Frequently Asked Questions
1. Where is the Batwa Experience? The Batwa Experience is located in southwestern Uganda adjacent to the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park on the Buhoma side.
2. Is it inside the Bwindi National Park? Do I need a park permit? The Batwa Experience is on old-growth forest land adjacent to the Bwindi National Park, but not in it. No park permit is required.
3. How do I get there? Come to the Buhoma side of the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. Just before the main entrance gate to the National Park, you will see the Batwa Craft Banda on the left side of the road. Inquire here for reservations and detailed information.
4. Where does it start and end? Visitors will gather at the Batwa Craft Banda (near the Buhoma-side Bwindi Impenetrable National Park gate). The Batwa Experience guide will take you from there to the trailhead.
5. Where do I make reservations? When I book for gorilla trekking is this included? Reservations can be made by email to email@example.com or in person at the Batwa Craft Banda. The Batwa Experience is booked separately from gorilla trekking.
6. What is the cost to visit? Prices are as follows:
– 1 person— $85
– 2-3 people— $70 per person
– 4 or more— $60 per person
– Private arrangement— $100 per person
Volunteers— $30 per person
Filming crews— $400 per group per day
Ugandan students— 15,000 UGX per person
7. Is there a commission for my local driver or guide if they arrange my visit? Yes, a commission of $5 per person is offered to the guide or driver.
8. How long does the Batwa Experience take? The hike and visit take a total of 5 hours or less, depending on the interests of the client and on the pace.
9. Is the start time flexible? How late in the day can I go? The start time is flexible; the latest time to leave is 2:00 p.m. Afternoon hikes are not advised during the rainy season. The Batwa Experience guide will advise as to the best times to visit. We can take 2 groups per day, one in the morning and one in the afternoon, except during rainy season.
10. How difficult is the hike? The hike is moderately strenuous. Parts of the trail are steep but manageable. The path is well-maintained, and the guide will travel at your desired pace. The hike is not recommended for clients with major mobility issues or severe health problems that could place them at risk in an isolated environment.
11. What do I need to carry and how should I dress? Plan to carry your own water and possibly some snacks. At the site, the Batwa will prepare you a traditional meal of matooke, goat stew, and fruits; if you cannot eat these foods, plan to carry your lunch as well. Wear athletic shoes or hiking boots and long pants; bring rain gear. Use insect repellant.
12. Is there a minimum number of visitors required for the Experience to run? What is the maximum? The minimum is 1-2 visitors and the maximum is 12 in a group. Up to 2 groups a day can be accommodated.
13. How are the proceeds from the Batwa Experience used? The proceeds generate income for individual Batwa families and support funding for Batwa healthcare, education, and community development through the Batwa Development Program.
14. Why was the Batwa Experience started? Batwa elders created the Batwa Experience to preserve their forest culture, teach Batwa children about their heritage, and introduce visitors to their rich culture and fascinating history.
15. Can I buy Batwa crafts at the Batwa Experience? To maintain the authenticity of the living history experience, no sales are permitted at the Batwa Experience site. You are encouraged to visit the Batwa Craft Banda by the National Park gate after your visit to purchase beautiful crafts handmade by the Batwa. All proceeds support their community through the Batwa Development Program.
17. What else can I do to help the Batwa? Visit the Kellermann Foundation website to learn more. Support for education is currently our greatest need.