Mubwindi Trail in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park - Ruhija, gorilla trekking

Mubwindi Trail in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest

Mubwindi Trail in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest: Situated in the Ruhija area of southwestern Uganda, lies the Mubwindi Trail within the breathtaking Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. This park is renowned for its thrilling gorilla trekking experiences, amongst a range of other activities. The Mubwindi trail, a popular route through the park, leads adventurers through stunning landscapes and diverse habitats, offering an unforgettable birding and nature exploration experience.

One of the most compelling reasons to visit Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is to witness the magnificent mountain gorillas, which are considered endangered as listed by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN). These gentle giants are the closest relatives to humans, sharing a remarkable 98% of our DNA. Visitors from all corners of the world flock to the park to see these awe-inspiring creatures up close and to appreciate the majesty of the natural world. This makes gorilla trekking one of the most popular activities in Uganda and attracts tourists from all over the world.

Mubwindi trail in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

More than 10 species of primates, 120 animals, 350 bird species, 51 reptiles, 310 butterflies, and more than 160 types of trees may be found in the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park. Although gorilla trekking is the most popular activity in Bwindi, visitors can also engage in hiking, nature walks, and birdwatching while in Bwindi. Hiking routes with stunning views of the surrounding Virunga volcanoes and rolling valleys can be found in every region of the park, allowing visitors to explore the area on foot.

Mubwindi Trail is one of the best trails in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park, found in the Ruhija section of the Park. The path winds through lush jungles and slopes of the tropical Afro-Montane Rain Forest with scenic views. It’s a 4-5-hour trail taking you through the jungles of Bwindi all the way down to the swamp, with breathtaking views of nature and its attractions. Mubwindi Trails is one of the best trails for birding in Bwindi and ranked number one in Africa, and for one to use this trail, the park authorities have to be aware, and upon payment within the company of armed ranger guides, depending on the interest, we are always with local birding guides who are familiar with the trail and recent bird behaviours and feeding habits, plus nesting.

When taking a nature walk along the Mubwindi trail in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, tourists can see a variety of park creatures as they move through the jungle in search of food or a place to rest. These creatures include primates like chimpanzees and monkeys, as well as mammals like forest Elephants, Giant forest hogs, Duikers, Bushpigs, Buffaloes, and Bushbucks. If fortune favours you, you might even catch a sight of the mountain gorillas. In addition, visitors will see a variety of flora, reptiles, amphibians, and butterflies.

As visitors explore Bwindi’s hidden gem, they may come across some of the many bird species that inhabit the Mubwindi Trail, reputed to be one of the top birding paths most of which are Endemic to the Albertine Rift and include among others the Dusky Crimsonwing, Grauer’s (African Green) Broadbill, Red-faced Woodland Warbler, Dwarf Honeyguide, Rwenzori Batis, Blue-headed, Regal and Purple-breasted Sunbird, Rwenzori Apalis, Black-faced Apalis, Red-throated Alethe, Archer’s Robin-chat, Yellow-eyed Black Flycatcher, Strange Weaver, Handsome Spurfowl among the numerous endemics not leaving out the high altitude rarities like the Grey-chested Babbler, Yellow-streaked Greenbul, Doherty’s and Lagden’s Bush-shrike, Pink-footed Puffback, Barred Long-tailed Cuckoo, Wallers, Sharpe’s, Narrow-tailed, Slender-billed and Stuhlmann’s Starling, Bar-tailed Trogon, Red-chested Owlet, Olive, Cardinal and Fine-banded Woodpecker, Black-billed Turaco, White-starred Robin, Black-throated and Chestnut-throated Apalis, Equatorial Akalat, Cinnamon-bracken Warbler, White-headed Woodhoopoe, White-browed Crombec, Western Green Tinkerbird, Cinnamon-chested Bee-eater, Remeron Dove, Abyssinian Thrush, Black Saw-wing among others.

Things to pack for Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

Things to carry for Bwindi Impenetrable National Park include; long sleeved shirts, long cotton pants, gloves, waterproof hiking shoes, gaiters, a telescope for birding, a sweater, a hat, sunscreen, a light backpack, insect repellents, a camera, a pair of binoculars, a drinking water bottle, a brimmed hat and energy snacks are among the items that travellers planning to hike the Mubwindi trail in Bwindi are advised to bring.

When to explore Bwindi using Mubwindi Trail

Although Mubwindi trail can be used for gorilla trekking, nature hikes, and birdwatching in Bwindi is done throughout the year. Mubwindi is best explored during the dry season (June to September, December to February). There is hardly much rain in these months, and the paths are usually usable. The roads leading to the park are passable, and the short, thin grass around the trail offers excellent views of the animals.

Despite the difficulties posed by strong rains and dense foliage during the wet or rainy season (March to May, October to November), adventurous hikers can still explore Mubwindi. In the rainy seasons of March to May and October to November, visitors can still visit Bwindi and hike the Mubwindi trail for nature walks and birdwatching activities. However, they should be aware that during these times, the trekking trails become muddy and slippery, making it difficult to move quickly, and the vegetation is dense and tall, making it difficult to carry out activities like gorilla trekking, birdwatching, and others. Additionally, there are also plenty of fruits and shoots for the animals and different bird species.

Accommodation facilities in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest

It is necessary for visitors interested in hiking Bwindi’s Mubwindi trail to make reservations for lodging in the Ruhija sector. Bakiga Lodge, Trekkers Tavern Cottages, Ruhija Gorilla Safari Lodge, Ruhija Gorilla Friends Resort, Ruhija Community Rest Camp, Gorilla Mist Camp, Broadbill Forest Camp, Bakiga Agandi Uganda Lodge, Gift of Nature Lodge, Kiho Luxury Lodge, and Eco Marvels Gorilla Lodge are just a few of the numerous lodging options available in the Bwindi Ruhija sector, ranging from affordable to luxurious. The section is also about 90 minutes to 2 hours away from the lower Buhoma section.

Getting to Mubwindi Trail, Ruhija

To access the Ruhija sector in southwestern Uganda, you can either use road transport or air transport. The sector is located on the eastern side of Bwindi, and it takes 9–10 hours to get there by road from Kampala via Masaka, Mbarara, and Kabale, to the Ruhija sector. If you are coming from Kigali, you can use the Katuna border in Kabale or the Cyanika border in Kisoro to get to the Ruhija sector of Bwindi National Park. This journey takes about 4–5 hours.

To reach the Ruhija sector of Bwindi National Park quickly, you can take a flight to Kisoro Airstrip from either Entebbe International Airport or Kajjansi Airstrip. The flight can be booked with airline companies such as Fly Uganda, Aerolink Uganda, and Bar Aviation Uganda. The journey from either airport to Kisoro airstrip takes about 1 hour and 45 minutes. After landing at Kisoro Airport, you can take road transport for a few hours to reach the area through the Echuya Forest Reserve to Muko and Rubanda, respectively.