Mgahinga Gorilla National Park
Mgahinga Gorilla National Park sits in Uganda’s southwest in Kisoro District’s Bufumbira County. Mount Muhavura (4,127 m), Mount Gahinga (3,474 m), and Mount Sabinyo are the three northernmost Virunga Volcanoes that are covered by the park (3,645 m). The park is located about 10 kilometers south of Kisoro, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Republic of Rwanda both border it on the west and south, respectively.
In the Parc National des Volcans and Parc National des Virunga, respectively, each of these nations safeguards a specific section of the Virungas. Together, the three parks make up the 434-square-kilometer “Virunga Conservation Area,” or VCA. Only 8% of the VCA, or 33.7 sq km, belongs to Mgahinga.
The 33.7 square kilometers of Mgahinga Gorilla National Park are made up of the mostly wooded slopes of three extinct volcanoes. The massive cones of the Virunga volcanoes dominate the area from a distance and beg you to come closer. Only 15 minutes from Ntebeko Gate, the viewpoint at the park allows you to obtain a magnificent perspective of the surrounding area. Mgahinga Park is of considerable biological significance because mountains like these offered a haven for mountain flora and animals during the Pleistocene ice ages, which moved up or down the slopes as the climate changed. About half of the critically endangered mountain gorillas in the world reside in the Virunga Mountains.
Where to stay
Rest confident that you have many options available. A variety of lodging options are available in Kisoro Town, which is about 16 kilometers away from the park gate at Ntebeko. These options include Traveler’s Rest, Sky Blue, Mt. Gahinga Rest Camp, Virunga Hotel, Mgahinga Safari Lodge, Rugigana Campsite, and Mubano Hotel, among others.
If you consider yourself a “go camping tourist,” there is plenty of room at the park entrance and the Mt. Gahinga Rest Camp for “Do it Yourself Camping.” In addition, there are wonderful traditional Bandas run by the locals.
Kisoro is about 540 km from Kampala (Uganda’s capital city), it takes about 8 hours via Kabale by car.
For public transport, there are daily buses/minibuses, which set off at 7.00 pm from Kampala. Once in Kisoro Town, you can hike to the park if you are strong enough or hire a cab to the park gate.