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The dense rain forest of Bwindi in southwestern Uganda is home to more than half of the world’s remaining mountain gorillas including multiple groups habituated to humans. This is the most popular place to go gorilla trekking in Uganda (you can also gorilla trek in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park). Buhoma, on the northern side of Bwindi is one of the most popular places to stay. There are a wide range of accommodation options and the small town is within easy distance of the park headquarters where you depart for the gorilla trekking.

We recommend staying for 2 or 3 nights in Bwindi and doing 2 gorilla treks. Permits (purchased in advance) cost $600 and small groups with armed guards and trackers depart from the headquarters (once you have been assigned your gorilla family). Trekking can take anywhere from an hour to most of the day but is a once in a life-time experience and worth it for active, healthy travelers. Activities in addition to gorilla trekking include guided community walks and a visit to a Batwa educational village.

Bwindi is accessible by road but is 8 to 10 hours from Entebbe so we recommend breaking up that drive with a stop at Lake Mburo, Murchison Falls or Queen Elizabeth National Park. It is also possible to fly into in Bwindi from Entebbe.

Our favorite properties around Bwindi include; Mahogany Springs and Gorilla Forest Camp in Buhoma and Clouds Mountain Gorilla Lodge on the western side of the park near Nkuringo.

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Jamie Mehrotra