Combine the ultimate primate experience with a day of trekking volcanoes in the incredible scenery bordering Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. First, trek through local villages and lush rainforests, with a breathtaking reward at the end: finding yourself in the company of a family of gorillas. One of Africa’s major highlights, Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is home to half of the world’s population of mountain gorillas, the world’s most endangered ape. Next, climb one of three extinct volcanoes in the area, for a bird’s eye view of the wild African countryside.
Highlights of the Safari
- Gorilla Trek in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest
- Mgahinga Volcano Trek
|DEPARTURE/RETURN LOCATION||Kigali or Kampala|
|DEPARTURE TIME||Please arrive at least 2 hours to flight time|
|RETURN TIME||Approximately 6:30 PM|
|WEAR||Comfortable clothing, hiking boots, hat, jacket and sunscreen.|
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Day 1: Kampala
Depart Kampala at 7am and drive through magnificent countryside and tropical bamboo forest on our way to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park (approx 9 hours). We will make some stopovers along the way; at the Equator for photographs and and for lunch in Mbarara Town. Arrival at Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. Overnight at Rushaga Gorilla Camp / Gorilla Mist Camp / Chameleon Hill Lodge
Day 2: Gorilla Trek
Early morning, report to the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site. Take a trek through Bwindi’s Impenetrable Forest, a true African jungle, so named because of the dense undergrowth, vines and other vegetation which make it almost ‘impenetrable’. A gorilla trek through Bwindi takes between 4-7 hours, depending on the mountain gorilla group tracked. Approximately 98% of the gorilla treks are successful but there is no guarantee that you will see the gorillas. Overnight at Rushaga Gorilla Camp / Gorilla Mist Camp / Chameleon Hill Lodge
Day 3: Volcano Climb
Depart early to climb one of the three volcanoes within the Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. There are three volcanoes to climb;
Mt. Muhavura ‘The Guide’ (4127m)
Seen from all over Kisoro, this volcano acts as a guide. The typical cone-shaped Mountain provides some of the best views in the country. Much of the climb passes a rocky surface covered by grasses and small shrubs. Once at the top, hikers are rewarded with the view of the Virunga volcanoes, Lake Edward in Queen Elizabeth National Park, Bwindi and the peaks of Rwenzori Mountain. The hike takes approximately 8 hours round trip covering 12km.
Mt. Gahinga (3474m)
On your way to the park, look out for small piles of stones in the garden fields. The local people call this pile a ‘Gahinga’. Mount Gahinga is quite bigger than the average ‘gahinga’ but sitting next to Mount Muhavura does make it look small. Gahinga once had a Crater Lake on top but time has changed it into a Lush swamp. Distance to the swamp is 8km and takes approximately 6 hours.
Mt. Sabyinyo ‘Old man’s teeth’ (3645m)
Like an old man, time has eroded Mt. Sabyinyo’s crown. This volcano offers 3 challenging peaks to climb. A hike up the mountain takes you up a ridge along the eastern side to peak 1. If you were to continue, the hike to peak 2 involves walking a ridge with breath-taking drops into gorges of Rwanda and Uganda. Finally, the hike up to peak 3 is steep with several ladders and much scrambling. You are guaranteed to get your hands dirty en-route to peak 3. Once on top, you will be in Rwanda, Democratic Republic of Congo and Uganda at the same time. The journey takes about eight hours round trip to cover the 14km stretch.
Day 4: Kampala
Depart early for the scenic return drive from Kisoro to Kampala. Stop just after the town of Masaka at Mpambiire drum village to see the Ugandan drum craftsmen at work. Arrive back in Kampala in the early evening, where the tour ends.
End of the Tour