Uganda off the beaten track - 14 day roadtrip

This North East Uganda self-drive itinerary is perfect for anyone looking for an off-the-beaten-track adventure. 

  • Go on a walking safari in Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary and discover the only place in Uganda where you can spot the white rhino.  
  • See the mighty river Nile explode in Murchison Falls.
  • Enjoy plenty of wildlife spotting on your self-drive safaris in Lake Mburo, Queen Elizabeth and Murchison Falls National Park
  • Discover Kidepo Valley National Park, one of Africa’s last great wilderness areas. While the game viewing is excellent, it is the thrilling sense of supreme isolation that many people enjoy most.
  • Explore Karamoja, home to the proud and traditional Karamajong tribe. 
  • Top off your Uganda road trip with a true adrenaline rush rafting the river Nile before relaxing at one of the lovely riverside lodges in Jinja.

Scroll down below to see the day-to-day itinerary with route descriptions and travel tips for Uganda. The trip includes car rental, accommodation (available in four price categories), rhino trekking and wild water rafting (optional). 

Day-to-day itinerary | Uganda's Wild North East

Day 1

Day 1 of 14

Destination: Entebbe

Drive: 10 km | 0.5 hour

Gyebalo Ko, and Welcome to Uganda! As soon as you enter the airport you will be welcomed by a pleasant temperature, slight chaos, and hopefully a charming smile from the immigration officer. Take this day to relax from your flight in Entebbe. Entebbe is a peaceful lakeside town, an hour and a half away from the busy capital Kampala.

A glimpse of our lodge selection: 

Budget / Comfort: Via Via Guesthouse

Semi-Luxury: The Boma Hotel

Day 2

Day 2 of 14

Start: Entebbe

Destination: Murchison Falls National Park

Drive: 337 km | 7 - 8 hours

An excellent newly surfaced road takes you to Murchison Falls. Halfway, we highly recommend having a stop at the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary. It's the only place in Uganda where you can track the white rhino on foot. Trekking takes an hour. 

For those who book a budget tour, you can also choose to spend a night at the Ziwa Sanctuary. There is a basic guesthouse and a campsite at the sanctuary. When you're lucky you can even spot rhino's from your tent. 

A glimpse of our lodge selection:

Comfort: Bwana Tembo 

Semi-Luxury: Murchison River Lodge

Day 3

Day 3 of 14

Enjoy: Murchison Falls National Park

Most of the wildlife is in the northern section of the park. Yet the southern section is also worth a visit, as visiting the top of the waterfalls is a spectacular experience. You can make a boat trip to the base of the falls or, if you are into birding, take a smaller boat downriver from Paraa towards the Nile River delta, which flows into Lake Albert. Enjoy a refreshing break at Paraa Lodge, situated at the heart of the park, with excellent river views.

Day 4

Day 4 of 14

Enjoy: Murchison Falls National Park

Enjoy a day of game drives and relaxing by the pool. As animals are most active in the early morning and late afternoon, these are the best hours for your Uganda self-drive safari in Murchison Falls. 

Day 5

Day 5 of 14

Start: Murchison Falls National Park

Destination: Kidepo Valley National Park

Drive: 376 km | 8 hours

Depart early, as you're having a full day of driving ahead. Northern Uganda is the least developed region of Uganda and completely different from the lush southwest. Gulu is nice for a morning coffee break - we recommend Café Larem for coffee and a piece of banana cake. By the way, if people shout Muno, they are talking to you (Mzungu). Kopango? (How are you?), Kopêh! (Good!). From Kitgu, the last fuel stop, to Katurum gate via Orom is around 140 km and takes around 3½ hours. 

A glimpse of our lodge selection:

Kidepo Savannah Lodge

Day 6

Day 6 of 14

Enjoy: Kidepo Valley National Park

Kidepo Valley National Park is one of Africa’s last significant wilderness areas. It is an endless area of vast savanna plains and mountain ranges. Out on the savanna, you will likely see impressive herds of ostriches, hartebeest, buffaloes and giraffes and possibly predators such as lions, cheetahs and leopards. While the game viewing is excellent, it is the thrilling sense of supreme isolation that many people enjoy most.

Day 7

Day 7 of 14

Start: Kidepo Valley National Park

Destination: Moroto

Drive: 249 km | 5+ hours

Exit Kidepo via the Mataba gate to Kaabong and Kotido. The scenery changes drastically to arid landscapes with large boulders (kopjes). From Kotido to Moroto is a 2-hour drive. 

A glimpse of our lodge selection:

Kara-tunga Safari Camp

Day 8

Day 8 of 14

Enjoy: Moroto

The guides from Kara-Tunga can take you into the manyattas, which are traditional villages of the Karamojong tribe. Immerse yourself in the nomadic pastoral culture of the Karamojong by experiencing daily life in a manyatta. You could even spend a night in the kraal. Or climb the secret Mount Moroto, during a one or two-day hike. 

Check our Uganda's culture blog to read more about the people of Uganda and cultural activities. 

Day 9

Day 9 of 14

Start: Moroto

Destination: Sipi Falls

Drive: 202 km | 5 hours

Sipi Falls is based at the foothills of Mount Elgon, home to a series of three spectacular waterfalls, some of the best Arabica coffee in the world, and beautiful sunsets! Sipi Falls is a magnificent place to relax and unwind in a cool and peaceful environment. It's also an excellent area for walks, hikes and cultural tours. 

A glimpse of our lodge selection:

Lacam Lodge

Day 10

Day 10 of 14

Enjoy: Sipi Falls

Sipi Falls is the perfect place to stretch your legs and switch your comfortable car seat for hiking boots. It is a very scenic area, with lush green hills, endless banana and coffee plantations, a waterfall and breathtaking views. If you're looking for a relaxing break, drop by Endiro Coffee at Lacam Lodge, where you can enjoy good coffee and lunch while taking in the view of the largest waterfall.

Consult our Hiking in Uganda Travel Blog for more hiking tips.

Day 11

Day 11 of 14

Start: Sipi Falls

Destination: Jinja

Drive: 198 km | 4+ hours

The Source of the Nile is on the menu for today. Referred to as the “Adventure Capital of East Africa”, the area has much to offer including class-5 rafting, bungee jumping, mountain biking, horse riding, Nile river sunset cruise, fishing and more. Jinja town is also lovely to wander around for an afternoon.

A glimpse of our lodge selection: 

Budget : Nile River Explorers 

Comfort / Semi-Luxury: The Haven

Day 12

Day 12 of 14

Enjoy: Jinja

A perfect day to relax… or to go on a mountaine bike with Bike Ventures Uganda, where all proceeds go to charity, or to go for an action-packed day of world-class, grade-5 rafting with Nalubale. The thrill of a lifetime! Roadtrippers get a special discount! 

 

Day 13

Day 13 of 14

Start: Jinja

Destination: Entebbe

Drive: 123 km | 4+ hours

All good things must come to an end. You're heading back to Entebbe today. The crew from Roadtrip Uganda will pick up your car from the lodge you are booked in. Enjoy a lovely warm evening with tons of newly created memories to look back on. 

A glimpse of our lodge selection: 

Budget / Comfort: Via Via Guesthouse

Semi-Luxury: The Boma Hotel

Day 14

Day 14 of 14

Most international flights depart in the evening. Entebbe is a lovely town to finish your trip and relax by the shores of Lake Victoria and the pool of your lodge. 

Laura & Carlos made this video for when they are older, to remember their good times in Uganda

2 weeks in Uganda | This is what you need to know

Travel time & road conditions

We recommend 14 days / 12 car rental days for this Uganda itinerary, spending two to three nights at each location. A Landcruiser is required because of the condition of the roads in Karamoja and Kidepo National Park. 

On an average travel day, you'll drive for around  4 to 6 hours. Keep in mind that with photo and picnic stops, this can still make a full travel day. 

Road conditions are good: asphalt with the occasional pothole and speed bumps. Roads inside the National Parks are generally good dirt tracks, but Kidepo can be difficult after rain. Consult our Driving in Uganda Guide, which contains essential information when planning a self-drive holiday in Uganda. 

Uganda's Wild North East is possible to travel year-round. 

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Whats suits your budget & travel style?

Our Uganda's Wild North East can be booked in four price categories:

Budget: Some mid-range lodges offer 'Lazy Camping' (glamping), where you sleep in an already set-up tent. There is a sanitary block that you share with other campers. Adding some 'Lazy Camping' nights in your Uganda tour works favourably for your budget, while you can still enjoy the lodge facilities. 

Comfort (mid-range): This is your best option for comfortable, self-contained ('en suite') accommodations set in stunning locations which do not cost a fortune. 

Semi-Luxury: If you opt for luxury, we select barefoot luxury resorts which are intimate, have lots of privacy and high-quality service. Not every stop in Uganda allows for a stay in this segment, therefore we rather call it a semi-luxury trip.

Combo - Campsites & Lodges: Experience the best of both worlds: travel with camp gear and alternate camping in the bush with stays in lovely lodges. 

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Included in your Uganda roadtrip

Included

  • Bed & Breakfast
  • Car rental with unlimited mileage. Fuel own expense
  • Car delivery to airport or hotel
  • Car insurance
  • 24/7 roadside assistance
  • On the road manual, Bradt Travel Guide, roadmap

Optional

  • Driver - Guide
  • Electrical fridge
  • Rhino trekking permit
  • Rafting

Create & Book

Book Uganda's Wild North East with stays in budget, mid-range or luxury lodges - or adjust it to your liking.

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The Wild North East | Indicative prices

Low season | March - April + Nov - 21 Dec

Landcruiser

Hilux

Budget

€ 1,380

€ 1,510

Comfort

€ 1,800

€ 1,920

Semi-luxury

€ 2,070

€ 2,190

Combo

€ 1,360

€ 1,480

Peak season | July - Sept + 22 Dec - February

Landcruiser

Hilux

Budget

€ 1,740

€ 1,860

Comfort

€ 2,160

€ 2,280

Semi-luxury

€ 2,430

€ 2,550

Combo

€ 1,720

€ 1,840

Rest of year

Landcruiser

Hilux

Budget

€ 1,560

€ 1,680

Comfort

€ 1,980

€ 2,100

Semi-luxury

€ 2,250

€ 2,370

Combo

€ 1,540

€ 1,660

The price is per person based on 2 people sharing a car and includes 13 hotel nights,12-day car rental and airport pick-up. 

Easy and secure online payment to our Roadtrip Africa Bookings office in the Netherlands. 

Prefer a guided road trip? Travel with a driver-guide (€40/day). This is an option you can select in the online booking form. 

Planning to visit Uganda during peak season? Book your tour several months in advance!