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Uganda itinerary

New York City, New...
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Uganda itinerary

we have an 11 day trip planned in mid nov to SW uganda that seems to be too action packed with excessive driving. we go from entebbe to Murchison Falls to Kibale Forest to Queen Eliz to Bwindi to Lake Mburo to Entebbe. A total of 40 hours of driving in the rain and on bad roads including a 7 hr, 8 hr and 9 hr driving day.. 3 women with a driver. has anyone experienced a breakdown in an area with no cell service? not sure what would happen...

Oakland, CA
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1. Re: Uganda itinerary

YOu're right--you are in for a LOT of driving. Add at least 25% of time to the drive-time estimates you've been given. NO Ugandan travel agent realistically or adequately takes time spent for food, bathroom, photography, bad roads, and unexpected delights like trees across the road, flat tires, etc.

\]They are either in denial, or think IF people knew the reality, they woudn't visit!

Yes, that sounds pessimistic, but i prefer to consider it simply realistic. Forewarned is forearmed. Better to be pleasantly surprised by drives going smoothly, than innocently expecting easy, trouble free road trips!

I would also consider a stop overnight near Hoima. There's a fairly new place called (I think) Lake Albert Lodge. I WISH i had done that, to break up the trip.

The only alternative is to leave Murchison out of the itinerary, but it is such a highlight, that I'd encourage you to go for it--keeping the above "reality check" in mind/

I don't recall too many areas that did NOT have cell phone coverage.

North Coast, N...
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2. Re: Uganda itinerary

Read this before you book Lake Albert Lodge to make sure you'e comfortable with it:

tripadvisor.co.uk/ShowTopic-g293840-i9254-k4…

But yes, that journey from Murchison to Kibale was in our itinerary as 5-6 hours. It took 10 and we didn't even stop for lunch (I remember munching our packed lunch from paraa lodge in the car) and it was a long day! Although we were hit by exceptional circumstances as I think all 3 of the normal routes were closed due to broken bridges so we had an unusually long detour.

But yes, the roads are something else! Bridges down, lorries overturned, potholes are all part of normal travel. We met people who weren't able to go to Ishasha as it was planned as a side trip rather than an en-route stop and a bridge down turned a 7km trip into a 56km trip (those may not be exact figures but it was something like that) and that adds hours not minutes onto your trip in Uganda.

But your driver should know the roads and any diversions required. You have to just put it all down as part of the experience!! :)

Totally agree with cali - expect the worst, hope for the best case scenario

Oakland, CA
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3. Re: Uganda itinerary

Hey Ponaire!

Ooops!!!! I forgot that was the lodge owner Mfuwe referred to in his post. OMG, I would never recommend it now!!

Ignore what I wrote above, Ellabellaster from NY. I 've thought how i would re-do the trip, and might even consider doing it in two segments next time, , weg Murchison as a round trip from Kampala, and then a separate trip heading SW from K'la. Don't know if that is the best way, butwill do anything to avoid those roads.

Or we can wait and hope that some day, the gov't will be serious enough about Uganda's infrastructure, to surface those "roads."

Delaware
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4. Re: Uganda itinerary

Calinurse, when I was getting itineraries that's what one operator recommended (and steadfastly stuck to even when I balked): going Entebbe to Murch. Falls then back to Entebbe overnight and across to Fort Portal to avoid the worst of the roads. I got several replies here on TA that that was a crazy detour but now I'm wondering it they were maybe right in having us avoid some of the roads! It would be quite a serious detour but maybe depending on how you handle rough roads (propensity for car sickness?) that is something to consider.

North Coast, N...
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5. Re: Uganda itinerary

Calinurse - I did wonder!!

Leslie - I don't know. It is a long day's travelling but I would be loathe to waste time going backwards to go forwards and I imagine it would eat into your time and trust me you won't want to miss out on your safari time:)

Oakland, CA
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6. Re: Uganda itinerary

Leslie, funny enough, i thought of you druing one of the more horrendous sections of the ride. YOur tour companies suggestin didnt make sense when looking at a mpa, but once there, i could understand it.

HOwever, it WOULD make sense if you were seeing only Murchison, and then doing gorilla trekking in Bwindi, but not going to QE, or Kibale .

\

Disclaimer: i dont have a photographic memory. But the part i recall as REALLY bad, and exhausting, was the road from QE / Ishasha sector, just after the turnoff at to Ishasha, all the way to Buhoma, and then again, in Bwindi forest between Buhoma nd Nkuringo (which you wouldn't be taking, unless your permits are for a gorilla family in that area, instead of Buhoma). .

Also, the tjhere is a long segment on the road between Kabale and Mbaraara that is being ccontructed and was pretty bad, caue of all the trucks and dut

The drives didnt make me carsick--its not the that they were winding or curving , but rather, the constant bumps and long, long rides that seemed never-ending. And for me, it was perhaps worse, (will write more in my TR) as was traveling with very bruised ribs and head.

I recall the ride from Murchison to Fort Portal as getting incrasingly scenic as we reached FP, but the first couple hours got pretty boring. Yes, there are interesting villages, up to a point, but that gets old, fast , when you just want to get to a comfortable spot!

I .

North Coast, N...
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7. Re: Uganda itinerary

Yes, I'm not a great traveller either but didn't get carsick and was in the back of the jeep for most of the time. It is just sitting in one spot for hours on end is hard work! And then you're constantly waving at kids as well so your arms are starting to ache!!!! But I still loved Uganda :)

Delaware
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8. Re: Uganda itinerary

I think we'll survive :)

But it's nice to be forewarned so we can brace ourselves. I know it will be worth whatever discomfort there is -- hopefully no broken ribs or other bones at that time to make it worse ;)

I say brace "ourselves" but I'm actually not telling my husband any of this so he won't dread it for the next 5 months and he'll just have to be surprised once we get there. Is that mean of me? heehee

Kampala
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9. Re: Uganda itinerary

EllaB can you list your route and days, Day 1 = ... and so on. WIll be much easier to comment then.

Please don't let anyone persuade anyone else to come from MFNP south if you are headed West, before you ultimately leave Entebbe!

North Coast, N...
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10. Re: Uganda itinerary

Ah Leslie, not at all!! I hid from my other half that we were going to a couple of upmarket lodges on a holiday a few years ago as he would have absolutely baulked at the cost - he's quite happy camping in a sleeping bag!. Turned out he absolutely loved both places which were unique with no alternative. To this day he doesn't know the actual cost but agreed that whatever it was, it was worth every penny. Had I told him in advance, we wouldn't have gone and would have missed out.

And you're not lying, just not volunteering information unnecessarily or being slightly economical with the truth:)

Are you excited yet?!!! I'm usually planning my next holiday by this stage and it's killing me that I can't at the moment.