Planning A Uganda Budget Gorilla Safari From Kigali Rwanda
Planning a Uganda budget gorilla safari from Kigali Rwanda. If you plan to travel budget for a gorilla safari from Rwanda, you must purchase a Uganda Gorilla permit from Uganda Wildlife Authority. To cross into Uganda from Rwanda, you use the Gatuna or Cyanika Border. You can use international flights from Kigali Airport to Entebbe Airport by air.
Select the Uganda gorilla safari destination of the two that Uganda boasts of that is Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and Mgahinga National Park. Currently, you can do either gorilla trekking or gorilla habituation experience in Uganda.
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Currently, Uganda has 152 gorilla trekking permits open to public booking from 19 gorilla families. For gorilla habituation experience in the southern part of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda has two gorilla families available to public booking.
The accommodation type you choose for the gorilla safari in Uganda depends greatly on your gorilla safari package. This is a budget gorilla safari package when you choose budget accommodations in Bwindi or Mgahinga National Park.
Even the time you plan to travel for your budget gorilla safari in Uganda through Kigali must be considered. During the low seasons, March to May and November, demand for gorilla safaris diminishes. Chances for an upgrade on budget gorilla safaris are more open too.
If you must possess a visa before entering Uganda or Rwanda, purchasing the East Africa visa saves time for re-applying for one at the Uganda immigration. Uganda and Rwanda are both in the East African community, and the East African visa allows entry into at least two East African countries.
At Encounter Africa Safaris, our safari consultants are always ready to help you with planning your gorilla safari no matter the category( Budget, Mid-range or Luxury) Enquire From Us.
How To Plan For Budget Gorilla Safari In Uganda Through Kigali
Book the Uganda Gorilla permit
While in Uganda, you can do two gorilla safari activities: gorilla trekking, where tourists are allowed one hour in the presence of a fully habituated gorilla family. Gorilla habituation experience in the southern part of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is available too but the mountain gorillas are semi-habituated and a maximum of four hours are allowed with the mountain gorillas.
The gorilla permit cost cuts across all safari plans, including the budget gorilla safaris. When booking the gorilla permit, you must know the date and the number of people you hope to travel with. Check for gorilla permit availability through an accredited tour operator or directly from Uganda Wildlife Authority.
Upon finding gorilla permit availability, you need to purchase your gorilla permit as soon as possible because they sell out fast. Despite the overwhelming demand worldwide, they are sold on a first-come, first-served basis.
Securing your gorilla permit in advance at least 6 months to a year upfront saves you from last-minute panic as you try to seek availability. It gets trickier to find Uganda gorilla permit availability at the last minute, especially in the peak season: June, July, August, September, December, and January.
Reserve Accommodation For Your Budget Uganda Gorilla Safari
Bwindi Impenetrable National Park being the main Uganda gorilla safari destination, the gorilla permits are booked according to four areas that is Buhoma in the North , Ruhija in the East, Rushaga and Nkuringo in the south.
When reserving accommodation for gorilla safari in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, you must consider where your gorilla permit is booked. Each of these four Bwindi gorilla safari areas is separated from another by distance and the highlands which is challenging to drive through especially in case you have to attend briefing. Some of the troubles you may get into while driving in the dark to catch up with briefing in another area include poor visibility due to misty conditions, puncture, blocking logs, and slippery roads are others.
Bwindi Budget accommodations: Bwindi View Bandas, Bwindi BackPacker’s Camp, Gorilla Resort, Broad Bill Camp, Majambere Iwachu Community Camp, Trekker’s Tarven, Nshongi Camp and others
You must cross-check the meal plans of the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park budget accommodations as the majority may offer just Bed and Breakfast or Bed only. These Budget Bwindi accommodations may have restaurant services, too, where you can go for meals.
A good number of the budget accommodations you can book for gorilla safari in Bwindi have share facilities like bathrooms and toilets.
Reserve Transport to Use During Uganda Gorilla Safari Though Kigali
How to get to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is very important. The common means of transport for budget gorilla safaris is road transport using safari vans. Because of the nature of the condition of the roads in the countryside, the safari vehicle must be 4×4 wheel drive. This gives you a chance for a smoother drive even though the roads are slippery, especially during the severe rainy seasons.
Hiring a professional and experienced drive guide gives you insight into the wonderful attractions along the way.
Air transport from Entebbe Airport or Kajjansi Airstrip to Kihihi or Kisoro Airstrip is available, too. From Kigali Airport Rwanda, you cross to Uganda at Entebbe Airport, then you can catch the domestic daily flights. These flights depart Entebbe or Kajjansi airstrip to Kihihi or Kisoro daily. You must hire a transfer vehicle, too, as there are about two hours to the lodges in either Bwindi Impenetrable National Park or Mgahinga National.
Charter flights from Kajjansi or Entebbe airport are available too for those interested in a private gorilla safari experience.
Book Additional Uganda Safari Activities To Combine With Gorilla Safari
In case you have extra days after or before the gorilla safari, you can engage in other Uganda safari activities. Uganda is a country of natural diversity where you can enjoy a game drive in Queen Elizabeth National Park and spend the afternoon with the chimpanzees in Kyambura Gorge.
With our safari consultant, you can make a perfect plan for your Uganda safari through Kigali. Note that the majority of the wildlife parks are far from one another, so you may need a day to transfer from one destination to another.
Some additional activities you can combine Uganda Gorilla safari with include Chimpanzee trekking in Kibale National Park, Golden monkey trekking in Mgahinga National Park, game drives in Queen Elizabeth National Park, Lake Mburo National Pak, Kidepo National Park and others. Enjoy a Launch trip on the majestic River Nile to Murchison Falls, the most powerful falls in the world, white water rafting, visiting the source of the River Nile, and sports fishing, to mention but a few.
When Is The Best Time To Book Budget Gorilla Safari In Uganda Through Kigali?
Gorilla safari packages of all categories are open all year round, but most tourists prefer the dry season. The dry season in Uganda is usually June through September and December through January. This season however, is the peak Uganda tourism time too.
The mountain gorillas and other primates are full of life in the wilderness and feed closer to the ground. The humidity of the tropical forests where mountain gorillas live is fairly lower because there is more sunray penetration through the dense forest canopy.
Bwindi forest and Mgahinga forest are prime Uganda birding destinations, so keen birders on gorilla safari get a double opportunity, too. While searching for mountain gorillas, you may spot over 100 bird species including Albertine rift endemics.
When you book the gorilla permit in advance, you protect yourself from last-minute panic searching for these permits, especially in the peak season when they sell out. Last-minute gorilla permits take a lot of work to get in the peak season.
The wet season is also favorable to tourists on budget gorilla safari arrangements as fewer people are booking. Chances of receiving discounted gorilla safaris may be open this season from some facilities like accommodations, vehicle drivers and others. If you wish to have an upgrade or discounted costs, the low season is favorable for March, April, May, and November.
How Long Is Gorilla Safari In Uganda?
The time of the gorilla safari varies with where the mountain gorillas spend their daytime. Some tourists have located mountain gorillas in two hours, while others have taken three-quarters of the day to find the mountain gorillas. No matter the time you find the mountain gorillas, when you finally meet them, you may forget the huddle you may have gone through while searching for them.
Mountain gorillas are free wild animals that wander through the forest with nothing stopping them. This is why it is hard to determine the easiest gorilla family to trek, as the gorilla family that was close yesterday may be the furthest the following day.
Finding the mountain gorillas depends on the proximity of their food, weather conditions prevailing on the day, in case of an attack from another gorilla family, the adventurous nature of the gorilla family, the pace of the trekkers, and others.
A lot of patience is required before finding the mountain gorillas, but you can open your mind to other attractions in the forest and not focus on just locating these primates. The mountain gorilla habitats have unique wildlife not seen on the outside.
Following the gorilla safari adventure guidelines saves you from agitating the mountain gorillas, which can push them into the deep forest before locating them.
Is Gorilla Safari in Uganda Difficult?
Based on the nature of the topography where mountain gorillas which is mountainous, gorilla safaris are somehow strenuous. The Virunga area is generously mountainous, with ridges and plateaus covered with tangled vegetation.
Since the vegetation in this area has accumulated over time, it is tangled and needs to be trimmed to create a path for you to meet the mountain gorillas.
Along the way, there are trails in the forest created by regular visitors in the park. Sometimes, these trails are flooded after the dense network of rivers overflows. Even the vegetation in the forest decomposes to form a slippery matter.
The ranger guide follows the pace of the slowest trekker so that nobody is forgotten in the wilderness.
To go through the gorilla trek, the ranger guide follows the pace of the slowest trekker. Having some fitness level helps you go through the gorilla safari adventure.
How Sure Can I Be To Find The Mountain Gorillas In Uganda?
The mountain gorilla families are first habituated for some time before being opened to public booking. The mountain gorillas are first habituated for about 2 years, depending on how quickly they adapt to human presence.
When finally allowed to be opened to human presence for gorilla trekking or gorilla habituation experience, the ranger guides know the location where mountain gorillas may be spending the day.
Mountain gorillas live as a family all through their lives and may part because of fighting for power, the death of the dominant silverback, and other factors. They feed in a particular area for some time and relocate when food is exhausted.
Each day, a team of trackers follows the gorilla families before tourists and offers a report of their night hangout and possible day destination. This clue is followed by the ranger guides when leading the group.
Currently, Uganda has 19 mountain gorilla families open to public booking for gorilla trekking and two gorilla habituation experience families.
What Can I Pack For Gorilla Safari In Uganda?
- Safari boots to wear while trekking to find the mountain gorillas.
- Garden gloves to cover your palms while in the wildernesses
- Safari hat to wear and protect your head from water dripping off the trees.
- A pair of stockings to tack in your trousers
- Insect repellent to keep away the stinging insects.
- Backpack to carry with your gorilla safari gear.
- Warm wear because this area receives cold conditions in the morning and late evening.
- Long-sleeved shirt and trousers to wear while we trek to find the mountain gorillas.
- A torch to use for lighting in the night when lights run low.
- Flip flops to change into after the gorilla trek.
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