Although there is only one family of gorillas living here, the Park offers great trekking tours for you to experience striking vistas of the Virunga Mountains, bamboo forests, volcanoes, and the endangered golden monkey.
This Park is covering an area of about 33.7 sq. kilometres and is located in the south-western Uganda on the border with Congo and Rwanda.
The park is a habitat for man’s closest, the mountain gorillas which roam about the whole forest in search for food.
One may wonder why gorilla Safari should be done in Mgahinga and not other places but the secret behind it is that this park has a thick rain forest with a wide variety of tree species and gorillas are known to be vegetarians. There is enough food for them in the park and this is the reason why some even migrate from Congo and Rwanda to this place.
This park is one of the few places in the world where the endangered mountain gorillas live and it attracts people from different countries to come on Uganda Gorilla Safari.
Though not in large numbers, gorillas of Mgahinga are easily seen in their natural habitats and this makes tracking more easy compared to other parks.
Gorilla tracking is unforgettable experience while visiting Mgahinga National Park. The park has one habituated gorilla group that can be tracked by tourists. Gorilla tracking is the most chosen tourist activity in the Park. The habituated gorilla group in this park is called the Nyakagezi, which consists of 9 members, 2 silverbacks, 3 adult females, 2 juveniles and 2 infants. This group is mobile and sometimes crosses into Rwanda and DRC.
Gorilla tracking is an impressive experience that can take the whole day. The guide leads you while explaining aspects of their ecology and behavior along the way. When tracking the mountain gorillas, travelers have to know that the mountain gorillas are wild creatures with no fixed routine, and finding them requires the skill and experience of your trackers and guides, as well as luck.
GOLDEN MONKEY TRACKING
Wind makes it easy and conducive while tracking monkeys as trek the slopes, they stay quiet and in mid canopy because they have problems hearing predators and when the trees blow you do not know if it is monkey moving or wind blowing, or both. When it rains the monkeys take shelter and do not move, hence closer view of them.
Sighting the golden monkeys is not so challenging like gorilla trekking because golden monkeys live in lower areas, so tracking can’t go for more than 3 hours. When tourists encounter the golden monkey family, they are given one hour to spend with them (to take photographs and observe their behaviour).
BATWA COMMUNITY VISIT
The Batwa cultural visit is an incredible experience that you couldn’t miss during your gorilla trekking experience at Mgahinga National Park.
The first time you meet Batwa, you will clearly see the forest in their eyes and lives. With the cultural visit in Mgahinga National Park, you will be able to experience the ancient ways of the Batwa people who once lived within the forest and also traverse their ancient cultures. The Batwa were the original inhabitants of the forests before Mgahinga and Bwindi Impenetrable National Park were gazetted into National Parks in 1991.
During this brace visit, tourists are taken though the original Batwa grass-thatched houses, they will also demonstrate how those houses are constructed, will also showcase the traditional herbs that they used in the past and still use, hunting skills, demonstrations of how water is fetched using bamboo cups/mugs, skills of gathering honey and how to make fire by friction using sticks.