Mgahinga Gorilla National Park Uganda Gorilla Trekking Safari Tour
Mgahinga Gorilla National Park Uganda Gorilla Trekking Safaris tour destination is the smallest Uganda national park well known for mountain gorilla tracking, Golden monkey tracking tours an amazing safari experience in Africa. Gorilla Trekking in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park makes your adventure, explore, and interact directly with mountain gorillas in the park while on your Uganda Safari
Mgahinga Gorilla National Park, only 38 sq. km in size, is the Ugandan part of the bigger Virunga Conservation Area, which is a jointly protected area with Congo and Rwanda. It includes three extinct volcanoes: Mount Sabinyo (3.669 m.), Mount Gahinga (3.474 m.), and Mount Muhavura (4.127 m.). “Mgahinga” is named after Mount Gahinga plus the initial of Mount Muhavura.
History of Mgahinga Gorilla National Park Uganda
The park gets its name from Gahinga that is the local word for the “piles of volcanic stones” Mgahinga Gorilla national park was gazetted as a game sanctuary in 1930 by the British administration and later declared a national park in 1991.
In Mgahinga’s past, there were several poachers lingering in the park causing insecurity and in 1989, a survey was made and several wire Traps were discovered and destroyed.
The park managed to maintain security till the m23 Congolese rebels took refuge in the park but were defeated in 2013 and since then the park has been stable till now.
Species to Adventure in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park:
The vegetation is the one typical of Afromontane areas, with a consistent bamboo forest. There are 76 mammal species recorded, including buffaloes, elephants, bushbucks, golden monkeys, leopards.
115 bird species have been recorded, including Rwenzori turaco, crowned hornbill, black kite, and crowned crane. Mgahinga hosts a population of golden monkeys and a few families of mountain gorillas.
- Wildlife in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park Uganda
The park is a Primate dominated area therefore the tourists are guaranteed the sighting of several primates such as the Gorillas, golden monkey, black and white colobus monkey, and several other monkeys. However, the chances of seeing other animals such as Buffaloes, Elephants, bushbucks, and carnivals are close to none.
The park is also a Birders paradise because the park has over 115 bird species with a variety of Albertine birds these include the white-necked raven, Black kite, Pin-tailed whydah, Double-collared Sunbird, Ibis, and so many more birds. This experience lasts all year but the best times to catch these birds are in April to mid-may and October to April.
- Relief and vegetation in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park Uganda
The relief is dominated by the Virunga mountains making it favorable for the mountain Gorillas. The vegetation in the park is majorly Afro-montane due to the cool climate. The vegetation types include Bamboo which takes up about 60% of the entire vegetation, Lobelia, Haegenis, and several other species.
The different vegetation types include Afromontane, Tree heathers, montane forest, Bamboo, Montane woodland, and former farmland. Lastly, the Virunga Ranges have eight volcanoes with three conical peaks found at Mgahinga Gorilla National park.
Activities to do in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park.
Each of the three volcanoes can be climbed with a day trip hike, without a piece of special mountain equipment. Visits are organized to the Garama Cave, near the Park Head Quarter in Ntebeko, which is 432 m in length and was once inhabited by the pygmy population.
The key activity at Mgahinga National park is Gorilla trekking. In this activity, The Tourists will be able to track down the Nyakagezi gorilla group which frequently roams in the forests of Rwanda and Congo making them easy to track down.
This activity starts early in the morning and it is an exciting adventure because you are able to sit with the gorilla families and watch them go about with their daily activities.
The park also has Golden monkey tracking. The golden monkey species are a very rare species therefore tracking them is a very thrilling activity. These monkeys are known for their bright orange golden body and they live in the bamboo forests in groups of 3-30 individuals.
Mgahinga Gorilla National park is the ideal destination for Birders because they are able to trek to the Rugezi swamp, the bamboo forests or the Sabinyo Gorge for the most exciting bird-watching experience.
This activity takes 3 to 4 hours and provides spectacular sightings of the bronze Sunbird, Dusty Turtle dove, and a variety of other fascinating birds.
The park also offers hiking and nature walks through the rest of the deep Sabinyo Gorge, this is the perfect opportunity to see a few birds especially the Rwenzori Turaco. This allows hikers to sight the calderas on top of the Gisozi hill.
This park is next to various mountains such as Mt. Gahinga, Mt.Muhavura, and Mt.Sabinyo which will definitely be exciting for the Tourists that desire adventure in their lives.
Another activity is the cultural encounters with the Batwa people. While on this encounter, the Batwa will demonstrate hunting styles, collect honey, point out medicinal plants, and show how to make Bamboo cups. This activity is quite exciting and there are also traditional dances and folk songs.
Accommodation in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park Uganda
The tourists comfort while at Mgahinga National park will be catered for at several lodges such as Mount Gahinga safari lodge, Countryside Guesthouse, Virunga guesthouse, Nkuringo safari lodge, Golden monkey guest house, Mutanda Eco community center, Birds Nest at the bunny resort, Buyonyi overland resort, Virunga hotel and campsite, Kisoro Travelers and Kisoro Tourist Hotel.
You can take a road trip from Kampala to Mgahinga Gorilla national park using Kampala-Kabale-Kisoro road and it takes about 8 hours to get there. Alternatively, a flight from Entebbe International airport to Kisoro that takes about an hour to get there is also available.
In conclusion, Mgahinga National park is ideal for Primate lovers and a vacation away from the city to a quiet and serene place.
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