Ngahinga Gorilla National Park
Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is a small park covering about 38 sq km. As its name suggests, it was created to protect the mountain Gorillas that inhabit the dense forests, and it is also an important habitat for the golden monkeys, elephants, leopards, black and white colobus monkeys and buffalos. The park also has a huge cultural significance in particular for the Batwa pygmies. This tribe of hunter-gatherers was the forest’s first people, and their ancient knowledge of its secrets remains undefeated. The Batwa are dependent on the forest for food, medicine and shelter and the rest of their life spins around the forests.
Mgahinga’s most interesting features are its three volcanoes part of the spectacular Virunga Range that is located along the border region of Uganda, Congo and Rwanda. Mgahinga forms part of the larger Virunga Conservation Area which includes adjacent parks in these countries. The volcanoes’ slopes contain various ecosystems and are biologically diverse. The national park can be visited any time the Gorillas are available with only a one day drive from Kampala via kabale where taxis can be gotten from kisoro town to the park
Mgahinga is a home of the batwa people who are much untamed warriors and specialized hunter. The Batwa are hospitable human beings always ready to lead the visitors in the amazing forest walk as they explain to them every detail about their culture. The batwa are famous because of their rare height and culture which depends on the forests for all the basic necessities of life like food, shelter and medicine. The Batwa are paramount in proving that they own the best hunting techniques, honey gathering and demonstrate how to make bamboo cups. Guests are invited to the sacred Garama Cave, once a refuge for the Batwa where cultural songs are performed by the women giving you more insight about the origin and culture of the Batwa people.
Birding at Mgahinga
Mgahinga is the perfect idea for anyone interested in bird watching since it provides a perfect view of all the bird species with a clear sound of the sweet melodies produced by the birds. Bird watching is spectacular in some of the beautiful sceneries between Mt Gahinga and Sabinyo. At least 12 bird species can be observed from the Mgahinga N.P.
This activity depends on the availability of the Gorillas since they have a seasonal appearance and they sometimes do not cross borders. Permits to trek the Gorillas have to be booked from the UMA offices in kisoro town or in Kampala.