Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is located in the southwestern part of Uganda on the rim of the rift valley along the Democratic Republic of Congo next to the Virunga national park with hillsides covered by biological varied impenetrable forest.

The park covers an area of 331 sq km of the jungle forest and contains both montane and lowland forest in Kanungu district.  Bwindi forest is one of the richest ecosystems in Africa with scrambled vegetation draped over an intensively fissured landscape of the steep, haughty ridges as well as the slippery valleys. Bwindi was set up as a reserve in 1942 and later renovated to Bwindi national park in 1992 when it was also acknowledged as the world heritage site by UNESCO.

Bwindi impenetrable national park is a home to over 400 habituated endangered mountain gorillas giving it half of the total remaining mountain gorillas in the world while the other half is shared by Volcanoes national park in Rwanda and Virunga national park in Congo. However, the gorilla statistics have showed a great increase of mountain gorillas in parks they are habituated. There are 11 species of primates and 346 bird species and 200 species of butterflies.

Bwindi Gorilla trekking and Habituation are the park’s main attraction carried out in the four sectors of the park, that is Buhoma sector which is the headquarters of the park, Ruhija sector, Nkuringo sector and Rushaga sector. Other attractions found in Bwindi Park include the batwa trail experience and cultural tours in the communities near the park. Gorilla trekking involves trekking for the gorillas and spending one hour in their presence while Gorilla habituation involves tracking the semi-habituated gorillas and spending four hours in their presence learning their behaviours.

Bwindi impenetrable national park has the highest number and range of accommodations given its division into 4 sectors each with its own accommodation.  Buhoma sector being the first sector of gorilla trekking to be formed has the highest number of high-end lodge such as Buhoma lodge, Mahogany Springs lodge, Bwindi lodge to mention a few. Other luxury lodges include; Silverback Safari lodge, Nkuringo Gorilla lodge, Chameleon Hill lodge to mention a few, Mid-range lodge include Gorilla mist lodge, Buhoma Community Haven lodge, Rushaga Gorilla Camp, Ichumbi Gorilla lodge, Trekkers Tavern lodge to mention a few, budget lodges include; Bakiga lodge, Buhoma Rest camp, Karungi Camp, Ruhija Friends resort to mention but a few. The park can be accessed from by road from Kampala through Mbarara to Kabale or Kisoro taking about 8-9 hours’ drive using both public and private means. Aero-link Uganda limited operates daily domestic flights from Entebbe airport to Kihihi and Kisoro airstrips for just 2 hours flight. Alternatively, for guests in Rwanda, the national park can be accessed via either Katuna border or Cyanika border for only about 4-5 hours drive from Kigali. After a visit to Bwindi impenetrable national park, we can also opt to visit Kidepo Valley National Park and compare experiences.