Things to do in Mgahinga gorilla national park; Mgahinga gorilla national park is the smallest national park in Uganda located in southwestern region in Kisoro district bordering with Volcanoes national park in Rwanda and Virunga national park in Congo. Mgahinga gorilla national park was gazeted in 1991 and its famously known for harboring the endangered mountain gorillas, other primates like golden monkeys, black and white colobus monkeys, animals like forest elephants, buffaloes, bushbucks, bush pigs and over 115 bird species. Mgahinga gorilla national park offers interesting activities that tourists can engage in during the safari including,
Things to do in Mgahinga gorilla national park
Gorilla trekking is the most popular activity in Mgahinga gorilla national park and it involves visitors moving on foot into the tropical rainforest in search of the habituated mountain gorillas and once found spend one hour with them in their environment. Mgahinga gorilla national park is a home of one habituated gorilla family called Nyakagezi which is available for trekking daily and trekking starts early in the morning with a briefing about the rules, regulations and expectations at the park headquarters. After the briefing, you will start trekking in the jungle which takes about 2 hours to 6 hours depending on where the gorillas are located because they like to move from one place to another in search of food. During trekking you will be able to view other wildlife species and once the mountain gorillas are found, you will be allowed to spend one hour with them in their natural habitat which gives you an opportunity to learn about their behaviors, habits, watch them carry out their daily activities like feeding, breastfeeding, grooming young ones, take photos and record videos.
Golden monkey trekking
Golden monkey trekking is the second best done activity in Mgahinga gorilla national park and just like gorilla trekking, visitors will be able move into the tropical rainforest in search of the golden monkeys and once found spend one hour with them in their habitat. Golden monkey trekking in Mgahinga gorilla national park starts with a briefing about the rules and regulations to follow during trekking. After the briefing, you will start trekking in the forest with an experienced park guide which takes about 2 hours to 5 hours depending on where golden monkeys are found because they are active primates which like to move from one place to another. Once they are found, you will be allowed to spend one hour with them in their environment where you will be able to watch them play, feed, jump up in tree branches, take photos and record videos to show people back home.
Mgahinga gorilla national park is a home of three volcanoes namely mount Muhavura which is 4,127 meters above the sea level, mount Sabyinyo which is 3,669meters above the sea level and mount Gahinga which is 3,474 meters above the sea level. All the three volcanic mountains can be hiked to the summit where each mountain can be climbed in a day and during mountain climbing, you will be rewarded with great views of the crater lakes, swamps, different vegetation zones, views of the Virunga ranges, Rwenzori ranges, views of Lake Edward, Bwindi impenetrable national park among others.
Batwa trail experience
Batwa trail experience is an interesting activity in Mgahinga gorilla national park where you will be able to interact with the Batwa people who used to live in Mgahinga forest before it was gazetted into a national park. During the Batwa trail experience, you will be able to learn about the hunting and gathering skills, learn how to make fire with sticks, identify herbs that are used to treat different diseases, visit Garamba cave where you will learn about the history of the Batwa people, the Garama cave also acted as the kings palace and food store, enjoy performances from the Batwa women among others.
Mgahinga gorilla national park is a home of over 115 recorded bird species including 14 of the Albertine rift endemics, afro-tropical highland biome and migratory birds. During bird watching, you will be accompanied by an experienced bird guide who will help you spot different bird species including Paradise Flycatcher, Black Kite, Double-collared Sunbird, Speckled Mouse bird, White-necked Raven, Archers Robin Chat, Kivu Ground-thrush, Olive Pigeon, Blue-headed Coucal, Yellow-vented Bulbul, Olive Woodpecker, Rwenzori Turaco, Ruwenzori Batis, Regal Sunbird, Red Faced Woodland Warbler, African Hill Babbler, Western Green Tinker Bird, Handsome Francolin, Alpine Chat, Yellow-billed Kite among other.
Nature walk is another interesting activity in Mgahinga gorilla national park where visitors get an opportunity to explore the park on foot with the company of an armed park ranger and an experienced park guide. During the guided nature walk, you will get up-close and personal with different animals, primates, tree species, listen to sweet sounds of bird species, view colorful butterflies, take beautiful pictures among others.
Best time to visit Mgahinga gorilla national park
Mgahinga gorilla national park can be visited all year round though the best period is during the dry season or peak season in the months of June to September and December to February because during this time there is less or little rainfall in the park therefore access roads, nature walk and gorilla trekking trails will be dry and passable which makes hiking and trekking easy.
Mgahinga gorilla national park can also be accessed in the rainy season during the months of March to May and October to November because this is the best time for bird watching where bird lovers will get an opportunity to spot colorful and migratory bird species.
How to get to Mgahinga gorilla national park
Mgahinga gorilla national park is located in southwestern part of Uganda and can be accessed by air transport means whereby you will book a scheduled or charter domestic flight with Aero link or Bar Aviation from Entebbe international airport or Kajjansi airfield to Kisoro airstrip and then connect to the park headquarters by road.
Mgahinga gorilla national park can also be accessed by road transport means where you will drive from Kampala via Masaka, Mbarara, Kabale, Kisoro and then to the park headquarters which takes about 9 to 10 years drive in a safari vehicle.
You can as well access Mgahinga gorilla national park from Kigali Rwanda where you will fly to Kigali international airport and then connect to Mgahinga gorilla national park through Cyanika border in Kisoro or Katuna border in Kabale which takes about 3 to 4 hours drive.
Where to stay during your safari in Mgahinga gorilla national park
There are a number of accommodation facilities near Mgahinga gorilla national park where you can stay during your safari. The accommodations range from budget, midrange and luxury including Mount Gahinga lodge, Travelers Rest hotel, Mucha hotel Kisoro, Kisoro Tourist Hotel, Amajambere Iwacu Community Camp, Lake Mulehe Safari Lodge, Mutanda Lake Resort, Mount Gahinga Rest Camp, Lake Chahafi Resort, Montana Guest House among others.
For more information about the things to do in Mgahinga gorilla national park Uganda, you can contact us at Achieve Global Safaris.