The distinctive glacial Mountain Rwenzori NP peaks are a preserve of hikers, who regard the mountain as the most challenging of all African mountains. The Rwenzoris are notable for their majestic scenery and vegetation. The trails lead through rainforest rattling with monkeys and birds, tall bamboo forests, before emerging on the high-altitude moorland zone, a landscape of unusual giant lobelias, towered over by black rock and white snow. The snow-capped 998 sq mile Rwenzori has an elevation reaching 5,109m, Africa’s third highest peak.
The main peaks, Margherita (5.109m) and Alexandra (5.083m) on Mount Stanley, are exceeded in altitude elsewhere in Africa only by Kilimanjaro and Mount Kenya. The first European who climbed the peaks was in 1906 the Italian Prince Luigi Amedeo da Savoia, Duke of Abruzzi.
Species in Mountain Rwenzori National Park.
The interest for Rwenzori is also on the vegetation, which is divided into several altitude zones: the forest zone (between 1.800 and 2.500 m), the bamboo forest (up to 3000 m), the heath and Alpine zones (3000-4.500 m), with forests of giants heath plants, giant lobelias and groundsels. There are 70 mammal species recorded (elephants, golden cat, chimpanzee, yellow – backed duiker) and 177 birds, especially Albertine Rift endemics (Rwenzori Turaco, cuckoo, owl, francolin, robin).
ACTIVITIES IN MOUNTAIN RWENZORI NATIONAL PARK.
Most of visitors undertake the excellent “central circuit” trail, which takes 9 days-8 nights to complete and takes you to the main peaks. However, other shorter hikes are possible in the central area and in the North of Rwenzori. High mountain equipments are required, as the trials reach an altitude of 4.000m above.
Accessibility to National Park.
The Rwenzori lies a few kilometers north of the equator, rising over 4000m above the floor of the Albertine Rift Valley. The park trailhead at Nyakalengeja can be reached from Kampala from the north via Fort Portal (375 km) or the south passing through Mbarara and Queen Elizabeth National Park (450 km). Nyakalengeja is 17km off the Kasese-Fort Portal road and 25km north of Kasese town. Charter flights to Kasese can be arranged from Kampala (Kajjansi) or Entebbe International Airport.
At this park the accommodation facilities are somehow distant in the nearby towns like Kasese and Fort portal. For instance you rest at Mountain of the moon, Ndali lodge, Kibale safari lodge, Kyaninga lodge (Luxury) Fort Motel, Rwenzori Travelers Inn (Budget) and the following day go for your mountain trekking experience.