Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is situated in the south-western part of Uganda. The park is part of the eminent Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, a remote tropical rainforest located along the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) boarder, on the edge of the Albertine rift. The 331 square kilometres (128 square mi) jungle is hailed as a world heritage site by the UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization).
‘Bwindi’ translated ‘dark place’ from the local language was used to refer to the impenetrable nature of the dense forest. The foot-only accessible park is a haven for over 340 Mountain Gorillas which is about half of the world’s population of these critically endangered species. The park is also a sanctuary to over 120 species of mammal and more than 348 species of birds. The Bwindi Impenetrable National Park abounds with as many as 1000 flowering plant species which give it a breathtakingly beautiful scenery.
The Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is a ‘must go’ place and with ATP-Tours you can be sure to explore the gigantic park and relish its beauty. A safari to Bwindi is a must for nature lovers.
The Marvels of Bwindi
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park has a number of features that make it unique and outstanding.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site 'an outstanding wonder'
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park was designated a World Heritage Site by the UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation). The stunning natural beauty of the park and abounding wildlife and plant species gave it pre-eminence. Bwindi is a habitat to over; 120 mammal species, 348 bird species, 27 frog species, 220 butterfly species and 1000 flowering plant species, 104 species of ferns, 163 tree species, and over 340 individual mountain gorillas, which is half of the world’s population of these endangered species.
Over 340 mountain gorillas 'About half of the world’s population of these critically endangered species'
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park is renowned for being a habitat to one of the world’s critically endangered species – the mountain gorilla. There are about only 880 individual mountain gorillas in the entire world and Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park has over 340 individuals of this measly population.
A number of these mountain gorillas have been habituated to make gorilla trekking and encountering them possible to curious tourists. They have been divided into about 9 families/groups, spread across the different regions of the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park. These gorilla families include; the Mubare, Habinyanja and Rushegura families which abide in the Buhoma region, the Bitukura family which lives in the Ruhija region, the Mishaya and Nshonji families living in the Rushaga region and the Nkuringo family living in the Nkuringo region.
Over 348 species of birds 'of which 23 species are Albertine rift valley endemics & 14 species recorded nowhere else in Uganda'
The Park has a number of rare bird species among which is; the dusky crimson, honey guide, sjort-tailed warbler, bar-tailed trogon, yellow eyed black fly-catcher, kivu ground thrush, rusty-faced woodland, and grauer’s rush warbler.
The easy to see birds include; the African emerald cuckoo, white-tailed blue flycatcher, red-headed blue bill, dark capped bulbul, blue-headed sunbird. The other birds include; the fine-banded woodpecker, handsome francolin, African wood owl, western green tinker bird, collared apalis, chapin’s flycatcher, red-throated aletha, chestnut-throated apalis, regal sunbird, montane oriole and many more.
Over 120 mammal species ' including the African elephant which is the largest mammal walking the face of the earth'
In the thickets of the dense Bwindi Forest abides an innumerable number of wildlife animals among which is the famous African elephants, largest mammal walking the face of the earth. The other mammals within the park include; buffalos, giant forest hogs, bush pigs, black-fronted duiker, clawless otters, bats, rodents, golden cats, side-striped jackals, and the yellow-backed duiker.
The Park also harbours 11 primate species among which is the rare L’Hoest’s monkeys, spectacled galago, baboons, chimpanzees, black-and-white colobus monkeys, De brazza monkeys, potato, blue monkey, and demidoff’s galago.
Adventure & Activities
There are a great many things to do while at Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park. While at the park, your sure to have an exciting and activity-pilled day.
This is the mostly done activity in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park. The Park harbours almost half of the world’s population of the critically endangered mountain gorilla. Over 340 individual gorillas live in Bwindi Forest and a number of them have been habituated to make tracking them possible.
After accessing a gorilla permit, one is able to follow the trails leading to the habituated gorilla families/groups with the aid of a professional guide. The habituated groups include, the Mubare family having about 16 gorillas with one silverback – a dominant male acting as the family head, and the Habinyanja family having 23 gorillas with 2 silverbacks.
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park is nature’s haven. For a nature lover, a walk through Bwindi is an experience not be traded for anything. From spotting wild animals in the thickets, chimpanzees and other primates, birds in the thick trees, multiple moth and butterfly species, you will be able to encounter the Munyanga and Ivy rivers concealed in the forest’s jungle thickets.
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest stands out as Africa’s finest birding site. Having over 348 species of birds recorded, of which 23 species appearing in the forest endemic to the Albertine rift valley region. There are also about 14 bird species in this forest that have not been seen anywhere else in Uganda. You will be astonished by the numerous colourful and rare forest birds.
Hike and trails
The Park is suitable for hikes and trails which are a bit tedious but very rewarding. A trail walk to the bamboo region will expose you to 14 vegetation zones, the magical waterfall trail will make you cross the Munyanga 3 times and then lead you to the 3 adjoining waterfalls, a strenuous hike to the peak of Rushura hill will reward you with a spectacular view of Lake Edward, the Virunga volcanoes, the Rwenzori mountains, and the Western Rift Valley. The Muzabajiro loop trail is a moderate hike involves crossing over the Muzabairo creek before ascending to Ruhubura hill. Bwindi has an inexhaustible list of hikes and trails that will quench and satiate your hunger for climbs.