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26 Days Highlights of East Africa

Safari Overview

The 26 Days Highlights of East Africa explores Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, and Rwanda. 

This East African Tour is an exciting adventure tour allowing you to explore the diverse landscapes, wildlife, and cultures of the beautiful East African Region.

This is the ultimate highlight Tour of Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania and Rwanda within 26 days.

Itinerary for the 26 days Highlights of East Africa

26 Days Combined East African Safari

Day 1: Arrival in Nairobi

Upon arrival at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, you will be met by the guide and transferred to the hotel for relaxation and leisure.  You may use this day to change some money to local currency or have a city tour within Nairobi. Accommodation at the Jacaranda Hotel.

Day 2: Nairobi – Lake Nakuru

After breakfast, depart for Lake Nakuru National Park. Arrive at the lodge in time for lunch and spend the early afternoon at leisure. Enjoy a game drive at 1600hrs in search of wildlife.

Look out for mammals like the Rhinos (black and white), Rothschild Giraffes, Buffalos, Baboons, Impalas, waterbucks, hippos, colobus monkeys, hyenas, zebras, gazelles leopards and lions among others.   Accommodation and Meals at Lake Nakuru Lodge.

Day 3: Lake Nakuru – Maasai Mara

After breakfast depart for the world’s famous Maasai Mara Game Reserve. Enjoy a leisurely drive arriving at the lodge in time for lunch. After lunch, head for a game drive in search of wildlife that includes the Big 5. Accommodation and Meals at Mara Simba Lodge

Day 4: Maasai Mara

Enjoy an early morning game drive at 0630hrs in search of wildlife. The reserve is one of the best for big cats but sightings of smaller predators such as bat-eared foxes, black-backed jackals, and spotted hyenas.

Other mammals include impala, reedbuck, Thomson’s gazelle, eland, and topi, while buffalo, elephant, and giraffe.  Return to the lodge for breakfast and leisure time. After lunch, head for a game drive at 1600hrs in search of other wildlife.  Accommodation and Meals at Mara Simba Lodge

Day 5: Maasai Mara – Nairobi

After breakfast, depart for Nairobi with a brief stopover at The View Point to marvel at the scenic beauty of The Great Rift Valley. Arrive in the afternoon for relaxation and lunch at the famous Carnivore Restaurant. Accommodation and Meals at the Jacaranda Hotel

Day 6: Nairobi – Departure- Arrival at Kilimanjaro

After breakfast, you will be transferred to the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport for your onward flight to Tanzania. Upon arrival at Kilimanjaro Airport, you will be met by the guide and transferred to your hotel for an overnight stay. Accommodation and Meals at Moivaro Coffee Plantation Lodge.

Day 7: Kilimanjaro – Serengeti National Park

After breakfast depart for Serengeti National Park, with a game drive and picnic lunch en route. Later in the afternoon, take on another game drive in Serengeti National Park.  If you want to spot the Big Five – lion, elephant, leopard, rhino, and buffalo- all in one park, then Serengeti is the best place to do so. Accommodation and Meals at Seronera Wildlife Lodge.

Day 8: Serengeti National Park

After breakfast, you will spend the day in Serengeti National Park having game drives in the park.  Depending on which time of the year you visit this park, you can also witness the famous Great Migration.

With so many wildebeest, gazelles, and zebras present it is no wonder the Serengeti is also home to 4,000 lions and 1,000 leopards. Apart from the Big Five, the Serengeti boasts the cheetah, jackal, hyena, serval, aardvark, Accommodation and Meals at Seronera Wildlife Lodge.

Day 9: Serengeti National Park – Ngorongoro Crater

After breakfast, depart for Serengeti National Park arriving in time for lunch. Take a game drive after lunch in the crater that teems with zebras, buffaloes, lions, wildebeest, warthogs, baboons, elephants, flamingos, ostriches, hippos, cheetahs, and a small population of the rare black rhino. Accommodation and Meals at Ngorongoro Wildlife Lodge

Day 10: Ngorongoro Crater Floor

After breakfast descend to the Crater floor for a full-day game drive. Have lunch at the hippo pool picnic site; ascend to the rim for another game drive. Accommodation and Meals at Ngorongoro Wildlife Lodge.

Day 11: Ngorongoro Crater – Arusha

After breakfast depart for Arusha with lunch at Arusha. Accommodation and Dinner at Moivaro Coffee Plantation Lodge.

Day 12: Departure Arusha – Arrival Entebbe

Upon arrival at Entebbe International, you will be transferred to Kampala Emin Pasha Hotel. You may have a city tour depending on the time of arrival.

Day 13: Kampala – Kibale National Park

Depart for Kibale National Park just under the Rwenzori Mountains with lunch en route. You will visit Bigodi Community for a cultural interaction or a nature walk at the wetlands that is famed for its bird species. Accommodation and Meals at Chimpundu Lodge.

Day 14: Chimpanzee Trekking and Crater Lakes Region

Today the forest opens its doors for sensational chimp tracking. Kibale Forest is reputable for having the greatest variety and the highest concentration of primates in East Africa.

Enjoy a guided nature walk in the tropical rainforest in search of the wild chimpanzee, red-tailed monkey, black-and-white colobus monkey and many others. After lunch, head to the crater lakes region for the Mahoma Waterfall Hike and later head back to the lodge.

Accommodation and Meals at Chimpundu Lodge.

Day 15: Kibale – Bwindi National Park

After breakfast, head to Bwindi National Park with lunch en route arriving in the evening for relaxation and preparing for the gorilla trekking session the next day. You may have a community walk close to Bwindi Forest for cultural interaction.

Accommodation and Meals at Gorilla Safari Lodge.

Day 16: Bwindi Gorilla Trekking

The day is the highlight of your safari: a meeting with the gentle giants of Bwindi! Especially hikers will love the tracking in the beautiful ecosystem of the park. Expect to walk a long distance in steep and muddy conditions, sometimes with rain overhead, before you encounter any gorillas.

It will definitely be worthwhile as you observe them closely while they eat, play, and rest. A unique and unforgettable experience awaits you as you spend an hour with the mountain gorillas before descending back to the trailhead. Head back to the camp for relaxation. Accommodation and Meals at Gorilla Safari Lodge

Day 17: Bwindi National Park – Kabale (Lake Bunyonyi)

After an early breakfast, transfer to Lake Bunyonyi in Kabale. The afternoon is spent for relaxation and sightseeing around the Lake or embarking on a canoeing session to visit the punishment island. Accommodation and Meals at Bunyonyi Safari Resort

Day 18: Lake Bunyonyi – Rwanda

After early breakfast, head to the Cyanika Border Crossing Point in Rwanda arriving in time for lunch and relaxation in Kigali. Accommodation and Meals at Hotel des Mille Collines

Day 19: Kigali – Akagera Park National Park- Boat Cruise

Depart Kigali heading to Akagera National Park arriving in time for lunch and relaxation. After lunch head for a boat cruise on Lake Ihema for 2.5 hours, look out for crocodiles and hippos and over 40 water bird species.

This is also the best way to view the park’s abundant waterbirds including breeding colonies of noisy and cormorants and open-bill storks.  Accommodation and Meals at Ruzizi Tented Camp

Day 20: Akagera – Kigali

Today you will have a game drive experience in search of animals like the:  elephant, giraffe, hippo, zebra, and crocodiles before checking out and heading back to Kigali arriving in time for lunch and relaxation. Accommodation and Meals at Hotel Des Mille Collines.

Day 21: Kigali – Nyungwe Forest – Canopy walk

Breakfast and head to southern Rwanda to visit Nyungwe Forest. The journey to Nyungwe Forest is stunningly beautiful, through terraced hillsides, and along the way, you will arrive in time for lunch.

After lunch, you will have a canopy walk taking in the views of the dramatic landscape of the Nyungwe Forest.  Accommodation and Meals at Nyungwe Top View Hill Hotel

Day 22:  Chimp Trekking and Water Falls Hike

Breakfast and then have an early start to go and trek the Chimpanzees.  Depending on the availability you are likely to trek chimpanzees in Cyamudongo Forest, a very small, isolated ‘island’ of forest surrounded by tea estates a little over an hour’s drive from the park office at Gisakura. This group consists of about 40 individuals.

Alternatively, you might be taken to see a second habituated group, the Uwinka group, which is the largest with around 65 individuals.  The duration of your trek depends on the location of the chimps – this could take from between 30 minutes to 3 hours to find them depending on how far they have moved in search of food.

Once you meet the trackers and are with the chimpanzees, you’ll have an hour to observe them. After lunch, you may opt to relax in the evening or embark on a 4-hour round trip nature walk along the Kamiranzovu waterfall trail – Kamiranzovu is the largest wetland in the forest comprising lush, forested mountains, and it resembles a giant caldera and drains through a dramatic gap between two peaks.  Accommodation and Meals at Nyungwe Top View Hill Hotel B-L-D

Day 23: Nyungwe Forest- Lake Kivu

After breakfast, we depart from Nyungwe heading to Gisenyi the largest port on the Rwandan shore of Lake Kivu. Arrive in time for a relaxed lunch and thereafter relaxation at the lodge or visit the nearby coffee plantations. Accommodation and Meals at Kivu Lodge  

Day 24: Lake Kivu – Volcanoes Park – Iby’lwacu cultural village

After early morning breakfast drive through the hilly northern province to reach Volcanoes, National Park arriving in time for lunch.

After lunch, you may visit the nearby Iby’lwacu cultural village, a local community some of whom are former poachers who now share their traditional rural culture and livelihoods with visitors.

 You will tour the village with a local, hear local songs, see different traditional dances, and visit a healer and the king’s palace.  Accommodation and Meals at Mountain Gorilla View Lodge

Day 25: Golden Monkey Hiking – Dian Fossey

Breakfast and then head for the Golden Monkey Tracking: This is one of Africa’s rarest primates and can be found playing and feeding in the rich bamboo forests.

OR visiting Dian Fossey project- this takes a 3 -4 hours activity to the graveyard where several of Dian Fossey’s favorite gorillas were buried and Dian Fossey is also buried near the graves of her beloved gorillas.

Take a look at the facility- labs, research center and meet the researchers plus staff who work on the dian fossey project. After any of these activities, you will see you return to your hotel for a late lunch relaxing into the evening as you enjoy the beautiful views of the backdrop of the three Volcanic mountains here, dinner, and overnight.

Accommodation and Meals at Mountain Gorilla View Lodge

Day 26: Volcanoes –Kigali

Today you will have a relaxed breakfast and thereafter head back to Kigali arriving in time for lunch and transfer to the airport for your departure flight back home.

Included in 26-days Highlights of East Africa Tour

Ground transportation in a safari customized 4WD Toyota Landcruiser with gasoline/fuel, Mineral water in the vehicle, services of an English-speaking Driver/guide, Activities, Nature walks, Boat cruises, Game drives, Accommodation, Meals, all Park Entrance Fees, Statutory Taxes where applicable.  

Excluded in 26 days Highlights of East Africa Tour

International Airfares; Excess baggage charges; East African Visa Entry Visa Fees USD 100 per person,  Gorilla permits in Uganda  USD 700,  Items of personal nature such as Room service, Alcoholic drinks, and Beverages, Laundry, Tips and Gratuities for your Driver/guide and Hotels staff, Shopping charges for Curios and Crafts, International Airport Departure Taxes, Optional activities unless specified as included, Any other services not expressly shown in the itinerary or indicated as included.  

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