Entanda Community Center
Kafred - Bigodi Swamp
Queen Elizabeth National Park
This tour starts from $630.00
Day 1: ENTANDA AND LAKE WAMALA
After an early breakfast at your hotel by 8:30 am, your transfer to Entanda Cultural Center in Mityana will be the beginning of your adventure. This drive takes approximately 1 and 1/2 hours. Entanda promotes cultural activities from Buganda, so this stop gives you a chance to enjoy activities like music, dance and drama plus more cultural experiences. The other activity is having a traditional meal with the people there and that will be our lunch. After about 2 and 1/2 hours of adventure and feasting, you will then be transferred to Lake Wamala for a 1 and 1/2 hours’ boat cruise and nature walk where you will experience the small fresh water lake that has a cultural and spiritual significance to the people of Buganda. You will then be transferred to your overnight destination which will be in the town of Kyenjojo which is a 2 and 1/2 hour drive from Lake Wamala.
Tooro Royal Cottages
Day 2: KAFRED AND QUEEN ELIZABETH NATIONAL PARK
After breakfast you will be transferred to Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary where you will have a village walk with a traditional lunch and a chance to experience nature and its hidden gems in Bigodi. Then you will be transferred to your final destination, the amazing and popular Queen Elizabeth National park, arriving just in time for a late afternoon 3 hours’ boat cruise along the panoramic views of the Kazinga Channel where much of its park wildlife congregates along the water banks including the elephants, buffaloes, hippos, crocodiles and water birds. After this experience, you will then return to your accommodation for dinner and an overnight stay.
Luxury: Mweya Safari Lodge
Midrange: Kyambura Game Lodge
Budget: Enganzi Lodge
DAY 3: QUEEN ELIZABETH NATIONAL PARK
You will have breakfast after waking up to the sounds on nature and then embark on your 3 hour morning game drive in the open savannahs of the park with a lot of wildlife including the buffaloes, elephants, Uganda kobs, bush buck, topi, monkeys, baboons and hyenas along with lots of birds. Thereafter, you will commence your drive back to Kampala with a stop at Igongo Cultural Center after a 3 hour drive. This is the ultimate destination for lovers of history, art, culture and comfort. Here you will experience the Southwestern Uganda Museum and Western Uganda culture. After an hour of the cultural adventure, you will embark on your final drive to Kampala— reaching in time for dinner and an overnight stay, or to be driven to Entebbe Airport for your flight back home.
Entanda Community Center
Entanda is a Luganda word that refers to a package which you offer to people that you love and care about. The package could be useful advice or physical valuables which you offer to help someone in the future. The Entanda Initiative offers visitors an opportunity to learn and explore Ugandan culture and norms. Located in Kijjudde (which means a community blessed with abundance), about and an hour and half from Kampala, the center promotes traditional practices in the areas of music, games, hunting, back cloth making, traditional medicine, food preparations and dining, religion, taboos and totems, among others. There is a hunting expedition undertaking with the visitors to save wildlife and as a result of this approach, many hunters/ poachers have laid down their tools.
Initiated in 2013, Entanda was aimed at protecting and revitalizing the waning Buganda cultural practices and natural environment through tourism. Buganda Kingdom is one of the largest and most influential pre-colonial kingdoms in what comprises the territory of Uganda. The Kingdom has a rich history which visitors experience through music, dance and drama. There are also cooking classes, village walks, hunting expeditions, bark cloth making, traditional games, local medicinal wine processing and tasting plus classes on traditional dressing.
Lake Wamala derives its name from the last king of the Bachwezi dynasty, who founded the Kitara territory that covered the central, western and southern parts of Uganda and part of northern Tanzania, western Kenya and eastern Congo during the bronze age. A local legend suggests that King Wamala disappeared into the lake at a site near the fishing village of Nakyegalika and his spirit lives on in the lake, making the lake of strong traditional and cultural significance to the people of Buganda. People from all walks of life and from as far as Kampala frequent this site to perform rituals. At Nakyegalika – one of the spiritual sites where Buganda kings performed rituals to appease spirits, there is a cave of cultural significance that is overseen by the Lugave clan, one of Buganda’s major clans.
The lake covers a total area of 250 square kilometers and is fed by rivers from the surrounding areas including the Nyanzi, Kitenga, Kabasuma, Mpamujugu and Bimbye rivers. The vegetation surrounding Lake Wamala is dominated by papyrus, other spectacular floaters and water based vegetation. Fishing and other activities along the river make it not suitable for bathing and swimming. There are also trees such as Raphia and other palms. There exist remnants of a variety of species such as wild pigs, hippopotamus, bush bucks, water bucks, velvet monkeys, baboons and a variety of birds such as guinea fowls, turraco and francolins in the forests, while a diversity of water-based birds are visible in the remaining wetlands. Existing fish species include tilapia, catfish and lungfish.
Different bird species have made the islands in the lake their home and some of these islands are used for cultural functions. The main islands include Lwanja, Mabo, Kizara, Kazinga and Bagwe islands. Among the Baganda, it is believed that some islands are a home to their ancestral spirits that would help solve their problems and many other ailments.
KAFRED - Bigodi Swamp
Kibale Association for Rural and Environmental Development (KAFRED) is an important stakeholder in eco-tourism in Bigodi, a village situated in the highlands of Western Uganda. KAFRED was founded in 1992 in order to conserve areas of rich biodiversity outside nationally protected areas; wetlands in particular, and to benefit communities from tourism businesses in the area. Bigodi lies in the shadows of the Rwenzori Mountains, the famous “Mountains of the Moon”. The community is located about 40 kilometers outside Fort Portal and borders Kibale National Park, which has the highest population of primates in the world. KAFRED’s main focus is to conserve Magombe swamp, also known as the Bigodi Wetlands Sanctuary.
Other than being the home of the Great Blue Turaco, this bird watcher’s paradise shelters over 200 species of birds. Local guides take visitors through the lush vegetation where in addition to birds, many animals and magnificent flora can be admired.
KAFRED also offers a cultural experience which takes up to 3 to 4 hours depending on the pace of the group, where you explore the village of Bigodi, including the option of visiting a traditional healer who will share his knowledge about spirits, herbs, plants and local medicines. A visit to the local school, church and the trading center –the hub of rural life – is also included in the tour. Visitors can also admire the work of more than 150 weavers of Bigodi Women’s Group who sell baskets, mats, bags, jewelry and other crafts.
The income earned by KAFRED is used to fund projects in the community including water kiosks and water pumps which provide clean and safe drinking water for over 2,000 households. The construction and management of Bigodi Secondary School, which is the only secondary school in the Bigodi parish is another successful project and thanks to the tourism revenues, KAFRED is able to support the parents with payment of the school fees and offers education to the less fortunate. A beehive project has also played a role in generating additional income for the locals.
Queen Elizabeth National Park
Queen Elizabeth National Park is understandably Uganda’s most popular and visited wildlife conservation area. The park lies in the western part of Uganda in the districts of Kamwenge, Rukungiri, Rubirizi, and Kasese. Queen Elizabeth National Park has green scenery for most of the year with sprawling savannah, shady, humid forests, sparkling lakes and fertile wetlands, making it the ideal habitat for wildlife. Named after Queen Elizabeth II, this park was previously named Kazinga National Park.
This gazetted park ensures the conservation of its ecosystems, which in turn benefits the surrounding communities. The park is home to over 95 mammal species including the classic big game, ten primate species including chimpanzees and over 600 bird species. Some of the activities to carry out in this popular national park include wildlife/game viewing and local community visits. Other exciting sought-after activities include game viewing, chimpanzee tracking, hot air ballooning, birding, hiking and nature walks, bird watching, launch cruises on the Kazinga Channel, lion tracking, a visit to the explosion crater and a visit to the Katwe Salt Works.
Tourists mainly come to Queen Elizabeth National Park for lion tracking because of the famous cactus tree climbing lions. It also gives them a chance to get an up-close session with the lions and get to study their behaviors. There are only two populations of these mysterious tree climbing lions in the whole world; Queen Elizabeth national park and Lake Manyara National Park in the southern part of Tanzania, making these big cats a major attraction for the tourists that visit East Africa.
The park is set against the back of the great Rwenzori Mountains with beautiful views that are made up of various crater lakes. These lakes are carved dramatically into the green rolling hills. The Kazinga Channel's shores are also a spectacle and are packed with hippos, elephants and buffaloes. You will also see the savannah plains of Ishasha, whose fig trees cover the majestic tree-climbing lions.
Some of the exciting scenery locations in the park include the Kazinga Channel that harbors a couple of wildlife including the Nile crocodiles. It is a major attraction as tourists take a boat cruise across its shores to view the magnificent wildlife scenery. The Mweya peninsular into Lake Edward covered by candlestick thorns with the outlying impressive savannah also make it an excellent area for game viewing. Lake Katwe salt works and the explosion craters, Kyambura Gorge, the magnificent valley of apes, Maragambo forest (known for its bat caves and resident African rock pythons) are all worth visiting. The endless views of savannahs with roaming antelopes and the Uganda kob in Kasenyi plains are all found here. It also harbors numerous lions, leopards plus many other cats and the extraordinary views of wildlife, primates and butterflies at Kyambura Wildlife Reserve.
Queen Elizabeth National Park has a fascinating cultural history on top of its outstanding wildlife attractions. There are also opportunities to visit the local communities and enjoy sessions of music, dance, drama and storytelling.
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Transportation in a Tour Van/Land Cruiser
Service of an English-Speaking tour guide/Driver
All activities mentioned in the itinerary
Accommodation on full board
Entrance fees to all destinations as per the program.
Transfers to and from the airport/Kampala
Free WIFI for the entire trip
All activities not mentioned in the program
Phone call bills
Visas to Uganda
Gratitude to tour-guides
Visas to Uganda
Personal effects of any nature
Hotel fees before and after the safari