How to Safari in Uganda on Budget

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Uganda is located in East Africa. It is bordered by Kenya in the east, Tanzania in the south, Rwanda in south west, and DR Congo in the west.

Most travelers may perceive that Eastern Africa safaris as expensive but Uganda is one of the destinations you can visit for those who want to an ultimate safari but don’t have much to spend. The reason to travel to Uganda on budget is you can find a lot of adventure activities to do, book online budget tour operator who can offer you deals to travel as a group and visit during the low season from March, April to May and October to November.

Choose the places to visit in Uganda

Gorilla trekking is a highlight of any trip to Uganda. Make your journey to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in South Western Uganda, home to half of the world’s mountain gorillas. For adventure travelers wanting to safari on budget, a gorilla permit cost is $600 US but you can find your way out by camping or staying in rest camps outside the national park. Mgahinga National Park offers the best way to camping and gorilla trekking, one of the wildlife experiences on top in East Africa.

Visit national other national parks for wildlife viewing  

If gorilla trekking seems too expensive for your budget safari, Uganda has several national parks where gamer drives cost $20 and boat cruises $30. Some of the parks for wildlife viewing are Lake Mburo, Murchison falls national park, Queen Elizabeth national park and Pian Upe Wildlife Reserve. You can arrange a safari or depending on your choice, you get to some of these parks by public transport and self driving. To keep costs within your budget, make sure to stay in budget accommodations. Dormitories, self and non self contained bandas, tents, hostels such as Mweya in Queen Elizabeth national park, are extremely affordable starting as low as $10 US per night if compared to lodges that charge over $100 per night. Game viewing starts at early at 06:30 or 07am, so you should be close to the park offices to be on time for game drive with rangers.

Besides game viewing, lots of activities can be done in parks such as hiking, nature walks, birding. Mgahinga gorilla national park in southwestern Uganda is home to 3 dormant volcanoes proving the best volcano hiking trails. Hiking excursions range from take 6-8 hours depending on the volcano you choose to hike. The park has the best campsites starting at $40 per person.

Visit Jinja for thrilling white water rafting and outdoor adventures

The Nile, the world’s longest river has its source in Jinja located eastern Uganda about 1 hour drive from Kampala. The Nile itself is one of the 7 natural world wonders, plus its budget friendly adventures are enough for travelers wanting to safari in Uganda on budge.

Jinja is nicknamed the adventure capital of East Africa with a variety of outdoor adventures to do on a weekend or just for a day trip. Jinja offers outdoor adventure activities such as white water rafting, kayaking, horseback riding, and quad biking, swimming, cycling, and biking. In addition, Jinja is just along the Nile, it boasts beautiful scenery and weather, affordable guest houses, campsites, restaurants. Also easy to get there by public transport unlike going to some national parks, the highway from Kampala city takes you straight to Jinja. You just need to know the time to particular activities. For instance rafting starts in the morning while the rest can be done any time of the day. Taxis, bus coasters depart Kampala any time of the day. You can hire a car and self drive to Jinja safely.

Accommodations

Staying in affordable accommodation is one of the best ways to safari in Uganda on budget.  Accommodations in Uganda national parks range from budget, mid-range and luxury lodges to community rest camps, guest houses, cottages, dormitories to bandas owned by Uganda wildlife authority. There are options to get where to stay in any national park you choose to visit.

Not all safari lodges are expensive. There are those offering basic accommodation and in their rooms you can find amenities such as, good beds, hot and running water, and flash toilets. Visitors can stay on the basis of bed and breakfast, half or full board. There are also basic huts or large tents with pit latrines, simple beds, bathrooms which are separate and hot water will be heated. For instance in Ishasha sector of queen Elizabeth national park.

In Murchison falls national park, there are also lazy bush camping tented lodges which offer accommodation starting around $70 for those sharing and $80 for single occupancy. These have solar power are mostly located in the bushes along the Nile.

If you opt to stay in tented camps, some provide beds while others require you to pack items for sleeping comfortably.

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