Mgahinga Gorilla National Park “where Gold meets Silver” is located in the southwestern region of Uganda, Kisoro district in Virunga Mountains and contains three active volcanoes Mount Muhavura, Mount Gahinga and Mount Sabinyo. It is contiguous with Rwanda’s Volcanoes national park and southern sector of Virunga National Park in the Democratic republic of Congo.

It is Uganda’s smallest National park with 33.7 square kilometers. It was gazzeted as a National park in 1991 and takes its name from Gahinga the local word for the piles of volcanic stones cleared from farmland at the foot of the volcanoes.

The park was created to protect mountain Gorillas and endangered golden monkey and other wildlife. It also has a huge cultural significance for the indigenous Batwa pygmies.

Activities in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park

Gorilla tracking

This park protects a variety of Mountain Gorillas and trekking these gentle giants requires a well trained guide who explains the gorillas behaviors, trekking starts from Ntebeko entrance gate at around 8 am and the maximum time allowed to be with mountain Gorillas is 1 hour. This activity is best done in the dry season when thick forests are penetrated easily and the paths are not too muddy.

Batwa experience

Mgahinga’s dense forests were home to the indigenous Batwa. These are hunter-gatherers and fierce warriors who depended on the forest for food, shelter and medicine.

When the national park was established the Batwa were evicted from the forest and abandoned their low-impact, nomadic lifestyle. But they still enter the forest to entertain visitors and show them more about their culture.

Mountain/volcano climbing in Mgahinga Gorilla national park


A walk through Gorge Trail between Gahinga and Sabinyo can provide a spectacular sightings of the Dusky turtle Dove, Cape Robin-chat, Kivu-ground Thrush, Olive Thrush, Brown-crowned Tchagra, Bronze Sunbird, Regal Sunbird, Blue-headed Sunbird, Rwenzori Batis, Black-headed Waxbill and Streaky Seedeater.

Other good birding areas are at the bamboo belt at about 2,500m above sea level, and the tall montane forest at 2,660m.

Hiking and nature walk

A walk through Gorge Trail between Gahinga and Sabinyo can provides a clear vie of wildlife, farmland of the bamboo forest, give one a chance to find Rwenzori Turaco and many bird species plus different vegetation zones. On a clear day, you may view the Virunga Volcano range and come across buffalo and duiker.