MGAHINGA GORILLA NATIONAL PARK
Mgahinga national park is the smallest park in Uganda but despite being the smallest park in Uganda it is the prime tour-safari destination because it’s one of the only two national parks in Uganda having gorilla habituation experience for endangered mountain gorillas in the world. The park offers some activities like adventurous climbing, hiking, gorilla trekking, and golden monkey trekking.
Mgahinga Gorilla National Park has hiking trails that include the Batwa trail which goes across the bottom slopes of two volcanoes within mgahinga gorilla national park. The Batwa trail leads to the forest and you will view how people in the forest lived. The favorite trails for visitors who come to the park are the sabyinyo Gorge trail and the border trail near the Congo border. Mgahinga national park has a cave called Garama cave and it is said that it was used by the Batwa people and the king for hiding during the period of war.
Mgahinga gorilla national park has a cool type of climate that supports the best growth of Afro-montane vegetation and other vegetation types. The people leaving round mgahinga gorilla national park are the Bafumbira people who occupy the largest area in Kisoro district and the main activity is farming.
Mgahinga Gorilla National Park does not only offer golden monkeys trekking and mountain gorillas trekking but also has 76 species of mammals which include elephants, golden cats, buffaloes, bushbucks, black-fronted duikers, bush pigs, and African porcupines among others. Mgahinga gorilla national park has 115 bird species and some of the bird species are endemic to the Albertine Rift Mountains. Some of the bird species include the white-necked raven, olive pigeon, blue-headed coucal, speckled mousebirds, fire finch stonechat, and many others.
Mountain gorilla is an endangered wildlife animal in Uganda but still, the gorillas are multiplying in numbers because of the game reserve policy. Mgahinga gorilla national park has both gorilla trekking and gorilla habituation, the only habituate group is Nyakagezi gorilla family group in Mgahinga Gorilla Park. In the process of trekking, you have a chance of seeing other animals like the golden monkeys and other wildlife including some bird species. Actually gorilla trekking starts off at 8:00 am in the morning, the Uganda wildlife authority staff will brief you on the rule and regulation of gorilla trekking and went going for trekking should move with the guide. Gorilla trekking is the best experience should not miss out.
Golden Monkey Trekking.
Golden monkey trekking in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is one of the things you should not miss to do. Mgainga gorilla national park has a habituation group for golden monkey and the home is at mount sabyinyo. Golden monkey trekking starts in the morning and the trekkers take one hour with the monkeys. For golden monkeys trekking the number of trekkers is not limited as it’s with the gorillas, permits for golden monkeys only cost 100 USD per person.
The golden monkeys are sub-species of the blue monkey and are always found in the bamboo forest jumping from tree to tree and playing with the little ones. Mgahinga Gorilla national park in Uganda offers the best opportunity for trekkers by forming habituation families for golden monkeys.
Batwe Forest Trail.
Batwa forest trail starts from mount Muhavure and it takes around 3 to 4 hours. The Batwa trail goes across the bottom slopes of the two volcanoes that are Muhavura and Gahinga volcanoes in Mgahinga gorilla national park. The Batwa people use the forest for a variety of things like for gathering food, medicines, and homes for Batwa people, collecting firewood and many others. When going for the Batwa trail, the Batwa guide should accompany you. The Batwa occupation is farming and they are well known for their dance, music and historical background and visiting their cave known as Garama cave.
Mgahinga gorilla national park has 115 bird species recorded and some of the birds are endemic to the Albertine Rift Mountain, the birds in Mgahinga Park include the pin-tailed whydah, yellow-vented Bulbl, fire finch, speckled mousebird, Rwenzori nightjar, Double-collared sunbird and many others. Bird watching in mgahinga gorilla national park is done all year round in the park. But still, the best time for bird watching is Aprils to mid-May and October to November.
Mgahinga Gorilla national park is so interesting because of the activities done from it. The park has three Virunga Volcanoes and each Volcano can be climbed per day. The hiker climbs the three volcanoes and reaches to it is the peak where they can view the Virunga Volcanoes, Rwenzori peak, Lake Edward, Bwindi impenetrable forest and different creatures on the park. Actually you can enter the three countries Rwanda, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo through Mt. sabinyo.
Hiking and Nature Walks.
Hiking and nature walks are interesting activities you should not miss when in Mgahinga gorilla national park. You will walk to the foothills of Virunga Volcano; the tourist will have a wonderful experience during nature walks because you will have clear views of wildlife, birds, bamboo forest trees, beautiful swamps.
Accommodation at Mgahinga Gorilla national park
Accommodation in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park includes luxury, budget and mid-range lodges, chameleon hill lodge, Mutanda Lake Resort, kisoro Tourist Hotel, Mount Gahinga Lodge, Amajambere Iwacu community camp and Travelers Rest Hotel.
- 33.9 km²
- Kisoro District, Uganda.
- Drive Distance:
- 15km from Kisoro Town and close 55km from Kabale by road.
- Tour Activities:
- Gorilla trekking, golden monkey tracking, bird watching, mountain hiking and sightseeing, wildlife adventure, Nature Walks
- Tour Attractions:
- Mgahinga National Park National Reserve with Gorillas and Monkeys, Muhavura Volcano, Muyanga waterfall, Batwa Cultural Center, and Lake Chahafi
- hotel kisoro, Mount gahinga lodge, Kisoro tourist hotel, Mutanda lake resort, virunga hotel heritage guest house, Country side guest house, Lake Mutanda campsite Landmark tours and travel guest house, Mgahinga rest camp, Mgahinga community camp ground