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Short return visit -- question about logistics

Chicago, Illinois
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Short return visit -- question about logistics

Two years ago, my daughter and I took a wonderful trip through Uganda, the highlights being CHEX and Bigodi swamp walk at Kibale and two gorilla visits from Buhoma. Now, my husband and I are planning a trip for June/July 2014 that centers on 8-9 days of safari in either Kenya or Tanzania (still trying to figure that out). A lot of people combine a short gorilla visit with an East African safari, and my husband would love to do one gorilla hike (and I would love to go again!) and he'd love to see chimps too. What I am wondering is how many nights we would have to add to also visit Kibale, and if it make sense to try do both in 5 nights, or is that just too much driving? Maybe we can fly to Kihihi from JRO or Nairobi, I don't know, and maybe that would reduce driving time. Another question is whether anyone has done both CHEX and gorilla treks at Mahale in Tanzania and can comment on differences. It might be easier to stay in the same country for the primate experience, but then of course, husband misses the gorillas. I'd really like to make a short Uganda trip work. Thanks in advance for any suggestions/guidance.

Isle of Man, United...
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1. Re: Short return visit -- question about logistics

Definitely possible.

If on Safari in Serengeti you can finish at Mwanza and then fly to Kigali in Rwanda. Either Trek in Rwanda or, as this is Uganda Forum, transfer over the border, 90 mins from Kigali and trek one of the southern groups based around Nkuringo. Chimps are further away in Kibale and this is a six hour drive. from Kibale you can reach Entebbe and fly out to either JRO or NBO and home. Or reverse the whole thing.

So one night Kigali, two nights Nkuringo, before and after trekking, drive to Kibale, one night, Chimps in the morning unless you do CHEX and down to EBB for your flight. That is four nights and a bit hectic. five would be more relaxing.

Only Chartered small aircraft go into Kihihi and it costs $$$s

You can of course fly to EBB from your Safari in Arusha from Kilimanjaro but this would increase the driving. And times.

I am not aware that they do CHEX in Mahale and I do know there are no Gorillas there. In any case to get to Mahale from your Safari will take almost as long as your five days.

Think about this. It is just bare bones and can be tweaked but it would work.

Chicago, Illinois
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2. Re: Short return visit -- question about logistics

Thanks, this is brilliant! Will a Ugandan TO be able to pick us up in Rwanda? I think I've heard that they can.

For us, it's a Mahale vs Uganda decision, I think; there we'd do 3-4 nights and try to do 3 chimp treks and see a new remote area, but no gorillas. Rwanda, no chimps. Uganda is probably best, if we can do it in 5 days, because it's wonderful for both, and I love the idea of retuning, just wasn't sure if it's sensible/feasible. Now we'll need to explore whether it's affordable!

The reason I asked about chimp treks (and I know you are not a chimp person, Mfuwe) is that I've read that Mahale affords the premier chimp trekking experience and I wonder what the difference is. The day-long CHEX that I did was simply amazing, and I'd love to do it again.

Logistics are so complicated, and it's great to have your help here, thanks again

Isle of Man, United...
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3. Re: Short return visit -- question about logistics

Karibu sana.

Yes a Ugandan Operator can meet and greet in Rwanda. Mahale I have not been to. Most folks combine it with a trip to Katavi to better absorb the cost of getting there.

Despite not being a Chimp person, you are soo right, I would wonder how one experience can vary so much from others. How does one compare? I would stick with what you know is good. And the Gorillas are a BIG plus. (I AM a Gorilla person and love to meet my big cousins when in their country.)

UGANDA
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4. Re: Short return visit -- question about logistics

I have not seen or heard of Mountain Gorillas in Tanzania . Mountain Gorillas are only found in the Virungas of East AFrica . That is ; Uganda Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo. The best encounters of Chimpanzees can be found in Kibaale National Park where the BIgodi swamp is . So doing a gorilla and Chimpanzee safari in Uganda would be like shooting two birds with one stone.

Kampala
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5. Re: Short return visit -- question about logistics

Hello

I can comment on the chimps in Kibale - only yesterday revisiting video of Magesi, the big male munching on dates - although we didn't do the CHEX, our experience was excellent.

Uganda
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6. Re: Short return visit -- question about logistics

Hi. My wife and I own a tour company, Sabili Tours that does safaris mostly in Uganda, Kenya and Rwanda (we have done a few in Tanzania, but most of our clients do a combination of Kenya and Uganda or Uganda and Rwanda).

For starters, I think all the advice you've got so far is great. Yes, it is possible to have a tour operator arrange for your safari across Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda.

Regarding Gorillas, I'd recommend you go for a Uganda Gorilla Trekking safari (and it's not because I'm Ugandan!). Apart from the fact that the majority of the gorilas (up to 50%) are in Uganda (and therefore you have a higher likelihood of seeing them than in Rwanda), the gorilla permits in Uganda are generally cheaper than those in Rwanda (currently, the ones in Uganda are at $500 while those in Rwanda are $750). Also, Kibaale Forest has one of the highest diversity and concentration of primates in Africa (13 species) and you could also add to it a visit to Queen Elizabeth National Park (a section of which has tree-climbing lions). It is possible to do gorilla trekking and chimp trekking in Uganda in 4 nights (5 days).

Hope this helps.

Kampala, Uganda
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7. Re: Short return visit -- question about logistics

Better read the guidelines before you post any comment on this forum..

Isle of Man, United...
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8. Re: Short return visit -- question about logistics

I don't think Ganzi breaches guidelines. He has stated his connection but makes no attempt to benefit from that. Just giving his advice to travellers. I think that is permitted.

what he, or any operator, must not do is offer to provide service and/or promote his company.

Uganda
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9. Re: Short return visit -- question about logistics

Thanks for clarifying this for brovadsafaris mfuwe.

Brovad, I hope the guidelines are now clearer to you.

10. Re: Short return visit -- question about logistics

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