Mountain hiking in the Perl of Africa is one of the most rewarding adventures, which travelers shouldn’t miss out when on a safari in Uganda. A hiking tour in Uganda offers you two mounains; mount Rwenzori, Mount Elgon, mount Mgahinga, mount Sabyinyo, mount Moroto, mount Kaabong, mount Muhavura and many others.
Of all the mentioned mountains, mount Rwenzori, Mount Elgon, mount Sabyinyo and mount Muhavura are the commonly hiked mountains in Uganda by adventurous tourists on Uganda safaris. These are most popular mountains mainly because they are surrounded by national parks and therefore tourists visiting the national parks are most times tempted to also go for mountain climbing.
Ugandan mountains have beautiful and distinct features and offer a unique unforgettable experience one can ever have in a destination. Lets look at the most hiked mountains plus the necessities needed for a successful hike.
Mount Rwenzori ‘The Mountains of the Moon’
Mount Rwenzori is a snow capped block mountain located in western Uganda near the border with Democratic Republic of Congo. This Albertine rift valley mountain is the third largest mountain on the African continent with the highest peak Margherita standing at 5,109 meters above sea level. Mount Rwenzori has a range of mountains and peaks some of which stretch up to Democratic Republic of Congo. All the high peaks on the Rwenzori above 4,500 meters above sea level have permanent snow with impressive glacial features like glacier lakes, pyramidal peaks, u shaped valleys and many others.
This dormant volcanic mountain is located along the Uganda Kenya border in eastern Uganda about 235 kilometers from Kampala city center. With the highest point Wagagai at 4,321 meters above sea level, Mount Elgon is eighth highest on the African continent and has the largest mountain base in the world. The mountain is located in the Mount Elgon conservation area and therefore has vast tourist attractions ranging from wild game, birds, monkeys, caves, waterfalls, rock paintings and many others.
The Virunga Volcanoes
The Virunga volcanoes in Uganda are located in south western Uganda comprising of mount Mgahinga at 3,474 meters above sea level, mount Sabyinyo at an elevation of 3,669 meters above sea level and mount Muhavura at 4,127 meters above sea level. The Virunga volcanoes in Uganda are covered with dense vegetation covers and homes to various primate species, the endangered mountain gorillas, various bird species and many other species and therefore hikers are likely to view any of those on their journey.
Strong shoes or boots, a walking stick, a rain coat and pant are highly recommended because of the unpredictable rain falls at any time of the day.
The volcanoes can be accessed after traveling 510 kilometers from Kampala city which is approximately an 8-9 hours using road transport or alternatively using air transport with charter flights from Entebbe international airport to kisoro airfield which fly daily.
Hikers should note the following;
• All the mountains in Uganda have extremely cold temperatures and therefore all hikers should prepare accordingly.
• The mountains have various wildlife species and therefore the hikers must not leave their hiking groups because it might be dangerous since one could easily be attacked.
• All the hikers must follow the guides’ instructions because the guides are more familiar with the place.
• Hikers should minimize noise while trekking the mountains in order not to distract the animals
• Most of the mountains can be best hiked in the dry season with minimal amounts of rainfall and muddy slopes thus easy hiking
• Pack enough food (snacks) and water that will sustain them throughout the journey and trekking period