Interesting tourist’s attractions in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park Uganda Gorilla tracking Safari
The Batwa People
The majority of people that occupy Uganda today are Bantu speaking people but what is interesting is that over 4,000 years before the Bantu arrived in Uganda, the Batwa had already settled there. The Batwa also called the Abatwa of Abathwa are short-structured people who currently are ranked among the most endangered, disregarded and marginalized groups of people in the world. Although they dwelt in this land before most communities of people today, they have been forced to leave their lands and homes and give them up to the new arrivers. The batwa are a hunter fruit gathering community who inhabited Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. They narrate that their god (Nagasian) put them in charge of taking care of all the forest’s biomes including its streams, flora and fauna; and for their protection, Nagasian permitted them to hunt and gather fruits in the forest. They used to reside in caves, many of which can be visited while on a tour and safari to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. Unfortunately, in 1992 they were ousted from the forest by the government of Uganda when it was gazetting Bwindi as a National Park. This meant that they lost the places they called home, and the forest from which they got food and water to drink. Their survival became a matter of “God’s mercy”. Fortunately today, a number of local, regional and global initiatives have come up to not only fight for the rights of the Batwa but to also provide them with the necessities of life and to also accord them with things to do from which to earn a living. Programs that support the Batwa community today include the Batwa Development Program (BDP), the European Union (EU) and World Vision. Their previous and current settlements have been transformed in to the Batwa trail which tourists can visit while on Gorilla Tracking Safaris to Bwindi. One of the highlights of the Batwa trail is the Garama cave where the former Batwa king’s palace used to be. Tourists will also enjoy the amazing music and dances performed by the Batwa women.
Other peoples, places and things to do when visiting Bwindi.
The park is surrounded by other groups of people who are also equally fascinating to see and interact with including the Bafumbira and the Bakiga who both present captivatingly unique cultures for tourists to discover.
- Buhoma community Tours
The Buhoma community tours are organized by the Mukono Development Association and they last between three (3) to four (4) hours exposing tourists to the local way of life of the people of Buhoma village. Tourists will be wowed at the ability of a native doctor to cure illnesses using local herbs. Tourists can also see how the local brew is made from bananas; how crafts are made from local raw materials and can also see how the local people make their clothes. The rewarding thing about this tour is that in many of the activities that tourists participate in for example making local brew, they are free to taste the results of the entire process. Another highlight to look out for is the energetic Kiga dance and beautiful African folk songs performed by members of the community.
- Nkuringo Community Conservation and Development Foundation (NCCDF).
There is a lot to do while in the Nkuringo village. Tourists can watch how local waragi is distilled in Sicilia’s home. They can also see and feel the artistic works of African porters like the cooking pots, charcoal stoves, grinding stones and the waragi distilling apparatuses. The tour can also continue to Pena’s home where you can experience the incredible traditional healing of African native doctors (sometimes called African chemistry) using locally sourced herbs from which she makes ointments, herbal powder and tea. Tourists can also make visits to Nicolas the Blacksmith where they can watch the artistic sculpturing of locally used tools like knives and machetes. And being next to Uganda’s boarder with DR Congo, tourists can enjoy magnificent views of the Virunga volcanoes.
- Nkuringo Cultural Centre (NCC)
This site is greatly edifying. Tourists can learn a great deal about the Kiga people of southwestern Uganda ranging from how they cook, weave pieces of art like baskets and mats, and cultivate the fields. More interesting is their music. You can either watch from a distance or join in and learn a few strokes to carry with you home. The Kiga people are very energetic people and this is portrayed in the way they dance and sing.
- Buniga Forest Nature Walk.
The forest is a fountain of life both in fauna and flora species. Paths have been designed through the forest to enable the successful operation of guided nature walks. While in the forest, tourists can enjoy breaths of fresh air and can be rejuvenated by the gorgeous sightings of unique flora species. The forest is being managed as an eco-tourism destination under the control of Nkuringo Community Conservation and Development Foundation (NCCDF)
The best months of the year to track the gorillas would be December to late February and from June to September during the dry season. The gorillas will definitely be there for the other parts of the year but because of the occurrence of the rainy season, tourists might be inconvenienced. For those who intend to visit the park during the wet season, it is recommended that you pack solid shoes, preferably jungle boots; a reasonably strong walking stick; jacket and an umbrella because of the unpredictable showers of rain throughout the day. Also during the dry sunny season tourists should be well equipped with clothing and lotions which protect them from the sun, including sun glasses, caps or hats and smear protective gels. Tourists should also consider travelling and using an insect repellant to keep the flies and bugs off their skin while enjoying the Gorilla Safari. Also advisable is to carry some ear plugs just in case you become uncomfortable with the sounds of the jungle. Tourists with communicable sicknesses will not be allowed to embark on the gorilla safari because gorillas are extremely vulnerable to many human diseases.
Gorilla tracking can be carried along any of the four trailheads of Buhoma, Ruhija, Nkuringo and Rushaga. In Uganda, gorilla permits go for a normal USD 600 for foreign non-residents, USD 500 for foreign residents and 250,000 Uganda Shillings (UGX) for residents of the East African Community. Depending on the number of people, the cheapest (budget) Gorilla tracking safari can cost about $ 1000 while the super luxury should cost between $ 1500 and $ 2000 per person. The activity commences at 8am with a short briefing about what to expect after which tourists head out to their respective trailheads. Chances of finding the mountain gorilla family are at 95% but this can last from one to eight hours depending on how lucky the group is.
Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is a pivot for birding not only on Ugandan standards but also in the whole of Africa, and she is therefore the perfect place to carry out birding safaris to Uganda. The afro-montane lowland forest provides different types of habitats for hundreds of bird species. Among the 350 bird species which Bwindi boasts of, 23 are endemic to the Albertine Rift Valley areas and 14 other species cannot be found anywhere else in Uganda. Birders can expect to see species like the Handsome Francolin; Western Green Tinkerbird; Mountain-masked and Collared Apalis; Black-billed Turaco; Black and Cinnamon-chested Bee-eaters; Purple-breasted, Blue-headed and Regal Sunbirds; Mountain and Yellow-streaked Greenbuls; Many-colored Bush-Shrike, Black-faced Rufous Warblers; the cream-banded swallowtail; the Mountain and Yellow-streaked Greenbuls; and the globally threatened species such as African Green Broadbill and Shelley’s Crimsonwing, among others. Gorilla treks along the Buhoma trailhead will expose you to the Short-tailed Warbler, and in the Ruhija region, tourists get the opportunity to see a great number of birds during the three-hour trail descending to Mubwindi swamp including the endemic and localized African Green Broadbill. Bwindi also accommodates about 200 butterfly species and among these, 42 are endemic to the Albertine Rift Valley region.
The park’s area is dominated by vegetation species in a number of forms, heights and widths. There are a number of species that can be seen which survived the 6,000 years of the ice age while in other places their sister plant species did not survive the disastrous age. Bwindi is thick in its many shades of green making it rightfully deserve the title Impenetrable. The park has more than 100 species of ferns and over 220 tree species which accounts for 50% of all Uganda’s tree species including its threatened black mahogany.
Activities in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park Uganda Gorilla tracking Safari
Accommodations Safari Hotels, Safari Lodges in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park Uganda Gorilla tracking Safari
Buhoma Community Rest Camp
Buhoma Community Rest Camp is majorly a midrange accommodation center but it also offers affordable lodging for travelers on a budget. Lodging is offered in six (6) self-contained safari tents, three (3) self-contained cottages and two (2) non-self-contained twin cottages. The accommodation centers are built in African architectural style and they dissolve in the gorgeousness of the park. Many of the materials in the cottages feature African local materials which are a clear indication that you are away from your routine place. The Rest Camp also has a 6-bed dormitory and several campsites at budget rates. Amenities featured include an expansive and safe parking area, mosquito nets, reading materials, transportation to and from the lodge on request, charging spots for gadgets and a crafts shop. Cigarettes and post cards can be bought at the Rest Camp.
Rates in US$ per room per occupant, per night.
|ROOM TYPE||BED ONLY||BED & BREAKFAST||FULL BOARD|
|Self – Contained|
|Non – Self Contained|
Too set up your own tent in the camping area you are only requires to pay 12 US$ per night.
Meals are available at the lodge and tourists can also request for packed lunch on days when they will be engaging in mountain gorilla tracking.
Breakfast 10 US$
Hot Lunch 10 US$
Packed Lunch 10 US$
Dinner 13 US$
Sanctuary Gorilla Forest Camp
Its unique location and attractiveness has attracted to it a number of visitors including both tourists and mountain gorillas. This is the luxury accommodation in Bwindi’s Buhoma sector. Housing is offered in eight (8) tents each with a private and wide terrace from which tourists can have magnificent views of the park’s ecosystem. The rest camp offers a great range of amenities but one of its most interesting amenities are the Sedan chairs which are used to carry guests with reduced mobility through the forests to also experience the gorilla tracking experience. While at the lodge, tourists can interact with the local community including the Batwa pygmies or they can make trips to the Bwindi Community Hospital which is a philanthropy project.
|RATES FOR 2015|
|Valid From||Valid To||Rates in US$|
|16 June||20 June||655|
|21 June||30 September||350 (Best Available Rate)|
|01 October||31 October||373 (Best Available Rate)|
|01 November||15 December||459 (Best Available Rate)|
|16 December||20 December||655|
|21 December||02 January 2016|
|RATES FOR 2016|
|Valid From||Valid To||Rates in US$|
|03 January||31 March||480|
|01 April||20 June||380|
|21 June||31 October||620|
|01 November||20 December||380|
|21 December||05 January 2017||620|
The rates are full board but exclude premium drinks, gorilla permits, transfers to and from the airport and medical insurance.
Lake Kitandara Bwindi Camp
This accommodation center is situated at a point where tourists can enjoy amazing views of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. The lodge offers comfort at the midrange level without compromising the environment. Its architecture involves traditionally sourced materials. The accommodation center has twenty (20) self-contained tents which offer great comfort to their guests. All tents feature comfortable beds, solar energy that is available for all hours of the day, en-suite washrooms with hot and cold showers and elegant furniture. The tents are named after bird species in Bwindi.
This lodge can be found inside the park with ten (10) relaxed cottages that have private verandahs from which guests can enjoy vistas of the park especially the Buhoma sector which is home to the Mubare, Rushegura and Habinyanja mountain gorilla families. Guests will find facilities like a comfy bed, en-suite bathroom facilities which feature hot and cold showers and a bath tub for some rooms. In addition to comfortable lodging, tourists can enjoy delicious meals in the onsite restaurant and drinks can also be served from the well-stocked bar. There ample room for tourists to walk around, stretch their legs or to just sit and meditate on how beautiful a place Bwindi is.
Rates in US$ per night for every adult (2015).
|ROOM TYPE||RATE PER NIGHT|
- The rates are subject change depending on the seasons (high and low seasons)
- Children below 5 years do not have to pay. However, children between 5 and 12 years pay 50% of what adults pay per night.
- Children above the age of twelve (12) are considered to be adults.
- The lodge offers discounts especially to East African citizens and travel agents.
CTPH Gorilla Conservation Camp
This camp is run by an organization which has a history of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) seen in numerous projects throughout the community including sloughing back 100% of the profits received. Conservation Through Public Health (CTPH) was one of the very first accommodations in Bwindi although it had another name and different owners than they do today. The camp offers budget accommodation in their three (3) and the camping ground which necessitates tourists to come along with their own tents.
The rates in US dollars
|Room Type||Bed Only||Bed&Breakfast||Full Board|
|Putting up your own tent||10||25||35|
The lodge is a mere five (5) minutes from the park’s briefing area. It has twelve (12) comfortable rooms which include a single room, four (4) double rooms and seven (7) twin rooms. The rooms offer amazing views of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park due to their location at a high altitude. The lodge is designed to offer comfort and luxury in line with the Marasa Africa standards. The lodge is profoundly large and offers enough room for guests to relax and get the best out of their holidays. Meals and drinks are available in the onsite restaurant and bar respectively.
Rates in US$ per person per night
|Room Types||Bed and Breakfast||Full Board|
|The peak season: January, February, June, August, September and OctoberThe Low Season: March, April, May, November and December|
Volcanoes Safaris Bwindi Lodge
This lodge has many years of experience and they surely know what they are doing. The lodge’s eight (8) bandas including three (3) doubles and five (5) twins which offer comfort deep in the African jungle. Rooms are well serviced with luxury accommodation necessities like huge beds, walk-in mosquito nets, en-suite bathroom facilities and a wide verandah where tourists can relax and enjoy glorious views of the beautiful Bwindi. Keen observers will be able to sight some of the primate species swinging from tree to tree within the park. The main lodge building has a fireplace around which tourists can meet to warm up and to also exchange stories about their experiences. All eight bandas are named after Bwindi’s mountain gorillas.
|Room Type||Rate (US$)|
|High Season Per Person Sharing||330|
|High Season Single Occupancy||401|
|Low Season Per Person Sharing||295|
|Low Season Single Occupancy||354|
- The rates are inclusive of full board meals and access to limitless consumption of alcoholic and soft drinks, a right to engage in any activity around the lodge, laundry services and one free massage session.
- Children between 2 and 12 years only pay 50% of what adults pay while children below 2 years can share rooms with their parents or guardians at no charge.
- The low season rates only apply from 15th October to 15th December and 1st March to 31st
Most of the things at this lodge reflect local African styles. The lodge was built with the help of local engineers and using locally sourced materials making its outer appearance not to look dissimilar from the community in which it is found. The base was built using eucalyptus roofed with dry banana fibers. Hidden behind the vegetation, the lodge has eight (8) cottages which offer en-suite services and facilities like the modern restrooms which have both cold and hot water and solar electricity. Fine dining is offered at the lodge in its expansive restaurant and drinks from the well-stocked bar; which are a part of the main lodge building. The meals are three (3) course and travelers with special cases (like vegetarians and others who have food allergies) will be catered for.
This resort offers secretive but very luxurious accommodation to tourists in the Buhoma sector of Bwindi. Accommodation is offered in cottages and East African Safari tents which are all built on elevated wooden platforms to provide awesome vistas of Bwindi. The resort’s rooms are large and have very comfortable beds which were made of logs. The rooms also have en-suite bathroom facilities including which have hot and cold showers and also include immersion bath tubs which are claw-foot brass bath tubs. Meals and drinks are available at the lodge and are offered in the restaurant and bar.
Standard rates per night per person
Single Room 375 US$
Double Rom 275 US$
Mahogany springs camp
You might mistake this accommodation center to be paradise once you arrive there. Lodging is offered in two major forms of accommodation, the superior suites and the presidential suite. The superior suites can be twins, doubles or twins with a terrace from which guests can stand and enjoy views of the park or catch a breath of fresh air. The presidential suites can be single, double or quadruple. Comfort is their specialty and this is projected to be the same even in the future. Mahogany Springs camp has adorable gardens which relax the mind especially after a month of stressful work’s days and tourists can also hike along the stream which has finely fitted footstones. All the rooms have comfortable beds with a dressing table and modern washrooms. The staff members at Mahogany Springs Camp are very hospitable and knowledgeable about excellent service delivery.
Rates in US$
|Low Season (March, April, May, October and November)|
|High Season (January, February, July, August, September, December)|
The lodge maintains Full Board rates at all times although sometimes he rates may be increased depending on a number of conditions principally seasons. As part of the full board service, tourists can also enjoy tea in the afternoon and in each room there is bottled drinking water and a glass of cask wine or local beer.
Bwindi Guest House
The guesthouse is adjacent to the Buhoma Community hospital and offers accommodation in its two houses; the monkey and gorilla houses. At the main guesthouse tourists can enjoy facilities like the kitchen and a fine dining area, awesome views of the park including sightings of the red tailed monkeys; a well-stocked library and reading area. The guesthouse also has an outdoor summer house which offers comfort. All the rooms have hot and cold showers and have sockets from which tourists can charge their gadgets. Wi-Fi is also available for all interested guests.
Bwindi View Bandas
This is a budget lodging center is situated in Kitahurira just a few minutes from the entrance to the Buhoma and Ruhija Mountain Gorilla trailheads therefore facilitating quicker trekking of the Habinyanja and Oruzogo Mountain Gorilla Families. Guests are accommodated in three (3) simple bandas named Sparrow, Robin and Eagle each containing four (4) beds and smaller bandas, Kiwi & Warbler have two (2) beds each. The resort also has camping area where travelers can erect tents for the night. Cold water is available for a bath but guests can request for heated water from the resort’s management. There is ample parking space at the lodge and your vehicles will be protected at all times.
Rates in Uganda Shillings
|Bigger bandas with 4 beds (PP)||10,000/=|
|Renting entire big banda||35,000/=|
|Smaller bandas with 2 beds (PP)||10,000/=|
|Camping per tent||4,000/=|
Eco Marvels Gorilla Resort
Eco Marvels offers comfortable lodging to tourists on Mountain Gorilla tracking Safari in Uganda. Accommodation is offered in bandas. The rooms range from doubles, deluxe singles to family bandas featuring comfortable beds and rewarding views of the National Park. Meals are served at the lodge’s restaurant.
Rates for accommodation in US$ per night.
|Accommodation Type||Rates (US$)|
How to get to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park Uganda Gorilla tracking Safari
Uganda National Parks | Safari Destinations in Uganda
Uganda is a gorgeous place to be and is truly the treasure chest of the African continent. Uganda’s abundance of life in the wild has always inspired peak Safaris in Africa and this is undoubtedly expected to continue in the future. Read More about Uganda Safari Destinations
Queen Elizabeth National Park. Located within the western rift valley floor, Queen Elizabeth National Park was gazetted in 1952 as Kazinga National Park attaining its nomenclature from the 45m long Kazinga channel that bisects the park adjoining Lake George and Lake Edward. Queen Elizabeth National Park overlooks the highest point in Uganda Rwenzori Mountains with their snowcapped peaks as they were described by Ptolemy in 150AD as the mountains of the moon.
Lake Mburo National Park, The nomenclature of Lake Mburo National Park like most of other African areas cannot go without a legendary connotation. The legends have it that the two brothers named Kigarama and Mburo settled in the area that is currently occupied by Lake Mburo grazing their long horned cattle across the open savannah plains that thrive up to today.
Kidepo National Park, Located in the north eastern part of Uganda, Kidepo Valley National Park covers a geographical landscape of 1,442km2. It is in the district of Kaboong about 220km from Moroto the biggest town in the sub region and 700km from Kampala the Uganda’s capital city. Kidepo Valley National Park was established in the year 1962 and it contains 77 species of mammals, 475 bird species of which 60 are endemic to the park on the standards of Uganda.
Mgahinga National Park, which was established in 1991 covers a geographical surface of 33.7km2 making the smallest national Park in Uganda. Mgahinga National Park is the second habitat that contains the world’s critically endangered mountain gorillas and it is the only national park in Uganda with counts of the rare and endangered golden monkeys which only thrive in the Virunga massif in the whole world.
Murchison falls National Park, Regarded as Uganda’s largest protected area, Murchison Falls National Park was nowhere until 1952 when 3,840km2 of land in the North West part of Uganda were established as a national Park. Perched on the northern extreme of the western arm of the great East African rift valley, Murchison Falls National Park is 80km from Masindi town which is the largest town in the sub region and 311km2 from the city of Kampala, the Uganda’s capital.
Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Bwindi Impenetrable National Park lies in the south west of Uganda stretching for 321Km2 at an elevation of 1,160 – 2,607 m above sea level. Bwindi is one of those areas in East Africa with large expanse of Afro montane lowland forest which dates back to the pre-historic era and is known to have survived the last ice age.
Mount Elgon National Park, Spreading to over 1,121km2 of land, Mount Elgon National Park lies with in the eastern side of Uganda close to Kenyan boarder 255km from Kampala which is the country’s capital city. Mount Elgon which was once the tallest in Africa before it was eroded to being the fourth tallest in East Africa rises up to 4,321m above sea level and is the oldest and largest single standing volcano in East Africa having last erupted approximately 24 million years ago.
Mount Rwenzori National Park, had earlier been described by Ptolemy a Greek geographer in 150AD as Lunae Montes translated as the Mountains of the moon and were thought to be the origin of the Nile River which is the longest in world and one of the natural wonders encountered by Uganda safari undertakers.
Kibale National Park, The park is located in the western part of Uganda sharing the districts of Kabarole and Kamwenge and is 358km surface transfer from Kampala the Uganda’s capital city and 26km from Fort Portal the largest town in the area. Kibale National Park is entirely forested landscape that stretches to 795km2 of land coverage and it is one of the mature remaining tropical rain forests in Uganda.
Semuliki National Park, Spreading to over 220km2 of land surface, Semuliki National Park is located in the west of Uganda in the county of Bwamba, Bundibugyo district. The park contains a range of species among which include 441 bird species and 53 mammal species. Established in 1993, Semuliki National Park is recognized among the newly established Uganda safari parks in Uganda.
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Uganda Gorilla Safaris
Enjoy the world`s surprising Gorilla trekking Uganda African safari destination offering Uganda Gorilla tours / Uganda gorilla safaris – Bwindi Forest National Park and Mgahinga Gorilla Park Uganda.Read More about Uganda Gorilla Safari Tours
10Days Uganda Gorilla Safari Holiday & Wildlife Safari in Uganda, A Uganda Gorilla Safari Holiday Tour/Uganda Safari including Gorilla trekking in Bwindi and Wildlife tours in Uganda`s Major Game Parks.
12Days Gorilla Safari Uganda & Wildlife Safari tour in Uganda, is a long Uganda Gorilla Safari to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest Park featuring Wildlife Tour to Uganda wildlife safari parks.
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Mountain gorillas live up to 40 or 50 years with some even ageing beyond 50 years. They live in dense tropical rain forests which aptly offer them a habitat and access to daily vegetarian meals. Pregnancy in mountain gorillas can last an average eight months and a half and females can give birth to an average four (4) to six (6) infants throughout their lifetime with the ability to also give birth to twins.
Like the father in a home, very mountain gorilla family is headed by n alpha silverback. The criterion on which different mountain gorillas base to choose their alpha silverback changes from one group to another. All silverback have shiny hairs on their backs (from which they get their name) but it is more than just having a shiny back to be chosen as the head of the family.
The alpha silverback is responsible for finding food for his family; attracting productive members to his family and also defending his family from any forms of attacks whether by humans or other wild animals especially other mountain gorilla groups. These tasks come with privileges like enjoying the first bite of every meal and love and respect from most of the females in the family.
The total number of mountain gorilla families in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is unclear but we are sure of twelve (12) habituated families; and eleven (11) of these can be visited by tourists on Gorilla trekking Safaris in Uganda. The habituated families are different from the wild gorilla families because they are more used to humans. In order for them to get acquainted with human visits, the group goes through an average habituation period of two (2) years which is carried out by expert Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) officials. The twelve (12) mountain gorilla families are distributed among 4 (four) sectors each with a trailhead where these habituated mountain gorilla groups can be found. Below is summary of their latest locations.
|SECTOR/TRAILHEAD||MOUNTAIN GORILLA FAMILY(s)|
|Ruhija||Kyaguriro (for research only), Oruzogo, Bitukura|
|Rushaga||Bweza, Kahungye, Mishaya, Nshongi Busingye,|
|Buhoma||Rushegura, Habinyanja, Mubare|
Although Bwindi sits on a complicated set of geology, she allows a number of rivers and streams to quench the land of its thirst, including many rivers which originate from the park and flow northwards. Some of the streams and rivers include Ishasha, Munyaga, , the Ntengyere rivers, and Ihihizo, which flow into Lake Edward. The surplus of streams empty their waters in the Lake Mutanda and Bunyonyi depressions.
The park is also one of Uganda’s most diverse congregations of mammalian species amounting to an incredible 120 species, a number that competes favorably with even the country’s top tourist destinations by arrival. This diversity does not guarantee that tourists will be able to lay eye all the mammalian species in one singe visit, so a short prayer before embarking on a hike through the forest might position you fortunately to view the sporadically seen African golden cat, forest elephants, 11 primate species including our closest brother the chimps, and the giant forest hogs.
For birders, the park’s area is an ideal playing ground. Twisting and turning your binoculars to the left, and then to the right should enable you to see as many of the 360 species of birds available in the different ecosystems in this UNESCO World Heritage Site with only one of the Albertine Rift 24 endemic lacking. Other birds to look out for include the Purple-breasted, Blue-headed and Regal Sunbirds, and endangered species, such as the African green broadbill..
The park also serves its guest to an accounted 220 species of butterfly of which 42 are endemic to the Albertine Rift Valley region. Tourists on a Gorilla Trekking Safaris and Tour may hike past or see with the aid of a guide a number of amphibians including the park’s camouflaged chameleons and a few of the identified 27 frogs species therein.
Saving the best for the last is not a new deed, but is most of the time deliberately done to plainly “Save the Best for Last.” It no longer calls for a further inquiry when one proudly talks about Bwindi Impenetrable National Park being a home to almost half the world’s population of Mountain Gorillas, a fine number of 400 of the total 880 Mountain Gorillas. The remaining number is distributed among the three National Parks of Virunga, Volcanoes and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park in Congo DR, Rwanda and Uganda respectively, which form the continuous queue of 8 volcanoes, particularly referred to as Virunga Conservation Area. This is perhaps the chief reason why tourists ought not to look elsewhere but to Uganda for a prime Gorilla Trekking Safari.
Unfortunately, even with their might and greatness in size and weight, most of the world’s population of Mountain Gorillas has been wiped off of the face of the earth leaving a few endangered. It is due to motives of protecting such a matchless species that Bwindi Impenetrable National Park was gazetted in 1991 and later declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site (WHS) in 1994. Before attaining these titles, in the previous century Bwindi has held titles like the Impenetrable Central Crown Forest in 1942; an Animal Sanctuary and Impenetrable Central Forest Reserve in 1964, in the course of which it was expanding in size to its current size.
As is a common African practice, the name Bwindi did not just fall from heaven but has a history that dates a number of years back. History has it that as migrants to the north from Rwanda, Burundi, and Zaire (the then Congo DR) trekked in search for land to cultivate and settle in, they crossed sections of the jungle on foot. A tale has it that along the journey, one family came across a wide-stretching swamp which they were unable to traverse. Observing their helplessness, the spirits of the swamp offered assistance but at an expense. The spirits sought the sacrifice of their daughter Nnyinamukari. This was not going to be an easy bargain for the family so they chose to spend a few days as they pondered on what the spirits had asked for. After 2 (two) days, a decision was reached to sacrifice Nnyinamukari and the spirits accorded the remaining members of the family a successful gateway through the swamp. This unfortunate news circulated through the land creating a uncomfortable fear for the forest a reason why it was described as “The Dark Place of Nyinamukari” which in the local semantics is “Umubwindi bwa Nnyianmukari”. While on a Gorilla Safari in Uganda, tourists can see the still-existing Umubwindi swamp, and can also get a more detailed account of this fascinatingly sad story.
Though a sad story, fortunately today, after many years, we have the resource-rich Bwindi Impenetrable Forest that tells an endearing story.