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Uganda Family Safaris

4.3/5  –  284 Uganda Reviews

Adventurous, outdoorsy families will fall in love with Uganda. Imagine the thrill of taking your children to track wild gorillas or chimps and coming face-to-face with these extraordinary creatures in their lushly forested home. Or being with your family on a game drive in search of lumbering elephants and tree-climbing lions, or on a boat trip on a timeless tropical waterway alive with hippos, crocodiles and waterbirds. True, Uganda isn't for everybody, and if your children would prefer hanging in a mall to heading out on a nature trail, then you might want to think twice about taking them on safari to Uganda (or anywhere else for that matter). But if they are receptive to the outdoors and love wildlife, a Uganda safari will be the holiday of a lifetime.

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1-20 of 465 family safaris to Uganda

5 Questions About Uganda Family Safaris

 
 

5 Questions About Uganda Family Safaris

Answered by Philip Briggs

Is Uganda recommended for a family safari?

“That depends on the family. Uganda certainly wouldn't qualify as a conventional family holiday destination, given that it lacks for swimming beaches, amusement parks, resort-style hotels and other such child-friendly amenities. On the other hand, it has a lot to offer adventurous, sociable families with a strong interest in the outdoors and wildlife. As safari destinations go, it is particularly attractive to families because it offers more opportunities than most to vary the usual regime of twice-daily game drives with boat trips and guided walks. Overall, Uganda is probably better suited to families with teenagers than to those with younger children. But bear in mind that online screen time is likely to be restricted by slow or nonexistent internet connections in many places.”

1

How old should my children be to go on safari in Uganda?

“Two fixed age restrictions relating to travel in Uganda with kids are that children under the age of 15 are not allowed to track gorillas, while those under 12 are not permitted to track chimps. The Uganda Wildlife Authority might make an exception for children a few months short of the relevant birthday, but the paperwork needs to be completed in advance. It is also the case that while most lodges and camps in Uganda are open to all, others (mostly at the luxury end of the scale) impose a minimum age restriction of anything from 4 to 12 years old. Those restrictions aside, kids of any age can go on safari in Uganda, though the experience tends to be more rewarding for older children. Generally, children of a preschool age lack the concentration and interest to really enjoy game drives and similar activities. For those aged between 6 and 10 years, a lot depends on the individual child’s interest levels and boredom thresholds. Most over-10s absolutely love being on safari and are fascinated by the wildlife, but again this depends on the temperament of the individual child, so some parental judgement is necessary. Children of any age who are prone to tantrums, whining or crying are unlikely to be much fun on safari, especially if you do group activities with non-family members. If in doubt, with children of any age, it's probably best to restrict your first African safari to a manageable period of less than 7 days, and to book a private safari tour package.”

2

Which parks are recommended for a Uganda family safari?

“Assuming that all members of the family are old enough to go gorilla trekking, the two national parks where this can be done are Bwindi Impenetrable and Mgahinga Gorilla, both of which are in the far southwest. An absolute minimum of 3 days is required to track in one of these parks using the capital city of Kampala or nearby Entebbe International Airport as a springboard for your safari. Most people spend longer in the area, however, and combine gorilla trekking with a more traditional safari in Queen Elizabeth National Park (home to lion, elephant, buffalo, hippo and the like) and possibly chimp trekking in Kalinzu Forest, Kibale National Park or Kyambura Gorge. For families whose children are too young for gorilla trekking, a recommended option is Murchison Falls National Park, which is home to four of the Big Five (rhino are absent) and offers a great combination of game drives and boat safaris. Murchison Falls is easily combined with chimp trekking in Budongo Forest and a visit to Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary.”

3

Is it safe to bring my children on a Uganda safari?

“Uganda is generally safe for travel. In most parts of the country regularly visited by tourists, there is little to worry about in terms of crime and security. The main exception is the capital Kampala, which has crime levels similar to any large city. Healthwise, your main concern, traveling with or without children, should be malaria. This is especially the case if any member of your family is unable to take antimalarial drugs (a category that includes breastfeeding mothers and children under the age of 4). Sporadic and very localized outbreaks of Ebola have occurred in Uganda, but as things stand the risk posed to casual travelers is practically nonexistent. Wildlife is not generally a major cause for concern in Uganda, but parents should be extra cautious with young children when staying in camps and lodges in national parks. You have little to worry about with children on game drives and boat safaris, but if you track gorillas or take part in other hikes, it is vital that you and your children obey the instructions of your guides at all times.”

4

What should we pack for our children when going on safari in Uganda?

“Even if your children are fascinated by wildlife, they are likely to be bored on long drives between national parks, so bring plenty of distractions (tablet, games, toys or snacks). If your children are used to watching shows or playing games on a tablet, bear in mind that you’ll probably lack internet access much of the time in Uganda, so download plenty of content in advance. It's worth bringing binoculars for your children so they can enjoy looking at wildlife up close. You may also want to bring an African wildlife checklist and/or suitable bird and mammal field guides to help keep them occupied on game drives and boat trips. Otherwise, the safari accessories required by children are much the same as those for adults: sunscreen, insect repellent, a good selection of warm and waterproof clothing, solid shoes for walking, sunglasses and a hat.”

5

Uganda Reviews

4.3/5 284 Reviews
Expert
Mark Eveleigh  –  
United Kingdom UK

Mark is a travel writer who grew up in Africa and has written over 700 titles for CNN Traveller, Travel Africa, BBC Wildlife and others.

Fantastic wildlife and some of the friendliest people in Africa make Uganda unbeatable
5/5

I spent a month travelling around Uganda with a self-drive, expedition-prepared Landcruiser and visited almost every national park in the country. Uganda was a revelation! I had not expected such a richness of wildlife or such great...

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Expert
Lizzie Williams  –  
South Africa ZA

Lizzie is a reputed guidebook writer and author of the Footprint guides to South Africa, Namibia, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Zimbabwe.

Mountain gorillas, chimps and birds in lush, well-watered and incredibly green hills and valleys
4/5

Most of the superlative descriptions you read about Uganda are totally true, and it really is a place of shimmering lakes, lofty mountains and mysterious forests. Best known as the place to see mountain gorillas, no safari to the country...

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Klaus Hüskes  –  
Germany DE
Reviewed: Jan 25, 2023
I now know what made Winston Churchil say Uganda is the pearl of Africa, and he was right.
5/5

It was our first trip to Africa. We booked through Skyway Expedition in Entebbe and were thrilled. We felt absolutely safe at all times and warmly welcomed. The country is a wonder of nature, a treasure chest for nature lovers. I hope that...

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Ilias Kyriakopoulos  –  
Greece GR
Reviewed: Jan 16, 2023
Awesome nature friendly people
5/5

We booked home for Africa for gorilla trekking . The accomadation was great, our driver William, friendly and helpful. We also went hiking to mountain elgon Awesome nature. And we had a safari at Murchison Falls as well. Brilliant...

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Mariona CL  –  
United Arab Emirates AE
Reviewed: Jan 3, 2023
Uganda is a vibrant, welcoming and peaceful setting for wildlife lovers.
5/5

Home to Africa has been very accomodating and has adapted to all of our requests when planning and budgeting. Our guide, Benon, was fun, kind, patient and knowledgeable. He made us feel very comfortable and was always on the lookout to make...

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Ee Chang  –  
United Kingdom UK
Reviewed: Jan 1, 2023
Uganda is an underrated destination, would deserve better publicity
5/5

We have been fortunate enough to book 2 safari experiences, one going through the Ziwa Rhinos sanctuary and Murchison Falls National Park, where we've been able to see very closely all big five, another going to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest...

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