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Buhoma Sector

Buhoma Sector

Buhoma sector is one of the 4 gorilla trekking sectors that visitors can visit in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park during Uganda gorilla safaris, other sectors also include; Rushaga, Ruhija and Nkuringo gorilla trekking sectors.    

The Buhoma sector is a pioneer of the gorilla trekking activity in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park and Uganda in general. Buhoma sector is located in the northern section of the park. It is one of the four sectors on the borders of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. Where tourists start daily gorilla trekking experiences to see Uganda’s mountain gorillas in their natural habitat. This region features as most famous as the oldest trailhead in Uganda given. When it comes to mountain gorilla adventures. Buhoma sector is the first trailhead to be established by the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA). It was opened for tracking in 1993 attracting enormous number of tourists. That have turned the small village trading center into a vibrant town.

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is located in south-western Uganda near the Great Rift Valley. Its mist-covered hillsides are surrounded by one of Uganda’s oldest and most ecologically diversified rain forests dating back over 25,000 years. The forest contains around 400 plant species. Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park. Protects an estimated 459 mountain gorillas, about half the World’s remaining population, this also includes many habituated groups.

The Park has about 120 mammal species that live in this biologically rich region. This includes various primate species. Such as chimpanzees and baboons as well as elephants and antelopes, the forest is also home to over 350 bird species including 23 Albertine Rift endemics.

Mountain Gorillas exist in two isolated sub-populations in East-Central Africa surrounded by a human matrix of cultivated highlands and village settlements. The southern sub-population resides in the Virunga Mountains, approximately 451 km². That straddles the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda and Uganda borders. These countries manage designated protected areas in this tri-national habitat; Virunga National Park, Volcanoes National Park and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park respectively.



A gorilla family in Buhoma sector
A gorilla family in Buhoma sector

The Gorilla trekking groups in Buhoma Sector in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

The Buhoma Sector of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park has several gorilla trekking groups. That inhabit this dense rainforest, each with its own unique dynamics and stories. The following are some of the Gorilla Trekking groups found in the Buhoma Sector.


Mubare group

The Mubare family is one of the oldest habituated gorilla groups in the Buhoma sector. It was availed for tracking in 1993 and holds a historical significance in gorilla conservation efforts. This family was named after the gorgeous Mubare hills where they were first sighted. The Mubare group has undergone various changes over the years but still remains a popular choice for gorilla tracking. Due to its accessibility from the Buhoma Park Headquarters.


Habinyanja group

The Habinyanja group is another prominent gorilla trekking group in the Buhoma Sector. This group was made available to visitors for trekking in 1999. It is known for its size and diverse composition. The group was named after the “Nyanja swamp” from where they were first seen. The Habinyanja group consists of several silverbacks, females and juveniles. Hence offering visitors a fascinating glimpse into gorilla social dynamics.


Rushegura group  

The Rushegura group is a gorilla trekking group in Buhoma widely known for its gentle demeanor and close-knit relationships. The Rushegura group got its name after the “Rushegura” area from where they primarily range. It has approximately 19 members including; 1 silverback, several adult females and also juveniles. This family has a history of peaceful interactions with tourists and is usually sought after for gorilla tracking experiences in Buhoma sector.


Katwe group 

The Katwe gorilla group is a relatively new addition to the habituated gorilla families in the Buhoma Sector, having split from the Habinyanja family in recent years. Headed by a dominant silverback, the Katwe gorilla group is still forming its territory and social structure. Though it provides an exciting opportunity for researchers and visitors to observe the gorilla group dynamics in flux.

Each of the gorilla trekking families in Buhoma Sector of Bwindi contribute to the rich tapestry of biodiversity and conservation efforts in the park. Hence offering gorilla trekking visitors a rare opportunity to interact with these primates in their natural habitat. In Buhoma sector, visitors have the opportunity to go on guided gorilla trekking tours where they can track and observe these gentle giants in their natural habitat. This experience provides a unique opportunity for them to get up close and personal with these majestic creatures.

Buhoma sector has several other tourist attractions besides the mountain gorillas, These includes; bird species like Water starling,  pink footed puff back, White throated green bull among others, these can be spotted along the Buhoma waterfall trail and also the bamboo zone. Since Bwindi is rich in flora and fauna, you will be mesmerized by the beautiful sceneries of the region, the tree species like Ceiba tress, primates like Vervet monkeys, chimpanzees among others, and butterfly species like cream banded swallowtail.


Activities in the Buhoma Sector

Gorilla Trekking

While on Uganda safaris to Buhoma sector of Bwindi, visitors’ experience is never complete without a trek to see the mountain gorillas. Gorilla trekking is a great opportunity for holidaymakers to interact with the world’s rarest creatures-the mountain gorillas while in Bwindi’s jungles.

Visitors on a tour in Buhoma get a chance to explore anyone of the 4 habituated families; Katwe, Habinyanja, Rushegura and Mubare groups.

You can easily have your Buhoma gorilla permit booked through our reservation team or contact Uganda Wildlife Authority’s reservation team through a local tour operator.


Bird Watching

Bird watching is also another interesting activity to do on Uganda safaris that visitors enjoy in Buhoma region. The region shelters a significant population of avifaunal species for birders to sight ranging from; Rwenzori batis, bared long tailed cuckoos, Jameson’s anti peckers, African goshawk, yellow fronted canary, dusky twin spot, cape wagtail, Tambourine dove, common bulbul, African blue catcher, great blue turaco to blue headed sunbird and others.


Cycling and Biking

Cycling is also possible while you are in the Buhoma sector side. A remarkable community experience which was initiated by Ride 4 a woman and it is usually arranged by Buhoma Community Rest Camp. Cyclists ride for about 13 kilometers trail to Ivi River, this takes about 6 to 7 hours’ cycling. During this time, you will come across interesting birds, primates.


Hiking or Nature Walks

A visit to Buhoma sector is not only about gorilla trekking. But also, there are chances to get close to nature through hiking or nature walks. Tourists can take on any of the available nature trails such as the waterfall trail, Rushura trail, River Ivy trail, Muzubijiro loop, Munyaga river trail.


Batwa Community Experience

The Batwa Community Experience offers a memorable cultural encounter for visitors on Uganda safaris in Buhoma sector. The trail takes visitors through Buhoma community to meet with the Batwa pygmies. While here, they get to learn in-depth about their cultures, ancient methods for hunting, gathering, tradition. You will also enjoy entertainment as they will dance for you.


How to get to Buhoma Sector

By Road, You can travel from Kampala and it takes about 8-10 hours depending on the road conditions. You can hire a private vehicle, take a bus, or arrange for a tour operator to provide transportation.

By Air, You can take a domestic flight from Entebbe to either Kihihi or Kisoro airstrips. Which are the closest airstrips to Bwindi Impenetrable forest national park.


Accommodations in Buhoma Sector

There are various lodges that offer romantic or exclusive getaways to tourists who come for gorilla trekking safari in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, among these include;

Gorilla Forest Camp, Buhoma Lodge, Mahogany Springs, Bwindi Lodge, Engagi Lodge, Lake Kitandara Camp, Haven Community Lodge, Ride 4 A Woman, Bwindi View Bandas, Eco Marvel Gorilla resort, Gorilla Safari Lodge, Gorilla Friends Lodge and Silverback Lodge among others.