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Vacation Itinerary

Private Dates: Departs daily - Inquire for availability and pricing.


Seeing some of the last remaining 700 mountain gorillas in the world is a fantastic experience, and this safari takes you to three gorilla parks and offers an opportunity to track gorillas four times. PNV in Rwanda has five habituated gorilla families, and you can also climb a volcano, visit the remains of Dian Fossey’s grave or visit the endangered golden monkey. Bwindi in Uganda has four habituated families, and tracking is more challenging as the hillsides in thicker tropical forest are steeper. You can also go for nature walks to see birds, monkeys and orchids.


Day 1 : Tuesday
Arriving in Kigali you will be welcomed by your expert guide who will provide knowledge and assistance throughout your safari. Your journey takes you through the beautiful terraced hills that characterise much of Rwanda’s landscape. Climbing gradually to the base of the spectacular volcanoes of the Virunga range, the five nearest peaks rising high above the verdant countryside, you arrive at the magnificent Volcanoes Virunga Lodge Approximate Travel Times: Driving 3 hours Please book flights arriving no later than midday. O/N Virunga Lodge (L,D)


Day 2 : Wednesday
Gorilla tracking in Parc National des Volcans, through the light mountain forest on the slopes of the Virunga range, is a magical experience. Once you reach the gorillas, you can spend an hour with them and be back at base in time for a late lunch! Some gorilla families can be more elusive, and tracking can take a full day, especially if it is wet and muddy. O/N Virunga Lodge (B,L,D)


Day 3 : Thursday
Either go gorilla tracking again (additional permits required, upon payment of supplement, subject to availability), or choose from one of many options. There is much to explore here: •Track the endangered golden monkeys. •Trek to Dian Fossey’s grave and the gorilla cemetery, the final resting place of her favourite gorilla, Digit. •Visit the local school and community projects, supported by the Volcanoes Safaris Partnership Trust. •Visit Lake Kivu, home to some of the finest inland beaches in Africa. •Take a guided walk to Lake Bulera, to experience local village life. •Tour the ex Imbabazi Orphanage and flower plantation; have tea or lunch with staff and volunteers to learn more about founder Ros Carr and the Orphanage history. O/N Virunga Lodge (B,L,D)


Day 4 : Friday
Enjoy a more relaxing morning during which you can do one of the activities in day 3 – except gorilla tracking and visiting Dian Fossey’s grave. After lunch set off for the Volcanoes Mount Gahinga Lodge. You cross the border into Uganda and clocks need to be adjusted one hour ahead. The lodge is located at the foot of the Virunga Volcanoes and near the entrance to the national park. Enjoy your pre-dinner drinks on the terrace with stunning views of the Volcanoes or warm yourself inside by the roaring fire. Approximate Travel Times: Driving 2 hours O/N Mount Gahinga Lodge (B,L,D)


Day 5 : Saturday
The Batwa Heritage Experience offers an interactive tour of the culture and history of one of Africa’s oldest tribes. The tour includes lessons on hunting, gathering, life in the forest, cooking food, religion, marriage and courtship customs and is fully involved. They also perform their traditional dances at the lodge and a Vocational Centre has been set up to teach them skills and abilities to create a new life for themselves in the village. Alternatively there are other exciting activities for those interested in the culture and natural history of Mgahinga: •Hike the Muhavura, Sabinyo or Gahinga volcanoes. Mount Gahinga offers a gentler hike through the bamboo forest on the lower slopes and marshy craters at the peak. •Enjoy a performance from the Batwa Dance Group, an initiative fully supported by the Volcanoes Safaris Partnership Trust. The group now perform once a week on Volcanoes Safaris land for the benefit of the local community and Volcanoes Safaris clients. Learn more about their unique culture through their oral traditions first-hand. •Track gorillas in Nkuringo, which is a 2-hour drive away from the lodge. (additional permits required, upon payment of supplement, subject to availability). Tracking is possible at Nkuringo, located at the southern sector of Bwindi National Park. Tracking here can be challenging due to steep and muddy paths. •Take a guided nature walk through the park and track golden monkeys. The path takes you from the bamboo stands and a forested gorge on the lower levels to the elevated heath and moorland higher up. O/N Mount Gahinga Lodge (B,L,D)


Day 6 : Sunday
This morning you will transfer to the airstrip in Kisoro for the 9:10am flight to Kihihi, arriving at 9:30am. Once there, you will be met by the next guide who will transfer you to Volcanoes Bwindi Lodge. Depending on when you arrive you may explore the lodge grounds with its clear mountain stream or visit the local village. Approximate Travel Times: Flying 30 min; Driving 2 hours O/N Bwindi Lodge (B,L,D)


Day 7 : Monday
Take the option of an additional gorilla trek (additional permits required, upon payment of supplement, subject to availability). After enjoying an early breakfast, you set off gorilla tracking. Trekking through the steep, densely forested hills and then finally coming across the gorillas camouflaged in the vegetation is an inspiring and privileged moment. Tracking in the Bwindi forest requires stamina and can often take most of the day. Alternatively there are other activities and excursions on offer in and around the national park: • Take a guided walk in the rainforest, home to several endemic bird species, clouds of butterflies and rare plant life. This walk offers excellent photographic • opportunities and the knowledgeable guide will provide a great insight into this globally important habitat. • Walk through the local village, and learn about community life and Bwindi Community Hospital that started as a health clinic under a tree and now provides vital medical and educational services to over 60,000 people. Also take a tour of our local tea processing operation at the lodge which enables guests to see the various different methods for tea growing and at the end of the tour taste some of our own grown tea! The Volcanoes Safaris Partnership Trust supports both projects. • Discover the traditions of the Batwa Pygmies, and learn about the native tribal inhabitants of the forest. The indigenous people of Bwindi forest, though no longer resident in the forest, still practice many of their traditional hunter-gatherer skills. O/N Bwindi Lodge (B,L,D)


Day 8 : Tuesday
Your safari ends with your journey to Kigali. You cross the border into Rwanda and clocks need to be adjusted one hour behind. Before transferring to the airport, there maybe time to tour the city and visit the genocide memorial, a moving testimony to this country’s past that it has courageously overcome. Return to your hotel or transfer to the airport in time for your return flight. Approximate Travel Times: Driving 6 hours Please book return flights departing after 5:00pm Bwindi Lodge (B)


Included:

  • Transport and a driver/guide for the itinerary agreed
  • Accommodation on a shared basis
  • Meals stated (in Kampala, Entebbe and Kigali bed and breakfast only and on safari full board)
  • Boat trips, park fees, chimpanzee permits and one gorilla permit, where appropriate
  • At Volcanoes gorilla lodges (Bwindi, Mount Gahinga and Virunga), the tariffs are on an all-inclusive basis, in addition to accommodation and meals, include unlimited consumption of all alcoholic and soft drinks
  • Laundry services
  • Any activities clients wish to do around the lodges
  • A complimentary massage

Not Included:

  • Airfares to Uganda/Rwanda
  • Entry visas and airport taxes
  • At non-Volcanoes lodges all personal expenditure such as laundry and drinks are excluded
  • Additional Gorilla permits
  • Additional supplementary activities (Uganda)


All gorilla permits need to be purchased at the time of booking or a deposit equivalent to 20% of the cost of the safari paid, whichever is higher. Gorilla viewing is subject to availability of permits, which are limited; any additional gorilla permits required should be purchased when booking. Gorilla permit prices are subject to change without warning.


From the safari price paid by clients Volcanoes contributes $100 per client to the Volcanoes Partnership Trust, a separate non-profit organization which undertakes community and conservation activities.


*Price subject to change based on exchange rate at time of booking.

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