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Gorillas & Horses in the mist, Uganda

An expedition observing wild animals in their natural habitat from the Saddle

P info

Practical information:

Good to know before you go

Riding level:

Experienced riders only, comfortable at all paces (walk, trot, canter, gallop) and able to get out of trouble calmly and at the necessary speed. You should be balanced with an independent seat and fit enough to ride 4 – 7 hours per day.

The pace can be fast and it is essential that you can do rising trot and canter for long distances.

The riding

We use English tack on our horses, and we have a weight limit of 85kgs maximum for our safaris. We do require confident horse riders although we accommodate for those that want a faster pace and those that want a more relaxed ride by temporarily separating the safari group in various places on the ride where a faster pace is possible. Swimming horses in the Nile is also an optional part (free) of our ride. All safaris are accompanied by at least 2 guides. This safari passes through rural Ugandan villages and is an authentic look at life in Uganda and the stunning areas of forest, sugar and tea plantations, around the Source of the River Nile. The pace can be fast and it is essential that you can do rising trot and canter for long distances


Riders weight limit: 85 Kg

(contact us for info/admission if your weight is higher)


Minimum age is 15 years, only allowed if accompanied by an adult.


  • Horses: We have 16 beautiful horses, from 17hh down to 13.3hh. All our horses compete in eventing as well as ride on safari, so they are well schooled, responsive, very fit and we pride ourselves on having the right horse for everyone. We own Irish Sports Horses, Freisian/Boerpoed, Thoroughbreds, American Saddlebred crosses and Ethiopian ponies.

  • Saddles:  English Tack.

  • Guides: Natalie & TJ - professional and multilingual guides – see the Who is Who on the trail / Guides section) Paul will be the Tripleader on the March 2024 Safari.

  • Comfort: Very comfortable, clean and charming African style Lodges based on double/twin rooms during the entire trip.

  • International Passport: Passport: make sure that your passport is up to date.  It must be valid for at least nine months from the start of your trip and minimum of at least two full clear pages for visas and stamps.

  • E-Visa:  You will require a tourist visa for Uganda which must be obtained in advance at  or contact the nearest Ugandan embassy or consulate for further information.
    Visas cannot be obtained on arrival. You must apply and pay for them online. (USD 55) We advise that you apply for a 3-month visa. Once a 3 month visa has been approved you will have 90 days from the time of visa approval to enter the country or forfeit their visa and payment.

  • Vaccinations & Medication: Yellow Fever vaccination certification Mandatory Currently you are required to have a Covid vaccination for entering Uganda. However, please ask your doctor for advice on what vaccinations and malaria medication are required before traveling. We do not recommend Larium.  Consult your physician.

  • Health: Check at:

  • Covid-19:

  • Medical Kit: We have a medical kit for people and horses suring the safari at all times and an emergency medical kit in the guide’s saddle bags.

  • Gorilla Tracking Health Requirements; Mountain Gorillas and Chimpanzees are highly susceptible to human diseases including flu and colds. If you are participating in a gorilla/chimp trek you must be free of any visibly contagious diseases. This is checked at the start of the trek by the Park Authorities. If they are in any doubt as to your condition, they reserve the right to prevent you from continuing on the trek. If you are worried about this, please inform your safari guide as soon as possible. He will seek advice on the best way to manage the situation.

  • Food & Water: Most food on the safari is European style. Uganda is awash with organic and delicious fresh fruits and vegetables, meats, fish and spices. There may be an opportunity to try a local meal and it's certainly worth it. Water should only be consumed from bottles as tap water is not suitable for drinking. We provide plenty of water each day. Please let us know any dietary requirements.

  • Flying: Fly in and out to ENTEBBE International Airport (airport code: EBB).

Are you alone?

Do not worry, you can individually register/book and join a group with other riders. Most participants are people who register individually and may just like you, not know the other riders in your group. Since everyone has the same points of interest (horseback riding, nature, travel, culture) there is always a good atmosphere and understanding among the participants. Participants come from all corners of the world, so you can be part of a group with riders from the United Kingdom, Belgium, Spain, France, Sweden, Canada, USA, Australia, Colombia, and many others countries. Your friends are suddenly so much more international! :) A standard group consists of 6 riders. (guides excluded) In general, there are as many females as male participants.

Non Riders (your partner is not a rider)
We do have non-riders occasionally come, and we offer a simultaneous motorbike safari (250cc dirt bikes) that do the same itinerary and roughly the same route as the horses. Sometimes we have non-riders who just want to come and relax at the lodges. Contact us for more info.

Across the Nile on  horses - Nile Horseback Safaris.JPG


In comfortatble lodges based on double/twin rooms.
7 nights during the Horseriding Safari / 2 nights in Entebbe / 2 Nights in Bwindi
websites of some of the lodges:
Boma Guest House:   (Entebbe)
Buhoma Lodge: (Bwindi)
Haven Lodge: (riding safari)

Bujagali Lake - Nile Horseback Safaris.JPG

Seasons – Weather:

Being about 50km north of the equator and at 1100m above sea level, Jinja enjoys a tropical climate, most days are between 21°c and 32°c.  The majority of the country experiences two rainy seasons – as a very rough guide these are from April to May and mid October to November.   It still rains in the dry season and can be heavy, it just not as regular as in the wet seasons.


NB. Domestic flights have a weight allowance of maximum of 15 kilos including hand luggage. A soft bag is preferable to a hard case on safari.


Africa, just as most other third world countries, does not always have the best reputation for safety and crime. This is primarily and almost exclusively in large cities. The regions you will visit are quiet and completely safe. The ride/safari passes through a region where there is no need to worry at all!   Uganda is one of the safest countries in the world despite its well known history when Idi Amin ruled in the 70’s. Foreigners are treated with great respect. Violent crime against tourists is almost nonexistent. Petty theft like anywhere else in the world is a problem. Do not leave valuables lying around, and cause unnecessary temptation. Some lodges do have safes. You will be staying in lodges that have their own private security, and we have never had a problem with theft in any of them. We still recommend not leaving valuables where they are easily seen.


Luganda and English are the official languages of Uganda while Swahili is also widely spoken. The guides speak fluent English and your tripleader Paul speaks English, Portugues, Spanish, French, Dutch, Afrikaans and basic German.

travel gear... Packing List

* Strickt 15kg luggage allowance on domestic flights including hand luggage
(you can optionally leave luggage at the lodge in Entebbe and then pick it up on return (this way you fly with only 15 kg to Bwindi)

  • A pair of hiking boots and/or riding boots

  • A pair of half chaps (we can provide)

  • Three pairs of riding pants (jodhpurs/breeches/bombachas/wrangler)

  • A ‘bumnah’ or ‘seat saver’ is always a good idea

  • A small daypack suitable for riding if you have large cameras etc

  • An appropriate riding helmet 

  • A pair of long trousers

  • A long sleeved shirt

  • A head torch

  • A refillable water bottle

  • Sandals/flip-flops

  • Raincoat (we can provide)

  • Mosquito repellent

  • Sunscreen

  • Sun hat

  • Swimming Costume

  • Shorts

  • T-Shirts

  • Fleece

  • Sunglasses

  • Anti-Malaria medication

  • Yellow Fever Card

  • Travel Insurance documentation

  • Cameras, rechargers, film etc

  • Adaptor Plug

  • US$Cash 

  • Passport and relevant visas if you need to get them beforehand

  • Toiletries and personal items

  • In general lightweight wash-and-wear clothing - something for any of the varied conditions in Africa:- hot, cold, wet or dry.

  • Good hiking shoes for the Gorilla Trek

  • Adaptor Plug if coming from outside the UK. (We use UK  plugs in Uganda 230v at  50Hz)

  • A set of earplugs are also a good idea, the bush babies in the forest can keep you awake. The rapids at the Wild Waters Lodge are loud and not everyone finds that relaxing while trying to get to sleep.

Riding Hat:

Riding helmets are Mandatory and we suggest people bring their own helmets, although we can provide them free of charge if necessary.

In a tropical climate light cotton clothing is the most comfortable and this can be worn throughout, but it can occasionally get cool in the evenings, so a jumper or fleece is worth packing, as well as a lightweight spray jacket. Swimmers and a rash shirt for rafting are a good idea. Please be aware that we transfer all luggage from lodge to lodge via vehicle. The horses have small saddlebags for water, sunscreen, snacks, and cameras. We do supply large army poncho raincoats that are also stored in the saddlebags. We can provide helmets and half chaps if you don’t want to bring your own. Please note: it is mandatory to wear helmets on our safaris.


Please bring something warm, no bright colors, (e.g., tracksuit, fleece or sweater) for the mountainous areas of Bwindi. In addition to your rain gear, long trousers and long-sleeved shirts are recommended.
For gorilla and chimp tracking you will need a comfortable, hard wearing, pair of walking shoes or boots, with good tread and support. Conditions are generally very muddy/slippery. There are uphill sections which may be quite steep and strenuous. Please wear a long sleeve cotton shirt and lightweight long trousers to protect yourself from stinging nettles and biting ants. Gloves are highly recommended (cheap gardening gloves work well). They will prevent your hands being scratched when holding onto vegetation for support. A pair of gaiters is useful to tuck your long pants into your socks/boots to avoid biting insects. Your clothes will probably get very muddy therefore take old clothing for the gorilla tracking.


We request you take a travel Insurance. Ask your local insurance company or travel agent about it. You will not be allowed to participate at the “Entre Orejas” riding holiday program without having a Personal Travel & Medical Insurance. Your insurance details will be requested on arrival.

Trip Cancellation Insurance MANDATORY:

In order to protect yourself against unforeseen circumstances interfering with your “Entre Orejas” vacation, we demand that you purchase trip cancellation insurance. You can use any travel insurance company you are comfortable with.

Release Agreement:

The “Entre Orejas” guests are required to sign a release agreement at the time of check-in. This is mandatory and guests cannot participate in the tour without signing the release agreement (all moneys paid are non-refundable). Please feel free to read the release agreement prior to your arrival: please download the form here. Parents or legal guardians of minor children are required to sign the release agreement on their children’s behalf. Please direct all questions to the office.

As fast as you can ride - Nile Horseback Safaris.JPG


  • Communication - Phone and Internet: An international mobile phone will work on roam here. All of the lodges on the trip have WIFI. Internet runs on the mobile phone network and is usually good, but sometimes can fail temporarily. You can get phone reception reliably on just about all areas of our safari, except in the forest where it can come and go. 

  • Power: UK  plugs in Uganda 230v at  50Hz  (UK 3 point plugs)

  • Tips : If you wish to leave a tip at the end of your stay this is at your own discretion. Tips are accepted in any denomination and collected by the guide to be distributed among the staff.  

  • Time: 

  • Currency: Uganda Shilling & USD widely accepted. There are 24-hour foreign exchange facilities at the airport as well as an ATM machine.  Please note that credit cards are difficult to use outside the main cities/airport and MASTERCARD and American Express are hardly recognized at all.  A VISA card is your best option and can be used at some ATMs to withdraw local currency. Jinja area does have an ATM where cash advances can be done, but generally not amounts more than about $300 a day and it is not always reliable. From the lodges it is a minimum 20 minute and maximum hour drive to Jinja town. Most of the lodges do accept credit card payments should you need to pay for something.
    Credit cards are best carried to Uganda as a contingent rather than primary source of funds.  Bring at least half of your spending money in cash. US$ dollars are your best option as a lot of tourist facilities will accept $US payments. Make sure the US$ notes you bring are dated post 2013, and are clean of extra writing/stamps or damage. Pounds and Euros are also easily exchanged at the Forex places but are not generally taken as payments. The larger denominations of US$50 or US$100 - attract a far better exchange rate. Ugandan Forex dealers are extremely pedantic on the quality of notes and will reject $US notes that are used without a problem in the USA. Travelers Cheques can only be changed in Kampala and attract a low rate, but in reality they are rarely used here.

  • Personal Spending: Personal spending varies from person to person -Please note you will not really need any money on the ride itself = part 1 of the trip. We provide for all of your drinks on the ride including alcohol! We offer a lock up service at the beginning of the ride so you do not need to carry cash, passports, important documents etc. Tips are always welcome at the end of a ride, and we fairly distribute amongst all staff members.
    For Part 2 of the trip (Entebbe & Bwindi) you might need some Money for e few not included meals, some drinks, snacks, curios and local crafts, internet, phone calls an
    d tips.

  • Rules: We are not so much into rules, but we reserve the right to refuse service to any individual who jeopardizes the health, safety and welfare of any of our guests, staff, family & community members, animals & livestock, or who refuses to follow the rules we have established for your safety and welfare during your visit with us.
    We will do everything possible to follow the indicated itinerary, although spot changes can occur due to unforeseen circumstances. Rides are subject to change depending on weather, location and difficulty of terrain  In the unlikely event that this happens on your trip, we ask you flexibility and understanding. This is a sporty and adventurous vacation!

  • Uganda and its People: 
    Uganda is place of stunning beauty, and also of third world living conditions. We come into contact with a lot of Ugandan people on our safaris. Ugandan people in our experience are the most friendly people in Africa. 

    Uganda and especially the area around the source of the Nile in Jinja is an exceptionally fertile place, and subsistence farming is the most common way of life in our area. No one in the village goes hungry, as Ugandans have a strong sense of family, and look after each other if someone has a brief period of shortage. Very occasionally children will ask for money when safaris pass by. After years of travelling in Africa, we are trying to discourage begging in our area, as we have seen the negative social effects it has in other African countries. The Ugandans in our area are a proud, happy and self sufficient people, begging will make them the opposite. We want to encourage the local people to stay self sufficient as they always have been. If you want to donate something, the best option is to give second hand childrens books, as the local kids have no access to them. We would be happy to donate them to the Kiira Primary School Library that Nile Horseback Safaris supports, so they can be used by all. Our safari does visit our local school if your safari date coincides with the school term.
    Our safari does pass through villages, some more affluent and others extremely poor. Ugandans do not have a problem with horses/bicycles, motorbikes or anybody using the multitude of natural pathways that run through villages crossing their land (sometimes even their front yard) as long as there is no damage caused by the user. This is the normal custom in Uganda, unlike anywhere else in Africa and benefits the village as a whole by being able to take shorter routes. Our horses use these trails and also trails adjacent to gardens/cropped areas. Maize is the main crop in our area along with ground beans. We therefore use grazing muzzles on our horses at certain times of the year, to minimize damage to crops and to ensure our neighbours continue to allow us to ride through these amazing areas. Occasionally our horses will accidently walk through an area of crops and do damage, which is not ideal, however the owner will be well compensated.
    Please treat everyone you meet in the village with respect as this is literally their home you are riding through. The word “Muzungu” is one you will hear on the ride a thousand times a day from the local kids. It means white foreigner and it is not meant to be offensive, it’s just that political correctness is not part of the Ugandan culture. They say it as they see it, and that is one of the reasons race relations between Europeans and Africans here in Uganda are the envy of many other parts of the continent. 
    The official language is English, but it is still not spoken by everyone in the areas our safari travels. Luganda is the main language used, but many Ugandans, especially the children, like to practice their minimal English on a Muzungu on a horse as this is the most exciting thing that might happen in the village that day.

    Please come prepared for your gorilla tracking experience. Expect a strenuous day in dense jungle on steep terrain, often without proper paths, and in highly changeable weather. It’s impossible to predict the duration of this activity as the gorillas move continuously. You may have to drive to begin your trek. You may encounter your gorilla group within an hour or two or it might take a full day (8 hours +) to locate the gorillas and return to the trailhead.
    Before your primate tracking, you will be met by a Uganda Wildlife Authority guide who will brief you before leading you into the forest. Porters can be arranged to carry your day pack and camera equipment for an additional fee (approximately USD 20 per porter per day plus tip). The porters wait separately while you view the gorillas so you will be asked to remove any items from your bag which you will need during the encounter. Please leave valuables at the lodge/camp safekeeping facility. You are allowed up to one hour with the gorillas/chimps while maintaining a minimum of 5-7 meters from them.  Photography and video filming is allowed but, for your safety, flash photography is strictly forbidden. Ensure you know how to disarm any automatic flash function on your camera/phone.
    The age limit for gorilla tracking is 15 years.

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