Great Lakes Safaris

Christmas Newsletter

Great Lakes Safaris

December 2008

An extra large newsletter to end the year in a festive way! In this last edition of 2008 we will summarize the greatest highlights of the year, inform you about the physical challenge that the Great Lakes Safaris team had to face, and reveal our sp
ecial offers for 2009!

1.   Virunga Mountain Gorillas
The Virunga National Park is one of the most beautiful national parks in East Africa, covered with active volcanoes, mist-shrouded mountains and dense tropical forest. It is also home to 200 of the last remaining mountain gorillas in the world. Tragically, after years of ethnic violence the conflicts in Congo have flared up again. The NBaby Mountain Gorillakunda's rebels have occupied a great part of Eastern Congo and forced park rangers to abandon the national park, leaving the threatened mountain gorillas at the mercy of rebel fighters and poachers.
Nevertheless, in neighbouring countries the gorilla parks are absolutely secure and visits to the mountain gorillas continue as usual. The border area as well as the national parks are closely watched by the government and Uganda Wildlife Authority. Moreover, cancelling or postponing your safari now will not help the many citizens who directly benefit from tourism. And even less the vulnerable mountain gorillas whose protection largely depends on your support...
Read more about the mountain gorillas and find out how you can help!


2.   Run for fun, Run for life
On 23rd November 2008 Great Lakes Safaris participated again in the MTN International Marathon in Kampala. The company was well represented by 20 fanatic runners, standing out in the mass of more than 10,000 registered participGreat Lakes Safaris in the MTN Marathonants. The run however was not entirely for fun, but Great Lakes wanted to focus on its social responsibility as well. Just like last year, all proceeds of the MTN Kampala Marathon are donated to our fellow citizens in Northern Uganda. Since the peace slowly returned to the region, families are able to return to their homes and resettle into a normal life. With the financial contribution of the yearly marathon special "return kits" are purchased and given out, helping them to make this process a little easier. And that is why Great Lakes Safaris runs for fun, runs for life!


3.   Meet Great Lakes in Spain!
Come and meet Great Lakes Safaris at the tourism fair FITUR in Madrid. Step by to share some great memories of your safari, learn more about the possibilities for your next holiday, check out the special offers or buy one of the traditional handicrafts, made by the local people of Uganda. Whether it is freezing and snowing, we will bring some of the African warmth to Europe!

Great Lakes will be present at FITUR in Madrid from 28th January till 1st February 2009, Hall 6, 6E18.


4.   Highlights of 2008
As the year 2008 is slowly coming to end, we can look back at a turbulent but successful period. It was a year of important initiatives, newly established collaborations and appreciated rewards. We had the pleasure to host many international visitors at Primate Lodge Kibale, to guide tourists around the country and share the beauty of the hidden Pearl of Africa. And if you haven't had the luck yet to visit this amazing country, we hope that 2009 will bring you the opportunity to join an unforgettable safari!

Our great highlights of 2008 are:

      UTA President
In July 2008 Amos Wekesa, the Managing Director of Great Lakes Safaris, was elected as the new President of the Uganda Tourism Association. UTA is the national tourism apex body and represents all stakeholders in the tourism sector. Being the president, Amos is determined take tourism in Uganda to another level and increase the exposure not only internationally, but on the domestic market as well.

      New cottages at Primate Lodge Kibale
During the year of 2008 the bandas at Primate Lodge Kibale were fully renovated and reconstructed into new comfortable forest cottages. The cottages are secluded in the forest, featuring a private veranda, spacious bedroom decorated with traditional African art and en suite bathroom with a shower and toilet.
Please visit our website Primate Lodge Kibale for our most recent photos.

      Chimpanzee Award for Primate Lodge Kibale
On 5th June 2008 Primate Lodge Kibale was awarded with the Chimp Award for Investment in Eco-tourism by the Uganda Wildlife Authority. The award was presented as a recognition of the high quality of the lodge, the high customer's satisfaction, the loyal commitment to the surrounding communities and meeting the eco-tourism standards
among others.

      Opening of Simba Safari Camp
Not yet open but already highly popular, Simba Safari Camp will open her doors on 25th December 2008! The newly built camp is located on the border of Queen Elizabeth National Park with spectacular views on Lake George and the savannah plains teemed with wildlife. With eleven en-suite rooms, four dormitory rooms and a well-stocked restaurant, Simba Safari Camp is the ideal gateway for your safari to Queen Elizabeth National Park! Please visit our website Uganda Lodges for more details and developments.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for your continuous support and we are looking forward to welcoming you in Uganda in 2009!


5.   Special offers for 2009!
Great Lakes Safaris is pleased to inform you that from this month we will start running scheduled safaris with regular departures throughout the year 2009. The groups will be small to ensure flexibility and personal attention, but at the same time guaranteeing a competitive price.

      "Highlights of Uganda"
The "Highlights of Uganda" is a 16-days safari to the main attractions of the country. From the amazing Murchison Falls you Highlights of Uganda Safariwill track the wild chimpanzees in Kibale Forest and continue to Queen Elizabeth National Park for great wildlife viewing. Find yourself staring in the eyes of the mountain gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, followed by a fascinating meeting with the local people of Nshenyi Village and end your safari at the river Nile, a world class place for rafting!

The Highlights of Uganda can be booked from US $2470 per person with an amazing discount for all bookings made before 15th February 2009!

Promo video of Highlights of Uganda View the promo video of "Highlights of Uganda"!

      "Luxury Primate Safari"
An amazing combination of the wideLuxury Primate Safari Uganda savannah plains of Queen Elizabeth National Park with the dense tropical rainforests of Kibale and Bwindi. Excellent wildlife viewing and unforgettable encounters with the primates of Uganda! The "Luxury Primate Safari" is a 10-days safari that combines nature, wildlife and adventure with comfort as you will be staying in small, luxury African lodges.

The Luxury Primate Safari can be booked from US $2650 per person with an amazing discount for all bookings made before 15th February 2009!

Promo video of Luxury Primate Safari Uganda View the promo video of "Luxury Primate Safari"!

Please visit our website Special Offers for a detailed itinerary, prices, departure dates and practical information. Or contact us directly and we will be happy to send you all details by email.


6.   Permits available
The year 2008 has been characterized as a tumultuous year, with an immense run on gorilla permits. Inevitably, many people got disappointed by the fully booked tracking dates.

But no need to worry! Great Lakes Safaris has already blocked some permits for next year's season. Thus if you want to track the mountain gorillas on any of the following dates, you are guaranteed of a permit!
      10th December 2008      2 permits available
      15th December 2008      4 permits available
      06th January 2009         4 permits available

      20th June 2009              4 permits available
      29th June 2009              4 permits available
      08th July 2009                4 permits available
      12th July 2009                4 permits available
      26th July 2009                8 permits available
      31st July 2009                8 permits available
      09th August 2009           2 permits available
      20th August 2009           8 permits available
      31st August 2009           6 permits available
      15th August 2009           6 permits available
      31st August 2009           4 permits available

Take this unique opportunity and book your gorilla permit now! Complete your safari with a visit to other national parks and more beautiful sites, and we guarantee you a splendid holiday in 2009 that will be remembered forever!


7.   Testimonial
Julia Pallant and her family travelled with us in June 2008.
This is what she says about her safari:
"We returned from Uganda after a wonderful holiday. We had had high expectations of 'the holiday of a lifetime' but even they were exceeded! The places that we visited were all, in their different ways, fantastic and I certainly wouldn't miss any of them out.
In terms of security we didn't have a moment's concern. When travelling in the rural areas we found people welcoming and curious. We had, as was suggested by Great Lakes, a plentiful supply of pencils for the children which went down very well.
As far as the company is concerned I cannot recommend them highly enough. They responded promptly to emails when we were planning and did everything as promised when we arrived. The office staff was welcoming and no 'extras' to pay for were slipped in. Our driver, Noel, was very knowledgeable, extremely friendly and competent and anxious that we should see the best of Uganda. Thanks again!"


If you have any questions or comments concerning the newsletter please contact us!

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Suzie House, Ggaba Road
P.O. Box 33024
Kampala, Uganda
Tel: +256 (0) 414 267 153
        +256 (0) 772 426 368
Fax: +256 (0) 414 267 153
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Merry Christmas and
a Great Safari Year!