Attractions, Activities and Things to Do in Kisoro
Kisoro is a small district located in the southwestern part of Uganda. Kisoro, which borders both Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo, is a hub for mountain gorilla tourism. Kisoro is home to two of Uganda’s most famous national parks: Bwindi National Park and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. Much as gorilla trekking is the significant tourist activity in the area, there are several exciting nature-based and local activities explored when visiting the region. The most popular attractions, activities & things to do in Kisoro complementing gorilla tours are; Congo border walk, King’s (Gisozi) hike, Sabyinyo volcano hike, canoe trekking at Lake Mutanda, Batwa community visit, Virunga volcanoes viewing platform, and Kisoro market visits.
Gisozi caldera hike
The Gisozi Caldera, also locally known as “Kings Hills,” is a larva cone situated about 2 kilometers from the Ntebeko gate of Mgahinga gorilla national park headquarters. Hiking the Gisozi caldera is a highly recommended activity when visiting Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. The walk to the caldera goes through farmlands, a trading center, and homes. The walk and summit to the caldera take about 2 hours. Upon reaching the top of Gisozi caldera, you have the Virunga mountains’ best views as they stretch from the Rwanda border to the southeast and the Congo (DRC) border to the southwest.
The Batwa Trail
The Batwa Trail is a half-day activity that takes place in Mgahinga gorilla national. The Batwa Trail showcases the Batwa forest peoples’ life, the original inhabitants of the Mgahinga area. During the 4-5hour tour, the Batwa will demonstrate their old ways of harvesting herbs for medicine and wild honey, fetching water using bamboo made “mugs,” and a demo construction of historic grass-thatched huts. The tour ends with a cultural show by the Batwa community at the Garama cave entrance, a ceremonial ground for Batwa cultural leaders. The cave was such a symbolic place in the Batwa culture, and you will be proud to be part of this experience.
Congo border walk
While visiting Mgahinga gorilla national park, you may opt to join the Congo-boarder walk. The walk to the Uganda-Congo border takes about 2 hours. This will be an excellent opportunity to learn about Uganda’s life and culture and the DRC border communities. You may consult with Bamboo Ecotours to reserve the walk or reach out to Uganda Wildlife Authority directly.
Canoe trekking at Lake Mutanda
Canoeing at Lake Mutanda is an adventurous activity to do before or after trekking the mountain gorillas. Lake Mutanda provides space for relaxation after the gorilla trekking experience, and the lake is accessible between the Bwindi forest and Mgahinga national park. Canoeing at Lake Mutanda can be done at the southern side of the Mutanda Eco Community Centre. Alternatively, one can travel to the lake’s northern flank at Chameleon Hill Lodge or Mutanda Lake Resort.
Golden monkey trekking
Golden monkey tracking is one of the next popular tourist activities in Mgahinga after gorilla tracking. There is one habituated golden monkey group in Mgahinga that is open to visitors every day. Trekking the golden monkeys takes about 4-5 hours, and at Bamboo Ecotours, we highly recommend this exciting experience.
With roughly 1,000 mountain gorillas remaining in East and Central Africa’s forests, gorilla trekking is the most popular tourist attraction in Uganda. Gorilla trekking is permitted at both Bwindi national park and Mgahinga gorilla national parks in Uganda. There are about 15 gorilla families that are open to tourism. The minimum age to visit the mountain gorillas is 15 years, and a trekking permit is mandatory to see the primates. It is advisable to reserve the gorilla tickets way in advance to avoid missing out on the trek. Check Bamboo Ecotours guided tours here.
Volcano hike (Mt. Sabyinyo, Mt. Muhavura, & Mt. Gahinga)
There are three volcanoes located in Mgahinga gorilla national that are loved by hikers. These are Mount Sabyinyo (the old’s man’s teeth in the local Rufumbira dialect), Mount Gahinga (a small pile of stones), and Mount Muhabaura (the guide). Mt. Sabyinyo is 3,645m high, Mt. Muhabura is 4,127m, whereas Mt. Gahinga is 3,474m. Mt. Sabyinyo is the most favored by hikers not only because of its rugged peaks but also provides a chance to step in three countries of Uganda, Rwanda, and the DRC upon reaching the third peak.
- Kisoro market visits