Rwanda, Kenya, and Uganda trip Report

Sep 22nd, 2005, 06:20 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 12,845
Are you planning to use Hilton HHonors points for your Salt Lick stay? If so, do you already have a confirmed reservation? I ask because Hilton recently announced the discontinuation of their safari award. They will honor reservations for those already booked but will not accept new bookings using points. See this thread for more information -

If this doesn't apply to you, then there are lots of Salt Lick trip reports on the forum. Just do a search for 'salt lick' and you'll find them.
Patty is offline  
Sep 25th, 2005, 04:57 PM
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 49
My wife and I am going to Rwanda in late December to view the mountain gorillas. I had tried several times to e-mail and fax the ORTPN (the national agency that books the reservations in the group to see the gorillas). That effort to fax and e-mail was in June and again in July. Finally I called directly to ORTPN in Kigali and spoke with "Dennis" who speaks perfect English. He formally booked our reservation. It is about 3pm in Kigali at about 7am pacific standard time here so you can reach them in our daytime. Don't be discouraged if they don't answer the phone. Let it ring over 50 times and then call back the next day if nothing happens. They are very VERY laid back over there.

I called back and spoke with "Claire" a week or so later. She confirmed "Dennis" had entered us in the reservation book. Claire said once we had paid our deposit they would contact us to give us all the travel details. Two months later ..... we have never had any written confirmation except my visa card has a $100 debit from it for the $50 per person reservation. I have no information giving me any details and I am staying at the Novatelle in Kigali the night before. I still owe them the next $300 or so for each of us....

So I do not know how this works. How do we get to the start of the gorilla trek? Who will transport us and for how much money? Will they wait for our return trip later that day or do we find another ride? How much will this return trip cost us? When to leave Kigali in the morning of the trek, and should I book a room the night before much closer that night? Some say to stay at the Gorilla Nest. I tried to call the Gorilla Nest but have never reached them by phone. I suspect I have the wrong phone number. Is this a good place to stay and should I book there? Some love it and some have said it lacks a lot of things. And what is the price for a room at the Gorilla Nest? And how do I contact them to book a room?

When we arrive in Kigali we are 4pm the day before the trek. What shoudl we see in town? After the trek the next day we will have the afternoon and evening free and the next day until we fly at 1pm. What should we see for that 24 hours?
536547869 is offline  
Sep 28th, 2005, 03:03 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 12,845
That flyertalk thread was just updated today to confirm that the Salt Lick safari award using Hilton points is still alive for 2006.
Patty is offline  
Oct 21st, 2005, 11:54 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 12,845
Did you ever finish your report? What happened to Uganda (hint, hint )?
Patty is offline  
Oct 21st, 2005, 02:40 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 1,922
Hi Patty-
I think I got lazy and just never finished.
And I was supposed to provide photos of which I never did. Shame on me!

One good thing that did come out of it is that I am now working for The Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International trying to do my part to help save the critically endangered gorillas.
divewop is offline  
Oct 21st, 2005, 02:52 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 12,845
Well, if you get the chance, I'm still interested in the rest of your report as well as your photos!
Patty is offline  

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