Gorilla trekking guides and rangers in Uganda and Rwanda
Gorilla trekking guides and rangers in Uganda and Rwanda are the tourism ambassadors to the destinations and bring out more information about the life of the mountain gorilla, there history and other activities to combine with gorilla trekking.
In Uganda the Gorilla trekking guides are under the umbrella of Uganda Safari Guide’s Association (USAGA). This association often takes them through retreats and seasonal training to equip them with knowledge of how to treat tourists. This preparation is often done in low seasons when the guides are less busy.
Most Popular Gorilla Safaris
- 3 Day Uganda Gorilla Trekking
- 5 Day Gorilla and Chimp
- 8 Day Gorilla Tracking
- 2 Day Bwindi Gorilla Via Kigali
- 3 Day Uganda Gorilla Via Kigali
- 5 Day Chimp and Gorilla Habituation
- 3 Day Fly in Gorilla Habituation
- 3 Day Fly in Safari to Murchison Falls National Park
- 3 Day Bwindi Double trek via Kigali
- 5 Day Gorilla Trekking in Rwanda
Even the ranger guides are often taken through retreats and trainings to allow them chance to acquire better information about the mountain gorillas. Many ranger guides are local people who go through training and attend period lectures to upgrade themselves and provide great and reliable information about the mountain gorillas and other occupants.
Why Hire a Gorilla Trekking Guide And Ranger In Uganda And Rwanda
When you pay for a gorilla trekking permit, part of the fund is payment for the ranger guide service, park entrance fees, security, and others.
The rangers guides often have firsthand information about the mountain gorillas. Each day a team of rangers follow the mountain gorillas in the wilderness before trekkers are allowed to view them.
They give information to the park headquarters that is passed to the gorilla trekkers later. Although general information is given about the behavior of mountain gorillas just like humans, they get mood swings.
Only the ranger guides who often visit the mountain gorillas can read and explain what is happening when you locate them.
During gorilla trekking, tourists advised to wait taking photos until the ranger establishes the situation the gorillas are in at that moment. In case they are in a jovial mood, the ranger guide ushered the trekkers in to see but you need to follow the guidelines provided. For the somber moods, he or she has to brief you on how to go about it and exhaust the one hour allowed with the mountain gorillas
The forest being a jungle has other forest dwellers like forest elephants, duikers, wild forest hogs and others. No one is allowed into the forest without the company of the ranger guide who is trained to encounter such situation.
In case any situation goes out of control, the ranger guide is in constant communication with headquarters using radio call. This area has no network at times so expect to be off grid when in the wilderness. The only means of communication is with the ranger guide who can request back up as soon as he notices anything odd in the wilderness.
The ranger guide follows that pace of the slowest trekkers but this doesn’t mean delay the rest of the gorilla trekking party. The time to take to locate the mountain gorillas is unknown which is estimated to be 2 hours to three quarters of the day.
The rangers being usual visitors of the forest have better knowledge of the wonders hiding in the ancient forest. They know where sparkling water falls are located, great scenery, unique birds and so much more. Tourists need this extra information to love the gorilla trekking destinations beyond the gorillas.
How To Book Gorilla Trekking Tours In Uganda And Rwanda
You must book the gorilla trekking permits first as this is the ticket that gives entry into these Africa adventure safari destinations. In Uganda, the gorilla trekking card with personal information about the trekker are issued. To collect the gorilla trekking card in Uganda, some information like the names on the passport, nationality, date of birth, passport expiry date are required.
Rwanda gorilla trekking permits are still issued on paper and when you purchase the permit, you are given a receipt later then the permit is issued which you present during briefing.
Book accommodation to use during the gorilla trekking tour it is best to use those close to where your gorilla permit is booked both in Uganda and in Rwanda.
In Uganda, since the gorilla trekking permits are booked according to area especially in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, before booking accommodation, you must know where your permit is booked. The park is divided into four areas that is Buhoma, Ruhijah, Rushaga and Nkuringo areas. You need to hire accommodation close or with in the area where your permit is booked.
In case you are booked on a fly- in gorilla trekking safari, book a seat in advance because they are sold out fast especially peak seasons for the scheduled daily flights. Even charter flight arrangement deserve to be made in advance so as to make advance arrangements.
What Is the Cost Of Gorilla Trekking Permits
In Uganda, the gorilla trekking permits costs $800 for foreign nonresidents, $700 for foreign residents and 300,000 shs for east African residents.
Rwanda gorilla trekking permits cost $1500 per person per trek.
This costs includes the ranger guide fees, security, support to the gorilla fund, medication for the mountain gorillas, park entrance and so much more.
How Much Is Gorilla Trekking safari In Rwanda And Uganda
A part from the mountain gorilla permit cost that cuts across all budgets from Luxury, midrange to Budget packages, the gross price is made up of different components.
The number of days you hope to be on gorilla trekking safari contributes to the gross cost of the entire gorilla trekking package.
The more the people the less the cost of gorilla trekking package per person. This is because you share some components of gorilla trekking like vehicle, driver guide accommodation and so much more.
Gorilla trekking safaris are graded according to Luxury, Mid-range or Budget and they include different services offered. They have varied inclusions and exclusion depending on the grade you select.
Additional activities to combine with gorilla trekking tour also contribute to safari cost. You may include chimpanzee trekking, golden monkeys trekking, birding, game drives and so much more.
When Is The Best Time To Book The Gorilla Trekking Permit
It is best to book the gorilla trekking safari at least 6 months in advance to reduce on last minute panic to acquire one. The least time you can book the gorilla permits especially peak season permits is 90 days to the expected trekking date.
Most trekkers often reserve there gorilla permits a year in advance because only 8 gorilla permits are released per day per family for tourists to book. There are few gorilla trekking families yet demand for tourists to enjoy them in the wilderness is high.
To acquire the gorilla trekking permits, you need to purchase it as soon as availability is got. There status changes any time because first come first served policy is used.
This however doesn’t mean you cannot reserve the gorilla permits at the last minute although the hassle of securing it is taxing. Being waitlisted for a gorilla permit is risky because you are not sure of a no show on the day of trekking.
What Is the Age Limit For gorilla trekking
15 years is the age limit for gorilla trekking. This is because of the nature of the gorilla trekking voyage where time of finding the mountain gorillas is unknown. The mountain gorillas keep meandering in the forest.
The topography of the Virunga are is volcanic with ridges and highlands. Some level of fitness is needed which a child below this age may not be in position to have.
Some patience is necessary which is often not possible with children below this age.
Noise is not allowed when trekking to see the mountain gorillas and its hard for children below this age to keep mum all throughout the trek.
When mountain gorillas provoke you, you pretend not to care so that you do not appear suspicious. This is hard to contain for a child below this age.
The first glance at the mountain gorillas is scaring which may cause you to shout. There sheer size and deep brown eyes may be scaring. You do not need to show such expressions to the mountain gorillas because you look suspicious.
Getting tired from hiking for a long time is possible depending on the proximity of the mountain gorillas. Its so hard to make a child who is extremely tired to keep going. This may delay the entire gorilla trekking group yet when you enter the forest no turning back until you complete the trek.
What To Pack For Gorilla trekking In Rwanda And Uganda
- Packing light for gorilla trekking safari gives you comfort while in the wilderness and in case you need to lift part of your baggage, its quicker although no one helps you out.
- A pair of binoculars to capture a clearer view of fur ranging primates like chimpanzees that climb trees during severe rainy seasons.
- Safari tracking boots comfortable enough to help you hike steep slopes. The wilderness has boggy trails that get socked from regular rains that fall yet less sunray penetration goes through the dense canopy.
- Safari Long sleeved shirt and trouser in colors like Khaki since you have to walk in a muddy jungle that can make you dirty.
- A torch to use in the night when lights go out because solar is the main source of energy here
- Sun glasses to protect your eyes from flying insects that move in the jungle.
- A pair of pajamas to wear in the night when it gets cold
- Travel adapter and charger in case your gadgets run low on battery
- Energy treats to munch on especially when you get hungry before locating the mountain gorillas.
- Insect repellant since the jungle has stinging insects that may feast on you.
- A poncho or warmers for warmth as the forest is always cold throughout the day and night at times.
- Bug spray in case your room is infested with the bugs.
- Foldable water bottle for keeping drinking water
- Rain coat or poncho to protect you from getting wet when it rains. This area receives rain throughout the day and without warning.
- Light back pack to protect your belongings from getting wet and scattered in the forest.
- Another full charged battery to exchange with when one runs low
- A Camera for keeping memories of your gorilla trekking experience in Africa
Rules of gorilla Trekking In Uganda And Rwanda
- No flash photography is allowed when taking photos for the gorilla trekking adventure. This scares the mountain gorillas.
- Never eat or smoke before the mountain gorillas because it may be harmful to there health
- Littering the forest is forbidden because it alters naturel setting where mountain gorilla feed from. The mountain gorillas are vegetarian and this may slowly reduce on there food.
- When you locate the mountain gorillas, do not surround them. This makes them feel ambushed.
- Ask the ranger guide to dig a whole of about 30 cm deep in case you wish to do a long call. You need to ever everything beyond recognition.
- Anyone below 15 years is not allowed to do gorilla trekking because the time of locating the mountain gorillas is not known and some patience is need to complete this trek.
- Volunteer to stay behind in case you catch any communicable infection like corona virus, flu, cough, cholera. This is because the mountain gorillas can catch human infections easily. They have a DNA of about 96% to that of humans.
- When you locate the mountain gorillas keep a distance of about 8 meters from them. To reduce on the chances of passing a communicable infection to them.
- Never spit on the vegetation because its food for the mountain gorillas. It is unhealthy and disgusting too.
- Wear a mask and hand sanitize as an after corona virus period precaution. You must change into a clean mask as you approach the mountain gorillas.
- When with the mountain gorillas, do not make noise and sudden movement because it may scare them. the gorillas are often scared of unfamiliar noise in there presence.
- Only one hours is allowed with the mountain gorillas when you locate them. This is because they are habituated to be in the presence of human beings for just that hour.