Attractions in bwindi impenetrable national park
Attractions in bwindi impenetrable national park: Bwindi impenetrable national park is a UNESCO world heritage site located in south western region of Uganda, Bwindi impenetrable national park is ranked as one of the top tourist destination in the world reason being the park features many attractive tourist attractions.
Tourist attractions in Bwindi impenetrable national park include
Mountain gorilla is the top attraction in Bwindi impenetrable national park, Bwindi impenetrable national park is a prominent home to many mountain gorilla individuals estimated to be 400 individuals which habit in different sectors of the park. These sectors situated in different regions of the park are where mountain gorilla live and in these sectors you find various exciting gorilla families and they include.
Buhoma sector is located in the northern region of Bwindi impenetrable national park, buhoma sector is the most exciting and visited sector in the park, buhoma sector is the first sector to be opened for trekking with mubare gorilla family to be opened for receiving trekkers. Mubare gorilla family is the first family to be habituated in both buhoma sector and Bwindi impenetrable national park habituated in 1992.
Buhoma sector consists of three gorilla families namely
Mubare gorilla family
Mubare gorilla family is the first gorilla family to be open for gorilla trekking first habituated in 1992, this group presently consists of 5 individuals, this family is named after mubare hills where this group was first sighted. Mubare gorilla family is headed by Kanyonyi a dominant silverback with 1 adult female, 2 sub adult female and 1 infant.
Habinyanja gorilla family
Habinyanja gorilla family deriving its name from a Rukinga word Nyaja meaning a place with water was habituated in 1997 and first trekked in 1999, this family was first sighted near swamp ponds of Bwindi impenetrable national park. Habinyanja gorilla family is consists of 13 prominent family members namely Makara, Rwansigazi, Maraya, Kisho, Nabukye, Binyonko, Rugyendi, Nyamuhango, Elsa, Hamusini, Hakato, Gacyaro and Bangenyi. This family is under the leadership of Makara a dominant silverback.
Rushegura gorilla family
Rushegura gorilla family was habituated in 2000 and opened for trekking in the same year, this group split from Habinyanja gorilla family. This family consists of 19 gorilla individuals and when you trek in this family you are able to get a sight of Mwirima the dominant silverback and leader of this group, Kabukojo the blackback, 5 adult female that is Kyirinvi, Kibande, Buzinza, Nyamunwa and Karungyi, 2 sub-adult female Kalembezi and Ruterana, 5 juveniles that is Nyampazi, Kafuruka, Kibande, Karungyi, Kanywanyi, 5 infant gorillas that is Kyirinvi, Buzinza, Nyamunmwa, kibade and katabazi
Buhoma sector is very accessible using routes from kabala, using kihihi airstrip and from Queen Elizabeth national park as it is close to ishasha sector the southern part of Queen Elizabeth national park
Nkuringo gorilla sector is situated in the southern part of Bwindi impenetrable national park Kisoro district, Nkuringo sector is a home to only three gorilla families which are
Nkuringo gorilla family
Nkuringo gorilla family is the first gorilla group habituated in the south western region of Bwindi and it was done in 1997. Nkuringo gorilla family is composed of 12 gorilla individuals including 1 silverback, 2 adult females, 2 adult females, 2 sub adults 3 juveniles and 2 infants. Nkuringo gorilla family is a historical family as it is the first family in Bwindi impenetrable national park to record the birth of twins, Nkuringo gorilla family initially was made up of 17 family individuals but many members split from the park and only 12 where left in this family group.
Bikingi gorilla family
Bikingi gorilla family is a fantastic gorilla family exclusive for gorilla habituation experience, this family was habituated as early as 2012. Currently this family consists of 15 family individuals that is 1 silverback, 5 adult females, 2 sub-adults, 2 juveniles and 5 infants. Bikigi gorilla family is not yet to have a leader because it is still undergoing through habituation process.
Bushaho gorilla family
Bushaho gorilla family is a group of 8 individuals with 1 silverback, 1 blackback, 3 adult females, 1 sub-adult, 1 juvenile, and 1 infant. Bushaho gorilla family was formed by numerous members who split from Nkuringo gorilla family, this family is under the leadership of a dominant silverback Bahati.
Rushaga sector is the most visited sector in Bwindi impenetrable national park by tourists coming from Kigali using cyanika border in Kisoro district, this region is also situated in the southern region of the park. Rushaga sector hosts the greatest population of mountain gorilla families in the park and they include
Nshongi gorilla family
Nshongi gorilla family is an exciting gorilla family in Bwindi impenetrable national park, this family consists of 7 family members under the leadership of Bweza a powerful silverback. There is 1 silverback, 1 juvenile, 1 infant, 3 adult females and 1 sub adult.
Kahungye gorilla family
Kahungye gorilla family is a family of 17 members deriving its name from kahungye hill where these gorilla were first sighted in this region, this family is under the leadership of a dominant silverback Rumaz with 3 adult females, 3 silverbacks, 2 infants, 3 juveniles and 3 sub adults.
Busingye gorilla family
Busingye gorilla family is a family of 9 members which broke away from kahungye gorilla family, this family under the leadership of dominating silverback Busingye. This group derives its name from a local word meaning peace.
Mishaya gorilla family
Mishaya gorilla family is a group of 12 members under the leadership of a dominant silverback Mishaya, Mishaya gorilla group was formed in 2010 by Mishaya who broke away from Nshongi gorilla group.
Bweza gorilla family
Bweza gorilla family is a family of 23 mountain gorilla individuals under the leadership of a silverback in the names of kakono, this family consists of 2 silverbacks, 4 black backs, 1 sub adult, 3 adult females and 2 infants.
Ruhija sector is found in the eastern region of Bwindi impenetrable national park, Ruhija is an amazing sector consisting of 3 gorilla families where mountain gorilla trekking takes place. These families include
Bitukura gorilla family
Bitukura gorilla family is a family of 14 family individuals with 4 silverbacks, 4 adult families, 2 juveniles, 3 infants and 1 baby. This family was habituated in 2007 and it initially consisted of 24 family members and recently the group faced constant conflicts which cause many members to run away from the group.
Oruzogo gorilla family
Oruzogo gorilla family is a family of 17 individuals with 1 silverback, this family was opened for tourism in 2007 and some of the prominent members of this group include Bakwate “old silverback”, Kaganga (silverback), Kasumali (silverback), six adult females whose names include Nyangaro, Katoto, Ruchura, Mutesi, Nyakina and Mukwano, one black back Bwengye, three sub adult males Nyakashunja, Musenene, Nyabirano, and Muhumuza, two infant males Mufuruki and Paska, one infant female Musana.
Kyaguliro gorilla family
Kyaguliro gorilla family is relatively a big family of 20 family individuals, this family was reserved for research that is why it is not occasionally visited. After the death of the group’s then leader who was struck dead by lightening, the group split into two groups that is Kyaguliro A and Kyaguliro B.
Kyaguliro A– consists of 10 family members that is 1 silverback, 2 black backs, 3 adult females, 2 juveniles and 2 infants under the leadership of Rukara a dominant silverback
Kyaguliro B– consists of 10 family members that is 1 silverback, 4 adult females 1 adult and 4 infants under the leadership of Mukiza a dominant silverback.
Mammals and other primates
Though Bwindi impenetrable national park is known for being a home to mountain gorillas the park is also a home to amazing mammals who habit in the deep forests of the park, mammals found in the park include forest elephants, giant forest hog, antelopes, side stripped jackal, African civet and many more.
There is also other primates which are habitants of Bwindi impenetrable national park, these primates include chimpanzees, black and white colobus monkeys, vervet, L’hoests, De Brazza monkeys, red tailed monkey, nocturnal potto and galago species.
Bwindi impenetrable national park is a great ecological system covered with numerous types of vegetation, on a record Bwindi impenetrable national park is one of the few areas in Africa covered by tropical forest in that it is where lowland and montane vegetation zones meet. Bwindi impenetrable national park is crossed by many small rivers such as Ivi, munyaga, ihihizo, ishasha and ntengyrere which pour their waters in Lake Edward making it a renowned water catchment area. The park is characterized by a conopy of plant species which include Red stinkwood, Newtonia, Symphonia globulifera, East African yellow wood and Strombosia scheffleri. Beneath the main forest there are species like Xymalos, Neoboutonia Macrocalyx, Monospora, Myrianthus holstii, Teclea nobilis and Allophylus abyssinicus.
Bwindi impenetrable national park is covered by afro montane forests a rare vegetation type on African continent with a recorded number of 220 tree species and 100 fern species.
Hiking trails in Bwindi impenetrable national park are also a prominent attraction in the park, these trails lead to numerous parts of the park and attractions and while using them you get to encounter many mysteries of the park. While on hiking and nature walk expedition in the park these trails are used and they include
- River Ivi trail– this trail is the best bird watching trail taking you through the escarpment of Nkuringo, while hiking on this trail it takes 7 hours covering 14 kilometers to finish it.
- Waterfall trail– waterfall trail is a 4 hours’ trail to hike leading to the park’s waterfall.
- Habinyanja trail– this trail is a 4-6 hours trail which takes you past river Munyanga, this trail is most used by tourists after trekking Habinyanja gorilla family.
- Kashasha river trail– this trail is a 5-7hours trail to trek, Kashasha river trail runs between Nkuringo and buhoma sectors of the Bwindi impenetrable national park.
- Bamboo trail– this trail is an attractive trail to hike of 6 hours leading towards Rwamunyonyi peak. Bamboo trail is a best trail for viewing birds.
- Muzabajiro trail– this trail is an exceptional trail offering scenic views of western rift valley and Virunga, Muzabajiro is a trial of 6 kilometers and while on it you encounter beautiful ferns, a variety of bird species and peaks of Virunga volcanoes.
Bwindi impenetrable national park boosts a variety bird species most especially water and forest bird species, this park is a perfect spot for montane-forest bird watching in Africa. Bwindi impenetrable national park is a home to over 350 bird species, among these bird species 14 species are endemic to Bwindi impenetrable national park and 23 of them are only found in Albertine rift. Bird species that are sighted in the thick forests of Bwindi impenetrable national park include Chapin’s fly catcher, Handsome francolin, Rwenzori Batis, Tit Hylia, Strange weaver, Dusky Twin spot, Montane Oriole, Regal sunbird, African wood owl, Bar-tailed trogon, Western green tinker bird, Black bee-eater, Dwarf honeyguide, Grey gecko-shrike, Kivu ground-thrush, Yellow-sreaked greenbul, Shelly’s greenbul, Red-throated alethe, collared apalis, handsome francolin, strange weaver
The most amazing trails for bird watching in Bwindi impenetrable national park is buhoma waterfall trail, mubwindi swamp trail and bamboo zone.
The batwa pygmy people
The batwa pygmy people are the ancient in habitant of Bwindi forests but during the gazetted of Bwindi impenetrable national park as a protected area they were forcefully driven out of the forest to the outskirts of the park. The batwa people regarded as the keepers of the forest are hunter-gathers who majorly depend on hunting wild animals and gathering fruits, even today these people still practice they ancient life style. Upon visiting Bwindi impenetrable national park you will visit the batwa community for cultural encounter where you will encounter these amazing people going on with their day to day lives in an ancient way.
You will witness them building houses using local materials, hunting small animals, local dance and drama and many activities which will blow your mind.
Best Time for Wildlife Viewing
Every time of the day is a good time to visit Bwindi impenetrable national park depending so much on your interest but the best time to visit the park is in dry periods of June to august and December –January. In these periods the trails are less slippery and mussy as little rainfall is received.