Although most visitors often prefer safaris with company, a section of them also enjoy traveling solo/alone. At times, you fail to get a group to join or perhaps your friends are busy but you need to travel to discover the wonders of Uganda. A solo safari then becomes a special option for you to make your dream come true.
The beauty about solo or traveling alone on a Uganda safari is that you have ultimate opportunity to capture every moment of your trip say wildlife, the breathtaking landscape and this comes with no worries about delays from fellow travelers. Solo traveling is perfect for photographers and you a chance to choose whatever you need including the National Parks to explore, the exciting safari activities to do and how long you should be at the destination.
There are plenty of exciting activities for visitors to engage in on solo travel in Uganda. These are available in the Eastern region, especially in Jinja where you can take up quad biking, zip lining, white-water rafting, canoeing, bungee jumping, kayaking and others. In the western side, you can participate in chimpanzee and gorilla trekking, birding, game drives, to mention but a few.
Gorilla trekking for solo travelers
Gorilla trekking in Uganda is possible to be enjoyed on solo travel. There are 2 options to choose for alone travelers to make their dreams come true and that is visiting Bwindi Impenetrable National Park or Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. A gorilla tour is the most famous activity for adventure seekers on solo travel in Uganda, offering a great opportunity for you to get up close and personal with the family of endangered mountain gorillas.
During the actual gorilla trekking, you will have one gorilla family allocated to you to track in a sub-group of eight clients starting at 8:00 am. Every single sub-group of 8 pax is accompanied by an experienced park ranger guides and you will spend 2-6 hours in the jungles searching for a group of these amazing creatures in the wild.
When you get a family of mountain gorillas, by gorilla trekking standards, you will have one hour to have a face-to-face encounter and taking photos. Note: tracking mountain gorillas happens in only 3 countries: Uganda, Congo and Rwanda. In Uganda, there are 21 families all fully habituated and open for gorilla trekking and tourists can visit any of the country’s five regions: Ntebeko, Ruhija, Buhoma, Rushaga and Nkuringo sectors. Valid gorilla permits are essential for any gorilla trekking to take place and you can book one at USD 700 per person and make booking at least 2-6 months before the actual date of tracking mountain gorillas.
Uganda features some of the finest savanna national parks in the world, offering excellent game viewing opportunities to solo travelers or group visitors. At the comfort of your 4×4 tourist vehicle, you will spend 2-3 hours navigating through the sweeping savanna plains of Kidepo Valley National Parks, Murchison Falls National Park, Semuliki, Queen Elizabeth and Lake Mburo National Park.
On a game drive in Uganda, expect to encounter a myriad of wildlife including the African bush elephants, cape buffaloes, cheetahs, leopards, spotted hyenas, giraffes, lions (plus the tree climbing lions at Ishasha area), antelope families like waterbucks, oribis, Uganda Kobs, Jackson’s hartebeests, bush bucks, and bird species.
Uganda has plenty of water bodies, most of which are ideal for launch or boat cruise excursions. The boat cruise experience is a remarkable leisure activity offering visitors a chance to see aquatic life such as birds, hippos, and crocodiles depending on the destination. The best places to visit for launch cruise excursions include Murchison Falls National Park (to the base of Murchison Falls or to the Nile Delta), Queen Elizabeth National Park (along the Kazinga channel), Lake Victoria and Lake Mburo National Park along Lake Mburo and Lake Bunyonyi to visit some of its spectacular islands.
Chimpanzee tracking is one of the most memorable primate adventures awaiting you to enjoy on a solo travel in Uganda. Over 5600 chimpanzees are estimated to be surviving in Uganda and in different locations. These apes share over 99% DNA with humans and a trek to see them is a remarkable chance for us to make comparisons. A chimp trek begins with briefing and a normal adventure lasts for 2-4 hours to find a chimpanzee community.
The best chimpanzee trekking locations in Uganda include Kyambura Gorge (Queen Elizabeth National Park), Budongo Forest/Kaniyo-Pabidi Forest (Murchison Falls NP), Kibale National Park, and Kalinzu Forest Reserve.
Other than game safaris, solo travel in Uganda also allows you to be part of the memorable spot fishing tours. Unlike normal fishing, this is different in that you use a catch and release method, and the target is to catch the heaviest Nile Perch. The main areas to visit for spot fishing include Murchison Falls National Park, Jinja and Lake Mburo National Park.
White water rafting
White water rafting is one of the amazing adrenaline adventures you can be part of while on solo travel, especially in Jinja. You will explore the Nile River on a full-day excursion while conquering the tough grades like grade 5. Other experiences to do at the source of the Nile River include kayaking, bungee jumping, jet boating, and more.
Other interesting highlights include hiking/nature walking tours, mountaineering/mountain climbing, bird watching, and more.
Important travel tips for alone travelers on Uganda safaris
- Always observe the set precautions while in the destination. Feel free to ask the residents for guidance or advice, especially on areas not to be visited. Don’t walk alone in dark streets while in the city, and take proper care of your valuables. Female solo travelers, ensure that you dress decently.
- If you are interested in hiking, please do so with an experienced guide.
- Uganda is a safe destination for solo travelers –male or female. What is most important, carry all essentials to make your trip a memorable one and these include valid visas, passports, daypack, long trousers, sweaters, rain jackets, insect repellents, and more.