HIKING & CLIMBING MOUNT GAHINGA VOLCANO – MGAHINGA NATIONAL PARK UGANDA

Hiking & Climbing Mount Gahinga is the easiest up to its peak at 3474 m above sea level compared to hiking Muhabura and Mount Sabyinyo in the Virunga Mountains. Mount Gahinga is found in Mgahinga gorilla national park in south western Uganda well known for mountain gorillas.

Mount Gahinga is an extinct volcano and is one of the 8 Volcanic mountains in the Virunga region. The Gahinga mountain got its name from a Kinyarwanda word to meaning a pile of stones since the mountain has a lot of stone piles. Mount Gahinga is also known as mount Mgahinga and it stands between mount Muhabura and mount Sabinyo which are shared by Uganda and Rwanda.

Hiking & Climbing Mount Gahinga Volcano

Hiking Mount Gahinga

A Hike to the summit of Mount Gahinga is one of the rewarding activities done at Mgahinga national park of Uganda after golden monkey and gorilla trekking. The trek starts at 7 am with briefing and Hiking takes about 6-8 hours to ascend and descend the summit depending on the trekkers physical ability and fitness. Hiking mount gahinga in Uganda takes you through the mountain slopes within the bamboo vegetation up to the steeper slopes until you reach the summit.

At the summit there is a large shallow crater swamp with plants like lobelia, senecio and a caldera of 180 meters wide. Amazing views of the neighboring mountains such as Sabinyo and Muhabura will make you feel like to reach their summits too.

Hiking & Climbing Mount Gahinga Volcano

Mount Gahinga is the smallest of the volcanic mountains along the border of Uganda, Rwanda and DR Congo. On a lucky day, trekkers get to see some of the wildlife in Mgahinga national park which include mountain gorillas, Golden monkeys, buffaloes, blue monkeys and more.

Along the trail you get to pass by the bat filled volcanic caves where you learn about the batwa people (pygmies) who were the first inhabitants of the forest. Trekkers have some stopovers to rest or enjoy views and take pictures. Visitors can spend up to one hour on top of the mountain in dry season but they spend less time during the wet season as it gets more cold and foggy.

At the end of the hike, Visitors will descend back to the base after enjoying the beautiful scenery, which is always easier than ascending up the mountain.

Every visitor interested in climbing Mount Gahinga volcano needs to purchase a permit from the park offices with the help of a trusted tour company. No advance booking is required and porters can also be hired on the day of hiking.

Hiking & Climbing Mount Gahinga Volcano

What to pack for Mount Gahinga hike.

Hiking & Climbing mount gahinga requires you to pack some of the following;

  • Back pack where to carry all that you may need for Hiking
  • Appropriate clothing, with rain jacket
  • hiking shoes or boats
  • Enough drinking water
  • Energy giving foods/ snacks
  • Take a Walking stick (usually provided)
  • Camera
  • Insect repellant.

Besides Hiking Mount Gahinga, visitors can also engage in other activities in the park such as gorilla trekking Adventure, Batwa cultural experience, Nature walks, Golden monkey tracking and bird watching tour. Accommodation options for Travellers planning to visit Mgahinga gorilla national park are availble at Travellers Rest Hotel in Kisoro town, Mutanda lake Resort, Ikoro Hotel, Lake Mulehe Safari Lodge, Chameleon Hill lodge and Mount Gahinga lodge at the entrance of the park.

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