Are you planning to visit Bwindi for gorilla trekking and you are trying to choose which sector you want to go for your trek to see the mountain gorillas, in this article we explain the difference between Gorilla Trekking in Rushaga compared to Buhoma? Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park is divided into two parts, the southern and northern parts. The southern part is made up of Rushaga and Nkuringo gorilla trekking gates and the northern part is made up of Ruhija and Buhoma gorilla trekking gates. Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park is one of the only 4 national parks home to the endangered mountain gorillas in the world, other national parks include Mgahinga Gorilla National Park in Uganda, Volcanoes national park in Rwanda and Virunga National Park in DR Congo. The park is also home to one of Africa’s oldest forests with a diverse biodiversity with various species which include 350 birds, 310 butterflies, 200 trees, 51 reptiles, 88 moths and 120 mammals, the park is also home to several primates including chimpanzees, L’Hoest’s monkey and the major one the Mountain Gorillas.
About Rushaga Sector of Bwindi
Rushaga region is located in the south park to Bwindi impenetrable National Park, Rushaga is a home for 8 Gorilla Families which by far is the most of any sector and its gorilla families being easy to trek due to the nature of terrine in the region. Rushaga can be easily accessed through Kisoro and for those travelling from Kigali it is just 4-5 hours drive. Gorilla families include Rwigi, Muchunguzi, Busingye, Bweza, Nshongi, Mishaya and Kahungye which are all available tracking and open to tourists. Also, this is the only region in Bwindi that offers Gorilla Habituation experience.
About Buhoma sector of Bwindi
Buhoma region is located in the northern part of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Buhoma sector was the first sector to be habituated in 1993 just after the park was declared a UNESCO Heritage. Buhoma is the most famous and most visited part of the park, with the oldest Gorilla family Mubare and three other families of Habinyanja, Rushegura and Katwe Gorilla families. Buhoma is best for easy hikes to visit and see the gorillas in Bwindi
Difference between Gorilla Trekking in Rushaga compared to Buhoma
When it comes to gorilla trekking whichever sector of the Bwindi you choose to do our gorilla trekking you will be able to see the mountain gorillas but there are many other things you can base on to Gorilla Trekking in Rushaga compared to Buhoma. Where best to do gorilla trekking in Bwindi, these include the following;
In terms of accessibility, getting to Bwindi by road Buhoma is closer compared to the Rushaga. The Buhoma can be accessed by turning off along the Kabale-Kisoro road you will see the sign posted of Uganda Wildlife Authority which you will follow up to your booked lodge for your stay during your gorilla trek in Buhoma. Rushaga of Bwindi can be reached using the road turning off at Muko along Kabale-Kisoro High way. By Air both parts have no close airstrips nearby, Kihihi Airstrip that can be used to access the Buhoma and Kisoro Airstrip that can be used to access Rushaga the drive time is approximately 1 to 2 hours. However, it is slightly cheaper to fly to Kihihi compared to flying to Kisoro as well the flight schedules are many and flexible for Kihihi compared to Kisoro because of the weather conditions in Kisoro.
In terms of Lodges, Both Rushaga and Buhoma have Budget, Mid-Range and Luxury Upmarket Lodges where you could choose to stay during your trek. Buhoma is the best place for gorilla trekking for those interested in staying in luxury lodges compared to Rushaga. At Buhoma sector there are popular lodges which are on an international standard that is Gorilla Forest Camp, Buhoma Lodge and Bwindi Lodge. It is also home to a large number of luxury lodge options in Bwindi including the only 2 lodges located within the Bwindi Forest that is Gorilla Forest Camp and Buhoma Lodge. These lodges offer great and luxury services so far the best in Bwindi and the country at large.
In terms of Gorilla families, Rushaga has more gorilla trekking families and gorilla permits compared to the Buhoma. This makes Rushaga have many gorilla permits available daily for gorilla trekking compared to Buhoma sector of Bwindi.
In terms of the best gorilla trekking experience, the whole truth is that both Buhoma and Rushaga sectors of Bwindi have mountain gorillas and there is no big difference when it comes to the experience obtained at the end of your trek. Chances of seeing gorillas in Buhoma and Rushaga are 98% so which ever part of the park you visit you will be able to see these great apes in their natural environment. What only make Rushaga sector of Bwindi unique is you an option to spend 4 hours much time with the mountain gorillas through gorilla habituation experience which is only done between Rushaga and Rushaga. Also Rushaga is steeper and strenuous than other sectors of the park making it great for adventurers and hikers seeking a challenging hike to see the gorillas.
In terms of distance walked to see gorillas in Rushaga and Buhoma sectors of Bwindi? The issue of walking longer or short distance depends on the given gorilla family allocated to you. In both in Rushaga and Buhoma sectors of Bwindi gorilla families are allocated depending on the interest and physical fitness of given individuals. If for example, you want a shorter trek, you will have to inform the park authorities on the very day of trekking so that you are allocated such family. If you want a medium or longer trek, then you do the same. It should be noted that while they will try to give you a family that requires shorter walks, the behavior of gorillas might affect the experience if for example gorillas decide to move further as you look for them you will still need to move further to follow them.
Best time for gorilla trekking in Rushaga and Buhoma sectors of Bwindi
Bwindi impenetrable forest is open for trekking all year round but it is also important to note that the forest is a tropical rain forest and can receive rain at any time. The best months to track gorillas include; June to August and December to February since they receive the lowest rainfall and the forest is less slippery. On the other hand, when you happen to travel during March to May and November there are chances of higher rainfall, you will be able to get discounts from some lodges for your accommodation. Compare Gorilla Trekking in the Southern and Northern Bwindi
Why book your gorilla trek in Rushaga and Buhoma sectors of Bwindi with Eco Adventure Safaris?
Eco Adventure Safaris takes pride in customizing tailor made gorilla trekking safaris in Uganda Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. It has a very diligent and trust worthy team. Your queries are answered within 30 minutes by our team of professional tour consultants. These consultants will make you a travel plan for you, answer to all your questions and make sure all your services are booked in advance for you to avoid inconveniences. We also have very knowledgeable safari guides depending on your language preferences. Compare Gorilla Trekking in the Southern and Northern Bwindi There some Mountain Gorilla Safari Packages and these include; the 3 day Gorilla Fly in safari, the 3 day Gorilla safari, 5 Day Gorilla and Game safari, it all depends on your preference. Feel free to contact us about Gorilla Trekking in Rushaga compared to Buhoma