for future exploitation. In addition, tourism has become an increasingly vital sector of the economy.

Uganda africa, Uganda tourist places

Uganda People, Culture and Belief

Uganda, home to 34 million people, primarily concentrates its population in the well-watered southern and western regions. The Baganda, centred in Kampala, constitute the largest ethnic group among Uganda's diverse population. While approximately 40 regional languages are spoken, Swahili and English serve as the official languages. Christian-based religious beliefs predominate, although Islam is influential within Uganda's Asian communities. Ugandans place great importance on their ancestry. Uganda holds conservative values, and visitors are encouraged to respect local customs and behaviours.

However, tourists often praise the friendliness and politeness of the locals. Greetings in Uganda involve elaborate rituals and may include inquiries about one’s family’s well-being. Superficial or rushed greetings, combined with an immediate demand for action, are typically discouraged.

Uganda africa, Uganda tourist places

Uganda Landscape and Wildlife

Uganda, nestled within a basin formed by the eastern and western branches of the Rift Valley, enjoys a temperate climate despite its equatorial location. Most of the country's terrain lies at an altitude exceeding 1,000 metres and is generally flat, with exceptions in the form of forested mountain ranges defining its borders. With approximately 25% of the land covered by lakes, rivers, and wetlands, Uganda is one of Africa's most well-watered countries. This lush and green landscape predominates throughout most of the year, transitioning to semi-desert conditions in northern Uganda.

Uganda’s diverse environment supports an astounding range of biodiversity. Its montane and lowland forests provide a habitat for mountain gorillas, chimpanzees, and other forest-dwelling creatures. Meanwhile, savannah parks like Queen Elizabeth and Murchison Falls offer classic game viewing experiences, although not on the same scale as countries like Kenya or Tanzania.

Key wildlife highlights in Uganda include gorilla trekking in Bwindi Forest, close encounters with chimpanzees in Kibale Forest, and birdwatching. With over 1,000 recorded species, Uganda ranks as one of the world’s premier birding destinations.

Uganda's Capital City

Kampala

Uganda's Population

34 million

Uganda's Currency

Ugandan Shilling

Uganda's Language

English, Swahili

Uganda's Calling Code

+256

Winston Churchill, in his 1908 book “My African Journey,” affectionately dubbed Uganda as the ‘Pearl of Africa.’ This moniker succinctly captures the country’s captivating beauty with its vibrant hues, lush vegetation, and the magnificent wildlife that graces its plains. Today, this epithet remains as valid as ever, as Uganda has evolved into one of Africa’s most coveted travel destinations.

A safari in Uganda offers a truly unique adventure, setting it apart from any other experience on the continent. With over 20% of its land dedicated to wildlife reserves, the country has remained mostly unspoiled, allowing its breathtaking landscape to take centre stage during Uganda safaris.

The wildlife in Uganda is both abundant and diverse, providing visitors with unparalleled experiences that are rarely found elsewhere. Murchison Falls and Queen Elizabeth National Park, Uganda’s premier wildlife destinations, offer classic big game viewing, chimpanzee trekking, river cruises, and the chance to spot the renowned tree-climbing lions. In Kibale Forest National Park, you gain accessible insight into the life of a tropical rainforest through guided chimpanzee treks. And let’s not forget the treasures hidden in Uganda’s rainforests: Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park and Mgahinga National Park, home to over half of the world’s mountain gorilla population, making them two of the finest places to embark on a life-changing gorilla trek.

Uganda africa, Uganda tourist places

Quest for Great Apes and Primate Encounters in Lush Rainforests

Uganda boasts the highest density of primates and gorillas globally, residing in its expansive rainforests. This East African nation, landlocked and blessed with fertile jungle jungles, is home to 20 primate species, including mountain gorillas, chimpanzees, and golden monkeys. Gorilla trekking in Uganda ranks among Africa's most captivating wildlife experiences. Thanks to its success, the endangered gorilla population is on the rise. Bwindi Impenetrable Forest offers an impressive 90% success rate in locating habituated gorilla families, guaranteeing you an extraordinary opportunity to spend an hour in close proximity to these majestic creatures, observing them in their natural habitat. The best times to visit Uganda for trekking mountain gorillas and chimpanzees are during December to February and between June and August.

Mountain gorillas aren’t the only primate stars you’ll encounter in Uganda. Kibale Forest is home to the world’s highest population density, hosting 13 primate species, making it the prime destination for chimpanzee tracking. Round out your primate trekking adventure by hiking the slopes of the Virunga Mountains in Mgahinga National Park in pursuit of the captivating golden monkey.

Takebacks:

  • Observe mountain gorillas in their natural habitat while gorilla trekking in Bwindi Forest and Mgahinga National Park.
  • Search for chimpanzees in Kibale Forest and golden monkeys on the Virunga Mountains’ slopes.
  • Revel in the life-changing opportunity to witness primates in their natural environment.
Uganda africa, Uganda tourist places

Extraordinary Wildlife Encounters in Uganda's Hidden Treasures

While Uganda is renowned for its great ape treks, it also boasts a remarkable wildlife experience. Queen Elizabeth National Park stands out as the country's premier destination for classic game viewing. This biologically diverse park, one of the world's most varied, offers the potential to spot elephants, hippos, crocodiles, buffalo, and various antelope species, to name a few. Yet, the park's undeniable stars are the famous tree-climbing lions that call it home.

Takebacks:

  • Witness the world-famous tree-climbing lions of Uganda.
  • Enjoy classic game drives through the park, as well as guided nature walks and boat cruises.
  • The Kazinga Channel Boat Cruise provides rewarding game viewing and bird watching.
  • Chimpanzee trekking and outstanding bird watching opportunities abound.
Uganda africa, Uganda tourist places

Revel in Breathtaking Views of Uganda's Lakes and Mountain Ranges

Uganda's landscape boasts remarkable features, including the world's second-largest freshwater lake, the source of the world's longest river, Africa's tallest mountain range, and the continent's mightiest waterfall. From the fertile, lush basin of the Great Rift Valley to the enchanting rainforest of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, the glistening waters of the Kazinga Channel, and the striking vistas of the Virunga Mountains, Uganda is a haven for nature lovers. Not to be overlooked is Uganda's most extraordinary natural wonder, the Rwenzori Mountains. This UNESCO World Heritage Site offers breathtaking vistas of waterfalls, lakes, rivers, glaciers, and forests. You can experience the captivating terrain firsthand through hikes, boat cruises, or even mountain biking excursions.

Takebacks:

  • Explore lakes, rainforests, savannas, and mountain ranges through hikes, game drives, boat cruises, and mountain biking excursions.
  • Soak up the breathtaking sights that inspired the nickname ‘Pearl of Africa’
  • Uganda’s luxury lodges offer magnificent views of the surrounding landscapes.
Uganda africa, Uganda tourist places

Enjoy a Crowd-Free Safari that Easily Combines with Other Top Destinations

In comparison to its East African neighbours like Tanzania and Kenya, Uganda attracts fewer visitors. Often, the first question we hear is, ``Where is Uganda?`` A hidden gem indeed, Uganda remains relatively undiscovered by many outside of Africa. This is fantastic news for safari enthusiasts in search of a more intimate, personalised, and exclusive experience, with few to no other guests in sight. Uganda seamlessly combines with other top African destinations, making it a convenient starting point for your adventure. Neighbouring countries like Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, and Congo harmoniously complement your Uganda luxury safari. This allows you to enjoy big game viewing and witness the Great Wildebeest Migration in the Masai Mara or Serengeti before delving into the rainforests of Bwindi National Park, Volcanoes National Park, and Odzala-Kokoua National Park.

After exploring Uganda’s top destinations, conclude your journey with a relaxing beachside escape in Zanzibar before returning home.

Takebacks:

  • Revel in an undiscovered, raw, and authentic safari experience in one of Africa’s best-kept secrets.
  • Savour exclusivity, privacy, and personalised service throughout your journey.
  • Embark on gorilla treks and game drives away from the crowds.
  • Combine your Africa gorilla tours with other popular destinations, such as the Masai Mara, Serengeti, and Zanzibar.
Uganda africa, Uganda tourist places

Enriching Cultural Encounters with Uganda's Local Communities

In addition to its rich and diverse wildlife and natural landscapes, Uganda is renowned for its people. Ugandans are known for their happiness, generosity, friendliness, and warm hospitality, making them exuberant extroverts who eagerly welcome and assist every visitor to their country. Beyond the warmth and friendliness of the Ugandan population, the people of Uganda are among the most captivating individuals you'll ever meet. Over 50 tribes with distinct cultures call Uganda home, creating a melting pot of various indigenous groups. Immersing yourself in this vibrant culture is a highlight of visiting Uganda, where you can partake in their colourful attire, music, dance, cuisine, and languages.

Takebacks:

  • Meet the local Batwa community and learn traditional crafts, such as basket weaving and mark carving.
  • Enjoy cultural visits to local Nkingo and Bigodi villages, where you can interact with members of various Ugandan tribes.

Uganda, often overlooked by many travellers exploring Africa due to its modest size and landlocked location, remains a captivating destination. While it lacks the allure of oceanfront vistas, a surprising 25% of Uganda’s terrain is adorned with pristine lakes and meandering rivers. Beyond its natural water wonders, this remarkable country conceals an array of captivating places that beckon visitors to return for more.

Among Uganda’s premier destinations, the captivating Bwindi National Park stands out as a top choice for gorilla treks. However, the realm of Uganda’s tourist attractions extends far beyond, encompassing vast savannah reserves, lush lowland rainforests, and enchanting lakes, collectively offering one of the most comprehensive wildlife experiences on the African continent.

Uganda africa, Uganda tourist places

Kampala: Capital City & Uganda's Gateway

Kampala, a bustling African capital with a compact high-rise centre surrounded by sprawling suburbs, serves as Uganda's commercial, political, and logistical heart. It also happens to be one of East Africa's most laid-back and welcoming cities. Uganda's sole international airport is situated near Lake Victoria in Entebbe, just 35 kilometres away. Many visitors find themselves spending a night in Entebbe or Kampala before and after their Uganda safari, making it an essential part of their journey.

Uganda africa, Uganda tourist places

Bwindi Impenetrable Forest: Gorilla Trekking & Rainforest Marvels

Do not be deterred by its daunting name – Bwindi is anything but impenetrable, and it ranks among the finest places in Uganda for unforgettable gorilla trekking adventures. Accompanied by naturalist guides and trackers, you will be led deep into the heart of Bwindi's enchanting forest. The effort is amply rewarded as you spend an hour with a gorilla family, witnessing these gentle giants in their pristine rainforest habitat. A gorilla trek may be wet, humid, and challenging, but the experience is undeniably extraordinary.

Uganda africa, Uganda tourist places

Murchison Falls National Park: Game Viewing, River Cruises & Birdwatching

Murchison Falls, Uganda's largest park, is bisected by the Nile River, creating a habitat that teems with a diverse range of animals. Here, you can expect classic big game species such as elephants, buffalo, lions, and hippos. With a bird count of nearly 500, Murchison Falls is a paradise for birdwatchers. The park also hosts chimpanzees and colobus monkeys. The highlight, however, is a boat cruise to the magnificent falls themselves, where the mighty Nile is channelled through a 7-metre cleft in the Great Rift Valley Escarpment.

Uganda africa, Uganda tourist places

Queen Elizabeth National Park: Birdwatching, Game Viewing, Chimps & River Cruises

Queen Elizabeth National Park, easily combined with Bwindi Forest, is Uganda's most popular and accessible savannah reserve. It is home to elephants, buffaloes, leopards, various antelope species, and the famous tree-climbing lions of the Ishasha Plains. A boat cruise on the Kazinga Channel provides opportunities to spot hippos and crocodiles, while the park's staggering 600 recorded bird species make it one of the world's premier bird watching destinations.

Uganda africa, Uganda tourist places

Kibale Forest National Park: Primates, Birds & Butterflies

Kibale Forest, rapidly gaining recognition as a must-visit destination in Uganda, offers an accessible and illuminating window into life in a tropical rainforest. While large mammals may be elusive, the profusion of vibrant butterflies and exquisite forest birds more than compensates. Kibale Forest is particularly famed for its primates. Embark on guided chimpanzee treks through the majestic forest and try to spot as many of the other 12 primate species as you can.

Uganda africa, Uganda tourist places

Lake Mburo National Park: Tranquil Game Viewing & Birdwatching

Lake Mburo, nestled halfway between Uganda's capital, Kampala, and the gorilla trekking forests of the southwest, serves as an ideal stopover for travellers navigating between these two destinations. While heavyweights like elephants are absent, the blend of wetland and woodland habitats hosts an array of mammals and birds. Lake Mburo's serene ambiance and picturesque vistas offer welcome respite after a challenging journey.

The optimal periods for visiting Uganda fall within the intervals separating its two dry seasons: from December to February and then again between June and August. These windows offer the most favourable conditions for embarking on treks to encounter mountain gorillas and chimpanzees. When it comes to game viewing in Uganda’s savannah parks, the prime moments are found towards the conclusion of the dry seasons, specifically in February, March, and during the transition from September to early October. During these times, wildlife tends to congregate around water sources, enhancing your safari experience.

January ushers in warm weather, setting the stage for captivating encounters with chimpanzees and the endangered mountain gorillas in some of Uganda’s most remarkable destinations. Clear skies, diminished rainfall, and increased sunshine create an ideal backdrop for observing families of these magnificent creatures as they navigate the lush forests, fostering a profoundly immersive connection with the wonders of Mother Nature.

In February, the climate remains relatively dry, rendering it a perfect time to explore the national parks in the southern regions and embark on gorilla trekking expeditions. The absence of muddy conditions enhances the trekking experience in these areas. However, the northern parts of the country can become hot and dusty during this season.

For those considering a journey to Uganda from March to May, March marks the onset of the first rainfall season. This period provides an excellent opportunity to witness animals in the parks giving birth to their offspring, and bird enthusiasts will be treated to a vibrant array of winged beauties.

April stands as the wettest month of the year, with frequent downpours that may lead to road closures. While the parks are quieter, this presents a favourable time to take advantage of discounted rates for accommodations, lodges, Uganda safari tours, and even gorilla trekking permits, bearing in mind that it will be a wet-weather adventure. May, although still rainy, offers a lovely window to explore the surroundings with less rainfall compared to April.

From June to August, Uganda shines as a top destination. June heralds the peak season for luxury Uganda safaris. Booking gorilla treks, especially permits, well in advance is advisable to ensure a hassle-free experience. July remains one of the prime months for gorilla trekking and safaris. The wildlife congregates around water sources, facilitating easier sightings in the national parks.

The favourable weather conditions, accompanied by clear hiking trails devoid of mud, make this a fantastic period for observing gorillas in Uganda. In August, the chances of witnessing incredible game viewing moments, including encounters with elephants, lions, and possibly elusive leopards, are particularly high, solidifying its status as one of the best times to visit Uganda’s national parks.

Exploring Uganda from September to December presents its unique charm. September, often considered the end of the dry season, may still witness occasional downpours. While it’s not the most ideal time for gorilla trekking, those willing to brave the possibility of wet weather can benefit from reduced lodging and travel costs. October remains a less crowded month for Uganda visits, offering reasonable prices and specials on gorilla trekking permits.

Most of the game parks remain accessible, albeit with some unpredictability in rainfall. November sees continuing rain, transforming the dry plains into vibrant green expanses due to the frequent thunderstorms. Fewer visitors choose this month due to less than ideal weather conditions. Finally, December marks the conclusion of the wet season, as rainfall gradually eases off. This month is excellent for travelling to the northern and southern regions to enjoy game viewing. Moreover, it stands out as one of the finest seasons for birdwatching, with numerous migratory birds gracing the area with their presence.

Uganda Travel Advice

Let our experts at Reimagining Travel, take care of your vacation in Uganda so that you could just sit, relax and enjoy the scenic beauty of the wilderness.

Currency: Uganda Shilling (advisable to carry US dollars, for buying drinks, curios and meals in the local currency when travelling between destinations.)
Transaction: Cash is best and traveller’s cheques and credit cards can be used at most lodges and in Kampala but attract hefty transaction fees.

Recommended: When embarking on a gorilla trek, tipping is not obligatory but is highly appreciated. The amount can vary depending on the size of your group and the level of assistance required. It’s advisable to engage a porter during the trek as they can assist with challenging sections of the hike, provide support, and even carry your daypack if fatigue sets in.
Others: In urban restaurants and bars, it is common to offer a 10% – 15% tip when a service charge is not included.

Average Temperature (yearlong): 14 – 27 °C
Rainy Season: March to May and September to December

Regular/Everyday: When preparing for your trip to Uganda, consider the following clothing and essentials for a comfortable and enjoyable experience. Daytime temperatures in Uganda are typically warm, so lightweight clothing is advisable. However, if you plan to go gorilla trekking, it’s important to pack specific items for this activity. Here’s a breakdown of what to include in your packing list:

Lightweight Clothing: Pack plenty of lightweight clothing for the daytime. This should include breathable fabrics suitable for warm weather.

Gorilla Trekking Gear:

  • Long Trousers: Wear long trousers to protect your legs from underbrush and insects during gorilla trekking.
  • Long-Sleeved Tops: Long-sleeved tops provide added protection and minimize exposure to elements in the forest.
  • Long Socks: These are essential to wear over your trousers, offering protection against ants and other potential hazards.
  • Light Gloves: Bring a pair of light gloves to shield your hands from nettles and other vegetation.
  • Hat: A hat can protect your head and face from the sun and rain.
  • Raincoat: A raincoat is handy in case of unexpected rain showers.

Sturdy Hiking Boots: Invest in a pair of sturdy, comfortable hiking boots, and be sure to break them in before your trip to avoid blisters.

Altitude-Appropriate Clothing: If you plan to visit mountainous regions, pack clothing suitable for colder and damp conditions. Include a change of clothes and a warm fleece in your daypack. Don’t forget to carry sunscreen and insect repellent.

Did you know that you can book your flights through Reimagining Travel? For further information and answers to frequently asked questions, please contact one of our Travel Experts.

Entebbe International Airport: This airport, located 35 kilometres from Kampala, serves as Uganda’s international gateway. Most visitors arrive via connecting flights, often stopping in Nairobi.

Private Charter Aircraft: Travelling by private charter aircraft in Uganda can be expensive. Therefore, many travellers opt for road transfers using mini buses or 4X4 vehicles.

Road Conditions: Despite its small size, Uganda has limited infrastructure, and road conditions can be challenging, especially during the rainy season. Be prepared for long travel days between destinations. Game drives in the national parks are typically conducted in open-sided 4X4 vehicles.

All visitors to Uganda must possess a valid visa, ensuring that the passport is valid for at least six months from the departure date. Visas for Uganda can be obtained at major border crossings and at Entebbe International Airport. Single and double-entry visas are usually valid for up to three months and cost around US $30. Moreover, extensions can be obtained at the immigration office in Kampala.

Customize your Uganda trip

Step 1 of 3

What's your preferred travel style in Uganda?

When do you want to travel to Uganda?

Desired Trip Length to Uganda?

No. of days: 7

Who will be traveling to Uganda?

Adults above 12
Children age 2-12
Infants under 2

What is your preferred accommodation type in Uganda?

Please keep in mind that this category is usually defined by local standards.
Seraphinite AcceleratorBannerText_Seraphinite Accelerator
Turns on site high speed to be attractive for people and search engines.