Mgahinga Gorilla National Park
Golden Monkey Trekking | Mountain Gorilla Trekking | Habituated Gorillas
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.
Mgahings Gorilla National Park has hiking trails that include the Batwe trail which goes across the bottom slopes of two volcanoes within mgahinga gorilla national park. The Batwe 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 Congo border. Mgahinga national park has a cave called Garama cave and it is said that it was used by the Batwe people and they 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 living round mgahinga gorilla national park are the Bafumbira people who occupy the largest area in Kisoro district and their main activity is farming.
Mgahinga Gorilla National Park does not only offer golden monkeys trekking and mountain gorilla 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 white-necked raven, olive pigeon, blue-headed coucal, speckled mouse birds, fire finch stonechat and many others.
How to access Mgahinga National park
You can easily access this destination by road through Kampala- Kabale- kisoro road and it will take you about 7-8 hours on the road as you drive through shape corners not forgetting the beautiful landscape that comes along the drive to Mgahinga national park.
What To Do And See From Mgahinga Gorilla National Park.
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 others wildlife including some bird species. Actually gorilla trekking start off at 8:00am in the morning, the Uganda wildlife authority staff will brief you on the rules and regulations of gorilla trekking and when going for trekking you should move with the guide. Gorilla trekking is the best experience one 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. Mgahinga gorilla national park has a habituation group for golden monkeys 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 best opportunity for trekkers by forming habituation family for golden monkeys.
Batwe Forest Trail.
Batwe forest trail starts from mount Muhavure and it take around 3 to 4 hours. The Batwe trail goes a cross the bottom slopes of the two volcanoes that is Muhavura and Gahinga volcanoes in Mgahinga gorilla national park. The Batwe people use the forest for variety of things like for gathering food, medicines, and homes for Batwe people, collecting fire wood and many others. When going for Batwe trail, batwe guide should accompany you. The Batwe 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 mouse bird, Rwenzori nightjar, Double-collared sunbird and many others. Bird watching in mgahinga gorilla national park is done all year around 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 Volcanoe can be climbed per day. The hikers climb the three volcanoes and reach to it is peak were 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 foot hills of Virunga Volcanoe; the tourist will have 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 include 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.
Location of Mgahinga Gorilla National Park
Mgahinga gorilla national park is located in southern west corner of Uganda in Kisoro district at Bufumbira County and the park comprises of three volcanoes and three extensive swamps. The three volcanoes include, mount Muhabura, mount Gahinga and mount Sabyinyo.
The park size is at 33.7 square kilometers and it’s at an altitude range of 2227-4127 metres. Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is bordering the Republic of Rwanda from the south and Democratic Republic of Congo in the west and the park is only 10 km from Kisoro main town. Mgahinga national park is the smallest park in Uganda but despite being the smallest park in Uganda it’s the prime tour-safari destination because it’s one of the only two national parks in Uganda doing gorilla habituation for endangered mountain gorillas in the world.