Mountain Gorillas to the Mara (Accommodated)

Tour Code 17MGM18A. Accommodated Overland
18 days from
$2'290 USD
USDwas 2695 USD
Plus 600 USD mandatory Adventure Pass
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Suitable for Ages: 18 to 39. Group Size: Average 12, Maximum 24

See some of East Africa's best wildlife in their natural habitats on this adventure tour

From gorillas and chimpanzee in Uganda to the 'big 5' in Kenya, this accommodated overland tour takes in all the top experiences the famed Pearl of Africa, and Kenya have to offer. Join us and explore these exciting destinations.

This tour includes Gorilla and Chimp Trekking. This is paid at the time of booking - please see supplements for pricing.

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Day 1. Nairobi to Lake Nakuru National Park Highlights. Great Rift Valley. Lake Nakuru, Kenya. Accommodation. Punda Millias.

We leave Nairobi early this morning and descend into the Great Rift Valley as we make our way to the shallow Lake Nakuru. Situated on the valley floor, Lake Nakuru National Park is one of Africa's smaller National Parks, but don't be fooled by its size - this park is a haven for wildlife despite its size!

The rich nutrient lake offers a feeding ground for over 2 million flamingo's that flock annually as well as other bird life. Nakuru is also home to a variety of wildlife including buffalo, black & white rhino, lion, leopard, antelope, warthog, baboon and more. We enjoy an afternoon game drive seeking out these animals in their lovely natural surroundings.

Day 2. Lake Nakuru to Eldoret Highlights. Equator. Accommodation. Naiberi Camp.

We travel northwest onto the higher lying plateau and tea country to the town of Eldoret. Along the way we cross the equator from the Southern to the Northern Hemisphere.

Eldoret is the 5th largest town in Kenya with an approximate population of 194,000 people living here.

Day 3. Eldoret to Kampala, Uganda Highlights. Kampala, Uganda. Accommodation. Red Chilli Hideaway, Kampala.

Today we make the crossing from Kenya to Uganda and experience our first bustling African border. From here we hit the road again and head to Uganda's busy capital city - Kampala.

Sprawling across five hills, Kampala is the commercial hub of Uganda and is home to a population of just over 1.5 million people. We head to our camp on the outskirts of the city where the rest of the afternoon is at leisure.

Day 4. Kampala to Queen Elizabeth National Park Accommodation. Simba Camp, Uganda.

Leaving Kampala early, we travel west through the Ugandan countryside and villages to the Queen Elizabeth National Park. We again cross the Equator, and head through fertile green terraced tea plantations, tangled forests, steep mountains and villages. Our accommodation for the evening is set in a tranquil setting just outside the park. Relax with a good book or, if time allows, take one of the many optional activities on offer.

Day 5. Queen Elizabeth National Park Highlights. Chimpanzee Trek, Kyamburu Gorge, Uganda. Queen Elizabeth National Park, Uganda. Accommodation. Simba Camp, Uganda.

Today we enter the Queen Elizabeth National Park and enjoy the picturesque views of the mountains and the wonderful wildlife. This magnificent park hosts over 500 species of birds and over 100 species of mammals and if we are lucky, we may get to spot these en-route to Kyambura Gorge for the chimpanzee trek.

Chimp trekking permits are issued by the wildlife authority in groups of up to 8 people at a time, per group. Depending on our group size, this means that we may trek on the afternoon of day 4, morning of day 5 and afternoon of day 5 or morning of day 6.

Day 6. Queen Elizabeth National Park to Lake Bunyoni Highlights. Lake Bunyonyi, Uganda. Accommodation. Lake Bunyonyi Camp.

Leaving Queen Elizabeth National Park we journey to Lake Bunyonyi 'Place of many little birds'. This breathtaking lake is 27km long and 7km wide with a depth of nearly 900m, making it the second deepest lake in Africa.

Twenty-nine islands are dispersed throughout the lake that can be visited by local boats. A great place to unwind, relax and explore on the days that we're not on our trek to see the mountain gorillas.

Day 7-8. Lake Bunyoni - Gorilla Trek Highlights. Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda. Mountain gorillas. Accommodation. Lake Bunyonyi Camp.

Lake Bunyoni is our base for trekking the mountain gorillas that inhabit the surrounding forested Bwindi and Magahinga National Parks.

Your permit allows you one trek and gorilla viewing (time limited to one hour). However because the authorities maintain strict limits on the number of visitors allowed to view the gorillas each day; we may spend several days in the area while all passengers in our group complete the trek and viewing.

If not trekking, today is free to explore the surrounding area, discover the nearby Islands by boat or relax back at camp catching up on some well deserved rest and relaxation.

Day 9. Lake Bunyonyi to Kampala Accommodation. Red Chilli Hideaway, Kampala.

From Lake Bunyonyi we make our way back across the Equator to Kampala passing the northern reaches of Lake Victoria (Africa's largest lake). Once settled in and if time allows, explore the city's nightlife and the local cuisines.

Day 10. Kampala to Jinja Accommodation. Nile River Explorer.

This morning we leave Kampala and travel a short distance to the small town of Jinja on the banks of Lake Victoria.

Our accommodation over the next few days is situated on the grassy banks overlooking the River Nile. At a 4132 mile course, the Nile begins in Uganda and flows through Sudan, Egypt to the Mediterranean Sea.

Day 11-12. Jinja Highlights. Jinja, Uganda. Accommodation. Nile River Explorer.

The next two days are yours to enjoy at your leisure. Explore the town of Jinja, relax on the river's edge or enjoy some of the many optional activities this magnificent place has to offer.

You could tackle the rapids white rafting, take a leap of faith over the Nile bungy jumping, head off-road quad biking or volunteer for a community school project.

Day 13. Jinja to Eldoret, Kenya Accommodation. Naiberi Camp.

Today we leave Uganda, retracing our steps across the border to Kenya and on to the town of Eldoret.

Our accommodation for the evening is located outside of Eldoret and set in a tranquil setting. The lodges iconic cave restaurant offers great entertainment and a central fire pit for those cold winter days.

Day 14. Eldoret to Nairobi Accommodation. Karen Camp, Nairobi.

Crossing the equator back to the southern hemisphere we make our way to the Kenyan capital Nairobi where we spend the the night - why not head out to explore the local nightlife!

Day 15. Nairobi Highlights. Nairobi. Accommodation. Karen Camp, Nairobi.

Today is a free day allowing you to explore the city's local optional excursions. Visit the Nairobi National Park, National Museum of Kenya, Daphne Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage and the Giraffe Centre or simply enjoy the local cafe culture, restaurants, markets and shops.

Day 16. Nairobi to Maasai Mara Accommodation. Maasai Mara Camp.

We set off early this morning in specialized safari vehicles across the Great Rift Valley to the Maasai Mara National Reserve. We spend two nights in a tented camp on the edge of the reserve with time to explore the parks on morning and afternoon game drives in search of the 'Big5' - elephant, rhino, buffalo, leopard and lion.

Famous for the annual migration, the Maasai Mara offers a wildlife spectacle where 2 million wildebeest and zebras cross the 'Mara' (around July to October) to greener pastures.

Day 17. Maasai Mara National Reserve Highlights. Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya. Accommodation. Maasai Mara Camp.

Today we have a full days game driving around this reserve. We keep our eyes peeled for the 'big 5' - buffalo, leopard, elephant, lion and rhino, who all call the reserve home.

The landscape offers rolling hills and open savanna and we spend the day seeking out the wildlife that inhabits the reserve. During the migration there are vast herds of wildebeest, gazelle and zebra clustered around the reserve. Outside of the migration there is still much to see including the resident herds, the big cats, elephant, giraffe and more.

Day 18. Maasai Mara National Reserve to Nairobi

We bid farewell to this wildlife wonderland and slowly make our way back over the dirt-track-roads to Nairobi where our tour ends on arrival in the city.

Suggested Pre-Tour Accommodation.

Hotel Boulevard, Nairobi

Conveniently located on Nairobi's Harry Thuku Road and set in manicured gardens, this hotel offers a peaceful oasis in the centre of town. Walking distance to shops and craft markets. Rooms – single, twin, double en suite rooms with balcony and satellite TV. Facilities – restaurant, bar, swimming pool, internet, laundry. Transfers are available from the Airport by pre-arrangement

* Suggested pre and post tour accommodation can be booked together with your tour. Please enquire at the time of booking.

Suggested Post-Tour Accommodation.
Hotel Boulevard, Nairobi

Conveniently located on Nairobi's Harry Thuku Road and set in manicured gardens, this hotel offers a peaceful oasis in the centre of town. Walking distance to shops and craft markets. Rooms – single, twin, double en suite rooms with balcony and satellite TV. Facilities – restaurant, bar, swimming pool, internet, laundry. Transfers are available from the Airport by pre-arrangement

* Suggested pre and post tour accommodation can be booked together with your tour. Please enquire at the time of booking.

Additional Info

PRE TOUR ACCOMMODATION:
This tour departs Nairobi early on day 1; we strongly recommend therefore that you plan to arrive at least the day before departure to overcome any jet-lag and to acclimatise to Africa. We would be happy to book pre-tour accommodation for you – please call or email us (or speak to your agent) with your arrival details and accommodation requirements. However please book early to avoid disappointment and the risk of having to find more expensive (or less convenient) lodgings.

If time allows, we also suggest planning a night or two extra (after your tour) to make the most of this part of Africa. Your Tour Leader can help with post tour accommodation if required and there are a variety of activities and excursions in the Nairobi Area that you can arrange locally. Alternatively, if you prefer, you can pre book your accommodation at the time of booking your tour.

ACTIVITIES & EXCURSIONS:
These are optional activities that are booked during your holiday and paid directly to the provider while on tour. These options offer a variety of experiences and allow you the freedom to decide what activities you would like to do.

ACCOMMODATION:
Twin share accommodation with facilities (17 nights) some may be with bar or swimming pool.

TRANSPORT:
24-seater, self-contained, custom-built safari truck with on-board tables, plug sockets, freezer, water tank, library, i-pod jack, safety features and 70-litre individual lockers, open pop top safari vehicle

GORILLA AND CHIMPANZEE PERMITS:
The Uganda Wildlife Authority imposes strict regulations regarding the gorilla trekking permits. One of these is that permits must be booked and paid in advance. In order for us to do this we must collect your permit money, in addition to your normal deposit, at the time of booking. Like your deposit, the permit money is not refundable if you cancel your tour. The Gorilla and Chimpanzee permit currently (March 2016) cost US$690.00 per person. Please ask your agent or Acacia for the equivalent amount in your own currency. On rare occasions, subject to permit availability, we may purchase trekking permits to view the gorillas in neighbouring Rwanda.

GAME PARK VISITS:
In order to maximise the quality of game driving and to comply with local authority rulings, some of our National Park visits and game viewing is carried out using services provided by local African ground handlers. As well as enhancing our experience using local guides and smaller vehicles it also allows us to contribute at a ‘grassroots’ level to local economies from which local people benefit.

TOUR STYLE:
This is a participation tour and your help will be needed in assisting with the various day to day duties, such as shopping, cooking and keeping the truck tidy (usually on a rota basis). But don’t worry it’s not all hard work and it’s a great way to meet the local people and get to know your fellow travellers. Your contribution benefits the success of the tour - most people find the greater their involvement, the greater their enjoyment of the whole trip.

Meals
17 Breakfasts, 17 Lunches, 16 Dinners

Accommodation
17 nights twin share accommodation

Includes.
Fully equipped safari vehicle
Camping and cooking equipment
All road tolls and vehicle taxes
All ground transportation
Meals as indicated
Services of two crew

Included Highlights:
The Great Rift Valley
Lake Nakuru NP, Open Vehicle Game Drive with Resident Guide*
Maasai Mara excursion with small vehicle*

*Highlights are included in the Adventure Pass
Excludes.
Visas
Flights
Travel insurance
Departure taxes
Airport transfers
Optional activities
Drinks, tips
Items of a personal nature
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Adventure Pass

Every Overland tour has an Adventure Pass which is paid to your tour leader in Africa at the beginning of the tour (or pre-paid by arrangement prior to your tour). This is separate and in addition to the Tour Price, and covers selected park entries, activities and excursions along the way where payment goes directly to the supplier to ensure local suppliers benefit directly from the income.

600 USD or 660 USD * (If prepaid)

* This pass is a compulsory add-on for this tour.

The Adventure Pass for this tour includes

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