To trek into the rain forest and sit with a family of wild mountain gorillas, looking into the eyes of a huge silverback at close range, watching babies cling to their mothers, laughing at youngsters playing in the trees...it's a life-enhancing experience for a wildlife lover. To capture amazing photographs of such encounters lets you relive these rare moments in enduring images.

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Why We Love It

Four separate gorilla-tracking expeditions — two each in Uganda and Rwanda

Complete the primate experience in Kibale National Park photographing wild chimpanzees and colobus monkeys

Explore Queen Elizabeth National Park, where African plains game and predators abound on the savannas of the western Rift Valley

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Day by day Itinerary

Ultimate Gorilla Photo Safari

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Day 1

ENTEBBE

Arrive in Entebbe and transfer to your hotel. Meet your expedition leader at a welcome dinner this evening, where we’ll have a full orientation to our gorilla tour. (D)

Day 2

ENTEBBE – KIBALE NATIONAL PARK

A day’s drive across Uganda’s green highlands takes us to Kibale, the equatorial rain forest reserve that is home to one of the world’s most prolific primate populations, including 1,300 chimpanzees. (B)(L)(D)

Day 3

KIBALE NATIONAL PARK

On two different occasions, trackers help us spot chimps and monkeys, which we’ll have plenty of time to watch and photograph as our expedition leader offers tips on how to capture the best shots in the low forest light. (B)(L)(D)

Day 4

KIBALE NATIONAL PARK

See Day 3 for today's itinerary. (B)(L)(D)

Day 5

QUEEN ELIZABETH NATIONAL PARK

Rise early this morning to depart by road for Queen Elizabeth National Park, skirting the western Rift Valley. On the Kazinga Channel, take a boat ride among the world’s largest concentration of hippos, as well as crocodiles, baboons and myriad birds. It is also home to lion, buffalo, elephant and antelope, all of which offer exciting photography opportunities. After lunch, we continue our wildlife drive to the southern sector of the park. (B)(L)(D)

Day 6

QUEEN ELIZABETH NATIONAL PARK – BWINDI NATIONAL PARK

Morning game drive looking for the park’s famous tree-climbing lions, continuing onto Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and our gorilla-trekking base Mahogany Springs Lodge. Though best known for its outstanding gorilla tracking, it also provides refuge to chimpanzees, monkeys, elephants and various small antelope. (B)(L)(D)

Day 7

GORILLA TREKING IN BWINDI NATIONAL PARK

Within the World Heritage Site that is Bwindi Impenetrable Forest our safari includes two chances to spend time among the gorillas, maximizing prospects for extraordinary photographs, often at very close range. Early in the morning, we depart on a trek through the dense rain forest on a quest to locate one of the “habituated” family groups. (B)(L)(D) 

Day 8

GORILLA TREKING IN BWINDI NATIONAL PARK

See Day 7 for today's itinerary. (B)(L)(D)

Day 9

BWINDI NATIONAL PARK - VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK

Leaving Bwindi, we descend to the Rift Valley floor, driving past local villages and coffee plantations. Entering Rwanda, continue to Parc National des Volcans—Volcanoes National Park—named for the string of jungle-draped volcanoes inside its borders. (B)(L)(D)

Day 10

GORILLA TREKKING IN VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK

Several habituated gorilla families live in the park, and we learn how important our ecotourism presence is to their survival before we trek in search of them. Our pace will be unhurried; the hike is tiring, lasting from 30 minutes to several hours. But what a reward: our destination is a specific group of habituated gorillas where we will spend a full hour with a gorilla troop. (B)(L)(D)

Day 11

GORILLA TREKKING IN VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK

See Day 10 for today's itinerary. (B)(L)(D)

Day 12

VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK – KIGALI

Our focus today is the endangered golden monkeys. On a much less strenuous hike, we look for these agile entertainers that swing through the forest canopy and delight us with their antics. This afternoon, we depart for Rwanda’s capital, Kigali. (B)(L)(D)

Day 13

KIGALI

This morning we visit the Kigali Memorial Centre, before a farewell lunch, transfer to the airport for departing flights. (B)(L)

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