Top Secrets Of Trekking Mountain Gorillas In Uganda
Here are the top secrets of trekking mountain gorillas in Uganda. To do gorilla trekking is an opportunity to unveil some of the ultimate secrets of the ancient forests of Uganda. Mountain gorillas are Uganda’s selling safari attraction living in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and Mgahinga National Park. These mountain gorillas are residents of the prehistoric forests of Uganda, especially Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, which is believed to be existing for over 30000 years.
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Mountain gorillas are particular primates picked from the rim of extinction by the 1980s, according to the census carried out by American primatologist Dian Fossey. The population of mountain gorillas had dwindled to about 300 by the 1980s.
These mountain gorillas were listed on the highly endangered primate list, and their conservation took precedence. One of the suggested ways to collect funds was selling gorilla trekking permits but limited to a maximum of 8 gorilla permits for conservation reasons.
In Uganda, gorilla trekking started in the 1990s when the Mubare gorilla family was opened to public viewing in 1993. More gorilla families have been habituated and open for gorilla trekking. Uganda is celebrating about 19 gorilla trekking families, with two gorilla families opened for the gorilla habituation experience.
With the above brief information about gorilla trekking in Uganda and beyond, we can now peep into the secrets of gorilla trekking in Uganda.
Gorilla Trekking In Uganda Is Done In Only Two National Park
Uganda’s gorilla trekking destinations are Bwindi Impenetrable national park and Mgahinga National Park. These parks lie in the southwestern part of Uganda. At the moment,
Currently, Uganda is celebrating 19 gorilla families living in these parks, with Bwindi Impenetrable National Park hosting 18 gorilla families and Mgahinga National Park having only Nyakagei gorilla trekking family.
Bwindi Impenetrable National Park gorilla permits are sold according to the area where the forest is partitioned because of its vast size. The gorilla trekking areas of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park include Buhoma Area in the North, Ruhija Area in the East, Rushaga, And Nkuringo Area In The South.
Uganda Gorilla Trekking Families Are Divided According To Area
As you book Uganda gorilla permits, pay attention to the area where your permit is booked. Bwindi Impenetrable National Park permits are booked according to the area, which are the Buhoma area, Ruhija area, Rushaga area, and Nkuringo area.
Each area has gorilla families under its administration, some of which are Buhoma Area with Rushegura Family, Mubare Family, and Habinyanja Family.
Ruhija area with gorilla families like Oruzogo Family, Bitukura Family, Kyaguriro Family, Mukisa Family.
Rushaga Area With Gorilla Families Like Busingye Family, Kahungye Family, Mishaya Family, Nshongi Family, Bweza family, Mucunguzi family, Rwigi family.
Nkuringo area gorilla families include Nkuringo Family, Christmas Family, and Muhozi Family.
Mgahinga Forest with Nyakagezi gorilla family.
Book A Gorilla Trekking Permit For Uganda
To access the Uganda mountain gorillas, you must secure a gorilla permit from Uganda Wildlife Authority. At the moment, Uganda has 152 gorilla permits open for tourist booking. For every gorilla permit you purchase, you support the sustainable existence of the mountain gorillas and their habitat.
Select a date when you hope to do gorilla trekking in Uganda and the number of gorilla permits you wish to purchase. Check for the availability of gorilla permits through a tour operator or enquire directly from Uganda Wildlife Authority.
The maximum number of gorilla permits allowed per day per family is 8 per trek, which makes these permits scarce. The demand for gorilla permits is high, especially in the peak season, yet the number is limited for conservation reasons.
What Is The Cost Of Uganda Gorilla Permit?
A Uganda gorilla permit costs $800 per person per trek for foreign nonresidents, $700 per person per trek for foreign residents, and 300000shs for East African residents.
What is included in the cost of the Uganda gorilla permit?
Park entrance fees, security during gorilla trekking, gorilla conservation support, one hour with the mountain gorillas, local community support, and ranger guide services.
What Is Excluded In The Gorilla Permit Cost?
The gorilla permit cost excludes accommodation, tips, porter hire, and any other items of personal nature.
Book Accommodation Close To The Gorilla Trekking Destination In Uganda
As the gorilla trekking park in Uganda is vast, you need to overnight close to where your Bwindi Impenetrable National Park permit is booked. Crossing from one gorilla trekking area into another in Uganda is challenging because of the poor road network and soft volcanic soils that turn slippery, especially in the severe rainy seasons.
When you spend the night in another area, you may need to drive in the night to catch up with the early morning briefing, which starts at 0730 hours daily. You may encounter a number of obstacles, like a log across the road, flat tires, slippery roads, and others.
Every tourist must attend a briefing at the ranger station before any gorilla trekking safari, whether you are a repeat client or a first-timer. Please attend a briefing before starting the gorilla trek to avoid your disqualification from this safari.
Some of the accommodations you can book during a gorilla safari in Uganda include Clouds Lodge, Buhoma Lodge, Gorilla Forest Camp, Gorilla Safari Lodge, Engage Lodge, Nkuringo Safari Lodge, Bwindi View Bandas, Trakker’s Tavern.
Uganda Gorilla Trekking Has An Age Limit
The age limit for gorilla trekking is 15 years. This is because of the rules of gorilla trekking adventure, which require a more mature mind. No, shouting while trekking to locate the mountain gorillas; patience is necessary when trekking to find the mountain gorillas as the time of locating them is unknown. It may be hard for children under 15 years to abide by gorilla trekking rules, yet violating them may cause the mountain gorillas to feel agitated and retreat into the bush.
Do Some Exercises Before Gorilla Trekking In Uganda
The areas where mountain gorillas live are mountainous due to volcanic action in this region. You must have some level of fitness to complete the gorilla trek as, at times, mountain gorillas feed from the slopes or lounge there. Preparing for the unexpected during a gorilla trekking adventure in Uganda would be best.
You do not need to keep in the gym all day but do some simple exercises to stretch your muscles a little longer than usual to avoid feeling muscle pulls.
Sedan chair services during gorilla trekking are available in the Uganda gorilla parks, where you are hired at a friendly price for those having physical impairments and age.
Gorilla Trekking In Uganda Starts Early Morning
When you wake up for gorilla trekking in Uganda, carry your gorilla trekking gear to the ranger station for briefing. Briefing before gorilla trekking in Uganda starts at about 0730 hours each day. You are later subdivided into a maximum of 8 trekkers and then allocated a gorilla family.
The criteria used when allocating the gorilla families is unpredictable because sometimes they divide you according to age, capability, and other characteristics.
Uganda Gorilla Safari Can Be Combined With Other Activities
You can make a combo of gorilla trekking in Uganda with other wildlife activities like chimpanzee trekking in Kibale National Park, game drives in Queen Elizabeth National Park, white water rafting on River Nile, mountaineering in Mgahinga National Park, visiting the source of River Nile and others.
Uganda is truly the pearl of Africa, as most of the activities found elsewhere in Africa can be found in Uganda.
It would be best to have a well-organized itinerary to accommodate your time on safari as their Uganda safari activities are in different destinations.
At Encounter Africa Safari, we can help you tailor your itinerary to suit your needs according to the time you hope to be on safari. We can also book gorilla permits for you and reserve accommodation according to your budget based on our over 10 years of experience in the tourism industry.
What Time Do You Locate Uganda Mountain Gorillas?
The time of locating mountain gorillas in Uganda is still being determined because they are free wild animals in the wilderness. So times, tourists have found mountain gorillas in two hours while others have exceeded. Mountain gorillas in the forest feed from one area for some time, and when food is exhausted, they relocate to another.
Sometimes you may find the mountain gorillas searching for a new feeding area which may prolong your time gorilla trekking. When the dominant silverback is adventurous, the rest of the gorilla family has to follow his hobby making gorilla trekking longer for trekkers. The weather conditions of the day also contribute to your time of finding the mountain gorillas, as during the wet season, the trails are soggy and slippery from the rains and overflown rivers.
Are Mountain Gorillas In Uganda Aggressive?
In nature, mountain gorillas are serene and shy primates. They have been portrayed as aggressive in some films and animations; however, this is the opposite of their nature. On the outlook, the mountain gorillas have a dark-furred coat over their bodies, sunken eyes, and walk by knuckle locomotion. This may stimulate some adrenaline at a glance.
That hour with the mountain gorillas gives you a glimpse into their true nature. When you meet the mountain gorillas, they keep on with what they are doing for the day, like munching on foliage, grooming, napping, playing in the vines, breastfeeding, and other activities for the day. They pretend they know what you have come to do and do not pay much attention to you.
Do not dare default the gorilla trekking rules, as you may cause the mountain gorillas to get agitated and retreat into the deeper ends of the forest.
What Are Uganda Gorilla Trekking Rules?
- Please keep away from the mountain gorillas even when they move towards you. Avoid touching the mountain gorillas when you locate them. Although they are habituated, they still possess wild traits.
- Speak at a low tine or quietly when with the mountain gorillas as you may scare them. Keep your voice low when searching for mountain gorillas. They are easily frightened of unfamiliar noise in their presence, which may push them into hiding.
- When you trace the mountain gorillas, keep a distance of about 8 meters from them. This is to reduce the chances of passing an infection to the already vulnerable mountain gorillas.
- Spitting on the vegetation is forbidden, as this is food for the mountain gorillas. You may pass germs that may lead to there massive death. Mountain gorillas are mobile primates whose life entirely depends on the forest for survival, so keep some level of hygiene.
- Gorilla trekking age limit is 15 years and above because of the nature of the forest where mountain gorillas live. There is a need to keep fit to locate the mountain gorillas that live in a mountainous area which a child below this age may not have.
- Using flash photography during gorilla trekking is forbidden because unfamiliar light in the presence of the mountain gorillas may push them into hiding.
- Volunteer to stay behind if you catch a communicable infection like coronavirus, cough, or flu because this may lead to the massive death of the mountain gorillas.
- Keep in a tight group when you locate the mountain gorillas so they do not feel ambushed by your presence. Mountain gorillas are easily scared by unfamiliar people in their vicinity.
- When you wish to eat or smoke, do this at least 300 meters from the mountain gorillas to prevent chances of the gorillas grabbing eats from you. Wild animals must search for their own food and not depend on human provision.
- Only one hour is allowed with the mountain gorillas when you locate them. This is because they are habituated to be in front of humans for just that time.
- Provoking the mountain gorillas is forbidden because you may agitate the gorilla family and push them into hiding. The mountain gorillas are very keen on what intruders do in their vicinity.
Contact us for more information if you are interested in trekking mountain gorillas in Uganda.