Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is a compact protected area, but rich in floral and faunal species. The park occupies only 33.7 sq.km of land area featuring the original afro-montane forest cover. Within its diverse vegetation cover, there are different faunal species including the endangered mountain gorillas, and golden monkeys- a section of these have been habituated and open for tourism.
In addition, Mgahinga Gorilla National Park supports other animal species including buffaloes, bush pigs, giant forest hogs, elephants, black-fronted duikers, black and white colobus monkeys, etc.
Visiting Mgahinga not only rewards you with a meetup with the mountain gorillas but you can also be rewarded with hiking the most incredible three Virunga volcanoes summits, the admirable flora and gorge. For this case, it’s when you will appreciate that encountering gorilla safari to Uganda is something interesting and rewarding.
Mgahinga was officially founded as a park in 1991, and it was a Game Reserve around 1930s and 1950. Part of the present park was turned to crop fields, especially the lower slope. Biological surveys began in 1989 and included training park rangers, destroying wire traps and tree planting to restore wildlife habitat.
Tourism/Activities to do
Gorilla trekking is the leading tourism activity tourists come to enjoy in Mgahinga N. Park. There are only 4 parks to be visited to see mountain gorillas and tracking these apes in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is done in Nyakagezi group. Gorilla permits for Mgahinga gorilla trekking tour cost USD700 per person. Other places to be visited for mountain gorilla encounter include Virunga National Park (DRC), Volcanoes N. Park (Rwanda) and Bwindi Impenetrable National Park (Uganda).
The Batwa trail allows you to explore more about the Batwa, their lifestyle, traditions, and cultures. During the Batwa cultural trail experience, you will be led by an experienced local guide. You may also consider visiting the Garama cave –this is the hiding area for the Batwa pygmies.
About 180 species of birds call Mgahinga NP home. The birds to expect identifying include brown crowned tchagra, montane double collared sunbird, regal sunbirds, handsome francolins, bronze sunbirds, alpine chat, black kite, streaky seed-eaters, dusky turtle dove, cape robin chat, crowned crane, scarlet tufted malachite and more.
Mgahinga National Park is home to 3 Virunga Volcanoes: Gahinga Volcano (3474m), Sabyinyo (3669m) and Muhabura 4127m. All the 3 volcanoes are hiked while in Mgahinga National Park Uganda.
Getting to Mgahinga Gorilla National Park
Travelers interested in trekking in the Nyakagezi gorilla family in Mgahinga national park can be accessed either by road or by air. Starting your journey from Kampala city to reach the park estimates 8 to 9hours drives. Then to those are interested in air transport can take scheduled flights from Entebbe Airport or Kajjansi Airstrip and lands in Kisoro Airstrip where you can be picked by the park’s drive or the guide and drives you to your respective lodge.
Where to stay on a gorilla trekking safari in Mgahinga Uganda
Some of the accommodation facilities that can make travel’s stay at Mgahinga gorilla national park truly awesome encounter include; Gahinga Lodge and Mutanda Lake Resort.