The Amazing Mgahinga Gorilla National Park – Uganda Zaabu
“Where Silver Meets Gold”
Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is Located South of Kisoro town in western Uganda just about 50km from Kabale the major town in Kigezi region. Mgahinga is based on an altitude of 2,220 to 4,126 m which makes it a very cold atmosphere with its mountain gorillas which are the main tourist attraction in that park.
Mgahinga National Park is popular for having a good number of the mountain gorillas in East Africa region despite with its added advantage of Its good climate. Most of the people round the park are subsistence farmers growing on small scale for family survival.
It was founded in 1991 from a former game reserve which used to be active in the 1930s after it was initiated by then British colonialists. It also at one time hosted Congolese rebels in the early November 2013. However this didn’t affect the tourism as it was quickly contained by the government army.
Originally from many decades back it has been occupied by the Batwa tribe, a Bantu group of very short people who have lived in the park and rely on the thick Mgahinga forests for food, shelter and medicine. Currently these people do a good role of guiding tourists around in the forests looking at the beautiful birds in the big tall trees.
It’s located within a gorgeous location having the borders of Rwanda and Congo. Reports have it that several other mountain gorillas move from DRC Congo and Rwanda to Mgahinga. It has a nice vegetation cover with the vast green pastures which favored the existence of wildlife for these centuries in the southwest of Uganda.
The park has a wide coverage of bamboo trees and tree heaths with the favorable two wet and dry season of which the two wet seasons one from February to May and the other from Sept to December in a full year. However as it’s called the Mgahinga Gorilla National Park originating Its name from one of the mountain ranges within the national park since the back years 1940s.
Mgahinga has several other wildlife species in It ,ranging many bird species and animals including leopards, golden monkeys, buffaloes, hyenas, forest hogs and others. Mostly with the mountain gorillas being the core tourist attraction. It has a wide number of well-trained tour guides who provide good service.
The adventures of Mgahinga Forest are that it also has too large and tall trees aging above 100 years plus. This has led to the continued evolution of most of these wild animals mentioned above especially the golden monkeys and mountain gorillas. The large trees have helped influence the weather in the right way favoring the majority of herbivorous animals. With the two experienced rainy seasons in a full year.
As It’s mentioned Mgahinga Gorilla National Park originated Its name from the close mountain peak called Mgahinga. Its close to another national park called Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in the same southwestern region of Uganda.
The presence and welfare state of Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is well maintained under the assistance of the government which has for years made alarms on the increased poaching which had become common in the late 90s and early 2000s.More to that there are well trained and sensitized game rangers running the I park services.
Geographical Features of Mgahinga Gorilla National Park
The Park having a geographical scope of 3 mountain ranges of Muhavura, Mount Gahunga and Sabyinyo which creates a very cool climate favoring the natural thick green forests inhabiting the prestigious mountain and birds. However, it’s reported to have one of the highest numbers of Mountain Gorillas in Africa.
It’s also good for Golden monkey trekking activities. Mgahinga Gorilla National Park in Uganda features as one of the best protected areas for g Mgahinga Gorilla National Parkolden monkey trekking. These remarkable species live mainly around the bamboo forest in Mgahinga.
Visitors who come for this adventure are given only one hour of face-to-face encounter with the apes in their natural habitat. Golden Monkey Trekking in Uganda is a life time experience that comes at a cost of $50 per person for foreign nonresidents and foreign residents while the East Africans pay 20,000 Uganda shillings.
Other tourism fun in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park include; gorilla trekking, mountain climbing, golden monkey trekking, the birding for Albertine Rift, seeing other animals and the unique culture of the Batwa. The Batwa Pygmies are the only tribe to have lived in the forest and relied on it for decades as they still rely on hunting to date.
Lodges at Mgahinga Gorilla National Park (Accommodations)
Mgahinga National Park covers wide range with good refreshment resorts for tourists to have a chill time around. It covers a section of the deepest lake in East Africa i.e., Lake Bunyonyi which also adds part to the park’s attraction capacity.
The amazing resorts where one would relax be accommodated and get several foods are quite not many but are so fancy. Travelers Rest Hotel which is one of the oldest resorts established since the 1950s in Kisoro town, Mutanda lake resort which is near the Mgahinga ranges with Its good view of bird watching then Bunyonyi lake resort which is a few Hi from Kabale town.
However, Bunyonyi overland resort majorly focuses on the lake Bunyonyi with the unique bird’s specie watching. Leaving alone resorts there are also a wide range of hotels and lodges namely Gorilla valley Lodge, BAM Rest House, Heritage Guest House, Golden monkey guesthouse, Mubano Hotel and a few others.
The average cost of a local tourist would range 40,000-60,000 Uganda shillings for a night and for a foreign tourist would range from 25$ to 40$ a night. The Tourism industry has gone on and continued to grow day by day with the continued and established efforts by the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA).
Interesting stories about Mgahinga Gorilla National Park can not be covered in writing to the last. you will need to visit Mgahinga yourself and tell a different story. You can leave a review for this article, Written and Submitted by “Anet Tusiime”.