Attractions

  • Experience Tribal Culture with Cultural Tours in East Africa

    Chris Walker Bush
    July 30, 2017
    There is more to East Africa than world-class game drives and stunning landscapes. A cultural activity is a great way to learn more about the tribes and cultures of East Africa.
  • How to Combat the Rwanda Gorilla Permit Price Increase

    AdminSoa
    May 26, 2017

    Price Change

    The Rwanda Development Board's recent announcement that they would immediately be lifting the cost of gorilla trekking permits from $750 USD to $1,500 USD has shocked a lot of people.

    While there's no debating that generating more money for gorilla conservation can only be a good thing, the price change has made the prospect of gorilla trekking in Rwanda a daunting one for many travelers.

    Thankfully, we're here to suggest a few ways in which you can still live your dream of seeing mountain gorillas in the wild without breaking the bank.

    Existing Permits

    If you've already purchased your gorilla trekking permit, your price is unaffected!

    While there were rumors that the price change would affect existing bookings, we can confirm that all pre-booked gorilla trekking permits retain their original price.

    Gorilla Trekking in Uganda

    An obvious alternative to gorilla trekking in Rwanda is heading to neighboring Uganda, where permits range from $450 USD in low season to $600 USD during peak season.

    While gorilla trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is a more difficult hike, the experience is no less awe-inspiring.

    With flights to Kigali still more affordable than flights into Entebbe, we've made things easier with our four new Ugandan gorilla trekking safaris.

    Starting and finishing in Kigali, these trips include transfers into southern Uganda where you'll enjoy the thrill of gorilla trekking in either Bwindi Impenetrable National Park or Mgahinga National Park.

    You can check out our new itineraries below:

    Three Day Uganda Gorilla Trekking Itineraries

    The above two itineraries are perfect for people on a tight schedule.

    While the drive north into Uganda is a long (six-hour) one, you'll be hard-pressed to find a more scenic drive in your travels.

    You'll then get to go gorilla trekking in either Bwindi Impenetrable National Park or Mgahinga National Park, both of which offer world-class gorilla trekking at a fraction of the cost.

    Four Day Uganda Gorilla Trekking Itineraries

    If time is less of a factor, you might want to take advantage of these slightly longer itineraries.

    Combining your Uganda gorilla trekking experience with either golden monkey trekking or a cultural tour, these are a great way to expand your trip without expanding your costs by too much.

    Why Combine Uganda and Rwanda?

    These four safaris allow you to combine Uganda's affordable gorilla trekking permits with Kigali's superior accessibility.

    They also all include a complimentary Kigali city tour.

    Gorilla Trekking in Rwanda

    If you still have your heart set on gorilla trekking in Rwanda, there are ways to make the experience more affordable.

    By combining Rwanda's other national parks with your visit to Volcanoes National Park, you can earn a 30% discount on the cost of your gorilla trekking permits.

    How to get cheap Rwanda Gorilla Trekking Permits

    It's as simple as paying a visit to Akagera National Park and Nyungwe Forest National Park.

    Why not combine your gorilla trekking experience with chimpanzee trekking in Nyungwe and a Big Five game drive in Akagera?

    Our seven day Ultimate Rwanda Wildlife Safari combines all three parks into one fantastic itinerary, allowing you to take advantage of the 30% discount on gorilla permits.

    Uganda Instead of Rwanda

    if you didn't have your heart set on Rwandan and don't mind flying into Entebbe, why not just make your whole trip about Uganda?

    The Pearl of Africa offers a huge variety of experiences and landscapes, as highlighted in our recent 10 Reasons Not to Overlook Uganda post.

    From Big Five safaris to gorilla trekking to world-class chimpanzee trekking to whitewater rafting to hiking the Rwenzori Mountains, Uganda has something for everybody.

    Why not browse some of our favorite Uganda itineraries below?

    Combine Rwanda with Tanzania or Kenya

    if the price of gorilla permits isn't an issue for you, why not combine your visit to Rwanda's famous mountain gorillas with a complete safari experience in either Tanzania or Kenya?

    With Kigali International Airport so well connected to the world, it's easy to pair your visit to Rwanda with a Big Five game safari in either Tanzania or Kenya.

    If witnessing the Wildebeest Migration on the Serengeti or Maasai Mara is also a dream of yours, we've got you covered!

    These itineraries are just a taste of what we can offer.

    With offices in Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Kenya - Shadows of Africa is ideally situated to assist in planning a cross country safari.

    Want to know more?

    Are you planning to see Rwanda's mountain gorillas? Contact us to discuss how we can help to make your gorilla trekking dream a reality.

  • How to Plan a Cross-County Safari

    Chris Walker Bush
    May 16, 2017
    A cross country safari is a perfect way to see it all, and Shadows of Africa is your best choice when it comes to designing a cross country safari in East Africa.
  • East African Destinations for a Family Safari

    AdminSoa
    May 8, 2017

    Planning a Family Safari

    Planning a safari for your family can be a stressful affair. You've not only got to consider your own safari ambitions, but also the shorter attention spans of your younger travelers.

    While we've written before about how to plan a family safari, we thought we'd highlight some must-see destinations when it comes to entertaining young and old alike.

    From learning about Maasai culture in Tanzania to walking with giraffes in Kenya to beach escapes in Rwanda, there's a little something for everybody in East Africa.

    Ol Pejeta Conservancy, Kenya

    This former cattle ranch is today a beacon for conservation in East Africa. Not only is Ol Pejeta the largest black rhino sanctuary in East Africa, it's also home to some of the world's last remaining white rhinos.

    The conservancy is also home to a large variety of other animals, including plenty of Africa's iconic big cats and a chimpanzee sanctuary.

    The opportunity to go on a game drive, visit the chimpanzee sanctuary, and meet Najin, Fatu, and Sudan (three of the world's last white rhinoceros) are the highlights, but there's more!

    Night game drives, lion tracking, bush walks, birding, and plenty to occupy young and old alike make Ol Pejeta a premier family safari destination.

    Lake Naivasha, Kenya

    While it's not a national park in its own right, Lake Naivasha is a regular inclusion on Kenyan safaris.

    Located between Lake Nakuru National Park and the Maasai Mara, Lake Naivasha is often included as a stop due to its abundance of comfortable lodges, its beautiful scenery, and its proximity to a variety of Lake Naivasha attractions.

    Key among these attractions are the opportunity to take a boat ride on Lake Naivasha to see hippos and a variety of birds.

    You can also pay a visit to the Crescent Island Sanctuary, where kids can wander alongside giraffes, zebras, and antelope.

    Nairobi, Kenya

    Nairobi is a common starting point for safaris in both Kenya and Tanzania, but the Kenyan capital is also full of exciting activities for families.

    Our half-day Nairobi tour and full-day Nairobi tour pack in a variety of activities including the David Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage, the Giraffe Centre, Bomas of Kenya, and more.

    Why not add a day in Nairobi to the start or finish of your safari?

    Hell's Gate National Park, Kenya

    Located a short drive from Lake Nakuru, Lake Naivasha, and Nairobi - Hell's Gate National Park is often thought of as a playground for those who love extreme outdoor activities.

    While rock-climbing and hiking might be a bit much for a young family, Hell's Gate's unique landscape and lack of predators make it a great place for a relaxed family excursion.

    Renting a bike and traveling through Hell's Gate is a great way to see Africa up close. You can also visit the local hot springs and even camp!

    Zanzibar, Tanzania

    Africa's premier beach playground is tailor-made for families.

    With a variety of resorts catering to all budgets and all walks of life, there's something for everybody on Tanzania's spice island.

    Whether you're looking to relax in luxury, take excursions for snorkeling, or learn more about the island's history - there is plenty of things to do in Zanzibar.

    Africa Amini Maasai Lodge, Tanzania

    Authentic cultural experiences can be difficult to come by while traveling. With many locals realizing the value of tourism, there has been a rise in 'fake' attractions aimed at selling souvenirs.

    Thankfully, Africa Amini Maasai Lodge near Arusha has filled this niche. A not for profit organisation aimed at bettering the lives of local Maasai, Africa Amini Lodge combines luxury with an authentic cultural experience.

    At this beautiful lodge, adults and kids alike can participate in Maasai led activities such as guided nature walks, traditional craft lessons, local food, spear throwing, music, and dance.

    Arusha National Park, Tanzania

    Not as popular as the Serengeti or Lake Manyara, Arusha National Park is nonetheless worthy of inclusion on your safari.

    Without any predators to worry about, visitors to Arusha National Park can trade the car for the open air - with both walking safaris and canoe safaris available.

    There's plenty to do in Arusha National Park, and it's thoroughly worth including in your trip if time allows.

    Murchison Falls National Park, Uganda

    While Murchison Falls National Park is a little out of the way compared to Uganda's other popular parks, there are plenty of reasons why your family will love the park.

    Not only is the park home to some of Africa's most iconic animals, but the waterfall from which it takes its name is worth a visit.

    Murchison Falls is the world's most powerful waterfall, and the chance to witness its power up close and take a cruise on the Nile are this park's big selling points.

    Queen Elizabeth National Park, Uganda

    Located on the drive between Kibale Forest National Park and Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Queen Elizabeth National Park is Uganda's premier game drive destination.

    Famed for its tree climbing lions, the park's open plains are also home to a variety of other animals and an equally huge variety of lodges and camps.

    A highlight of any visit to the park is the chance to take a boat safari on Kazinga Channel to see elephants, hippos, crocodiles, and a huge variety of birds.

    Lake Kivu, Rwanda

    Rwanda's main attractions - chimpanzees and gorillas - aren't available to kids under the age of twelve, but there are still reasons to visit The Land of 1,000 Hills.

    Lake Kivu is one of the most beautiful bodies of water in all of East Africa - the perfect place for a beach escape without the ocean.

    The shores of Lake Kivu are dotted with gorgeous accommodations ranging from luxury lodges to quaint B&Bs, and there are a variety of local cultural activities to participate in.

    Iby Iwacu Cultural Village, Rwanda

    Located in Musanze, the Iby Iwacu Cultural Village is a project by reformed poachers to raise awareness of traditional Rwandan culture.

    Visitors to this cultural park can try traditional food, see displays of local dance and music, learn about traditional culture, and even try their hand at being King or Queen for a day!

     

  • 10 Reasons Not to Overlook Uganda

    AdminSoa
    May 2, 2017
    Uganda is often overlooked on safari itineraries. We highlight ten reasons why Uganda is a can't miss African destination.
  • How to Spend a Day in Kigali

    AdminSoa
    April 7, 2017
    Kigali is more than just a layover city. In addition to its historic genocide sites, there's a wealth of cultural and culinary experiences to be had.
  • Things to do at Lake Naivasha

    Chris Walker Bush
    March 11, 2017
    Lake Naivasha is a popular stop on Kenyan safaris due to its proximity to a number of other attractions. Read on to find out why it should feature on your itinerary.
  • When and Where to see the Wildebeest Migration

    Chris Walker Bush
    February 20, 2017
    The Wildebeest Migration is the unchallenged king when it comes to safaris. Whether you want to catch it at its infancy in Ndutu or crave the high drama of a river crossing, this comprehensive guide has you covered,
  • Between Ngorongoro & Manyara. Elephant Caves Walk

    Lesia
    December 19, 2016

    If you would like to stretch your legs a bit after a longtime sitting during safari, there is an option to have a 2 hour hike to the Elephant Caves and Endoro waterfalls.

    Start of the track is located in Karatu town near Gibbs farm. You will be accompanied by a professional guide. You will hike through Ngorongoro rainforest - this is a corridor for animals between Lake Manyara National Park and the Ngorongoro Crater. During your walk through untouched forest you will be able to observe all the beauty of wild nature and amazing bird life. Your guide will explain to you about theanimal’s tracks from their footprints.

    Why the elephant caves are called elephant caves? Those giants used to come to the rocks which are very rich for calcium, they hit the rocks with their tusks and eat the piece sand it helps the elephants to receive enough minerals and to make their bones very strong. The big holes are still there and that is why people call this place“elephant caves.”

    You will be able to come very close, even step inside the caves and see signs from tusks.

    There is a small Endoro River near the caves, and the elder elephants pick this place as a point to spend their old age and finally pass away so some call this an elephant burial grounds as well.

    After caves you will track to the Endoro waterfall –a  great spot to observe the view of Karatu town and take some unforgettable pictures.

    Julia & Marjeta are exploring Elephant Caves

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