Batwa Cultural Village
The Batwa Cultural village has been established to provide visitors with an insight into the Batwa culture. Here, the Batwa (Pigmies) demonstrate the way they used to live in caves and tree houses. The Batwa only began leaving their forest homes around fifteen years ago when they were re-located by the government. Unfortunately the lands offered to them were not fertile and they faced a tough challenge until support was found by an American benefactor who donated part of their own land back to them and created a cultural program. The fees from visiting tourists and are given to the Batwa project and they delight in welcoming visitors to their village and demonstrating how they make weapons, dance, make fires using sticks and cook.
As a visitor, you will be met at your lodge by the representatives from the Batwa Community Trust who will take you to visit the local Batwa cultural village which is just a short walk from Buhoma. The tour is led by community members and takes around 2 hours. You will take a gentle walk past the river and your tour guides will point out the Tea plantations and show you how the coffee is grown locally. There is a small climb up to the Batwa settlement. Good walking boots or trainers are essential as parts of the path are slippery and quite steep.
If you wish to extend the hike you may walk to the top of the settlement on the Batwa trail which leads to the original caves used by the Batwa. This is a challenging hike but the Gorillas are occasionally sighted in the forest. If you do not wish to hike the full trail, just tell your tour guide that you would like to do a “shorter” tour without the caves. The Batwa tour usually concludes with a demonstration of dancing and fire making. There is an opportunity to purchase some locally made crafts and sometimes the ladies from the other communities provide a demonstration of African dancing at the foot of the hill and guests are always welcomed to participate. The Batwa also visit local properties on request to teach visitors about their culture and demonstrate their unique style of dancing.
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