Mgahinga Gorilla National Park Gorilla Families; First of all, Gorilla families are the groups of the fully habituated mountain gorillas that live within the park and a family can be led by silverback known as the head of the family. The gorilla family can be ranging between 5 to 35 individuals while comprised of off springs, juveniles, females, infants among others. However, Mgahinga Gorilla National park inhabits more than 100 endangered mountain gorillas with two habituated gorilla families namely Nyakagezi and Hirwa. More so, Mgahinga Gorilla National Park looks to be the smallest game park but it harbors with unique species of great mountain gorillas, golden monkeys, beautiful butterflies, bird’s species as well as a visit the Batwa pygmy –people who used to live, eat together with mountain gorillas and they are good in storytelling. The park is located in southwestern Uganda in Kisoro district bordering Virunga National Park in Democratic Republic of Congo and Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda.

Below are the Gorilla Families to visit on Gorilla Safari in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park as follows;

Nyakagezi Gorilla Family

 This was the first gorilla family to be introduced to the public for tourism and it is fully habituated gorilla family available for Gorilla trekking tourism on a daily basis. In fact, Nyakagezi was as area in the park where the gorilla group was first sighted by the trackers and the gorilla group was known for migrating  in the neighboring destination that is Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo and due to this behavior  of migrating all the time it led many visitors  stop visiting Mgahinga on gorilla trekking experience because they were afraid of disappointment of viewing the gorilla family .But as we talk ,Nyakagezi later settled in Uganda and visitors are assured of viewing it in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park, Uganda Safaris Tours.

Mgahinga Gorilla National Park Gorilla Families
Nyakagezi Gorilla Family

In general, Nyakagezi was habituated in 1991 after it was gazetted as a national park and in 1994 was officially opened for Gorilla Trekking Safaris .  And the gorilla family was under the leadership of Bugingo silverback and later was succeeded by Mark and after taking on leadership Bugingo stayed in the group and was given a title of Mzee which implies elder. Unlike other silverback after the over throw of Bugingo silverback stayed in the family and it is believed to make 57 years of age which means that Nyakagezi is a unique species and a gorilla family worth visiting.

Now Mark leads the group with his brother mafia who is the assistant and gorilla group comprises of 10 members which includes 5 silverbacks, namely; Mark, Mafia, Rukundo, Ndugutse and Bugingo ,2 adult females who are Nshut and Nyiramwiza and 3 youngsters who are Fred, baby Nshuti and Mutagamba.

Nyakagezi gorilla family does not require one to put in a lot of energy to trek in way that, it lives in the low land areas of Mgahinga National Park unlike other gorilla families in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park which live in steep slopes.

Hirwa Gorilla Family

 Hirwa ,the word Hirwa derives from Kinyarwanda word that means lucky one  and this is one of another gorilla family that migrated all away from Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda to Mgahinga Gorilla National Park .This gorilla family left his family in October 2019 to form another gorilla family ,it splintered from Susa gorilla due to  misunderstanding between  Munyinga   silver back  who was the first  leader of  Hirwa family and  the dominant leaders of Susa group and this forced Munyanga to leave with 2 adult female in order to firm own group.

This gorilla family comprises of 17 members and now got its permanent home in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. Unfortunately, the family was struck by lightning and four members couldn’t survive that is 3 adult females and 1 infant and now the group is comprised of 13 individuals.

Hirwa gorilla family is also one of the gorilla family to visit on gorilla trekking experience in Mgahinga Gorilla National park and we are not sure whether the gorilla family with stay permanently or will shift back to Volcanoes National park.

Mgahinga Gorilla National Park Gorilla Families
Hirwa gorilla family

According to two gorilla families that are found in Mgahinga Gorilla national park, there are about 16 gorilla trekking permits available daily for tourists who want to spend time with the mountain gorillas in their nature inhabits. Gorilla trekking is an incredible lifetime experience where one couldn’t have missed to experience on visit to Uganda Wildlife Safaris.

Gorilla trekking can be done with a valid permit that allows you reach out gorillas in their nature environment. Gorilla trekking in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park costs USD700 per foreign nonresident, USD600 per foreign residents and UGX250,000 per person for East African citizens.

Uganda gorilla trekking permits can be purchased directly through ‘’UWA’’ Uganda Wildlife Authority or by the help of the trust worth tour operator. If you do hesitate you can book with us Achieve Global Safaris and we help you to do all the reservations with care as we take our visitors to be our first priority.  We advise you to book in advance 3 to 6 months before the trekking date in order to avoid last minute disappointments since it can be competitive especially during peak season in the month of June to September and December to February.

Gorilla trekking in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park starts early in the morning   with a briefing about rules and regulations about gorilla trekking at the Ntebeko park headquarters. After you will be grouped in a group of 8 people to trek each habituated gorilla family, an activity can take about 30 to 6 hours depending on the location of the gorillas. Once gorillas have been found, one hour will be given to you to watch them as learn about their behaviors, habits, lifestyle, take photos and video recording for quite memorable experience on your safari.

Get started now planning to visit Mgahinga Gorilla National Park for Gorilla trekking and the park is beautiful with less crowd of visitors since it hosts only two gorilla families that are visited daily. There are lot of fabulous activities to engage on visit after gorilla trekking such as Golden monkey tracking, Nature walk, Birding, Batwa Trail Experience as well as exploring the hide treasures of park as you enjoy the breath fresh air, view various plant species among others.

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