Mountain Gorilla Trekking In Ruhija Sector

Mountain gorilla trekking in Ruhija sector

Mountain gorilla trekking in Ruhija sector

Mountain gorilla trekking in Ruhija sector : Ruhija Sector is the highest point of Bwindi impenetrable national park at an altitude of above 2,500 m and one of the 4 gorilla trekking sectors of the park, Ruhija sector is the quickest of the four sectors and provides the most secluded gorilla trekking experience.

Ruhija Sector is the most topographically diverse sector of Bwindi impenetrable national park mainly used for scientific research, the sector is located in East of Bwindi and is accessible from Buhoma and Kabale. Ruhija is noted to be the only sector in Bwindi impenetrable national park where elephants are present, there are also other animals including monkeys and antelopes.

Ruhija Sector a more suitable sector to trek for visitors who have Queen Elizabeth National Park on their Uganda safari itinerary via Ishasha Sector.

Ruhija Sector is situated approximately 9 hours of drive of Kampala – the capital city and is accessed through Kabale Town and then connect to Ruhija, another route to Ruhija sector passes via Ntungamo to Rukungiri, Kihihi and Butogota then to Ruhija with a drive of 2 hours.

Gorilla families in Ruhija Sector

Ruhija Sector has three habituated gorilla families namely Bitukura family, Oruzogo family and Kyaguriro group. On a daily, a total of 16 permits are issued by Uganda Wildlife Authority.

Bitukura Gorilla family

Bitukura gorilla family consists of 14 individuals including four silverbacks, four adult females, two juveniles, three infants and one baby, this group was habituated in 2007. Initially the family consists of 24 individuals but due to disputes and fights among the group, some individuals decided to move to other groups either to form new ones or joined already formed groups.

Oruzogo Gorilla family

Oruzogo gorilla family consists of 17 individuals with one silverback, the family is favored by its joyful and playful members. The Oruzogo gorilla family was opened for tourism in 2011.

Kyaguliro Gorilla group

Kyaguriro gorilla group is a big group of 20 individuals, the group is not usually visited due to the fact that it is reserved for research purposes. After the death of the group’s silverback who was struck by lightning, the group was attacked by a mature silverback from the Bitukura group which forced the group to split into two groups that is Kyaguliro A headed by Rukara with 10 family members composed of 1 silverback, 2 black bucks, 3 adult females, 2 juveniles and 2 infants.

Kyaguliro B is headed by Silverback Mukiza and consists of 1 silverback, 4 adult females and 4 infants.

Mukiza Gorilla Family

Mukiza gorilla family is a group of 13 members including 1 silverback, 6 adult females, 1 sub adult, 2 juveniles and 3 infants. The group is under the leadership of a dominant silverback Mukiza, this group is dedicated primarily to research by Manx Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology.

Gorilla trekking experience in Ruhija Sector

Gorilla trekking experience in Ruhija Sector starts as early as 08:00 am with briefing at the park’s headquarters, a senior ranger takes you through the rules and regulations to follow during this mind – blowing experience. In groups of 8 people you are assigned a gorilla family to trek and be assigned a gorilla family to trek, then head to the starting point and head into the forest looking for mountain gorillas.

The trek takes approximately 30 minutes to 6 hours depending on where the group spent the previous night, after finding the gorillas you are allowed to spend one hour in their presence while observing their nature and as they interact with each other. You are allowed to take pictures as long as their your flash light is off
(flash photography is prohibited).

Pros of gorilla trekking in Ruhija Sector, Bwindi impenetrable national park

  • Ruhija Sector is the best option for visitors seeking to visit Lake Bunyonyi after their gorilla trekking adventure, this is because the sector is situated close to Kabale.
  • Ruhija sector is the quickest of the four (4) gorilla trekking sectors in Bwindi impenetrable National Park thus providing visitors with the most private gorilla trekking experience.
  • Ruhija is situated in close proximity to Buhoma sector, because of this it is possible to sleep in Buhoma sector and do gorilla trekking in Ruhija sector
  • Ruhija is lies slightly over 2,500 meters in altitude offering unparalleled vistas of the misty forest and the Virunga mountains.
  • From Ruhija sector, it is possible to hike to the summit of Rwamunyonyi peak “hill of many birds” which is 2,607 meters above sea level, the peak is a great option for visitors interested in hiking experience
  • Ruhija sector is the only region in Bwindi impenetrable national park where elephants can be found and seen. Other animals you will find in the forests of Ruhija are monkeys and antelopes among others.
  • If you are looking for a more challenging gorilla trekking experience, Ruhija sector is the best sector since it situated on a high altitude.
  • Ruhija sector also offers other activities such as primate tracking, birding, guided forest walk/hikes and Batwa community tours.

Cons of gorilla trekking in Ruhija sector, Bwindi impenetrable National Park 

  • Ruhija sector has limited accommodation options, the available options include Bakiga lodge, Ruhija gorilla safari lodge, Broadbill forest camp and Gorilla Mist Camp.
  • Gorilla trekking in Ruhija sector can be strenuous due to the high altitude most especially to visitors who are not physically fit.

Where to stay in Ruhija Sector

There are limited accommodation options in Ruhija Sector and the available accommodations range from Budget, midrange to Budget.

Accommodations in Ruhija Sector include

  • Gift of Nature Lodge
  • Ruhija Gorilla Resort
  • Ruhija Community Rest Camp
  • Bakiga Lodge
  • Gorilla Mist Camp
  • Ruhija Gorilla Safari Lodge
  • Broadbill Forest Camp among others.

How to get to Ruhija Sector

Ruhija Sector is located in the Eastern part of Bwindi impenetrable national park and can be accessed by road or air means of transport.

By road: the park can be accessed from either Kampala OR Entebbe and from Kigali City, from Entebbe it is a drive of 8-9 hours from Kampala or Entebbe and from Rwanda, visitors have to fly to Kigali International Airport and then connect to the park via Katuna border in Kabale which takes about 3 to 4 hours of drive.

By air: there are chartered and domestic flights from Entebbe International Airport or Kajjansi airstrip to Kihihi airstrip then connect to Ruhija sector, the drive takes about 2 to 3 hours.

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