East Africa is the birthplace of mankind and as the saying goes, there’s no place like home. For travellers with their hearts in the wild and time to spare for adventure, this 30 day experience is a dream package. It is suitable for both families and individuals, is best enjoyed in a group, and offers the top travel destinations in East Africa. Earn yourself the bragging rights of crossing borders in one tour and experience the natural beauty of Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Kenya.
The experience starts in Uganda, the moment you step off the plane at Entebbe, with a relaxing evening at the shores of Africa’s largest freshwater lake, proceeds with a roundtrip tour of Uganda’s magical beauty and cultural heritage, moves to Rwanda for an experience of its conservation and historical sites, crosses over to Tanzania for a wildlife and Masai experience, and climaxes in Kenya with more wildlife, Masai, and sundowners at Mombasa’s coast.
East Africa is extravagant in its diversity of wildlife and cultural experiences. It is the land that gave the word “Safari” to African travel. World-famous personalities from British Premier Winston Churchill and Award Winning Author Ernest Hemingway, to Global Super Star Alicia Keys and Billionaire Moguls like Richard Branson and Bill Gates—not forgetting Queen Elizabeth of England—have experienced a safari in East Africa.
There are good reasons why East Africa is the best safari destination in the world. There is plenty to see and more to do. The region is endowed with abundant wildlife and birdlife, scenic landscapes, tropical beaches, in-land beaches, snow-capped mountains, diverse cultures, historical sites, pulsing nightlife, and a versatile geography spanning climates as varied as desert and snow conditions, equatorial and tropical conditions, interlinked by a complex web of freshwater lakes.
This is what makes the East African caravan our favourite package. It is a mega-serving of the classic safari experience with a touch of the pioneer spirit of East Africa’s first tourists—the explorers.
Day 1: Arrival at Kigali International Airport
Your trip begins in Kigali, Rwanda, where our Safari Specialist will be waiting to receive you and drive you to the hotel. Look out for a man or lady holding a placard with your name, they’ll brief you basic trip details and help you settle in the land of a thousand hill. Take your time to ease of the jet-lag, a long adventure awaits you first thing in the morning.
Optional: Nightout in Kigali
Day 2: Kigali City, Transfer to Akagera National Park
The East African Caravan kicks off with a tour of Kigali City. You’ll visit the Genocide Memorial, listen in on talks on Rwanda’s history, and explore Kigali. From here the road leads to Akagera National Park for our first wildlife experience under the caravan. Akagera Park is an ideal place to start a long safari; it is quiet, serene, un-crowded, and spacious. If conditions permit, we’ll do an evening wildlife expedition and return to the lodge in time to rest for the next day’s early wildlife expedition.
Day 3: Akagera National Park, Wildlife Experience
Akagera National Park is a gem for both wildlife and bird lovers. We start with an early wildlife expedition in the northern section of the park and top it up with a boat safari along River Akagera where birders will enjoy sightings of the 600+ species resident in the park, as wild animals cool down the afternoon heat with gulps of Akagera’s calm waters. We return to the lodge in the evening for a break, however, those up for it can opt for an evening expedition with chances of catching the elusive leopard in action. Otherwise, it’s time to rest for the next adventure.
Optional: Evening wildlife expedition.
Day 4: Transfer, Musanze Town
Today we head for the north-western most part of Rwanda, in a territory known to most travellers as Gorilla town. The day is fairly relaxed. We’ll stop for lunch in Kigali City and see some of the sights we missed on our first tour. From here we proceed to our final stop, Musanze Town where you’ll be treated to an evening of traditional performances as you wind down the day and eat your supper.
Day 5: Dian Fossey Trail
We rise early for a trek in the scenic hills and enlivening airs of the Virunga ranges. We are here to trace the steps of a legend of Mountain Gorilla; the great American zoologist, Diane Fossey. We’ll trek to the spot where she lived and worked, visit her burial place, and see a few sites connected to her work in Gorilla Conversation, then track an endangered species of primate known as the Golden Monkey. Later, we set for the south-west region of Uganda where a titillating experience. We’ll arrive in Bwindi in the evening, in time to rest and prepare for one of the top highlights of this adventure—an up close encounter with the largest beasts in the jungle, the Mountain Gorilla.
Day 6: Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Gorilla Experience
The second leg of this adventure begins in the thick jungles of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. The park leaves up to its “impenetrable” name; its jungle is too thick for vehicles to pass through, so most of the tracking is done on foot. The trek can be tough if you aren’t too fit. Mountain Gorillas prefer the higher slopes but the trouble is worth every second: the views are to die for!
Mountain Gorilla are a species threatened with extinction so conversation efforts here are rather strict. A maximum of 8 per group are allowed to visit one habituated group per day. Permits must be booked early in the year since they are on high demand throughout the year. However, the experience of being close to these giant beasts is incomparable with anything in all the known worlds.
Day 7: Transfer, Kibale National Park
Prepare yourself for a long, bumpy ride. Today the caravan heads north, along the western axis, to Kibale National Park. The trek goes through Queen Elizabeth National Park so you’ll have a chance to see the famous climbing lions of Ishasha. You’ll know you’ve reached Kibale National Park when bird caws and primate calls as you drive through road lined by trees on both ends. We arrive in time for dinner, and those who are up for it can opt for a night tracking experience that offers sightings of some primates that may be hard to come by during the day.
Optional: Night Tracking, Nature Walks.
Day 8: Kibale National Park, Chimpanzee Experience
Chimpanzees are the most famous and beloved of man’s cousins in the jungle, and Kibale Forest is a sanctuary for a number of their species. There are more than 13 primate species in this park and on this day you’ll be tracking some of them. But the most rewarding experience of Kibale National Park is the walks through the forest. It is also an Important Birding Area and gem for bird lovers. It is the perfect place to wind down the first leg of this great adventure.
Optional: Forest Walks, Night Trekking
Day 9: Transfer to Masindi Town
We set off early for Masindi Town, in Bunyoro Region of Uganda. The trek goes through a mixture or dirt road and paved highway, but the views of country scenery are magical. Here and there you will see farmers working their fields, children playing by the roadside, sleepy outpost slugging their way through the day and endless reaches of green, rolling hills. If you’re not too tired when we arrive, we’ll make a stop at the tombs of Omukama Kabalega, the highly beloved Nyoro king who waged a guerrilla resistance against British rule for 8 years. Dinner will be in Masindi Town.
Day 10: Murchison Falls National Park, Culture Experience
Murchison Falls is Uganda’s biggest national park and is surrounded by two of its biggest societies—Acholi and Bunyoro. Your culture experience will begin on the Bunyoro side with a community of Banyoro living on the southern border of the park. From here we head into the park for an afternoon boat safari on the Nile, hike up the Murchison Falls, and proceed to your lodge to rest and freshen up. If time permits, we’ll visit an Acholi community in the northern section of the park, or relax at the lodge and do an evening wildlife expedition.
Day 11: Murchison Falls National Park, Wildlife Experience
We rise early for breakfast before dawn and head off into the wild for an opportunity to catch predators killing breakfast. If you miss seeing the Lion and other cats, you won’t miss the large herds of grazers and browsers chewing their first meal of the day before the day’s heat kicks in. The expedition will go on into the afternoon, with a packed lunch on the go, as we get the most of the wild. We return to the lodge in the evening to rest and recoup our energies of the long drive to Kidepo.
Day 12: Transfer—Kidepo Valley National Park
In the north-eastern corner, at the border between Uganda, Kenya, and Sudan, lies one of the best hidden secrets in African safaris. Kidepo Valley National Park is the point where all the best ingredients of a classic African safari meet. It’s a long drive from Murchison Falls so we’ll set off early with brief stops in Gulu and Kitgum enroute, where you’ll have first hand view of the region’s remarkable recovery from two decades of civil war. We arrive in Kidepo in time for an evening expedition with high chances of catching some predator action.
Day 13: Kidepo Valley National Park, Wildlife Experience
Kidepo is a four-time World Travel Awards nominee famous for having large herds of zebra, antelope, bushback, and a wide range of herbivores. It is also home to Uganda’s largest population of lions. Of all the game parks in Uganda, Kidepo presents the biggest feast of game-viewing; which is what makes the perfect destination to close your tour of Uganda. Today’s wildlife safari is an all-day expedition in the wild with promises of large game sighting and scenic drives. Have your camera-eye ready; some of the shots you’ll get on this trip are in this place.
Day 14: Kidepo Valley National Park, Culture Experience
The Karimojong people are a nomadic pastoral-warrior culture similar to the Masai, and one of few communities whose culture and traditions are still intact. Today you will spend a day among friendly Karimojong communities and witness traditional pastoral life first hand. They keep large herds of cattle, live in puny huts known as Manyatta, and only recently began embracing clothes. Spending a day among these charming folks is like going through a time machine and finding yourself in 10th century Africa… it’s an experience for a lifetime!
Day 15: Transfer— Kapchorwa, Sipi Falls
Today you head to the slopes of Mt Elgon, where the Ugandan leg of this safari comes to an end. Our destination is Kapchorwa, home of the enchanting Sipi Falls. The drive goes through Lira, the bicycle town, and Soroti, two of Uganda’s oldest towns. If time permits, we’ll make a brief stop at Nyero, where you can see rock paintings made by the original inhabitants of this region several centuries before its current occupants migrated here. We arrive in the evening, relax and prepare for the next day’s adventure.
Day 16: Sipi Falls, Coffee Experience
Today’s highlight is the serenading beauty Sipi Falls. The falls are part of the River Sipi which flows down from the heights of Mt Elgon, forming a spectacular series of three waterfalls (some nearly 100m high), surrounded by village walking trails and lush green coffee-producing hills. It is one of the most beautiful sights in the world!
After sipping in the beauty of the Sipi Falls, we visit a coffee farm and savour the aromatic taste of hot coffee brewed with fresh beans picked from some of the richest soils on the globe. The farmers will induct you in the process of growing and brewing coffee, and when the day has worn off, you’ll head back to the lodge, kick off your shoes, and relax in the bewitching tranquillity of the Kapchorwa night.
Day 17: Transfer— Lake Nakuru National Park
We rise early to get the best of the long drive to Lake Nakuru National Park, in the rift valley region of central Kenya. We cross the border at Malaba and drive through Luo country on the Kenya side, with stops at old colonial towns like Eldoret which still carry that blast-from-the-past look.
Day 18: Lake Nakuru National Park, Wildlife and Rhino Experience
Lake Nakuru National Park is one few places in Africa where you can see both White and Black Rhino. The park is most famous for spotting unbelievable of flamingos in some seasons, and is said to b one of the best birding spots in East Africa. What isn’t known to most folks visiting the park is that it’s also rich in wildlife. Today you’ll track White and Black Rhinos, other forms of wildlife, and if you’re up for it, it you can take a nature trek in one of its developed walking trails.
Day 19: Transfer— Masai Mara
A Kenyan safari without a Masai Mara stop is a dinner with the main course missing, so today we head south to the most famous reserve in Africa. The Masai Mara is a large stretch of savannah shared between Kenya and Tanzania; on the Tanzanian side it’s called the Serengeti. This region is home to the Masai, one of the most respected and best preserved cultures in Africa, and a large feast of wildlife. Migration season is the best time to visit the region, however, every season is eventful.
Day 20: Masai Mara, Wildlife Experience
We rise early for a day of wildlife exploration in one the world’s most popular destination. Masai Mara is a legend among wildlife destinations. It’s unrivaled quantities of wildlife, especially during the migration season are mouth-watering. On this drive through the Mara ranges, you will see lions, buffalo, cheetah, elephants, grazers, small animals, birds, and the African wild in all its glory.
Day 21: Masai Mara, Culture Experience
One of the best perks of visiting Masai Mara is the opportunity to experience Masai culture. The Masai are a warrior culture related to the Kalenjin and Turkana of Kenya, and the Karimojong of Uganda. They are renowned for being such fierce warriors that even lions run away at the sight of one Masais warrior. Even during the colonisation of East Africa, British troops had to resort to negation having realised that a military campaign against them was futile. For a young boy to be inducted into society as a man, a young Masai boy must hunt a lion on his own and bring back its head, yet you wouldn’t guess that looking at their slim frames. Their culture is rich, their dress is colourful, and despite their reputation for being fierce, they are rather friendly and down to earth.
Day 22: Transfer— Amboseli National Park
The drive to Amboseli is a mixture of bush road and regular highway. As on all road trips on this journey, we hit the road right after breakfast to get the most the drive and arrive at Amboseli in time to watch the animals end their day as we make our way to the lodge.
Day 23 & 24: Amboseli National Park, Wildlife Experience
Amboseli National Park is a small park with shocking diversity. A short trip a way from Nairobi, this park is always bustling with tourists but its best enjoyed when the traffic is low and the animals move closer to the lodges and game tracks. On these two days, we’ll experience the best of what Amboseli has to offer.
Day 24: Transfer—Tsavo West National Park
Today we head to one of the most famous regions in East African history; the Tsavo region. The region rose to fame in the early 19th Century, during the construction of the Uganda Railway, when a mysterious group of man-eating lions displayed an unnatural knack for hunting Indian and European workers.
Day 25 & 26 : Tsavo National Park, Wildlife Experience
Tsavo is Kenya’s national park and one of the biggest in the world. For easy management the park was divided into two, but rumor has it that it’s the railway line from Mombasa to Nairobi that brought about the split. On this leg of the trip we spend a day in each. It’s generally flat terrain makes it easier to view animals which like to hide away from the tracks, but the big prize of this trip is a sighting of this park’s famous big cats.
Day 27: Transfer— Mombasa City
For our our final leg of the journey, we head to the place where all travel to this region once began–the town that gave birth to African Safari.
Day 28 & 29: Mombasa, City Tour & Culture Experience
Welcome to Mombasa, the city of beaches and ancient history. Through this region’s history, Mombasa has been a traveller’s town. Before the advent of air travel, visitors to East Africa started their journey here, but it’s most visitors are the Arabs who chose to stay and founded Swahili culture, a mix of Arab and African language & culture. On this trip you’ll learn about the city’s history, see it’s modern face, and enjoy the best of what it has to offer.
Optional: Nightout in Mombasa
Day 30: Departure
Depart at leisure.
Whether you're looking for a place to spend your honeymoon, you want to teach your children about our culture or you're just looking to escape for the weekend, we have just the adventure for you.
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Andrew Apartments, Kulambiro,
Nakawa – Circular Road
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