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“For travelers visiting ancestral lands of native people, there’s a unique responsibility to learn these stories—and to the support the Indigenous communities who have been displaced.”
Condé Nast Traveler’s latest article highlights the importance of respecting and supporting local communities who have been displaced from their homelands. We are honoured to see Volcanoes Safari’s Gahinga Batwa Village recognized in this article as we continue to support the Batwa community through our Volcanoes Safaris Partnership Trust (VSPT). This is hugely significant as the Batwa are thought to be one of the oldest surviving indigenous people in the Central African Region.
The Gahinga Batwa Village was founded in 2018 when we purchased 10 acres of land to build permanent homes and farming facilities for 28 Batwa families comprising over 130 people. Our long-term goal for the project is to provide land that can be used in perpetuity by the Batwa, where they can have their own homes and community facilities as well as an agricultural area where they can grow their own crops to help them start generating their own income.
Guests staying at Volcanoes Safaris’ Mount Gahinga Lodge have the unique opportunity to visit the Batwa village and its Heritage Trail with one of our VSPT project coordinators. The village is only a 15 minute walk from the lodge and offers guests the chance to meet the community, watch traditional Batwa dances and learn about life in the forest before the park’s creation.
Click Here to learn about our other VSPT projects and how you can get involved!
Tracking chimpanzees in their natural habitat, as they swing from the branches in the canopy high above the forest floor is nothing short of exhilarating. The chimps effortlessly cross and scamper through the trees above the gorge, and visitors on the other hand must cross the river using natural bridges in order to keep up with the chimps. So although the walk usually lasts only 2–3 hours, descending the steep gorge and crossing the log bridges over the river requires some agility and fitness.
Chimpanzee tracking is also available in nearby Kalinzu, a forest reserve 30 minutes drive from Kyambura Gorge Lodge where there is a community of about 40 habituated chimpanzees.