Gorilla Highlands Calendar

December 2019

Thriving Countryside: banana beer awaiting customers; photo by Marcus Westberg

🇷🇼 17-20/12/2019: Thriving Countryside Inaugural Trek
What is it? The first ever 4-day hike from Rwanda’s Gisenyi (Rubavu) to Cyanika on the Ugandan border, including quality time with fishermen of Lake Burera. More about the trek
Is it a confirmed departure? Sure! While this trek is open to anyone, it needs to be done for guide trainees and will be led by the Gorilla Highlands initiative founder
How much? The promotional price is USD 250 only (you will save USD 180!) and it includes: guiding, activities, accommodation, meals, snacks and water
Where can I learn more? tours@gorillahighlands.com, +250 783 118 421+256 776 558 123 (WhatsApp)

Volcano Quest route

🇺🇬 20-22/12/2019: Volcano Quest Trek
What is it? 3-day hike from Lake Bunyonyi to Mgahinga Gorilla National Park, through Echuya Forest and across some of the most picturesque landscapes of Uganda’s Gorilla Highlands. More about the trek
Is it a confirmed departure? Absolutely, it will be done for a 4-member German family from Kampala (the daughters are 11 and 13)
How much? USD 250 (you will save USD 60); the price includes: guiding, activities, tented accommodation, meals, snacks and water
Where can I learn more? tours@gorillahighlands.com+256 776 558 123 (WhatsApp), +250 783 118 421

Mother of All Treks route

🇺🇬 23-25/12/2019: Mother of All Treks (Christmas Special)
What is it? A 3-day mixture of Lake Bunyonyi trekking and canoeing with two incredible village homestays — you will first camp at Tom’s on Habukomi Island and then celebrate Christmas at Mama Bena’s. The night before will be full of traditional drumming, followed by a feast on Christmas Day shared with Batwa “Pygmies”. More about the trek (reversed direction)
Is it a confirmed departure? Indeed, you will be joining a 20-member Slovenian group with hikers of all ages
How much? USD 230 (you will save USD 50); the price includes: guiding, activities, tented accommodation, meals, snacks and water
Where can I learn more? tours@gorillahighlands.com+256 776 558 123 (WhatsApp), +250 783 118 421

Mama Bena’s house; photo by Karla Kofol

🇺🇬 24-25/12/2019: Christmas at Edirisa
What is it? A special activity package. On Christmas Eve (24/12) the drums around Lake Bunyonyi get loud and you will join in the drumming fun as an ample 3-course dinner is served. On Christmas Day (25/12), after checking if there is anything under the most unusual tree, you will be jumping into a motorboat to join the hikers who have walked to Mama Bena (see above). In the company of local Bakiga and Batwa “Pygmies” you will take part in the most special lunch of the year. In addition to Mama Bena’s excellent local cooking there will be pancakes, cookies and other treats brought from Edirisa. We will carry a sound system too, for some Christmas karaoke! By the evening we will be back at Edirisa, enjoying a pizza night.
Is it a confirmed activity? Oh yes!
How much? USD 50; the price includes: four meals, boat transport and a surprise; accommodation needs to be booked separately (you can sleep at other Bunyonyi places if you prefer so)
Where can I learn more? team@edirisa.org,  +256 782 779 599 (WhatsApp)

Chef Brenda Katusiime at GH Silverchef 2019

🇺🇬 26/12/2019: BBBB (Brenda’s Bunyonyi Boxing Buffet)
What is it? A buffet lunch prepared by Lake Bunyonyi’s only participant at the Gorilla Highlands Silverchef cooking competition of 2019! Expect crayfish, expect traditional treats — and a lot of very contemporary and creative stuff! We can pick you up with a dugout canoe, you can drive to us, or walk.
Is it a confirmed activity? Completely.
How much? USD 20; the price includes: lunch and dugout canoe transport
Where can I learn more? team@edirisa.org,  +256 782 779 599 (WhatsApp)

Lake Burera and Fisherman’s Fortune; video by Miha Logar

🇷🇼 27/12/2019: Fisherman’s Fortune Boating and Hiking Trip
What is it? A day on Lake Burera (see the video above) with a motorboat ride to three of the lake’s six islands plus a cultural walk into a mining village on its northern shore. More about the trip (If you are starting from Kigali, you will depart at 7am from Nyabugogo and come back at 9pm.)
Is it a confirmed departure? We are seriously working on it, including arranging bus transport from Kigali!
How much? USD 40/RWF 37,000 (you will save USD 30); the price includes: bus transport from Musanze to Lake Burera and back, guiding, activities, donations, lunch with fishermen, a soft drink, snacks and water; for bus transport from Kigali and back add USD 10/RWF 9,000
Where can I learn more? tours@gorillahighlands.com, +250 783 118 421+256 776 558 123 (WhatsApp)

Islands of Miracles moment near Punishment Island; photo by Marcus Westberg

🇺🇬 28-29/12/2019: Islands of Miracles with Tom’s Homestay
What is it? A day of dugout canoeing (covering all the major islands of Lake Bunyonyi) and a bit of hiking (for grand views and cultural experiences). A camping night on a remote island, hosted by a remarkable man who prepares amazing crayfish. More about the trip and more about Tom’s Homestay
Is it a confirmed departure? Yes, it has been booked by a 10-member Ugandan group
How much? USD 100 (you will save USD 45); the price includes: guiding, activities, tented accommodation, meals, snacks and water
Where can I learn more? tours@gorillahighlands.com+256 776 558 123 (WhatsApp), +250 783 118 421

Edirisa’s swimming platform; photo by Marcus Westberg

🇺🇬 28/12/2019: Children’s Saturday
What is it? After Edirisa’s Umuganda (the monthly cleaning and maintenance morning) that is open to all, the rest of the day will be devoted to kids: swimming, cooking classes, football, creative workshops and more!
Is it a confirmed activity? Yes, Daddy!
How much? USD 10; the price includes: all activities and supplies
Where can I learn more? team@edirisa.org,  +256 782 779 599 (WhatsApp)

Lake Bunyonyi picnic; photo by Miha Logar

🇺🇬 29/12/2019: Sunday Island Picnic
What is it? A feast in unspoilt nature of one of Lake Bunyonyi’s islands. You will travel there by dugout canoe, and all the picnic gear and culinary joys will be provided by Edirisa.
Is it a confirmed activity? Very much so!
How much? USD 10; the price includes: picnic and canoeing
Where can I learn more? team@edirisa.org,  +256 782 779 599 (WhatsApp)

Mama Bena’s Bonus route

🇺🇬 30-31/12/2019: Mama Bena’s Bonus Trek
What is it? A day of island hopping and a day of hiking, with a fantastic village homestay experience at Mama Bena’s. This trek is timed so that it can be beautifully combined with the new year’s party on Tom’s Homestay (see below). More about the trek
Is it a confirmed departure? Will be once we get 5 hikers
How much? USD 180 (you will save USD 40); the price includes: guiding, activities, tented accommodation, meals, snacks and water
Where can I learn more? tours@gorillahighlands.com+256 776 558 123 (WhatsApp), +250 783 118 421

Meeting a new year in dugout canoes

🇺🇬 31 December 2019: New Year’s Celebration at Tom’s Homestay
What is it? Edirisa has been celebrating the arrival of a new year at the home of Tom Karemire on Habukomi Island, Lake Bunyonyi, for over a decade. This means awaiting 2020 with floating candles and champagne on the lake surface, plus BBQ and traditional food.
Is it a confirmed activity? Totally. This is done for local partners from the Bakiga and Batwa “Pygmies” ethnic groups
How much? USD 50; the price includes: boat transport to and from Habukomi Island, BBQ meat & fruits, drinks, games, traditional dances, a camping overnight at Edirisa after the party
Where can I learn more? tours@gorillahighlands.com+256 776 558 123 (WhatsApp), +250 783 118 421


This page updates and expands on the calendar printed in the Gorilla Highlands Pocket Guide. Event and activity organisers, gorilla permit sellers and others are welcome to send us their items to be added free of charge: pocketguide@gorillahighlands.com