About the Rwenzori Mountains
The Rwenzori Mountains is located in western Uganda on the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo. It is holds the highest point in Uganda at the height of 5019m above sea level. This makes Rwenzori worth visiting to be able to witness the tip of the pearl of Africa. The mountains are the most unique feature that you will find nowhere else in East Africa. The biological richness in these mountains is enormous. With four different trails leading to both the low hills and the high snow-caped peaks, the trekkers find a paradise of birds, mammals, plants and sometimes primates. The mountain ecosystem is home to over one hundred mammal species and 217 bird species, making it an Important Bird Area. The scenery during the treks to these mountains is worth a try as it is ranked one of the best in world.
Uganda wildlife authority has opened various trails on these mountains. The different trails are of varying length. Therefore one requires different duration to trek on the different routes based on choice and budget. The shortest trail is a day nature walk that takes guests to experience the tropical Rainforest ecosystem for a few hours before they exit the park to stay at the base camp or go to the next destination. The longest is 8 days that takes guests to the highest point; margarita peak on mount Stanley. There are other trails that will take any number of days between one and eight that guests can choose from. Those interested can choose to stay longer than eight days on the mountains if they want to scale more peaks or get a detail of the landscape.
About the accommodation:
Those looking for accommodation during their trekking trip on Rwenzori will find Ruboni community camp ideal. This camp is located at the base camp, just 1km before the park gate. It offers perfect accommodation to the trekkers before and after their memorable experience in the mountains
At this camp, you will find comfortable guest rooms in several options; self-contained and none self-contained rooms. Those with their own tent can also pitch a tent at a relatively lower price than the rooms. The rooms have options for two twin or double beds each. Some rooms are too spacious and can be fitted with the third bed. The location of all the rooms is perfectly facing the mountains and surrounded by indigenous forest. Sometimes the squirrels, birds, and monkeys will be seen within the facility.
With running water from a local spring, hot showers are provided in all the self-contained rooms. The shared showers are refilled with hot water on demand. Each self-contained room has a toilet, a sink, and a bathroom all separated. The rooms are well cleaned as they are attended to by a resident housekeeper who gives them the best touch. The camp has furnished beds with bedding and mosquitoes nets on each bed.
The restaurant onsite is always open, offering all the three meals, The accommodation prices include free breakfast. Guests can order other meal (lunch and dinner) from the menu and they will be prepared within a shortest-agreed time. A long list of meal options is on offer. The chef will explain the range available every morning. They offer three-course meals. Generally, most food ingredients are fresh and organic. The food ingredients are mainly sourced locally from the village farmers. To ensure a high quality and taste of fresh meals, the spices are grown on-site.
Accessible peaks and trails:
Seating on the trail-head to Rwenzori Mountain peaks, through Nyakalengijo gate, all trekkers using the central circuit trail pass in front of the camp. Through this gate, trekkers stay in the mountains for a varied amount of days depending on the trail of choice. As said earlier, on this route are three main trails that take from one to eight or more days. This trail leads to;
- A one day nature walk to Nyabitaba or through the chimp trail
- Three days Mahoma trail loop
- Seven days central circuit trail
- Eight days margarita peak trek.
- Six days Bukurungu trek
These trails all go inside the park and require payment of park entrance fee per day spent inside the park. The days one spends on each trek/ trail my change depending on how many peaks one chooses to climb. These other additional peaks include Weismann peak, portal peaks, baker peak, mount Gessi and other short peaks.
Other village activities:
When you stay at Rubini community camp or any other lodge in the area, you will not only be limited to trekking the high peaks of Rwenzori. The camp links you the guides that can take you on the arranged community guided walks. These walks last about three to four hours of exploring the local village outside the park. They include;
- The forest walks
- The village walks
- The hill climb walk. or
- The overnight hill trek
The key highlights on the community walks are; visiting the blacksmith at their workshop, the traditional healer, the local farm, participating in the coffee farming and processes, walking in the indigenous forest to witness the waterfalls, chameleons, birds and sometimes primates, climbing to the highest hill in the village at 2400m to be able to view the village and sometimes margarita peak on clear days. These community walks are all outside the park and therefore require no park entrance fees. The payment you make covers the community guides and the experience. For overnight treks, the payment will cover three meals, porters camping gear, and the experience.
Those interested in the treks either to the high mountains or in the community will get a packing list and more information to prepare them for the trek. Rainforest and community tours or any other tour operator can help arrange this. Alternatively, you can contact Ruboni community camp directly for further information.
Location and how to get there:
This camp is located at the base camp of the Nyakalengijo central circuit trail in the village of Nyakalengijo/Mihunga. It is easily accessible from fort portal or Kasese towns. Depending on which direction you come from, branch off left or right at Nkenda electrical terminal. You will then drive 17km west on a marram road, towards the Rwenzori Mountains National Park gate. It is a straight road as you will not need to take any branch off until you reach the camp that will be on your left folloeing the road sign. Alternatively, you can contact us for a phone number that will be able to direct you as you travel. This location doesn’t have public transport other than the boda-bodas. If you’re not comfortable with boda-boda and you didn’t use private transport, we can arrange a special hire on request, to pick you from Kasese or from Nkenda the junction. Alternatively, type Ruboni community camp in google maps and follow the route from wherever you will be.