Entebbe is the home to Uganda’s main international airport, which means all international tourist has to arrive and depart from Entebbe which means 90% of Uganda’s safaris starts and ends in Entebbe. Those who are planning their mountain gorilla tracking Bwindi impenetrable forest national park in southwestern Uganda need to know the distance driving from Entebbe to Bwindi forest.
It is approximately about 540km from Entebbe international airport to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National park, which is also approximately 8 to 9 hours drive. However, driving from Entebbe to Bwindi forest it is very interesting because the drive takes through different towns and villages which gives tourists the opportunity to see the countryside of Uganda. The drive from Entebbe to Bwindi forest has few stopovers with the first stop at the Uganda Equator line in Kayabwe, after here the next stop will be in Lake Mburo National Park where you be able to see different wildlife from the roadside, next stopover is in Mbarara city for lunch after continuing with the drive to Bwindi with more few stopovers for photo opportunities before reaching Bwindi forest in the evening.
Yes, it is possible to fly from Entebbe to Bwindi forest, there are daily domestic flights that fly from Entebbe to Bwindi, the flight is approximately one and a half to 2 hours the flight that departs from Entebbe Airport daily starting at 7 am to Kisoro airstrip or Kihihi airstrip and from either airstrip, you can be picked up by your driver-guide or the lodge where you will be staying for the nights in Bwindi forest. about the best way to get to Bwindi forest from Entebbe or anywhere contact Kisoro Tours Uganda, and we will help you based on your budget and the time you have for gorilla trekking tours and other wildlife safaris in Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, and Rwanda.
How far is driving from Entebbe to Bwindi Forest by Road: Bwindi forest has four different gorilla trekking sectors so it depends on which sector you will be doing your gorilla trekking in, Bwindi Forest can be accessed through the main high-way road from Entebbe/Kampala, Masaka, Mbarara, Kabale then Kisoro area which approximately 8-9 hours drive to the southern sectors of Rushaga sector, Ruhija sector, and Nkuringo sector and for The northern sectors of Buhoma can be accessed by turning off along the Ntungamu, RuKungiri, Kanungu then Buhoma. Along the road, you will see the signpost of Uganda Wildlife Authority which will be directed you to the sector where you will be trekking.
This is a good question many self-driving tourists and other visitors driving themselves to Bwindi keep asking. You only get to which sector in Bwindi forest you will be trekking gorillas in at the time of purchasing gorilla trekking permits because permits are sold on a first come first serve so at the time of buying your gorilla permit you to choose which sector of Bwindi you wish to trek in. all sectors offer the same trekking experience. Not because of the distance you cannot sleep in sector A and trek in sector B, for example, you cannot sleep in the Buhome sector and trek in the Rushaga sector, this is why we always advise you to book your Uganda gorilla safari through local tour operators who will advise accordingly.
Apart from the other national parks where you can see mountain gorillas in the world, Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park is home to 65% of the total population of the endangered mountain gorillas in Africa and the whole world at large, the other national parks where you can see those great apes include Volcanoes national park in Rwanda, Virunga National Park in DR Congo and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park in Uganda.
Bwindi Forest National Park has a very reach biodiversity with various species that include over 350 bird species, over 310 butterfly species, over 200 trees, over 51 reptiles, and 120 mammal species. Apart from mountain gorillas, Bwindi forest is also home to other different primates species like chimpanzees and L’Hoest’s monkeys, Bwindi forest also has the highest number of habituated gorilla families/groups in Africa and in the whole world with over 20 fully habituated gorilla families/groups, also currently Bwindi forest is the only place in the world where tourists and other visitors can get an opportunity to participate in mountain gorilla habituation process
As motioned earlier, the global population of mountain gorillas is 1064 individuals and more than half of this population live in Bwindi Impenetrable forest national park in Uganda, for those who wish to take part in gorilla tracking in Africa please take note that there is a limit on a number of people to trek each gorilla family/group for example only 8 gorilla permits are issued to each gorilla family/group per day which means only 8 people can trek each gorilla family daily.
The current Uganda gorilla permit price to see gorillas in either Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park or in Mgahinga gorilla National Park is $D700 per person per trek for Foreign Non-Residents, $600 for Foreign Residents and 250,0000/= Uganda shillings or $70 for East African Citizens. For those allow who wish to take part in the mountain gorilla habituation process, gorilla habituation permit costs only and you to spend up to 4 hours with them.
For anyone to see mountain gorillas in their natural habitat you must first obtain gorilla trekking permits (entry permit) which are issued by Uganda Wildlife Authority at their headquarter offices in Kampala or at their other office in Kisoro town. Kisoro Tours Uganda recommends that you purchase your gorilla permits far in advance between six months and a year in advance.
For those who are accessing Uganda through Kigali Rwanda, you can easily cross the border via Kyanika to Kisoro town, which takes about 3 hour’s drive from the Kisoro office, and purchase your permit. Kisoro Tours Uganda we are one of the best gorilla safari companies best in Uganda we can purchase for you the gorilla trekking permit in advance and on short notice, the only thing you need to do is to send your details with the preferred date you wish to trek gorillas then we will do all the bookings on your behalf, you can contact us via email, call us or WhatsApp on the numbers on this website.
Gorilla Habituation experience is only done in the southern part of Bwindi forest at Rushaga sector and only 4 habituation permits are issued daily which means gorilla habituation is always in high demand compared to normal tracking given are only 4 permits available per day and habituation is only done by 4 people per day so it is recommended you book your permit at least six months to a year in advance.
The process of where and how to purchase a habituation permit is the same as the normal tracking permit as I mentioned above and Kisoro Tours Uganda is always at your disposal for any help you may need. habituation process involves walking with professional researchers and well-experienced rangers through the forest as you search for wild or semi-habituated mountain gorillas and once you find them, you are allowed to spend up to 4 hours interacting with them as you take part in activities geared to make them mountain gorillas get used to human presence so that they can trek normally, the habituation process takes about 2 years the particular gorilla family is open for tourism. As I said above habituation permit costs $1500 per person for Non-foreign residents, $1000 for Foreign Residents, and $220 for local Ugandans and other East African Citizens.
Yes, there is a big difference between gorilla tracking and habituation experience because, with normal gorilla tracking, your trek a ready fully habituated gorilla family, and you are only allowed to spend one hour with the mountain gorillas once you find them while for gorilla habitation experience you are taking part in habituation process of wild gorilla family which is under habituation process before it is open for tourist and other visitors and they are allowed to spend 4 hours with them.
Also, normal gorilla trekking is done in a group of 8 tourists per gorilla family while habitation is done in a group of 4 tourists per wild gorilla family that is under habituation process, gorilla habituation starts very early morning at 6:30 am while gorilla tracking with briefing starts at 7:30 am, both habituation and tracking are done in Bwindi Forest and the same time both activities requires you to prepare physically and mentally to participate in any of the two activities given the fact that they tend to be strenuous when you start hiking up and down inside deep in the tropical rain forest of East Africa.
Gorilla tracking can be done any time any day throughout the year but some tourists and other visitors prefer to go to see mountain gorillas during the dry season in the months of January, February, June, July August, September, and December simply because it is much easier to walk in the forest when it’s dry.
Below are some of the few things you need to add to your packing list when planning gorilla tracking safari to Africa
This is our proposed packing list for gorilla tracking in Africa which is meant to help you prepare well for your gorilla trip to East Africa but you can always reach out to us for any further information you may need or if you have any questions about gorilla tracking and other wildlife safaris in East Africa.
Yes, mountain gorilla tracking is challenging because mountain gorillas move continuously through the rainforest so it is always good to be prepared both physically and mentally, also weather in the tropical rainforest can change at any time so prepare accordingly, gorilla tracking can last between two hours to three-quarters of the day depending on the movement of the gorilla family you will be tracking that day.
At Kisoro tours Uganda, we will help you to arrange your gorilla trekking permits and also help you in the planning process of your trip to East Africa. Contact us at any time any day we help you to tailor made your gorilla trekking and other wildlife safaris in East Africa, our tour packages range from camping, budget, and mid-range to luxury and also based on your time range. Kisoro Tours Uganda we are highly recommended on trip Advisor and Safari bookings, feel free to check what our previous clients say about us our team of tour consultants is always at your disposal to answer all your East Africa safari questions.
You can as well reach us at email@example.com or call us at +256785790925 and also on WhatsApp for a free quote or any other enquires you may need to make.