Cultural Encounters in Rwenzori national park

Cultural Encounters in Rwenzori national park

Cultural Encounters in Rwenzori national park

Mountain Rwenzori is arguably one of the most spectacular mountain ranges in Africa. Coming in 3rd after Mt Kilimanjaro and Mt Kenya, the mountain is the 3rd tallest in Africa and the tallest in Uganda. The snowcapped peaks, the glaciers, and pristine flora make the mountains one of the top hiking destinations in Africa. Although Rwenzori is known for her hiking expeditions, it offers much more. The wildlife on the mountain is impeccable. The rare sightings of the forest elephants, primates and the elusive Rwenzori leopard makes it an extraordinary destination. More so, the culture of the Bakonzo, the more dominant tribal ethnicity is one of the encounters to explore on your Uganda safari. They reside at the foothills of the mountain and are sustained by the waters melting from the glaciers and food grown on these fertile soils. Cultural Encounters in Rwenzori national park include:

Rwenzori Turaco View Campsite

For over 300 years, the Bakonzo settled by the slopes of Mountain Rwenzori in a small village called Mihunga. One could argue that the epic views of the snowcapped peaks could be the reason they picked this location for their village. Without power or running water, the Bakonzo adapted to the life on the slopes of this towering mountain. They lived off the land, using local herbs for medicine and farmed for food. On your cultural expedition, you will visit the Mihunga community tourism group. In this modern times, the quick evolution into modernity has threatened the traditional ways and customs. This group was set up in an effort to showcase and preserve the heritage of the Bakonzo.

On your visit to this community, you are led onto a tour of the village and a cultural walk. Before modern medicines, traditional healers took on the role of treating and healing the people they served. Using local herbs and concoctions, they treated several ailments that plagued their local communities. On this tour, you will get a chance of visiting the local healer and get a glimpse into the herbs that were used to treat various ailments, chase away bad luck, fix relationships and more. Get to experience how local arts and crafts were made through demonstrations. These include, baskets, bark cloth, drums, pots and many more. Watch and participate in their local traditional dance for an exhilarating encounter on your Uganda Safari. You have the option of embarking on a guided nature walk in the forest. Rwenzori is home to some of the Albertine rift endemic birds. The Rwenzori Turaco, sun birds and bee-eaters are some of the beautiful bird on the trail. Primates such as colobus monkeys, red tailed monkeys and blue monkeys are found in the forest. The majestic views of the Margherita peak are transcendent on a clear day.

Accommodation at Rwenzori Turaco View Campsite

Rwenzori Turaco offers various accommodation options. There are options of camping, safari tents, single rooms and twin rooms. They are not self-contained and have shared facilities. The evenings are complimented with a camp fire.

The Ruboni Community Camp

The Ruboni community camp is a farming village located by the foot hills of the Rwenzoris. This cultural encounter not only allows you to learn about the culture of the Bakonzo in this village, it takes you through their daily lives as it is. The community is home to over 2,000 people and a visit to this village takes you to their farm lands where they tend to their gardens, livestock, preparing their fresh meals. Meet the traditional healer and learn of the different herbs used in treating ailments. Visit the blacksmith and learn of the old but trusted methodology used in making tools like knives. On the other hand, the women weave baskets and tell stories told by their ancestors. Enjoy and participate in the exhilarating traditional dance with epic sounds of the drums.

Follow the trail through the rocky terrain to the Mubuku river, the waters from which the name Ruboni (crystal clear water) was derived from. The trail follows the water stream. Meet local people carrying their harvest and firewood, a way of life for the Bakonzo. Watch some of the beautiful bird species like Rwenzori Turaco, handsome francolin, sun birds, cinnamon-chested bee-eaters and more. Colobus monkeys, red tailed monkeys and vervet monkeys are some of the primates on this nature walk.

Accommodation at Ruboni Community Camp

The camp offers tourist accommodation right at the foothills of the towering Rwenzori. Enjoy stunning views of the Portal peaks in the comfort of your balcony. The camp offers self-contained bandas, self-contained cabins and non-self-contained rooms. An evening camp fire augments your visit to the mountain side.

Bulemba-Ihandiro Cultural Trail

Follow this 6-7-hour cultural trail and encounter the culture of the Bakonzo people. The trail leads through stunning valleys, visit the various villages for insights into the lives of the local people. Visit the traditional healers and learn of the powers of the Muhima. The blacksmith showcases his skill of molding metal into tools like knives. The women demonstrate their basket weaving skills. Dance to the rhythm of the African drum as you join in the traditional dances.

Although Mountain Rwenzori is famous for her technical hikes, beautiful scenery, flora and fauna, the culture of the Bakonzo people is another option of exploring the mountain. The Bakonzo has survived and thrived on the foot hills of this great mountain. They have adjusted and learnt how to live off this rather unique terrain just like their forefather.