Gorilla trekking safari in Bwindi starting from Ruhija region
Ruhija sector is one of the best gorilla trekking safari regions of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park home to more than half of the mountain gorilla population in the world. Bwindi impenetrable forest national park is home to over 19 habituated mountain gorilla families that are open for trekking and out of these 4 are found in Ruhija sector. Ruhija sector is located on the eastern side of the park neighboring Buhoma sector. Trekking mountain gorillas in Ruhija sector can be done at any season of the year with 99% chances of seeing mountain gorillas in their natural habitats. Other sectors in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park where mountain gorilla trekking can be done are Buhoma, Rushaga, and Nkuringo.
Trekking mountain gorillas of Ruhija
Gorilla trekking is the main activity done in the Ruhija sector of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park a home to more than half of the mountain gorilla population in the world. Trekking mountain gorillas in Ruhija sector means trekking any of the mountain gorilla families and spending a maximum of 1 hour around it. Mountain gorilla trekking in Ruhija region starts with a briefing at the park headquarters where rangers teach about the dos and don’ts of the gorilla trekking activity. After the briefing, the trekkers are grouped not exceeding 8, and ranger guides lead them through different trails of the park looking for these endangered mountain gorillas. while searching for mountain gorillas, the trekkers have an opportunity of meeting different park animals such as buffaloes, duikers, elephants, giant forest hogs, different bird species, and different vegetation covers.
After several hours of searching mountain gorillas and locating them, the trekkers are given a maximum of 1 hour to be around mountain gorillas watch them do daily activities, learn their habits and take photos. After spending time with mountain gorillas, the trekkers trek back to the starting point where they are awarded gorilla trekking certificates. Ruhija is one of the best sectors to trek mountain gorillas in Bwindi due to its nature of terrain which is not hilly and steep compared to other sectors. The other advantage of trekking mountain gorillas in Ruhija sector is that accommodation facilities are near the starting points.
How many habituated mountain gorilla families are in Rushaga region of Bwindi?
Ruhija sector is home to 4 habituated mountain gorilla families namely Orugozo gorilla family with 23 members, Bitukura gorilla family with 13 members, Kyaguriro gorilla family, and Mukiza gorilla family. To trek any of the habituated mountain gorillas in Ruhija, you will need a gorilla trekking permit got from Uganda Wildlife Authority.
How many gorilla trekking permits are in Ruhija region of Bwindi?
There are only 4 habituated mountain gorilla families in Ruhija region of Bwindi and the fact that only 8 people are allowed to trek a habituated mountain gorilla family per day. This means that Ruhija sector of Bwindi has 32 gorilla trekking permits per day available for tourists to trek and be around mountain gorillas for a maximum of 1 hour. You are advised to buy your trekking permits in advance of 3-4 months of you ae to trek mountain gorillas in ruhija in the high season because the permits sell out quickly.
What is the gorilla trekking permit price in Ruhija region?
The gorilla trekking permit price in Ruhija region of Bwindi is the same as that in other sectors as well as Mgahinga national park. Ruhija Gorilla trekking permits go for $700 for foreign non-residents, $600 foreign residents while shs250,000 East African citizens. The gorilla trekking permits are bought directly from Uganda Wildlife Authority or can be got from a trusted tour operator. The gorilla trekking permits are sold to persons above the age of 15 years and they are valid for a single day allowing travelers to be around mountain gorillas for a maximum of 1 hour.
If you are intending to visit Ruhija region in the dry season, you are advised to book your trekking permit direct from Uganda Wildlife Authority or a trusted tour operator in advance of 3-4 months to avoid inconveniences since the permits sell out on a first come first serve basis.
Accommodation facilities in Ruhija region of Bwindi
Ruhija region of Bwindi has a number of accommodation facilities where tourists can stay while on a gorilla trekking safari. The accommodation facilities range from budget to mid-range to luxury options but where to stay depends on your travel budget. Some of the accommodation facilities in Ruhija region of Bwindi include Bakiga Lodge, Gorilla Mist Camp, Ruhija campsite, Broadbill Forest Camp, Cuckooland Tented Camp, Ruhija Safari Lodge, Gift of nature lodge, Ruhija Community Rest Camp, Agadi Eco Lodge, and Trekkers Tavern cottages among others. Travelers to Ruhija sector can also stay in some of the accommodation facilities for Buhoma sector since it’s so close to Ruhija sector.
How to access Ruhija region of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park
Rujiha region of Bwindi can be accessed using road transport or air transport.
By road transport, Ruhija region can be accessed from Kampala/Entebbe via Masaka – Mbarara – Kabale to the sector taking 9-10 hrs. Travelers from Rwanda can access Ruhija sector using Katuna border in Kabale taking only 4-5 hours from Kigali. By air transport, travelers can fly from Entebbe international airport or Kajjansi airstrip to Kisoro airstrip or Kihihi airstrip taking only 2 hours. From any of the airstrips, the driver guide can drive you to your lodge or park taking a few hours.
What is the best time to visit Ruhija sector in Bwindi?
Ruhija sector can be visited at any time of the year but the best time that we do recommend is the dry season. The dry season happens in June to September and December to January and this season is characterized by little or no rainfall, the vegetation in the park is thin giving clear views of the forest animals and best photography, the trekking trails are less muddy and not slippery and lastly, the roads leading to the sector are passable.
Trekking mountain gorillas in the Ruhija sector can also be done in the rainy season of October to November and March to May but during this time rainfall tends to be heavy, the trekking trails are muddy and slippery slowing the speed of trekkers, the vegetation is very thick giving unclear views of animals, and the roads leading to the park are impassable. The rainy season is good for budget travelers since there are huge discounts on the accommodation facilities.
What to do with Africa Adventure Vacations?
Africa adventure vacations is a tour company based in Uganda licensed by the Uganda Tourism Board and a member of the Association of Uganda Tour Operators. Booking with Africa adventure vacations provides you safety and confidence during your safari courtesy of well-trained safari driver guides who are well conversant with all routes and tourism destinations in Africa. You can book with us any of the activities you want to do in Africa such as mountain gorilla trekking, mountain gorilla habituation, birding, game drives, hiking, nature walks, and community tours among others. Booking gorilla trekking safari in Bwindi starting from Ruhija region can be done at any time of the year.