Mount Gahinga Lodge is conveniently positioned close to the entrance into Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. Children are welcome, but only those aged 15 years and older are permitted to take part in gorilla treks. However, as the property provides a wealth of other activities, there’s something for travellers of all ages to enjoy.
ACCESS & LOCATION:
Mgahinga Gorilla N.P. is situated in the farthest south-west corner of Uganda. Mount Gahinga Lodge can be accessed via 1-hour flight from Entebbe International Airport to Kisoro, followed by a drive of approximately 15 kilometres. Travellers approaching from Queen Elizabeth N.P. have a drive of 3–4 hours, while the road trip from Lake Mburo takes 5–7 hours.
ACCOMMODATION & FACILITIES:
Mount Gahinga Lodge has six guest bandas, all with stone walls and a papyrus roof. Each is named after a Virunga volcano! Three bandas contain a double bed, and three have twin beds. Room features include bedside tables and lighting, a chunky storage chest, and a cosy stone fireplace. The well-appointed en-suite facilities comprise flush toilet, twin washbasins, and shower with hot and cold running water. Every banda also benefits from a lovely private veranda – and all guests have use of a personal butler service!
The bandas are connected to the property’s main lodge along neat pathways. This building is made out of stone and thatch too. Inside, there’s an open-plan lounge and dining area, with well-cushioned wicker sofas and armchairs, a long table flanked by upright chairs for communal meals, and a large central fireplace. This space extends into a comfy sun room, which boasts amazing views of the volcanoes and surrounding landscape! Guests can also marvel at the scenery from Mount Gahinga’s terrace. Wi-Fi is available throughout the lodge, but it can be unreliable. In a separate building, there’s a great little gift shop, perfect for purchasing souvenirs. And there’s a massage room too, for a spot of pampering in between trips into the national park! Every guest receives a free massage.
The main activity from Mount Gahinga is tracking mountain gorillas! A trek can take from 3 to 8 hours. The terrain within the national park is arduous at times, but the experience of encountering the gorillas in their natural habitat is well worth the exertion. Once a gorilla group has been located, the human group (a maximum of eight persons) is permitted to view the magnificent mammals for a whole hour! Golden monkey treks are also on offer here, and keen birders will enjoy looking out for hundreds of species, not least specials such as olive woodpecker and scarlet-tufted malachite sunbird. If you are feeling super-fit, you can climb any or all of the Virunga volcanoes – Gahinga, Sabyinyo, and Muhavura. Travellers seeking less strenuous exercise will enjoy hiking in the Kisozi Caldera, less than one kilometre from the lodge. Cultural experiences are also on offer. You can visit the local Batwa village and school, walk along Batwa farmers’ fields, and enjoy a traditional Batwa song-and-dance performance!