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Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

Located in Southwestern Uganda, Bwindi impenetrable forest national park is 321 kilometers of both montane and lowland forest which can be accessed on foot only. It is located along the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) border next to Virunga national park. The history of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park dates way back in 1932 where two blocks were designated as crown reserves whereby Kayonza crown forest reserve was in the Northern and Kasatora crown forest reserve was in the Southern block.

Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park was designated as a national park in 1991 and in 1994 was listed as a United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage Site. Bwindi is one of the most visited national parks in Uganda due to the fact that most tourists visiting the Pearl of Africa are always eager to go for mountain gorilla trekking which is only done in Bwindi and Mgahinga gorilla national parks. The national park protects half of the remaining mountain gorillas.

Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park has four sectors which are all open to visitors that is Ruhija, Rushaga, Nkuringo and Buhoma. It should be noted that gorilla trekking is carried out in all the four sectors whereas gorilla habituation is only carried out in Rushaga sector. With over 27 frog, geckos and chameleon species, 200 species of trees,120 mammal species, over 350 bird species, 110 fern species and over 1,000 flowering plant species, the national park boasts of its strategic position also whereby tourists going for the visit find it easy to access.

Things to do in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park.

A lot of activities can be done by tourists on their visit to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park and these include the following.

Gorilla Trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

This is one of the major activities carried out by tourists in the park. This activity involves entering the forest and observing the mountain gorillas in their natural habitat and this is done with the help of a well-trained ranger from the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA).

During this activity, once the tourists come to meet these mountain gorillas in the wild, they are allowed only one hour with them. The activity looks so challenging at the beginning as you trek through the dense forest but once you come face to face with these gentle giants, it is one of the most rewarding experiences of a lifetime.

Gorilla Habituation Experience (GHEX)

This activity is done only in one sector of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park called Rushaga. The activity tarts with an early morning briefing from the ranger at the park headquarters on how to observe the rules and regulations governing habituation.  Later you enter the forest in search of man’s closest relatives as you trek through the thick forest. Once you meet the mountain gorillas, you are only allowed four hours with them as you observe how they go by their day-to-day activities say taking care of their young ones, looking for food and grooming each other.

Bird Watching in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

This is one of the top activities done in Bwindi. With over 350 bird species, bird watchers find it a great opportunity to see different birds for example Rwenzori turaco, Regal sunbird, Black bee-eater, Handsome francolin, African green broadbill, Kivu Ground thrush and African green pigeon among others.

Pygmy/Batwa Cultural Experience

A trip to the Bwindi is considered incomplete if you don’t visit the community of the Batwa. These pygmies are well known as the forest people so a deep conversation with them would be more enriching as you get to know more about their early days in the forest from gathering fruits, eating honey and the ways used in lighting the fire.

Forest walks

These walks usually go up to Munyaga river and as you pass through the forest and see different birds’ species and other animals. A stop at the waterfalls gives you a great opportunity of taking clear photos of the beautiful scenery of the falls and its surroundings

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