Tourists have so many things to see and do in Mgahinga National Park in Uganda. Mgahinga National Park is one of the two national parks that have mountain gorillas in Uganda. This small but beautiful national park is located in southwestern Uganda on the border of Uganda, Rwanda and Democratic republic of congo. It is an extension of the three gorillas national park in the Virunga ranges.
Mgahinga National Park is home to one family of habituated mountain gorillas that wonder in this forested area mainly bamboo. Mgahinga boots of several bird species, golden monkeys among other forest wildlife. Mgahinga National Park is the only national park in Uganda where mountain gorillas and golden monkeys do co-exist.
Accessing Mgahinga National Park.
Those interested in visiting Mgahinga National Park have two choices of road trips as well as flying to and from Kisoro. Mgahinga can be accessed by road from Kigali Rwanda which by far is the shortest route. It is much more comfortable and convenient to land in Kigali and drive 4-5 hours via chanika border to Mgahinga National Park. Please note that if you choose to fly into Rwanda, visa and all border crossing procedures of Uganda and Rwanda must be adhered to.
Mgahinga National Park can be accessed from Entebbe International Airport, which is the main entry point for Uganda. If you land in Entebbe, you will have to drive 8-10 hours past the equator, Mbarara, Kabale onwards to Kisoro town and then Mgahinga National Park. If you are not a fan of driving long distance, you may choose to fly from Entebbe to Kisoro Airstrip from where you can be transferred by road to Mgahinga National Park headquarters.
Top things to see and do in Mgahinga National Park.
There so many things to see and do in Mgahinga National Park located in southwestern Uganda. One of the most popular activities done in Mgahinga National Park is gorilla trekking. Mgahinga National Park is home to one habituated mountain gorilla called Nyakagezi. Those that have trekked this family will attest to you that it is one family that is easier to see and photograph. Currently, Nyakagezi gorilla group has fourteen members that wonder in the bamboo forest of Mgahinga. Nyakagezi gorilla family used to wonder and move from Uganda to Rwanda, but for the last 3 years, it has been resident on the Uganda side, making it possible to be trekked and booked in Uganda.
One gorilla family means that 8 gorilla permits are always available daily and can be booked in advance at Uganda Wildlife Authority offices in Kampala. Are you interested in trekking Mgahinga mountain gorillas? All you need to do is to send us your actual dates when you prefer trekking gorillas, and we will check the availability of permits. If we find space, we will reserve your permit tentatively and invoice you. After payment, we will go ahead and pay your permit, and after that send, you scanned copies of receipts from Uganda Wildlife Authority. Please note that Encounter Africa safaris can only book for you Mgahinga gorilla permit if you book an all-inclusive gorilla or Uganda safari with us. We have a couple of Uganda safari packages that visit Mgahinga, kindly have a look at them and get back to us for a quote. We can also tailor-make your safari to fit your budget, time and interest.
Golden monkey trekking in Mgahinga National Park
Apart from gorilla trekking in this park. Golden monkey trekking is among things to see and do in Mgahinga National Park. As earlier noted, Mgahinga is the only National Park where one has an opportunity to see and trek golden monkeys in their natural habitat. Golden monkey permits are still booked at the park headquarters in Mgahinga and not in Kampala. This is because there are no minimum numbers of people required. Encounter Africa safaris organizes safaris which include a visit to see golden monkeys and should you need any information, do not hesitate to contact us. Golden monkey trekking permit allows you to spend one hour with habituated families of golden monkeys. It also includes park entry fees as well as services of a ranger guide. For more information about golden monkey trekking, kindly send us an email, and we will advise you accordingly.
Golden monkey habituation experience
It is only in Mgahinga National Park that one can enjoy golden monkey habituation experience. This experience allows you to spend more than one hours with golden monkeys still under habituation. The experience starts at the park headquarters and takes up to half a day, depending on the time you take to find them. Encounter Africa safaris is glad and happy to discuss with you details of golden monkey habituation experience anytime any day.
Bird watching excursions in Mgahinga National Park.
Uganda is a bird-watching haven, and according to available figures, over 1040 species of birds have been recorded in Uganda. Mgahinga National Park has some endemics, and those interested in birding can follow trails to find these birds in this national park. Encounter Africa safaris works hand in hand with available birders in the region plus Uganda Wildlife Authority guides. They will make sure that you see as many birds are they are in this National Park.
Volcano hiking in Mgahinga National Park
Among things to see and do in Mgahinga National Park is volcano hiking. Mgahinga National Park has three volcanic mountains of Muhavura, Mgahinga and Sabinyo. It takes one to three days to hike any of the three volcanoes located in Mgahinga. Encounter Africa safaris organizes hiking tours to Mgahinga, and we make sure that all is included and your hike is safe and enjoyable.
Batwa experience and trail in Mgahinga National Park
Mgahinga National Park used to be inhabited by forest and bush people commonly referred to as the pygmies. When Mgahinga National Park was finally gazetted, the Batwa people were relocated outside the national park. A visit to Mgahinga national park will take you on a trail to show you how these pygmies used to spend their time in the forest, where they used to stay, how they used to harvest wild honey as well as hunting. They will show off their dances and explain how they have managed to settle and enjoy a healthy life outside the forest.
Where to stay while in Mgahinga
Mgahinga National Park and Kisoro town have some dissent lodges where one can spend a night or two. Mgahinga Lodge located at Mgahinga gate is one of the best places to stay if you book any activity in Mgahinga National Park. It’s a high-end facility and suitable for those that want to spend more while in Uganda. Kisoro Travellers rest inn is yet another budget but value for money lodge located in Kisoro town. All these lodges offer several arrangements from Bed and Breakfast to Full board. Depending on your budget, Encounter Africa safaris will ensure that whatever you choose, you derive the best experience and satisfaction out of it.
Responsible practices while with Encounter Africa safaris.
Encounter Africa safaris promotes sustainable and responsible travel. All those interested in visiting mgahinga national park should ensure that they adhere to practices that don’t degrade the environment since wildlife in Mgahinga National Park depends on the environment to survive. Mind about dropping any waste while in Mgahinga, follow the trails and instructions by your ranger guide, keep the distance between you and gorillas or golden monkeys as instructed by your guide, you can as well contribute to the local people so that they feel loved and be able to appreciate tourism and wildlife conservation.
Encounter Africa safaris operates day trips to Mgahinga National Park as well as other national parks and exciting tourists sites all over Uganda and Rwanda. It’s a matter of sending us an email, and we will start from there. Encounter Africa safaris is highly reviewed on trip advisor and Safari bookings. You too can be part of our happy family by booking a safari with us.