There are rare moments in life where we have to remind ourselves to pause and take it all in. To realize that what is happening right now is unlikely to ever be repeated. When the extraordinary overpowers the ordinary and leaves us in awe. This is how I felt while trekking through the tropical rain forest of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park en route to visit a group of endangered mountain gorillas. The 13 mountain gorillas of the Bitukura family are among the 710 or so left in the world, all of which reside in either Bwindi or the Virunga Volcanoe range in the region bordering Uganda, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Referred to by Lonely Planet as “One of life’s great experiences”, seeing a family of mountain gorillas close range in their own domain is truly awe-inspiring.
Passing beautiful people, exotic birds and breathtaking scenery we climbed. The familiar hum of the boda boda engine rose and fell with the alternately ascending then descending terrain. Each twist and turn of the road opened a window to yet another spectacular vista. This is the place known as the Switzerland of Africa, where the neatly manicured terraces connect vibrant greenery and sprawling villages.
The journey from Kabale to Ruhija took my breath away. I tried to take it all in since time constraints prevented me from taking too many photos. For those of you who know me well you know how hard it was to fly past such beautiful scenery, over one pothole and around another, without snapping pictures. I’m convinced that there couldn’t have been a better way for me to get to Ruhija than on the back of a motorcycle. The unhindered view enabled a constant visual feast.