Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

An African safari to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park is a holiday to one of the most spectacular places on planet earth. Patches of mist are often seen rolling through the verdant valleys of this rich afro-montane forest in Southern Uganda. Straddled on the border of DRC and in the south-west corner of the country, with some parts of the park extending over 2,600m above sea-level, Bwindi showcases impressive clashes between afro-montane forest and plains forest. Bwindi’s vine-covered, fern-rich canopies create a haven for the critically-endangered mountain gorilla. It is also one of three places in the world where visitors can track these magnificent primates.

Thanks to a diverse ecosystem with over 1,000 different types of flowering plants, 310 butterflies, 350 birds, and 120 mammal species, the park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Colobus monkeys and chimpanzees can be seen swinging between tree branches, disturbing turacos and hornbills en route.

Although Bwindi’s star attraction is undoubtedly the mountain gorilla, visitors can also go bird-watching, mountain biking, hiking, or visit nearby villages.

Accommodation in the park ranges from lodges and tented camps to community-run guesthouses. Guests can charter flights from Entebbe International Airport to Kihihi Airstrip near Bwindi, or take the 7-8 hour drive from Entebbe through the beautiful and breathtaking display of hills and valleys of Western Uganda.

Lake Mburo National Park and Queen Elizabeth National Park are around 3hr and 6hr away from Bwindi respectively, making it a possible add-on to an itinerary exploring this part of Uganda.

Know Before You Go

Bwindi Impenetrable Forest is the most popular place to track mountain gorillas in Uganda. The park is divided into four sub-regions: Buhoma region, Ruhija region, Rushaga region, and Nkuringo region. Gorilla permits are issued within one of these four areas for tourists. Within each region is a family or several that have been habituated to humans.

To avoid the rain, the best time to visit the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest Reserve is during the “cold” season in June through July. It is highly recommended to book your visit with a licensed gorilla trekking tour operator to ensure safety.

The forest reserve is accessible by either airplane or car. For drivers, Bwindi is a two to three-hour drive from Kampala or can be reached via a daily bus service from Kampala to Butogota by way of Rukungiri and Kihiihi. By air, Bwindi is served by three airfields. Travellers can fly in from Kampala or Entebbe.

Bwindi Highlights

  • Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is one of three places in the world that guests can track the critically-endangered mountain gorilla
  • Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site due to its incredible biodiversity and mountain gorillas
  • Visitors can take gorilla tracking tours and come within feet of mountain gorillas
  • The park is also home to monkeys, chimpanzees, elephants, and a myriad of bird species
  • Charter flights to Bwindi are available from Entebbe International Airport
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