Bwindi Forest National park

Bwindi Forest National park

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park isn’t only home to the endangered mountain gorillas but also one of the remotest and the most beautiful destinations with abundant floral and faunal species. With its wildlife abundance, it is with no doubt that Bwindi is a special place where visitors’ travel spirits can be ignited. Its unique and massive great apes –mountain gorillas are a reason

why Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park is Uganda’s most visited destination.
Getting up close and personal with a family of mountain gorillas in the wild is such a powerful and humbling experience. These large apes strictly reside only in the 4 parks in the world and the other 3 national parks include Volcanoes National Park, Mgahinga Gorilla National Park & Virunga National Park.

Location, size of Bwindi Impenetrable NP Uganda
Bwindi Impenetrable National Park (Kanungu District) is the leading primate trekking safari destination in Uganda. Bwindi is located in Southwestern Uganda, and regardless of its location, tourists on Uganda safaris can easily get there and enjoy gorilla trekking. The park features a dense Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, the main habitat to over 459 endangered mountain gorillas.
Bwindi National Park is compact in size, covering 331 and it is a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1994. It was declared a UNESCO site due to its biodiversity. This protected area is set at an altitudinal range of 1160 and 2607 meters. Its boundaries span covering Kanungu, and Kabale districts, comprising of 4 main sectors –Nkuringo, Rushaga, Buhoma and Ruhija.

Wildlife/Animals to see
Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is prime habitat to over 120 mammal species and these dwell within the park’s magnificent tropical forest and other habitats. The numerous mammal species that live in Bwindi include duikers, elephants, golden cats, giant forest hogs, black-fronted duikers, yellow-backed duikers, bush pigs, mountain gorillas, buffaloes, side-striped jackals, rodents, bats, clawless otters, civet, chimpanzees,
Spectacled galagos, Demidoff’s galagos, baboons, blue monkeys, red-tailed monkeys, L’hoest monkeys, black and white colobus monkeys, olive baboons, pottos, and more.

Bwindi birds
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest Park supports over 350 bird species. This makes this park one of the most outstanding birding safari destinations in Uganda. They include 23 Albertine rift endemic bird species, plus 14 species not found anywhere else in Uganda. The notable birds of Bwindi include dwarf honey guide, bar-tailed trogon, Rwenzori batis, Handsome francolins, Chapin’s flycatchers, Red-throated alethe, Strange weavers, Black bee-eaters, Western bronze napped pigeon,
White-bellied robin chat, African wood owl, Western green tinker bird, Kivu ground-thrush, Grey cuckoo-shrike, Regal sunbird, Tit Hylia, Cinnamon-chested bee-eaters, Purple-breasted sunbird, Black-faced warblers, Black-faced rufous warblers, Yellow-streaked greenbul, Neumann’s warblers, Mountain masked apalis, bush shrikes, Black billed turacos, Shelley’s crimson wing, and others.
Bwindi also supports more than 200 colorful butterfly species most of which are endemic to the Albertine rift including the cream-banded swallowtail, African giant swallowtail. Over 27 amphibians and several reptiles also reside within this tropical forest-dominated park.

Tourist Activities to do while in Bwindi NP

There are many exciting tourism activities tourists can do while on Uganda safaris in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. These include primate treks & cultural encounters in the adjacent communities.
Gorilla trekking
Gorilla trekking is the leading safari experience that tourists can enjoy in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. It is one adventure that ushers you into the dense tropical forest to interact with the family of mountain gorillas. All the daily gorilla treks in Bwindi are done with lead of a trained park from Uganda Wildlife Authority and you must be the holder of valid gorilla trekking permit.
The maximum acceptable age limit for you to participate in gorilla trekking is 15 and above. This park alone has 20 habituated gorilla families and these live within its 4 sectors: Nkuringo, Rushaga, Ruhija and Buhoma. Essentials for a gorilla trekking tour include long-sleeved shirts, gardening gloves, a walking stick, waterproof hiking boots, non-flashlight cameras, bottled drinking water, a daypack, safari hat, and energy-giving snacks.


Bwindi Impenetrable National Park isn’t only visited for magical gorilla trekking adventures but also for birding tours. It is one of the few birding spots listed by African Bird Club, it being home to over 350 bird species with the majority comprising of Albertine rift endemic species. A birding tour in Bwindi allows you to encounter diversity of avifaunal species including the yellow streaked greenbul, Shelley’s crimson wing, regal sunbird, Ruwenzori Apalis, Grauer’s broadbill, black-faced warblers, black-faced rufous warblers, black-billed turacos, black bee-eaters, African broadbill, cinnamon-chested bee-eaters, Neumann’s warblers, handsome francolins, and others.

Forest/nature walks
Bwindi is also recognized for its remarkable hiking trails. Each of the park’s trails leads guests to different habitats and there is a chance to see birds, primates and floral species. The trails to explore in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest include the Rushura hill walk, Buhoma-Nkuringo trail, Ivy River, Muzubijiro loop, Muyanga waterfall walk, Mubwindi and more.

Biking/cycling tours
Bwindi lies on the hillside of the country- Kigezi region and its location makes it an excellent spot for biking or cycling adventures. The Ride 4 a Woman, a local initiative at Bwindi organizes biking tours and they have bikes for hire too.

Community visits
Community/cultural tours make safaris to Bwindi memorable. Imagine combining gorilla trekking and Batwa pygmy community visit. This is a lifetime opportunity for you to explore the different traditions, and cultures of the Batwa who once lived in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. The cultural tour also comes with entertainment from residents as they dance before you- this is perfectly enjoyed in the evening after gorilla trekking.

Best time to visit the park
Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is open to all tourists on Uganda safaris at any time of the day or year. However, the best time to travel and engage in activities such as gorilla trekking is during the dry season- June, July, August, September, or December, January to February.

Bwindi NP accommodation
Around Buhoma sector- Buhoma Lodge, Sanctuary Gorilla Forest Lodge, Silverback Lodge, Mahogany Springs, Bwindi Lodge, Ride 4 a Woman, and Buhoma Haven Lodge. Rushaga sector lodges: Ichumbi Gorilla Lodge, Chameleon Hill Lodge, Gorilla Valley Lodge, Rushaga Gorilla Camp, Lake Mulehe Safari Lodge, and others. Nkuringo sector accommodation: Nkuringo Safari Lodge, Clouds Mountain Gorilla Lodge, and Gorilla Heights. Ruhija sector lodges: Broadbill Forest Camp, Bakiga Lodge & Agandi Lodge.

Getting there
Traveling to Bwindi is possible on 2 options; by road/air. Choosing road transportation means, you can begin your road trip from Kampala/to Kigali. From Kampala, expect to spend 8-9 hours and you will be driven along the Masaka-Mbarara-Kabale route and from Kigali, cross to Uganda via Chanika-Kisoro/Katuna border-Kabale then connect to Bwindi NP. By air, scheduled/charter flights can be arranged and you set off from Entebbe airport to Kihihi where the driver guide can pick you up and transfer you to the lodge.

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