Africa Tours and Safaris
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

Bwindi Impenetrable Forest also known as the Bwindi Impenetrable National park is regarded to be one of the most biologically diverse forests in Africa spread over a series of steep ridges and valleys that form the eastern edge of the albertine rift valley. The park, which covers 331sq km, encompasses one of the last remaining habitats of the highly endangered Mountain Gorillas and is where half an estimated 320 individuals of the surviving Mountain Gorillas in the world live. It comprises of a large primeval forest at altitudes spanning from 1,160 to 2,607 meters above sea level. The Impenetrable Forest, also known as 'Place of Darkness', is located in southwestern Uganda on the edge of the western arm of the Great Rift Valley, only a few kilometers from the Democratic Republic of Congo border and about 25 kilometers north of the Virunga Volcanoes. The forest was recognized by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as a World Heritage Site in 1994 for its biological significance. And it was established as a national park in 1991.

How to get there
Bwindi impenetrable forest lies 550 km from the capital city Kampala in the south west of Uganda a few kilometers from the Democratic Republic of Congo border. The trip takes atleast 10 hours by car. Travelers can also fly from Entebbe or Kampala (Kajjansi airfield) to the modern tarmac air strip in Kisoro.

What to see
The Bwindi forest dates back to before the Pleistocene ice age which makes it 25,000 years old while most of today's forests are no more than 12,000 years old. It's vegetation has been weaving itself into tangles over the years, therefore accumulating a lengthy species list.
This includes 310 species of butterfly, 51 reptiles, 200 trees, 88 moths and an exceptional 120 types of mammal including 10 primates. The latter includes chimpanzee, L'Hoest's, red tailed and blue monkey, black and white colobus, baboon, and Bwindi's most famous resident, the Mountain Gorilla estimated at 320 individuals living in 15 troops.

Activities
Gorilla tracking
There are four Gorilla tracking locations including Buhoma in the north west of the park, Nkuringo in the south west, Rushaga in the south, and Ruhija in the east.

Guided day walks from Buhoma
Day trails ranging from 30 minutes to eight hours in duration lead from Buhoma offering the opportunity to enjoy the tranquility of the forest and to see several different monkey species.
For birders roughly 190 bird species have been recorded in the Buhoma area. Birding can be good in the early morning and late afternoon. Bird watchers are strongly urged to stick to the main road that runs in to the forest from the entrance gate. It is easier to see the birds from the road than from the forest path.

The Muyanga river trail lies outside the national park only a half hour walk starting at the Buhoma road following the Bizenga road.
The waterfall trail: is about 3 hours and leads for 2km along an abandoned road before heading into the ascent to the 33m high waterfall. Other trails are the Mazubijiro loop trail and Rushara hill trail which both take about three hours and offer good views across to the Virunga Mountains. 

Village walk
This 3 hour stroll through Buhoma and its margins immerses visitors in the customs and practices of the Bakiga and Batwa people. It takes in varied activities like farming, brewing local beer, dispensing traditional medicines and dancing displays by members of the Batwa community. 

Where to stay

Luxury

The Gorilla Resort- Bwindi
This exclusive high end safari camp with a view of the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest is located at Buhoma - Bwindi Impenetrable Gorilla National Park on a Mountain side. The camp has been constructed and built to the highest standards whilst retaining sympathy with the local surroundings.

Mantana Luxury tented Camps
This mat tented camp about 1 km outside the park boundary, faces a steep forested hill rustling with bird life. The self contained tents all have solar lighting, an eco-friendly toilet and a private veranda.

Volcanoes Bwindi Camp
This low-key camp consists of several secluded self-contained standing tents, carved into individual clearings in the surrounding scrub. The restaurant and bar is on a wooden deck with a great view over the gallery forest on the park boundary. Meals are available.

Gorilla Forest Camp
This tented camp in Bwindi is cut into a lush forest glade about 500 metres inside the park entrance at Buhoma. The secluded self contained walk in twin tents are protected beneath a thatch roof extending over a private deck, while meals and drinks are served in an organically decorated open sided common area.

Moderate
Buhoma Homestead
a little more than a jumped-up local guest house, the Buhoma Homestead is a fair compromise between cost and comfort at Bwindi with a friendly atmosphere and an attractive location within the park boundary.

Buhoma Community Bandas and Campsite
This complex is set in wooded grounds in a slope facing a forest gallery immediately inside the park entrance gate. Camping is permitted. Drinks are also available.

Bwindi Travelers Motel Butogota
Is located in the middle of Butogota trading center 15 kms from Bwindi Park headquarters.

Bwindi-View Bandas & Gorilla Nest Campsite
Situated directly opposite the community camp site, this private set up is considerably cheaper, with stunning views of virgin forest opposite and nestled away on the edge of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park. Meals are available.

Nkuringo Gorilla Campsite
 Located in a beautiful swath of the world renowned Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National park.

Budget
Lake Kitandara Bwindi Camp
This new camp consists of self contained standing tents on plot situated immediately outside the park entrance.

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