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Geographical formation of Bwindi impenetrable national park

Geographical formation of Bwindi impenetrable national park

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site because of a diverse and unique eco system and it is located in south-western Uganda, in East Africa and Kabale town is the nearest town close to the park is Kanungu.

Bwindi Impenetrable National park is one of the most biologically diverse areas on the planet and is renowned for its population of endangered mountain gorillas. The park is the only Rainforest Park that has not been tapped into its beauty. 

Uganda Wildlife Authority Visitor Tariff Reforms
Gorilla trekking in Bwindi Forest National Park

About Bwindi

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is situated in the Albertine Rift Valley, across East Africa. Bwindi Impenetrable National park covers an area of approximately 331 square kilometres which is 128 square miles and is characterized by its rugged terrain and dense vegetation.

Bwindi impenetrable national park is a volcanic mountainous region with unique valleys that hang on hard rocks that threaten to give in at any time. 

Bwindi Impenetrable National park is located at the edge of the Western Rift Valley in the highest parts of Kigezi Highlands which were formed by the up-wrapping of the Western Rift Valley.

The park has several crater lakes formed during volcanic eruptions in sizes and shapes that offer an opportunity for boat cruise activities. After Gorilla trekking and volcanic hiking, you can go for sightseeing and you spot the lakes. 

You can explore the beauty of Bwindi Impenetrable national park through going for a boat cruise since you will be able to see different wild life, different vegetation and many more and also the guide will be providing you with vast information about the park.

Bwindi has 4 sectors which is Ruhija, Rushaga, Buhoma and Kihihi. Buhoma is the easiest sector to track gorillas from.

The landscape of Bwindi Impenetrable National park is rugged by a series of hills and valleys, with altitudes ranging from around 1,160 to 2,607 meters (3,806 to 8,553 feet) above sea level. The terrain is quite steep in some areas, and the dense rainforest makes it challenging to navigate, hence the name “Impenetrable.”

Bwindi Impenetrable National park is home to a wide variety of plant and animal species, including over 400 different plant species, over 346 bird species, and120 mammals besides the mountain gorillas, 50 reptiles and 80moth species. The rich biodiversity of the area is partly due to its location in the Albertine Rift, which has created a unique habitat for various flora and fauna.

The Geographical formation of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, is a hilly and rugged landscape, dense rainforest, and location within the Albertine Rift, makes it a critical conservation area and a remarkable destination for tourists interested in wildlife and nature experiences, particularly for those seeking encounters with the endangered mountain gorillas.

Bwindi Impenetrable National park consists of underlying geology of the Precambrian shale phyllite, schist, granite, quartz and quartzite. The elevations in Bwindi Impenetrable National park range from 1,190 to 2,607 metres above the sea level. The lowest tip of the park is top most northern tip and the highest elevation is Rwamunyonyi hill at the eastern edge of the park. 

The Bwindi Impenetrable Forest is a water catchment area with a generally impermeable underlying geology where water mostly flows through large faults structure where water infiltration and aquifers are limited.

Much of the rainfall in Bwindi Impenetrable National park forms streams which makes the park to form a dense network of streams.

The forest is the source of many rivers that flow in the north, west and south. Major rivers that flow through the park include; the Ntengyere, Ishasha, Ihihizo, Muyanga and Ivi which flow into Lake Edward, Lake Mutanda and Lake Bunyonyi. 

Forests in Bwindi impenetrable national park are afromontane which is a rare vegetation type in Africa. There is a continuum of low- altitude to high altitude primary forest in the park. Bwindi impenetrable national park is important for the conservation of the afromontane fauna especially. 

The vegetation in Bwindi Impenetrable National park is moist and evergreen having dense growth of herbs, vines and shrubs.

The forest has canopy with various species that often include the Red Stinkwood, Newtonia, Symphonia globulifera, East African yellow wood and strombosia scheffleri. The under storey commonly includes species such as Xymlos monospora, Neoboutonia Marco calyx, Myriathus holster, Tec lea nobilis Allophylus abyssinicus.

How to get to Bwindi national park

It is approximately a 9 hour drive from Kampala to Bwindi Impenetrable National park. Much of the road is tarmac which makes the travel smooth however the last two hours to the park is on a dusty road.

You can use air transport where you will be able to use airstrip in Kisoro town which will take you 2 hours to reach the park. You should also know that they are scheduled flights that you need to book earlier before coming to Bwindi Impenetrable National park. 

Bwindi impenetrable national park has 4 sectors; Buhoma sector is located in the northern part of the park. The sector is closest to Kihihi airstrip hence making accessible for visitors who use air transport.

Buhoma known for harbouring the first habituation family of a gorilla called Mubare hence making it tourist destination. The sector offer other activities like bird watching, guided nature walk, visiting the communities such as the Batwa and the Bakiga. 

Rushaga sector;

it is located in the southern region of Bwindi Impenetrable National park. This sector has the biggest number of habituated gorilla families. It can easily be accessed by tourists coming from Kigali through the Cyanika border in Kisoro which approximately a 3 hour drive. 

Ruhija sector;

it is located in the Eastern part of the park. It is suitable to get in for tourists who are coming from Queen Elizabeth National park. Compared to other sectors, Ruhija is the coldest. This sector has other activities like mountain cycling, birding, and cultural encounter with the Batwa people.   

Nkuringo sector;

is located in the western part of the park. the sector is a home to 3 gorilla habituated families. You can be able to view mount Nyiragongo and mount Nyamuragira. This is the hardest sector to trek due to its terrain. The sector can be easily accessed from Kabale district. You can do gorilla trekking, bird watching, nature walk and many more. 


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