Things to do in Kisoro
Kisoro is a small district located in the southwestern part of Uganda. Kisoro, which boarders both Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo, is a hub for mountain gorilla tourism. Kisoro is home to two of Uganda's most popular national parks: Bwindi National Park and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. Much as gorilla trekking is the major tourist activity in the area, there several exciting natured based and local activities that can explored when visiting the area. The most popular activities complementing gorilla tours are; Congo boarder walk, King's (Gisozi) hike, Sabyinyo volcano hike, canoe trekking at Lake Mutanda, Batwa community visit, Virunga volcanoes viewing platform, and Kisoro market visits,
Gisozi caldera hike
The Gisozi Caldera, also locally known as "Kings Hills", is a larva cone situated about 2 kilometres from Ntebeko Mgahinga gorilla national park headquarters. Hiking the Gisozi caldera is a highly recommended activity when visiting Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. The walk to the caldera goes through farmlands, a trading centre, and homes. The walk and summit to the caldera takes about 2 hours. Upon reaching the top of Gisozi caldera, you have the best views of the Virunga mountains as they stretch from the Rwanda boarder to the southeast and the Congo (DRC) boarder to the southwest.
The Batwa Trail
The Batwa Trail is a one-day activity that takes place in Mgahinga gorilla national. The Batwa Trail was crafted to show case the life of the Batwa forest peoples, the original inhabitants of the Mgahinga area. On the tour the Batwa will demonstrate their old ways of harvesting herbs for medicine and wild honey; fetching water using bamboo made "mugs" and construction demo of grass thatched huts they used to live in. The tour ends with a cultural show by the Batwa community at the entrance of the Garama cave, a ceremonial ground for Batwa cultural leaders. The cave was such a symbolic place in the Batwa culture and you will be proud to be part of this experience.
Congo boarder walk
While visiting Mgahinga gorilla national park, you may opt to a join the Congo-boarder walk. The walk to the Uganda-Congo boarder takes about 2 hours. This will be a great opportunity to learn about life and culture of Uganda and the DRC. You may consult with Bamboo Ecotours to reserve the walk or reach out to Uganda Wildlife Authority directly.
Canoe trekking at Lake Mutanda
Canoeing at Lake Mutanda is a adventurous activity to do before or after trekking the mountain gorillas. Lake Mutanda provides space for relaxation after the gorilla trekking experience. The lake is strategically located between Bwindi forest and Mgahinga national park. Canoeing can be done at southern side at Mutanda Eco Community Centre. Alternatively, one can travel to the northern side of the lake at Chameleon Hill Lodge or Mutanda Lake Resort.
Golden monkey trekking
Golden monkey tracking is one the next popular tourist activity in Mgahinga after gorilla tracking. There is one habituated golden monkey group in Mgahinga that is open to visitors every day. Trekking the monkeys takes about 4-5 hours, and at Bamboo Ecotours, we highly recommend this exciting experience.
With roughly 1,000 mountain gorillas remaining in the forests of East and Central Africa, gorilla trekking is the most popular tourist attraction in Uganda. Gorilla trekking is permitted at both Bwindi national park and Mgahinga gorilla national parks in Uganda. There are about 15 gorilla families that are open for tourism. The minimum age to visit the mountain gorillas is 15 years. A gorilla trekking permit is mandatory to visit the gorillas. It is advisable to reserve the gorilla permits way in advance to avoid missing out on the trek. Check Bamboo Ecotours guided treks here.
Volcano hike (Sabyinyo, Muhavura, Gahinga)
There are three volcanoes located in Mgahinga gorilla national that are loved by hikers. These are: Mt. Sabyinyo (the old's man's teeth in the local Rufumbira dialect), Mt. Gahinga (a small pile of stones) and Mt. Muhabaura (the guide). Mt. Sabyinyo is 3,645m high, Mt. Muhabura is 4,127m whereas Mt. Gahinga is 3,474m. Mt. Sabyinyo is the most favored by hikers not only because of its ragged peaks, but also provides a chance to step in three countries of Uganda, Rwanda and the DRC upon reaching the third peak.
- Kisoro market visits