Mgahinga gorilla national park: gorilla trekking and golden monkeys

Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is a pristine wilderness area located in the southwestern corner of Uganda, near the borders with Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Here’s an overview of Mgahinga National Park: Location: Mgahinga National Park is situated in the Virunga Mountains, a chain of volcanoes that straddle the borders of Uganda, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The park is part of the larger Virunga Conservation Area, which encompasses several protected areas across the three countries.

 Key Features at Mgahinga gorilla national park

Volcanic Landscape:

 Mgahinga National Park is characterized by its volcanic landscape, dominated by three towering volcanoes: Mount Muhabura, Mount Gahinga, and Mount Sabyinyo. These dormant volcanoes offer stunning scenery and challenging hiking opportunities for adventurous travelers.

Mountain Gorillas:

 One of the main attractions of Mgahinga National Park is its population of endangered mountain gorillas. The park is home to a habituated group of gorillas that can be tracked by visitors, providing a unique and unforgettable wildlife encounter.

Golden Monkeys:

In addition to mountain gorillas, Mgahinga National Park is also known for its population of golden monkeys. These charismatic primates can be found in the bamboo forests of the park and are a highlight for many visitors.


Mgahinga National Park is a haven for birdwatchers, with over 180 bird species recorded within its boundaries. The park’s diverse habitats, including montane forests, bamboo thickets, and alpine meadows, support a wide variety of birdlife, including several Albertine Rift endemics.

Cultural Encounters:

The indigenous Batwa pygmies, who once lived in the forests of Mgahinga, offer cultural experiences for visitors interested in learning about their traditional way of life. Guided tours with Batwa guides provide insights into their hunting and gathering techniques, folklore, and cultural practices.

Activities at Mgahinga gorilla national park

 Gorilla Trekking:

 Gorilla trekking is the highlight activity in Mgahinga National Park, allowing visitors to hike through the forest in search of habituated gorilla groups and spend an hour observing them in their natural habitat.

Golden Monkey Tracking:

Guided golden monkey tracking tours offer the chance to encounter these rare and beautiful primates in the bamboo forests of the park.

Hiking and Nature Walks:

 Mgahinga National Park offers a variety of hiking trails ranging from easy nature walks to challenging treks up the volcanic peaks. Popular trails include the Mount Sabyinyo hike and the Batwa Trail.

Bird Watching:

Birdwatching enthusiasts can explore the park’s diverse habitats in search of endemic and migratory bird species, with opportunities to spot species such as the Rwenzori turaco, white-starred robin, and Rwenzori batis.

Mgahinga national park accommodations

Accommodation options in and around Mgahinga National Park include lodges, campsites, and guesthouses catering to different budgets and preferences. Some popular accommodation choices include:

Volcanoes Mount Gahinga Lodge:

 The luxury lodge is located near the park entrance, offering comfortable accommodation and stunning views of the surrounding volcanoes.

Amajambere Iwacu Community Camp:

A community-owned campsite and cultural center operated by former Batwa pygmies, offering budget-friendly accommodation and cultural experiences.

Bwindi Lodge:

The luxury lodge is located near the park boundary, offering spacious cottages and panoramic views of the forest canopy.


 Overall, Mgahinga National Park offers a unique and diverse range of experiences for visitors, from gorilla trekking and golden monkey tracking to hiking, birdwatching, and cultural encounters. With its stunning scenery, rich biodiversity, and fascinating cultural heritage, Mgahinga is a must-visit destination for nature lovers and adventure enthusiasts alike.



Best time to visit  mgahinga  gorilla national park.

Getting to Mgahinga National Park involves several transportation options depending on your starting point and preferences. Here are some common ways to reach the park:

By Air:

The nearest major airport to Mgahinga National Park is Entebbe International Airport (EBB) in Uganda. From Entebbe, you can take a domestic flight to Kisoro Airstrip, which is the closest airport to the park. Several domestic airlines operate flights between Entebbe and Kisoro, with the flight duration typically around 1-2 hours.

 By Road (From Kampala):

 If you prefer overland travel, you can drive or take a bus from Kampala, the capital city of Uganda, to Mgahinga National Park. The journey by road takes approximately 8-10 hours, depending on road conditions and traffic. The route passes through several towns and villages, including Mbarara, Kabale, and Kisoro, before reaching the park entrance.

 By Road (From Kigali):

If you are  traveling from Rwanda, you can drive or take a bus from Kigali to Mgahinga National Park. The journey by road takes approximately 4-6 hours, depending on border crossing procedures and road conditions. The route passes through the Rwanda-Uganda border at Kyanika or Katuna, then continues to Kisoro town and the park entrance.

 By Public Transport:

Public buses and mini buses (matatus) operate between major cities and towns in Uganda and Rwanda, including Kampala, Kigali, Kabale, and Kisoro. You can take a bus or minibus to the nearest town to Mgahinga National Park, such as Kisoro, then arrange for a taxi or hire a local guide to take you to the park entrance.

 Organized Tours:

 Many tour operators offer organized tours to Mgahinga National Park, including transportation, accommodation, and guided activities such as gorilla trekking and golden monkey tracking. These tours often include pickup and drop-off from major cities and airports, making travel convenient and hassle-free.

 Once you arrive at Mgahinga National Park, you can check in at the visitor center or your accommodation and begin exploring the park’s attractions and activities, including gorilla trekking, golden monkey tracking, hiking, birdwatching, and cultural experiences with the Batwa pygmies.

The best time to visit Mgahinga National Park depends on your interests and what you hope to experience during your visit. However, the general consensus is that the best time to visit is during the dry seasons, which typically offer more favorable weather conditions and better wildlife viewing opportunities. Here’s a breakdown of the seasons and their implications for visiting Mgahinga National Park:

 Dry Season (June to August and December to February):

These are considered the peak tourist seasons in Mgahinga National Park due to the dry and relatively stable weather conditions.

The dry season is an excellent time for gorilla trekking and other outdoor activities as the trails are drier, making hiking easier and more enjoyable.

 Wildlife viewing is also excellent during the dry season as animals tend to gather around water sources, making them easier to spot.

The weather is generally cooler and more comfortable for hiking and outdoor activities compared to the wetter months.

 Wet Season (March to May and September to November):

The wet season in Mgahinga National Park is characterized by heavy rainfall, particularly in the afternoons and evenings.

While the wet season can be challenging due to muddy trails and unpredictable weather, it also has its advantages.

The landscape becomes lush and green during the wet season, creating beautiful scenery and vibrant vegetation.

Birdwatching is excellent during the wet season as many bird species are active and breeding during this time.

The wet season is considered the low tourist season, so you may encounter fewer crowds and have a more intimate experience with nature.

Ultimately, the best time to visit Mgahinga National Park depends on your personal preferences and what you hope to experience during your trip. If you prioritize dry weather and optimal wildlife viewing conditions, then the dry season months of June to August and December to February are ideal. However, if you don’t mind the occasional rain and want to experience the park in its lush, green state, then the wet season months of March to May and September to November can be equally rewarding. Regardless of when you visit, Maghinga National Park offers incredible biodiversity, stunning scenery, and unforgettable wildlife encounters throughout the year.