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“Great trip!”

Gorillas and Wildlife Safaris - Day Tours
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: Gorillas and Wildlife Safaris Ltd, a member of the Association of Uganda Tour Operators, is one of the few accredited Tour Operator by the Uganda Ministry of Trade and Tourism. We have been in operation since 2005. We delight in providing the most affordable luxury, mid-range and low budget safaris & tour packages to individuals and small groups/ families without any discrimination. Our major purpose is that as many as possible will visit and enjoy the unique beauty of Uganda and Rwanda with a professional and knowledgeable tour guide, through a fast, honest and professional booking service, at the best affordable price possible. We emphasize giving plenty of quality relevant information about Uganda and Rwanda both before and after the tour. Although we delight in earning a profit from our our work, this is not our main driver. We will be most glad when at the end of your visit you feel you want to stay longer than planned and we will be very sad when for any reason (both our own or other factors' making), you fail to make it for your safari in Uganda and Rwanda. So, talk to us today! We will most likely be of more help than you expect - be it gorilla tracking safaris, Rwanda wildlife and game viewing safaris, chimpanzee tracking, and bird-watching packaged tours, culture, white-water rafting, mountain climbing, name it.
Hobart, Australia
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Great trip!”
Reviewed 6 April 2014

My Friend and I booked with Gorillas and Wildlife Safaris Ltd to do a 5 day chimp and gorilla trek in Bwindi and Kibale. I could not fault this customized tour at all. I was initially a little apprehensive about booking a tour off the internet from back home considering how much cheaper it was than what other companies offered but my friend had already booked it so I was just hoping that we were going to get value for money. And we did. We were picked up by Robert and went straight to the Office in Kampala where we met Ivan and handed over the rest of our money. The van we were transported in was VERY comfortable considering we had some long driving days. We were able to stretch out and recline the seats a little, plus it had air con. Robert was very good to us, he drove safely and would stop if he saw animals we might like to see - zebras and monkeys etc and really exceeded his job as a driver. The accommodation was really good - we said we wanted cheap accommodation but no camping and we stayed at Ruhija Gorilla Friends Resort and Campsite (we stayed in a tent but it had a proper bed and tin roof over us and was very comfortable) and also at Chimpanzee Forest Guesthouse which was really lovely to stay at. The gorillas and chimps were amazing to see, definitely once in a lifetime and worth the trek (we were lucky enough to only trek for ~1 hour). Wear good shoes for the trek as the ground is wet and there is quite a bit of uphill - the stick they give you is handy! As two female travellers travelling alone and being the only ones staying at the accommodation at times we felt really safe. I would definitely recommend this tour company to anyone and would most certainly use them again if I were to go back, the price is extremely reasonable given the itinerary. Can't recommend highly enough! Book with them :)

Visited March 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank jacma9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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159 reviews from our community

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Bergen, Norway
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“AMUZING GIANTS”
Reviewed 3 April 2014

words cannot explain, one needs to expirience it, this is one activity one should have before they die. when you encounter the gorillas you forget the difficult terrain, these giants are too organised. the leader looks so different from the follwers, interestingly they all obey. i used cheap uganda safaris, just booked everything online all i had to care about is being healthy for that long awiated day, no husling it was cheap but of class. i as given a reasonable itnerary for the three days i had to stay, every thing was on time which i liked, very friendly guides and all at a reasonable cost. these creatures dont like noise, so the camera flush must be off,they are very protective to their young ones so you have to keep a distance. you need boots....for the jungle and be ready to walk quite a good distance before you encounter them.

Visited July 2013
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2 Thank leticialol
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
South East England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
481 reviews
90 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 320 helpful votes
“An hour = a lifetime 'wonder' ; an utter privilege !”
Reviewed 17 March 2014

No words can truly describe ( let alone do justice to ) the moment you come face to face with a gorilla...in its back yard. Well organised, our first trek lasted about 3 hours which in places was 'tricky', both physically as well as mentally. We felt safe at all times but the terrain ( by definition and circumstance ) can be unpredictable and underfoot was occasionally slippy, our feet at a 45 degree angle ! But...what a fantastic reward when you first smell, then hear the see your first gorillas ! Awesome in the literal sense of the word ! Time with the animals is highly regulated - 1 hour only - and this time passes in a flash. Luckily we had booked 2 further treks, each different due to the fact that this is no zoo experience, rather a wildlife adventure with the stars being free-spirited, independent and wild animals ! To have this experience comes at a price - but it's worth every penny ( and as an added bonus, there are benefits for conservation and the local economy too !

Visited June 2013
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1 Thank nauj63
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Salisbury, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Nkuringo Group, Bwindi”
Reviewed 10 March 2014

Incredible - the single most memorable wildlife encounter imaginable. Expensive but an absolute highlight of African travel.

Visited February 2014
Helpful?
Thank Kurt S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Canberra, Australia
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“You get what you pay for”
Reviewed 16 February 2014

What I really liked about using Gorillas and Wildlife Safaris is that we could book everything online and they are very prompt with email communication. We booked through Gaster, who was friendly enough. The cost was much more reasonable than others, and it appeared that we were going to have a jam-packed itinerary. My boyfriend and I wanted to see the mountain gorillas, and then do a wildlife safari at Queen Elizabeth National Park (QENP). The sites themselves were BREATHTAKING, but it was the service that let this trip down.

First of all, it took us forever to make our payments. Bank transfers were not allowed as the company's name was too long. Credit card transfers were quite expensive. It cost us $150 to transfer the first half of out payment. Luckily, we had someone in Kampala pay the rest in person before we got there.

Secondly, our accommodation got mixed up. We paid for "moderate accommodation" but then got downgraded to "budget" when we were at QENP at the last moment! With no refund, or explanations. The car that we drove around in was not a 4WD. It was a very old Korean minivan with no air conditioning. To make matters worse, for about 6 hours of our journey, the road was not sealed, and it was quite hot so we had to have the windows down and let all the dust in! The car also struggled on the steep hills of Kisoro.

Lastly, a section of our itinerary was cut out. Apparently because it was not feasible. We had been told we'd drive and see the tree-climbing lions, only to be told by our guide that it would take too long to get there and by the time we got there we might not be able to see a thing. It felt like we had been duped into paying more for less.

Next time we'll pay more if it means that we'll be able to get what has been promised.

Visited December 2013
Review collected in partnership with this attraction

Helpful?
1 Thank flik_NZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gorillas-WildlifeRW, Manager at Gorillas and Wildlife Safaris - Day Tours, responded to this review, 18 February 2014
Dear flik_NZ
First of all we are very happy that you appreciate our efforts to give the best of the jam-packed itinerary at a reasonable cost than others.
We do everything we can never to change a confirmed tour program after deposit payment is made. And if we are make any changes in the tour program we must inform you well in advance. You choose whether you want those changes or not before making any commitments. In your case we suggested these even before you committed any payment. A tour confirmation invoice and Itinerary were sent to you before any payment was made. It would have been nicer for you to let us know this was not want you wanted before any commitments.

Any visiting traveller to Uganda and Rwanda will quickly realize how high the cost is for accommodation compared to the quality of service provided. It is so common to pay $250+ for a "3-start facility" even when the actual standards are not 3-star.
Yes you paid for moderate accommodation and we gave moderate as booked. You can check out for yourself the lodge costs - Gorilla Safari Lodge at $360 per room per night and Simba Safari Camp at $170 per room (the same prices offered by the other moderate price camps in the area like Bush Lodge, Enganzi Lodge and all other safari camps there). At Simba Safari Camp, the low-budget accommodation there is the tent which costs only $70 per night. I am very sure you did not stay in the tents but you slept in the luxury accommodation. And indeed this is something we pre-discussed with you weeks before the tour and both parties agreed that because of the shortage of accommodation during the festive season, we would look for alternative (but similar quality accommodation). All correspondences show that this was agreed up on even before you made the first payment for gorilla permits. You could have refused to go ahead all together if you felt this was less than your requirement.

On transportation, we have never owned any Korean vans. Neither can we risk sending a vehicle which is non-4WD on Uganda's national park roads. Chances are really high that you would get stuck somewhere along the way. And no safari vehicle of ours lacks air-conditioning. It may have stopped working along the way or maybe you never asked the driver to turn it on. The same vehicles we used for your safari has been praised by other guests as the best for safari on Uganda's roads. I request you share some photos of the vehicle for us all to see the truth.

As for wildlife viewing, kindly note that we take you to see wildlife in a national park, not a zoo or theatre. We are very aware that on the day for viewing the tree climbing lions you opted to sleep more in the morning, so that you reached the Queen Elizabeth national park late and therefore could not go ahead with doing more hours searching for the tree climbing lions as the itinerary says. When we write the itinerary to say "Leave your lodge at 7AM", we mean that and not 10AM.

We however feel sorry about the payment systems in Uganda. As you may know we have been running flourishing business for now over 8 years and we have never heard of search a complaint that our bank account name is that long that bank transactions can be rejected. Maybe it is something to sort our with your bank or someone else. And we are very sorry for BarclayCard as well, they must be unaware of what the charges imply to those doing credit card transactions through them. But we have since shifted from them and found another Credit Card processing agent and alhough they charge us 3.5% for a transaction, it is much more reasonalble than the 6.5% you were charged and the transfers are instant.


Whether you pay more or less, we urge our visitors to try their best to abide with the agreed upon or suggested itinerary timings. And if we are make any changes in the tour program we must inform you well in advance. You choose whether you want those changes or not. In your case we suggested these even before you committed any payment. A tour confirmation invoice and Itinerary were sent to you before any payment was made. It would have been nicer for you to let us know this was not want you wanted before any commitments.
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