Best Car Rental Safari Through East Africa with a Guide

4×4 Car Hire Uganda were absolutely fantastic with us. Together with 2 friends, I rented a Toyota Land cruiser for 3 weeks over Christmas of 2021. We drove about 5,000 kilometers over the 3-week period without a single issue with the vehicle. As well as being well maintained, the car was spacious and had A/C. It was also provided with aux cables so we could plug in our own music while we were away.

Therefore, 4×4 Car Hire Uganda went above and beyond when it came to border crossings and were easily accessible when it came to any additional questions, we had en-route. They were also able to source gorilla trekking permits for us, and waited on time to deliver the 4×4 car with rooftop tent to us at the airport when our flights were unexpectedly delayed.

Our main highlight was to visit the mountain gorillas of Uganda. We did not know what to expect of the country, the people or the animals. We went in blank but in the end, it is one of the most beautiful trips of our lives.

Upon arrival we were greeted by one of the most amazing guides a person could ever wish for: Emma. During our trip he told us countless stories about his life and the people of Uganda. He showed us practically all the animals that live in the parks we got to visit (Murchison Falls, Bwindi, Queen Elizabeth, and Kibale).

Emma would update the Car Rental Safari Itinerary along the way, and by doing so he showed us even more than we expected. Emma would do everything to make us feel comfortable and to have us experience everything there was to see in two weeks – he truly made us feel like kings. The parks we visited include on self-drive road trip holiday.

4x4 Rooftop Tent CarMurchison Falls National Park

The magical Murchison Falls National Park is famously known for having the most powerful waterfall in the world, where the longest river in the world squeezes through a 7-meter gap and then drops down 45 meters. It combines all the sought-after varieties of the natural world. It is also the most fulfilling travel destination for people that visit Uganda. Mainly because of its distance from Kampala, and the combination of the Ziwa rhino sanctuary completes the traditional big five Africa safari.

We saw elephants, giraffes, hyenas, different types of antelope, water buffalo, hippos, and a lioness and cub and many bird varietals. This was a beautiful park. The animal sightings here were beautiful and the park itself is pretty cool either the Nile flowing through. Recommend checking it out.

I recommend taking the 3-hour return boat trip up the channel close to the falls and also viewing the falls separately from the top on a hike with a guide (mandatory). You are also likely to see a variety of interesting birds, elephants, hippos and crocodiles.

Kibale Forest National Park

I was told Kibale Forest National Park was outstanding for tracking chimps. What I wasn’t told was that it was also outstanding for other primates, 13 in all! So, keep an eye out for other furry delights amongst the trees. Undoubtedly though, visitors come to this beautiful, dense forest to observe chimpanzees, first and foremost. And it is unlikely you will leave disappointed.

We tracked a family both on the ground, as they searched for fruits to eat, and through the forest canopy once they scampered up the trees. I got nice and close to a big male chomping on some fruit on the ground, which made for some excellent pics. It’s uncanny how they can look human at times, just with a small gesture or movement.

Besides seeing so many beautiful animals I still feel blessed we got the opportunity to travel around Uganda with Emma. And I hope everyone who gets to book a trip with him enjoys the same experience. If you want to have a good laugh with him, ask him about the baboons or the lions under the car.

Queen Elizabeth National Park

I can’t think of any other African park that packs quite so much biodiversity into a relatively small area, an impression backed up by an astonishing checklist of 610 bird species – reputedly the most of any African park, despite Queen Elizabeth National Park being only one-tenth the size of the likes of Kruger or Serengeti. The Mweya Peninsula, site of the most established of several dozen lodges set in and around the park, is the base for boat trips along the lovely Kazinga Channel, which swarms with hippos and elephants, and weather permitting offers distinct views of the snow-capped Ruwenzori Peaks.

Game drives on the Channel Drive north of Mweya can be a bit hit-and-miss, but I’ve often seen elephants, lions and leopards in this area as well as families of the localized giant forest hog (one of the few sites anywhere in Africa where this massive swine is regularly seen in daylight hours).

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

Tracking mountain gorillas has been one of my ultimate wildlife experiences ever. I love all primates, but there is something about looking these gentle giants in the eyes, that blows your mind. Unlike habituated chimpanzees that seem oblivious to your presence, gorillas seem to really look at you.

The park itself is all a rain forest should be: mystical, dense and very wet. The day we tracked the gorillas in Bwindi, it rained all day. This took a little bit from the experience, but what else can you expect in a rain forest? The birding is amazing, but like in every forest, it is very hard. Good birding guides are available on the spot and they make all the difference.