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The Rwenzori Mountains National Park was established in 1991 covering an area of 996 square kilometers protecting the upper slopes and glacial peaks 5,019m high, the mountain Rwenzori runs across to the Congolese border covering 120km south of Lake Albert, it is the country’s most exciting hiking destination recognized as a UNESCO world heritage site in 1994 because of its angelic looks. It protects the tallest mountain range in Africa including waterfalls, lakes, and glaciers. The Rwenzori consists six different mountains Stanley, Speke, baker, Emin, Gessi and Savoia Mount Stanley stands with the highest peak Margherita 5019m third highest point in Africa. The Mountain is commonly termed as the mountains of the moon.

Rwenzori Mountains National Park

The national park is placed in the Albertine rift valley along Uganda’s border with the democratic republic of Congo near the Virunga national park, the Uganda mountain ranges are covered by Rwenzori while the part of DRC is covered by the Virunga. The mountain was named mountains of the moon by Alexander geographer in AD 150 he wrote about a snow-capped mountain that lied in the heart of Africa and believed it was the source of the Nile, however over the centuries, it faded until Henry Stanley emerged from central Africa and confirmed the mountain indeed existed.

The equatorial snow peaks include the highest peak in Africa, while the lower slopes are blanketed in the moorlands, bamboo and rich montane forest the national park is more remarkable for its flora than the fauna an ascent of mountains passes through a series of increasingly beautiful vegetative zones above the Bakonjo farmlands the plants are beautifully arranged, Montane forest gives way to the bamboo, mingled together with mimulopsis, and a lovely heather rapenea zone characterized by beautiful colored mosses and the giant lobelia. Its home to elephants, giant buffalos, forest hogs’ bushbucks they are present but rarely seen, Rwenzori climbing mouse and the Rwenzori red duiker are endemic to this particular region and over 217 species of birds notably the Rwenzori turaco, malachite sunbirds as well.

Tourism activities participated in the national park include hiking, three routes ascend on to the Rwenzori most visitors concentrate on the central circuit the climbing should be timed during the dry season July – august and December to February it’s advisable to take a good quality sleeping bag, raingear, warm clothes especially socks the summit is very cold strong boots fitted with crampons are necessary. This is organized by the Rwenzori mountaineering services and starts at Nyakalengija taking you to seven days to descend, the Kilembe trail enables 9 days’ expeditions to the summit of mountain Stanley. Forest walks and birding especially on the lower slopes of the national park can be visited on a day walk from Kilembe and Nyakalengejia.

The climate of the Rwenzori is extremely cold and wet, rainfall is heaviest in April to march, and august to December it’s commonly covered in mist from the snow it is among the less congested parks beautifully made, the real challenge in this park is to climb to the highest peak it not only gets you to this but takes you through an opportunity to see the superb mountain beauty covered by the equatorial snow and the eye-catching vegetation.

The Rwenzori Mountains National Park is located in western Uganda accessed through the Kampala-fort portal approximately 300km from the city center passing through beautiful hills, Banana, and tea plantations. Charter flights can be organized from Entebbe or Kajansi Kampala to Kasese airstrip for easy access by the local AeroLink.

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