Gorilla Trekking in Rushaga Sector | Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

Gorilla trekking in Rushaga sector is such an adventurous activity carried out with in Bwindi Impenetrable forest national park. Gorilla trekking is the number one tourist activity carried out by different travelers on an African gorilla trekking safari.to take part in a gorilla trekking adventure, traveler had to first obtain right information about the gorilla trekking including the gorilla trekking age limit which is 15 years and above, the climatic conditions of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, the gorilla trekking safety, gorilla trekking gears, and finally the best sector for gorilla trekking safari before purchasing the permit which in any case isn’t refundable or even renewable. A gorilla trekking permit for Rushaga sector like any other sector goes for $600 per permit which has increased slightly by $100 to make $700 with effect to July 1st, 2020 therefore, travelers intending to trek mountain gorillas in Uganda after July 1st, are entitled to a new gorilla trekking permit fee of $700 foreign nonresidents, $600 foreign residents and for east African community members are blessed to remain fixed at 250,000UgX till 2022.

Reasons for Gorilla Trekking in Rushaga Sector

There are very many reasons why Rushaga sector is the best sector for gorilla trekking in Uganda the pearl of Africa. These include;

Close Vicinity and easy access from Kigali-Rwanda: Rushaga sector is the closest sector to Kigali- Rwanda and the access of Rushaga sector in the extreme southern Bwindi Impenetrable national park is yet another interesting reason as to why you would prefer to perform gorilla trekking from Rushaga sector. Several travelers interested in gorilla trekking in Rushaga Sector of Bwindi normally fly to Kigali International airport and then close the border to Uganda and the closet sector from Kigali is now other than the Rushaga sector thus making it the best sector for gorilla trekking from Kigali Rwanda. Trekking mountain gorillas in Rushaga from Kigali is easily achieved by taking a two days gorilla trekking safari. This saves money, and even time since trekking the same gorillas from Kampala requires a 3 days safari that comes along with different expenses and costs. Thus the biggest percentage of travelers who do not enjoy having longer drives form kampala to Bwindi (8-10) hours’ drive always have the best option of landing into Rwanda and drive for fewer hours (about 3 hours’ drive) via Cyanika border to trek mountain gorillas in Rushaga sector.

Gorilla Habituation in Rushaga Sector: Apart from Gorilla trekking in Rushaga sector. There is the breath taking gorilla habituation experience that allows travelers to spend 4 hours with the mountain gorillas in their natural habitat. So gorilla trekking in the Rushaga sector can easily be incorporated with gorilla habituation which is not found in another sector in Uganda and Africa at large. 

In fact, some travelers who trek gorillas from other sectors of Ruhija, Nkuringo, and Buhoma both in Bwindi Impenetrable National park and would like to include gorilla habituation on their travel bucket have to visit two sectors which is a bit tiring.  The easiest way to do both gorilla trekking and habituation in Bwindi is by visiting Rushaga sector and all will be achieved in just one safari at ease. Gorilla habituation in Rushaga sector has made Rushaga very famous and thus the best sector for gorilla trekking safari. As gorilla habituation permit in the Rushaga sector costs $1500 per person allowing habituators alongside armed UWA rangers and the guide to stay with a particular gorilla family undergoing habituation for about 4 hours. During gorilla habituation in Rushaga sector, travelers get to learn different habits of gorillas and follow them up as they do their day to day activities such as feeding, mating, breast feeding among others till late in the evening when they start nesting up in the tree branches where to stay overnight. 

Availability of accommodation facilities in Rushaga sector: Bwindi Impenetrable national park has different accommodation facilities situated in the southern part of the Park. Thus travelers on a gorilla trekking safari in Rushaga sector are fully accessed with different accommodation facilities ranging from Luxury, Midrange and Budget that suit all the trekker’s needs. Some of these lodges include; Rushaga gorilla camp, Nshongi Camp,  Gorilla safari lodge, Gorilla valley lodge, Ichumbi Lodge, Rushaga Gorilla camp, Rushaga Gorilla havens lodge, Bwindi jungle lodge, chameleon lodge among others that make gorilla trekking in Rushaga sector a memorable adventure. 

Large number of habituated gorilla families: As of now, the Rushaga sector is the best sector for gorilla trekking due to the fact that it has the largest number of habituated mountain gorilla families available and open for trekking as compared to other three sectors in Bwindi impenetrable national park. This implies that the Uganda Wildlife Authority issues out more gorilla trekking permits for Rushaga Sector as compared to other sectors in the same park. As of now, Rushaga sector has 5 habituated gorilla families which include; Nshongi, Busingye, Kahungye, Mishaya, and Bweza thus the Uganda Wildlife Authority issues out 40 gorilla trekking permits for Rushaga sector on a daily basis allowing 40 trekkers in groups of 8 per gorilla family.

Gorilla Trekking in Rushaga Sector
Gorilla Trekking in Rushaga Sector

Getting there

There are different ways of getting to the Rushaga Sector which is either by air or by road. From either Kigali international airport or from Entebbe international airport. 

Getting to Rushaga sector by Road

From kampala: Travelers can access Rushaga sector by road either from Kampala which takes about 8-10 hours’ drive via Kampala – Masaka- Mbarara – Kabale – Kisoro road and then connect to Rushaga sector in the southern part of Bwindi Impenetrable national park. This drive includes in some stopovers along the way such as a stop at lake Mburo national park which is along the way though travelers which enables travelers to view zebras as they graze amidst cattle, another stopover at the Equator for some photography and experience and finally another stopover in Mbarara for meals before proceeding to Bwindi.

From Kigali – Rwanda: This is the shortest distance possible for travelers on a gorilla trekking safari in Rushaga sector with in Bwindi impenetrable national park, a home to the largest population of mountain gorillas in the wild. This takes about 3 hours through Cyanika boarder to Rushaga sector. In case of stopovers along the way, the travel from Kigali to Rushaga sector can increase to about 5 hours’ drive via Cyanika boarder. In most cases, travelers from Kigali have an opportunity of exploring Kigali city and then visit Lake Bunyonyi the second deepest lake in Africa with fresh water.

Getting to Rushaga sector by Air

Other travelers can access Rushaga sector by flight from either Entebbe international airport or from Kajjansi airfield to Kisoro airstrip and then drive to Rushaga sector in the south of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. 

Conclusion: Like Buhoma sector, Rushaga sector is yet another busy sector that require travelers to book their permits in advance as the permits are so competitive since they are preferred by both Rwanda travelers that visit Rwanda for other activities and then trek cheaper gorillas at $600 from Uganda as compared to gorilla trekking in Rwanda at $1500 which is $900 more expensive thus allowing just one hour with the mountain gorillas in the wild. Rushaga sector remains the best sector for gorilla trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.