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Mount Sabyinyo hiking

Mount Sabinyo is an inactive volcano within the Virunga Mountain ranges. Other mountains within this range include Mount Karisimbi, Muhabura, Bisoke, Mikeno, Nyiragongo, Gahinga and Nyamuragira.  Mount Sabinyo is separated from its closest neighbor Muhabura by a crater lake which is 20m wide. In the local language, Sabinyo means “Old man’s tooth”. The mountain was given this name because its’ jagged summit looks like worn out teeth.

 

Mount Sabyinyo is 12,037 feet high. Summiting this mountain means that you will be rewarded with being able to say that you are standing in 3 countries at once. The peak acts as a border to three countries - Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda and Rwanda.  The magic mountain is home to endangered mountain gorillas, forest elephants, buffalo, many bird species and groups of antelopes.

Hiking Mount Sabinyo is very challenging but the rewards are satisfying with 3 countries at your toes and breathtaking 360 degree views. To conquer Sabinyo you need to be mentally strong and physically fit – a great challenge.

The hike comprises of 3 peaks and is composed of a combination of steep vertical paths and long ladders at a height. The good news is, if you can make it to the first peak, you will be able to see the three countries - D.R Congo, Rwanda and of course Uganda.

Hiking Sabyinyo is considered one of the best mountain climbing experiences in Uganda. The mountain that looks and seems impossible to conquer has been made possible to climb by the Ugandan Wildlife Authority. The handmade ladders which are quite a feature to the climb were built by the local villagers to overcome the tricky parts of the hike which would otherwise not be possible to climb.

Itinerary:

The hike starts off gently, crossing seasonal rivers in the primary vegetation and venturing through tranquil green bamboo forests to the base of the mountain. If you are lucky, you may see golden monkeys, forest buffalos, forest elephants and lots of bird species. You also have a slight chance of seeing the mountain gorillas crossing before reaching first peak at 3423M.

Along the way, there are resting huts which allow you to take a short break, have some snacks and water and shoot some photos of the breathtaking views.

At 2800M, you will begin to climb the volcano face and as you do so, you will start seeing views of the D.R Congo. The path passes through a mystical “Old Mans Beard” forest – an Acacia tree forest covered in lichen. You can delightfully hand pick and eat blackberries along the way as you climb.

From the first peak to the base of third peak, you traverse the top of the mountain, Uganda to your left, Rwanda to your right, DRC ahead of you. You walk through a region of no man’s land as you reach the base of the final peak.

As mentioned, at the top of the third and final peak, you are rewarded with incredible views, a good lunch spot and the ability to say that you are standing in 3 countries at once. From the top, you will see the Lake Kivu and Lake Bunyonyi in Uganda.

Once lunch at the top is finished, you will start your decent. Coming down is easier in one way but just as challenging in others – if you are afraid of heights, this is not the hike for you. You have to deal with the ladders again and need to do it with special care.

The hike can take between 7-10 hours and park rules state that if you do not make it to the third peak by 1:00pm, you will have to return down as often the weather turns in the afternoon and there is a possibility you will not make it down to the base in the daylight.

On the day of the hike, you will need to arrive at the Uganda Wildlife Authority office at 7;00 Am and you must have prepaid (via eft) the park fees or loaded mobile money to your phone which can then be transferred. You will register with UWA at the office and then be briefed on your day. You will be guided on your hike by Ugandan Wildlife Authority rangers. You need these as it is a tricky hike and there is the possibility of running into wild animals. Your hike will start by 7:30am at the base of the volcano through the farm lands.

How to reach Mgahinga national park for Sabinyo hike?

If you are coming from Rwanda, you need to arrive in Kisori district in Uganda a day before hiking.  If you are coming from other parts of the country, you will need to contact us in advance so that we can make proper arrangements for your successful hike.

The park offers other activities that can be arranged such as gorilla tracking, Golden Monkey tracking and Pygmy Bushman tours.

 

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Looking to customize your trip?

Contact us below, anything is possible with Trek Rwenzori Tours!

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What's Included? 

 

  • Park fees(For non-residents)

  • Gorilla permits(One per person, non-resident)

  • All activities(Unless labeled as optional)

  • All accommodation(Unless listed as upgrade)

  • A professional driver/guide

  • All transportation(Unless labeled as optional)

  • All Taxes/VAT

  • Roundtrip airport transfer

  • Meals(As specified in the day-by-day section)

  • Drinks(As specified in the day-by-day section)

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Included Food & Drink*:  

 

  • Breakfast 

  • Lunch

  • Dinner (one main course)

  • Bottled Water 

*Meals typically include meat and fish. Please contact us if you have any dietary restrictions or allergies.​

What's not included? 

  • Airfare to and from Uganda

  • Uganda Tourist Visa 

  • Tips for guides and rangers

  • Tips for servers at restaurants

  • Additional dinner courses (appetizers, desserts) 

  • Alcoholic beverages, soda, juice, coffee, special beverages

  • Souvenirs, crafts, etc. 

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Cancellation Policy: 

 

To confirm your reservation a deposit of 40% of the total price is required. 

The deposit is non-refundable in the event of a cancellation.* 

*Upon making a reservation, Trek Rwenzori Tours purchases the National Park permits and primate tracking permits, all of which are non-refundable according to the Uganda Wildlife Authority policies. The deposit covers these charges. 

 

The rest of the payment (60%) must be paid no less than 14 days prior to the trip start-date.  

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Check out our interactive Google Map below! 

Destinations are listed on the map in the order to be visited! 

 

  1. Entebbe

  2. Kampala

  3. Fort Portal

  4. Kibale National Park

  5. Semuliki National Park

  6. Amabeere Cave

  7. Queen Elizabeth National Park

  8. Ishasha Sector

  9. Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

  10. Lake Bunyonyi

  11. Lake Mburo National Park

  12. Murchison Falls National Park

  13. Budongo Central Forest Reserve

  14. Kidepo Valley National Park

  15. Sipi Falls, Moroto District

  16. Jinja, River Nile

  17. Entebbe International Airport 

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