Uganda and Kenya Birding Tour
UGANDA AND KENYA BIRDING TOUR
21 days/ 20 nights
The Uganda and Kenya Birding Tour can be combined with our Usambara Endemics Birding Tour.
DAY 1: ARRIVAL IN NAIROBI
We shall arrive on our Uganda and Kenya Birding Tour via Nairobi; the tourism capital of Kenya.
Depending on your arrival time and how tired you may be from the flights, you can choose to add an extra birding session this afternoon. Otherwise, you can relax and enjoy the local city birds from your hotel.
Night in Nairobi.
DAY 2: MT. KENYA
From the hotel we shall bird near the local bush and forest edge and then head deeper into the mountain forest in our vehicle. We shall scan the forest, rivers and grasslands for the montane specials all day.
Montane mammals are likely, including monkeys, antelopes, mongooses, genets, pigs, hogs and squirrels.
Night at Mt. Kenya.
DAY 3 AND 4: BUFFALO SPRINGS AND SAMBURU NATIONAL RESERVES
We shall leave early for Samburu and Buffalo Springs, a very interesting destination on our Kenya Birding Tour. We shall spend time scouting for extra birds as we enjoy the local mammals, such as Leopard, Beisa Oryx, Gerenuk, Grevy’s Zebra, Reticulated Giraffe, Lion and Elephants.
This is an amazing part of Kenya, and allows for excellent dry country birding. Many of the typical North-East African dryland birds are present here and the habitat will provide a huge species list.
Nights in Samburu.
DAY 5: LAKE NAKURU NATIONAL PARK
We shall depart early in the morning and head to Lake Nakuru National Park; where our Uganda and Kenya Birding Tour continues. This is a great birding site and is rightly named “the birdwatchers paradise”.
The park also hosts many mammals such as African Lion, Black Rhino, White Rhino, Leopard and Rothschild’s Giraffe.
Night in Lake Nakuru.
DAY 6 AND 7: MASAI MARA NATIONAL RESERVE
These days will see us scout the vast Masai Mara, in search of the local birds and mammals. Described by many as the top reserve in Kenya, this area will have lots to offer from the Big Five, herds of grazing mammals, to the amazing birdlife.
The magical Annual Wildebeest Migration is also a spectacle that has made the area very famous. Birding will be busy with several transects across this vast savannah. This area is often a highlight of our Uganda and Kenya Birding Tour.
Nights in Mara.
DAY 8: MASAI MARA TO LAKE VICTORIA
We shall enjoy birding in Masai Mara all morning, targeting any species we may have missed earlier.
In the afternoon, we shall drive to the shores of Lake Victoria for the night.
We shall spend the night in Kisumu.
DAY 9: KISUMU TO KAMPALA OR JINJA (RIVER NILE)
After a morning boat ride, we shall cruise to the Uganda border and clear with customs. We shall then start the second leg of our Uganda and Kenya Birding Tour.
We shall then proceed to Kampala City or Jinja; often called the source of the River Nile. Birding on the way will be active all day and we shall make strategic stop-overs to enjoy the local birds.
Night in Kampala or Jinja.
DAY 10: MABIRA FOREST
We shall leave the hotel early and head to the beautiful Mabira Forest; where birding will be active all day. Mabira Forest is always a key site on our Uganda and Kenya Birding Tour; often producing amazing forest-dependent species.
Mammals to expect here include Red-tailed Monkey, Grey-cheeked Mangabey, Alexander’s Bush Squirrel, Yellow-backed Duiker, Black-fronted Duiker and Chequered Sengi.
We shall enjoy our picnic lunch here. Later we shall do some more birding, to try for extra species. We shall then return to our hotel for the evening.
Night in Kampala.
DAY 11: MABAMBA SWAMP TO LAKE MBURO
We shall depart early and head to the famous Mabamba Swamp, a nice place to search for the Shoebill- a key target on our Uganda and Kenya Birding Tour. Here we shall enjoy a boat trip, in a traditional canoe. The swamp is very productive and holds a huge variety of birds’ species. We may also be lucky to find the rare Sitatunga Antelope.
In the afternoon, we shall drive to Lake Mburo; as we enjoy more birding on the way. On this day, we shall also get to cross the Uganda section of the Equator on our way. On arrival, we shall start picking our first birds of this vast area until sunset.
Night at Lake Mburo.
DAY 12: LAKE MBURO NATIONAL PARK
We shall enjoy game drives the entire morning as we score more birds that we may have missed the previous day. Nice mammals will also be abundant including Burchellʼs Zebra, Oribi, Cape Buffalo, Uganda Topi, Nile Hippo, Cape Eland, Vervet (Tantalus) Monkey, Olive Baboon and Impala.
We shall later enjoy a boat ride here to score more birds across the water. This is a major highlight on our Uganda and Kenya Birding Tour. We may also find some Nile Crocodiles here, as they reside around the lake shore.
Night at Lake Mburo.
DAY 13 AND 14: BWINDI NATIONAL PARK- RUHIJA
We shall then carry on to the upper region of the famous Bwindi Impenetrable National Park; as we enjoy roadside birds.
The mighty forests at Bwindi provides a home for many birds, including a great number of Albertine Rift Endemic species. This area is often a highlight on our Uganda and Kenya Birding Tour. We shall start picking these species this afternoon, on a walk along the main trail.
On the second day we shall enjoy birding the upper forest, and search for species we may have missed the previous day. We shall also walk along the Mubwindi Swamp and other nearby trails.
Nights in Ruhija.
DAY 15 AND 16: BWINDI NATIONAL PARK- BUHOMA (OPTIONAL GORILLA TREKKING)
We shall continue our Uganda and Kenya Birding Tour on the lower Bwindi Forest at Buhoma; where we shall have a chance to score more species and add to our already growing list. We may also add some more mammals such as L’Hoest’s Monkey, Carruther’s Mountain Squirrel and Boehm’s Squirrel.
Those who would like to enjoy tracking the amazing Mountain Gorillas will have the opportunity on one morning. This is usually a big highlight for our Uganda and Kenya Birding Tours. The trek may take between two to eight hours, depending on how far the apes have travelled during the previous night.
Those who choose to enjoy birding all day will continue exploring the trails around Buhoma, seeking the local specials. In the afternoon, we shall continue birding as one group.
Nights in Buhoma.
DAY 17: ISHASHA TO QUEEN ELIZABETH NATIONAL PARK
We shall start the day with more birding at Buhoma. Later we head towards the Ishasha region in southern Queen Elizabeth National Park; for our next leg of the Uganda and Kenya Birding Tour. This area is famous for the local tree-climbing Lions. We may be lucky to find these beautiful cats among an array of other big game and birds.
Later, we shall arrive at the main Queen Elizabeth National Park area, where more birds and mammals await us. Mammals to expect here include Uganda Kob, Nile Hippo, Lake Chad Buffalo, African Elephant, Leopard and Spotted Hyena.
Night at Queen Elizabeth National Park.
DAY 18: QUEEN ELIZABETH NATIONAL PARK
We shall spend the day enjoying more game drives in this park. We hope to add more species that we missed the previous day.
In the afternoon, we shall enjoy a boat cruise along the famous Kazinga Channel, which connects Lake Edward and Lake George. Here many birds will be present and we shall take time to enjoy them. The cruise is a major highlight on our Uganda and Kenya Birding Tour.
Night at Queen Elizabeth National Park.
DAY 19: KIBALE FOREST NATIONAL PARK
Leaving early, we shall head to Kibale Forest. We may still find some additional species as we exit the mighty Queen Elizabeth National Park. We shall stop on the way to enjoy any special birds we come across. In the afternoon, we shall enjoy birding around Kibale.
Night at Kibale.
DAY 20: KIBALE FOREST NATIONAL PARK (OPTIONAL CHIMPANZEE TREKKING)
We shall continue birding the forest trails as we add species we may have missed the previous day. We shall also visit several wetlands around the forest including Sebitoli Swamp and Bigodi Swamp.
For those who would like to enjoy tracking the amazing Chimpanzees; there will be an opportunity this afternoon. This is another major highlight on our Uganda and Kenya Birding Tour. After the Chimpanzee trek, we shall rejoin as one group and continue with our birding walks.
We may also be lucky to find other mammals as we walk in the forest, such as the Central African Red Colobus, Guereza Colobus, Red-tailed Monkey, L’Hoest’s Monkey and Grey-cheeked Mangabey.
Night at Kibale.
DAY 21: KIBALE FOREST NATIONAL PARK TO ENTEBBE
On this morning we shall scan for extra birds on the way out of Kibale Forest. We hope to add some more species that we may have missed earlier.
Continuing towards Entebbe, we shall keep an eye for more birds that we may not have seen on our Uganda and Kenya Birding Tour.
We shall then take our airport transfer for the flights home- marking the end to our lovely Uganda and Kenya Birding Tour.
Shoebill, Green-breasted Pitta, Jackson’s Hornbill, Northern Red-billed Hornbill, Grauerʼs (African Green) Broadbill, Grauerʼs Rush Warbler, Grauer’s Warbler, Cinnamon Bracken Warbler, Black-faced Rufous Warbler, Banded Prinia, Carruthers’s Cisticola, Chubb’s Cisticola, Red-faced Woodland-Warbler, Red-chested Flufftail,
Pink-footed Puffback, Lagden’s Bush-shrike, Doherty’s Bush-shrike, Mountain Sooty Boubou, Oriole Finch, Ruwenzori Batis, Shelley’s Crimsonwing, Red-faced Crimsonwing, Dusky Crimsonwing, Dusky Twinspot, Olive Woodpecker, Regal Sunbird, Purple-breasted Sunbird, Blue-headed Sunbird, Dwarf Honeyguide, Tullberg’s Woodpecker, White-headed Wood-hoopoe, Stripe-breasted Tit,
Handsome Francolin, Scaly Francolin, African Crake, Greater Flamingo, Lesser Flamingo, Western Green Tinkerbird, African (Ruwenzori) Hill Babbler, Red-throated Alethe, Fire-crested Alethe, Archer’s Robin-Chat, Mountain Illadopsis, Yellow-streaked Greenbul, Rufous-breasted Sparrowhawk, Yellow-eyed Black Flycatcher, White-tailed Crested Flycatcher, White-tailed Blue-Flycatcher, Sharpe’s Starling, Slender-billed Starling, Waller’s Starling,
Black-billed Turaco, Ross’s Turaco, Narina Trogon, Dark-backed Weaver, Strange Weaver, Ruwenzori Nightjar, Fraser’s Eagle-Owl, Brown-necked Parrot, Barred Long-tailed Cuckoo, Goliath Heron, Saddle-billed Stork, African Open-billed Stork, Senegal Lapwing, African Wattled Lapwing, Kittlitz’s Plover
Highlight mammals and others
Cheetah, Savannah Elephant, Red-tailed Monkey, Grevy’s Zebra, Common Impala, Nile Crocodile, Nile Hippo, White Rhino, Black Rhino, Reticulated Giraffe, African Buffalo, Rothschild’s Giraffe, Leopard, African Lion, Beisa Oryx, Gerenuk, Chimpanzee, Mountain Gorilla
Equatorial forest, Wetlands, Savannah, Highland Forest, Albertine Rift Mountains, Semi-arid Scrubland
River Nile, Lake Victoria, Mt. Kenya, Masai Mara, African Big Game, Forest walk, the Great Rift Valley, Boat Ride, Albertine Rift Endemics