Itinerary type: Bird Watching
East African Birdwatching Safaris to Queen Elizabeth National Park and Lake Mburo National Park.
Bird the Uganda Wildlife Education Centre (U.W.E.C), Botanical gardens and other areas in Entebbe. UWEC originally started as an animal orphanage in the 1920s but gradually grew to be a show place of various flora and fauna. Birding here will yield sightings of a variety of birds such as pelicans, ostrich, parrots, crowned cranes, weaver birds such as the orange weaver, black necked baglafect, the northern masked weaver and the shoe bill storks.
Lunch break and then proceed to the botanical gardens where you will most likely be able to enjoy more prolific bird life. A. Whyte the first curator of Uganda’s Museum started these gardens as a natural forest for use as research grounds for the introduction of various ornamental plants and exotic fruits to Uganda. Birds to look out for here include the yellow-throated leaf love, the great blue Turaco, Ross’s Turaco, the black and white casqued hornbill, the pied hornbill. Yellow backed weaver, orange weaver, brown-throated weaver, and great reed warbler, sedge warbler and the fish eagle. Dinner and over night at the Forest Cottages in Ntinda / Red Chilli.
After an early breakfast set off for Lake Mburo National Park with a brief stop at the Equator. The park encompasses not only Lake Mburo but also four other small lakes. It’s easy accessibility from Kampala (about 4 hours drive from Kampala makes it the ideal birder gateway). Birding to the park begins as you turn off to Nshara gate.
Look out for the Handsome Francolin, Pink baked Pelican, Bee-eaters, Helmeted Guinea fowl, lilac-breasted roller, red faced barbet, Rufuos bellied heron, green capped Eremomela, long tailed Cisticola, the Malachite and Pied King fishers. Lunch break at Rwonyo. Proceed to the lakeside for a boat ride. The boat ride may yield sightings of the African water rail, black bellied bustard, brown chested lapwing, Rufous naped lark, lilac breasted roller, lesser and greater swamp warbler, papyrus yellow warbler, papyrus gonolek, king fishers, herons and the elusive shoebill. Dinner and over night Mantana Luxury Tented Camp / Rwonyo Rest Camp.
After breakfast embark on an early morning nature walk. Look out for the Bare faced go a way Bird, Lead Coloured fly catcher, African Drongo, Blue Eared Glossy starling, the Verreaux’s Eagle Owl and the Yellow billed ox pecker.
Get awoken by the sounds of the morning doves and embark on an early game drive along the zebra track as you look out for bird species such as the African Wattled plover, narinas trogon, coqui Francolin, rufous chested swallow, temmricks courser, deidric cuckoo and the black headed weaver. Late breakfast and proceed to Queen Elizabeth with a brief stop in Mbarara for lunch.
Enroute you will go through the unique western rift valley escarpment. Over 600 bird species recorded so far make Queen Elizabeth National Park superb birders Paradise. This is one of the richest and best managed parks in Africa and supports an astounding density of flora and fauna. Dinner and over night Mweya Safari Lodge / Ecology Hostel.
Rise early before the sun and go an early morning game drive to catch up with early risers. The drive takes you through the Kasenyi tracks and the Kikorongo crater area. The drive will enable you sight various bird species like the martial eagle, rupells griffon vulture and weavers. Lunch break, then drive to the dock on the channel, which joins lakes Edward and George.
This water way is a birders paradise and those who experience it consider it the highlight of their entire African skimmer, pallid harrier, great snipe, papyrus gonolek, gull billed tern, Madagascar pond heron, lesser kestrel and the rare shoe bill stork. Also look out for the elusive leopard, schools of hippos, elephants and the comical warthog. Dinner and over night Mweya Safari Lodge / Institute of Ecology Hostel.
After an early breakfast drive to Maramagambo for a foot safari through the forest. Bird species to look out for here include the bat hawks, brown eared woodpecker, fawn breasted Waxbill, Sulphur breasted bush shrike, and dark capped yellow warbler, red headed blue bill, African Finfoot and the Eurasian golden oriole. On a good day black and white colobus monkeys may also be spotted.
Dinner and overnight Mweya Safari Lodge/ Institute of Ecology Hostel.
Drive to Lake Katwe crater area. Enroute to Katwe, you may be able to see swallows, warblers and wagtails. Depart Katwe for Kampala with several stops to see bird species such as the African harrier, bare faced go away bird and the southern red bishop.