Mabamba Swamp Birdwatching Tour


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1 Day
Red Chilli Hideaway, Butabika Kampala
Mabamba Swamp

Mabamba Swamp Bird Watching Tour

A day trip to Mabamba Swamp – a twitcher’s paradise, just a day trip from Kampala!

Tour Details

Mabamba Swamp, located 50km from Kampala, is a prime wetland birding site, best known for its spectacular Shoebill Stork sightings. The swamp, however, has a lot more to offer to the seasoned birder, with more than 300 bird species:  Papyrus Gonolek, Swamp Flycatcher, Lesser Jacana, Purple Swamphen and African Pygmy Goose to name but a few.

The drive to Mabamba Swamp should take about an hour and a half depending on traffic.  An early departure is recommended to avoid the worst of Kampala traffic, and will allow you to make the most of your time in the wetland.

Most of the time will be spent in a motorised canoe within the swamp/bay area, where an experienced  boat crew will guide you through the numerous inlets, helping you identify the bird species within the swamp.  If you have a specific bird you are looking for, please make sure the guide is aware, so that he can attempt to find it for you.

Once you have completed the boat trip, we recommend having lunch at Nkima Forest Lodge before returning to Kampala. This lodge is nestled in a fragment of indigenous forest close by and rewards the visitor with sweeping views over the wetland area.  It also offers good chances of spotting the Great Blue Turaco and other forest birds, as well as Red-tailed monkeys whilst you wait for your lunch.

Departure & Return Location

Red Chilli Hideaway, Butabika Kampala, or an alternative location  by arrangement

Departure Time


Price Includes

  • Transport to and from Mabamba Swamp
  • Motorised Canoe with bird guide
  • Local taxes

Price Excludes

  • Meals and Drinks
  • Any Private Expenses

06:30Depart for Mabamba

After meeting at the Red Chilli reception, you will start on your journey west out of Kampala, towards Mabamba Swamp. The drive should take about an hour and a half, depending on traffic.

08:30Canoe boat trip

You will meet up with your bird guide and head out into the peaceful swamp in a motorised canoe, to search for the birds that you can find in the area this morning.

10:30Head out for lunch/return to Kampala

After the boat trip, you may opt to visit the beauty of Nkima Forest Lodge, just up the road and stop for lunch there. The cost for the meal would be around Ugx 40,000 per person. If you prefer however, you may head straight back to Kampala.

WHAT WE SUGGEST YOU BRING: Insect repellent, sun screen, plenty of drinking water/snacks, binoculars, camera equipment, rain coat and any other personal affects.


From only US$65 per person!

Price dependent on number of people on Safari:

  1 Person 2 People 3 People 4 People 5 People 6 People
Standard Price (Per person) $ 200 $ 110 $ 100 $ 90 $ 75 $ 65
Terms and Consitions

  • Trip cost excludes all food/drinks/other personal items. If you would like to add on full board please let us know and we can quote accordingly.
  • Cost includes park entry fees, game drive ranger fees (when available), transport/fuel ,shared accommodation and activities as per the itinerary.
  • Accommodation upgrades can be made for an extra charge - please enquire for availability.
  • Staff tips are never expected but always appreciated.
  • A 50% deposit or payment in full is required in order to secure your reservation. Please see our payment terms and conditionsfor further information.
  • Pick-ups en route may be considered if FULL PAYMENT is made in advance – please enquire before booking.
  • Safaris longer than 2 days includes a free night’s camping/dormitory bed at Red Chilli Kampala the night before departure (subject to availability, non transferable and non-refundable). Please reserve in advance if required.
  • Discounts are available for East African residents and Ugandan Nationals, subject to a valid UWA recognised ID. Please inform us when booking if you are seeking to claim a discount.
  • Baggage is limited to 1 medium backpack per person. Excess baggage can be stored at Red Chilli Kampala free of charge.
  • If you are arriving at Red Chilli Kampala on the morning of departure please report to the reception by specified time. We cannot wait for latecomers and will not refund deposits should this occur.
  • Take all sensible precautions against malaria.
  • Do not approach any wild animals you may see around the camp/park, & do not startle them with flash photography.
  • Drink plenty of water at all times & protect yourself from the sun.
  • Take care of your valuables at all times. We cannot accept responsibility for any loss.
  • We can supply packed lunches on request from Red Chilli Kampala for Day 1. However last orders are taken at 21.00 the night before the trip departs. If you are unable to meet this deadline, please email or call ahead with your order.
  • Please leave yourself plenty of time between the scheduled return of the trip and any ongoing travel connections. We cannot accept responsibility for any missed connections due to late return




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