Guide to gorilla trekking in Uganda 2023/2024; Gorilla trekking is an extra ordinary and one of the most popular activities in Uganda that involves travelers moving into the dense tropical rainforests in search of the habituated mountain gorillas and once found spend one hour with them in their natural habitat. Gorilla trekking in Uganda is done in two national parks namely Bwindi impenetrable national park and Mgahinga gorilla national park. Gorilla trekking is also done in other destinations like Volcanoes national park in Rwanda, Virunga national park and Kahuzi Biega national park in Democratic Republic of Congo. Gorilla trekking is one of the major activities in Uganda that attracts big numbers of tourists and this article will guide you on gorilla trekking destinations, best time to go for gorilla trekking, cost of gorilla trekking permits, how to book gorilla trekking permits among other which helps you to plan a successful gorilla trekking safari in Uganda.
Bwindi impenetrable national park is one of the most visited gorilla destination located in southwestern part of Uganda in Kanungu districts. Bwindi impenetrable national park is known for harboring the highest number of mountain gorillas which are found in four sectors namely Nkuringo sector in the south, Buhoma sector in the north, Ruhija sector in the east and Rushaga sector in the south. Bwindi impenetrable national park is a home of over 22 habituated gorilla families which are available for trekking on a daily basis and it also offers gorilla habituation experience where the wild mountain gorillas are trained to get used to human presence for trekking.
Mgahinga gorilla national park is another gorilla trekking destination in Uganda located in southwestern part of Uganda in Kisoro district. Mgahinga gorilla national park is a home of one habituated gorilla family which is available for trekking daily.
Gorilla trekking in both Bwindi impenetrable national park and Mgahinga gorilla national park starts very early in the morning with a briefing about the rules and regulations to follow during trekking. After the briefing, you will be sub divided into groups of 8 people and allocated a habituated gorilla family to trek and an experienced park guide. Trekking of mountain gorillas in Uganda takes about 30 minutes to 7 hours depending on where the gorillas are located because they like to move from one place to another in search of food. During trekking, you will be able to view other primates, different bird species, plant and tree species among others. Once the gorillas are found you will be allowed to spend one hour with them in their habitat which gives you an opportunity to learn more about their behaviors, lifestyle, watch carry out their daily activities, take photos and record videos to show people back home after the safari.
Best time to go for gorilla trekking in Uganda
Gorilla trekking in Bwindi impenetrable national park and Mgahinga gorilla national park can be done anytime throughout the year though the best time is during the dry season also known as the peak season in the months of June, July, August, September, December, January and February. During the dry season, there is less or little rainfall in the national parks therefore vegetation will be short which helps you to view the mountain gorillas and other wildlife species clearly, also access roads and gorilla trekking trails will be dry and passable which makes trekking easy compared to the rainy season when the trails are muddy and slippery hence making gorilla trekking difficult.
Cost of a gorilla trekking permit in Uganda 2023/2024
Gorilla trekking permits are legal documents that are issued by Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) to visitors above the age of 15 years allowing them to visit habituated gorilla families in Bwindi impenetrable national park and Mgahinga gorilla national park and spend one hour with the mountain gorillas in their natural habitat. A gorilla trekking permit in Uganda costs 700 USD per person for foreign non residents, 600 USD per person for foreign residents and 250,000 UGX per person for East African citizens.
How to book gorilla trekking permits in Uganda
Gorilla trekking permits in Bwindi impenetrable national park and Mgahinga gorilla national park can be booked through your trusted tour operator like Achieve Global Safaris where you will contact us with the date, month, year and gorilla destination that you wish to visit. After contacting us we will check for permit availability on your preferred dates at Uganda Wildlife Authority and if there are permits available, you will be asked to make a deposit. Once we receive the payment, we will purchase the permit on your behalf and send you a scanned copy of the receipt as confirmation.
Gorilla trekking permits in Uganda should however be booked 3 to 6 months in advance before the trekking date because they are competitive and get sold out quickly especially during the peak season in the months of June to September and December to February therefore in order to avoid last minute disappointments, you are advised to book in advance.
What to pack for gorilla trekking safari in Uganda
When going for gorilla trekking in Uganda, there are a number of items that you should pack or carry including insect repellent, garden gloves, long sleeved shirt and trouser, hiking boots, waterproof rain jacket, warm sweater, camera and extra batteries, hat and sunglasses, energy giving snacks and drinking water, face masks and hand sanitizer, waterproof back pack among others.
How to get to the gorilla destinations
Bwindi impenetrable national park and Mgahinga gorilla national park can be accessed by road transport means whereby you will drive from Kampala via Masaka, Mbarara, Kabale and then to the park headquarters in Bwindi impenetrable national park or Mgahinga gorilla national park which takes about 9 to 10 hours’ drive.
When using road transport means, you can also access Bwindi impenetrable national park and Mgahinga gorilla national park from Kigali Rwanda where you will fly to Kigali international airport and then connect to the park heads via Cyanika border in Kisoro or Katuna border in Kabale, Guide to gorilla trekking in Uganda 2023/2024
Bwindi impenetrable national park and Mgahinga gorilla national park can as well be accessed by air transport means where you will book scheduled or charter domestic flights with Aerolink Uganda or Bar Aviation from Entebbe international airport or Kajjansi airfield to Kisoro or Kihihi airstrips and then connect to the park headquarters by road.
Gorilla trekking is a breathtaking activity that can be combined with wildlife viewing in Murchison falls national park and for more information about the guide to gorilla trekking in Uganda 2023/2024, you can contact us at Achieve Global Safaris or visit our website for affordable gorilla trekking packages.