The Batwa Experience with the First People of the Forest – Bwindi

Posted by on March 26, 2019

A Day with Batwa Pygmies – the Keepers of the Forest – Bwindi Impenetrable Forest

The Batwa Experience with the First People of the Forest who have lived in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest for Thousands of years

Interactive Visit – The Batwa Experience with the First People of the Forest – A Day with the original people of the forest – The Batwa Pygmies.  Learn how they prepared for the hunt, their hunting techniques, what they gathered in Forest and how they lived – leaving a small ecological footprint on their environment.

The Batwa People are Conservation Refugees living at the edge of the forest that was their home for Centuries and they lived n harmony with Mountain Gorillas, they considered eating one Cannibalism since they considered the Gorillas as part of their Forest Family.  Conservationists, others like Dian Fossey unfortunately saw them as Gorilla Killer, unfortunately the latter stuck instead of the keepers of the Forest that they were.

The Batwa Experience in the Buhoma Area of Bwindi will be an eye-opener to you, a cultural insight into the lives of the original people of Southwest Uganda, the Batwa.

Be sure to let us know that you would like to include the Batwa Experience in your Safari while Gorilla Trekking in the Buhoma area of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest.

For 500,00 years the Batwa People lived, hunted and gathered in their beloved forest.  Before any other people lived in what is today Bwindi Impenetrable Forest there were the Batwa Pygmies – the  indigenous people of the ancient rainforest.

The forest provided everything that they needed, in turn, they left a minimal footprint in the forest, they co-existed with Nature and their environment only taking what the forest provided and what they needed.

The concept of owning the forest, of owning land was foreign to them – they lived in harmony with their surroundings and kept their traditional ways and culture even when other people groups moved into the areas surrounding them.

Times changed – In the name of conservation, in the cause preserving the ancient rainforest and its wildlife, birds, primates such as the mountain gorillas, the keepers of the forest were displaced without compensation since they did not own the land of the forest, they had only used it.  They became squatters, refugees, a people without, a people who lacked, a people on the verge of losing their traditional ways and culture,  their dignity, ways of living they had known and practiced for thousands of years – their beloved Bwindi Impenetrable Forest.

The Batwa Experience with the First People of the Forest – To Experience Bwindi Impenetrable Forest with the Batwa People is one way of keeping those ancient ways and traditions alive for the Batwa Pygmy People, a way of passing on the traditions and culture that had been such an integral part of who they were to their children and grandchildren and allowing outsiders, visitors to see and take part in their ancient ways.

Today you can spend a day Experience Bwindi Impenetrable Forest with the Batwa People – the  people of small stature but big hearts and allow them to guide and lead you through their beloved forest and learn of their traditional ways from handling a bow and error to which plants, berries, roots and bark to pick for medicinal purposes, to the gathering of honey .  Eat a traditional meal – today that is some goat stew and gain insight into a way of life that might be foreign to you and yet very enriching.

The Batwa Experience takes place outside of the park in an old-growth forest on land that is next to the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest Park.  The Batwa experience begins with a nature-walk, hike through the forest seeing the forest in a new way, through the eyes of the original people of the Forest, the keepers of the forest.  Learn how they hunted the small animals they used for food, what things they gathered, how traps and nets were used.

The Batwa Experience will also show you how they lived in huts made of grass, trees, the use of tree-houses, caves.  Experience the Batwa village life of old, the sharing, of living as a community, as a people, learn the things that they revered and cared for and almost lost.

A full day – over five hours or longer experiencing the Life and Ways of the Batwa Pygmies – your simple presence will honor them and their ways and in a way be a restoration of their dignity one of the most important things they have lost as they were evicted from the forest and having to live in a world that was foreign to them, a world where others would malign and look down on them as primitive and uncultured.

The Batwa Experience is an interactive time of learning, of seeing the forest in new ways, the ways of old, a day of personal enrichment, something not to be missed while in the Buhoma area of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest.

Plan a day for your Batwa Experience and let us know that you would like to spend a day with the keepers of the forest, the Batwa people.  The cost per person is minimal compared to what you have spent visiting the Mountain Gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest and it directly supports the Batwa Development program.

The Bwindi Impenetrable Forest is not only a place where you can visit and track the gorillas but a place where you can experience the right culture and ways of life of the Original People of the Forest – the Batwa Pygmies…enjoy your personal Batwa Experience in Buhoma.

We think based on our past clients reactions that the Batwa Experience is not to be missed if you are trekking Gorillas in the Buhoma area of Bwindi Forest.

 Batwa Cultural Visits Authentic?

This is a question that we are asked from time to time.  They are certainly different from the proverbial Masai Village Visit that many Visitors have done in Kenya or Tanzania.  It is a reenactment as to how Batwa used to live in the forest for thousands of years until they were evicted from them without compensation in 1991 ad 1992 becoming Conservation Refugees watching Gorilla Trekkers spend thousands of dollars while they, the Batwa were on outside looking in what was once theirs.

The Batwa Visits allow Tourists to see the forest through the eyes of the first people of the Forest.  It is meaningful not only tourists but to the Batwa since it allows them to keep their culture alive in the 21st Century.  it certainly is not poverty tourism meant to evoke pity from Visitors.  Most that partake are very glad that they met the Batwa people while Gorilla Trekking in Uganda.

We think that it is a way that Dignity is restored to the maligned Batwa People.

The Batwa Experience with the First People of the Forest – if this interests you – please contact us.