Bwindi Impenetrable national park and the trekking of the mountain gorillas in Uganda
Bwindi impenetrable national park is famous for trekking the mountain gorillas. The forest park has the highest number of mountain gorillas in the world.
The government formed this park in 1991. Previously, it was a forest reserve. This area is therefore one of the lastest parks of Uganda. Bwindi lies between 1,160m and 2,607m above sea level. The Bwindi impenetrable national park has a population of around 350 mountain gorillas. However, only an estimated 40% are habituated.
Bwindi forest has at least 120 mammal species . Along with the gorillas, there are ten other primate species found in the forest. The Blue monkeys, baboons and chimpanzees are some of the other primates that live here. The park has other animals like the forest elephants and several antelope species.
There are 350 bird species within the forest. Infact, 23 of these are endemic to the Albertine Rift. Specifically, 14 bird species are not in any other place in Uganda. For example, the chin spot batis and bronze naped Pigeon are some of the rare species in Bwindi. The other birds include handsome Frankolin, African broadbill and green breasted Pitta.
Furthermore, the park has 27 frog species. Likewise, you can easily find the three horned chameleon in the park. For those that love butterflies, Bwindi impenetrable national park has 200 species. Altogether, 42 are endemic within this region.
The size of Bwindi forest: 321 sq.km
Tourism activities in and around Bwindi
The main tourism attraction is the Mountain gorilla trekking. You can enjoy nature walks to the falls nonetheless. You can take part in other activities as well. For example bird watching and guided community tours. There are also cultural performances. Experiences include the daily life of the local people especially, the Batwas or Pygmies.
Lodges that are located at Bwindi Forest
Plenty of accommodations are here. These range from the very luxurious, to the very low budget. There is the Mahogany Springs, Buhoma Lodge and the Gorilla Forest Camp. The lodges are in the northern side of the park. Whereas the Bakiga Lodge and Gorilla Mist Camp are in the Ruhija sector. The Chameleon Hill Lodge, Ichumbi and Gorilla Camp are situated in the Rushaga area.
The areas that may interest the visitor
There are 4 locations park for gorilla trekking. You can visit any of these locations throughout the year.
Buhoma sector: There are 3 gorilla groups namely Habiyanja, Mubare and Rushegura. The activities include village walks, waterfalls and performances.
The Ruhija sector has Bitukura, Oruzogo and Kyaguriro gorilla groups. There is the bamboo trail leading to the peak. Another trail goes to Mubwindi swamp for the African broadbill bird.
Rushaga has several gorilla groups namely Nshongi, Mishaya, Bweza, Mukiza and Kahungye.
Nkurigo has the one and only Nkuringo gorilla group.
Bwindi is found in south western Uganda. It is close to the border with the Democratic republic of Congo.
Accessibility of Bwindi
However, from Kampala to rushaga the distance is 372 kms. The driving time is around 8 hours.
While Kampala to Ruhija is 322 kms, the driving time is about 7 hours. Optionally, the Kampala to Nkurigo route is 374 kms. Thus you need approximately 9 hours. This is because of the rough roads.
The distance between Kampala and Buhoma is around 400 kms. The driving time is estimated at about 9 hours.