Gorilla  Trekking Frequently Asked Question

Gorilla trekking frequently asked Question

Gorilla trekking frequently asked Question

Gorilla trekking frequently asked Question : Gorilla trekking is one of the most sought for wildlife experiences in the world offering visitors a once – in – a lifetime encounter with the endangered mountain gorillas which are found in rainforests of Central Africa on the slopes of Virunga Mountains and in Bwindi impenetrable National Park.

There are slightly 1,000 mountain gorillas left in the world and they are found only in 4 gorilla destinations that is Bwindi impenetrable National Park and Mgahinga Gorilla national park in Uganda, Volcanoes national park in Rwanda and Virunga National Park in DR. Congo.

There are many questions surrounding gorilla trekking experience asked by visitors as they plan to visit Africa for this once – in-lifetime experience, below are some of the commonly asked questions by visitors and answers to them.

  1. What is gorilla trekking

Gorilla trekking is an on-foot wildlife experience through the rainforests of Africa to get up closer with endangered mountain gorillas, this experience is done only in groups of 8 people and to only habituated gorilla families.

On gorilla trekking experience, visitors are allowed to stay only one hour in the presence of mountain gorillas in their natural habitat.

  1. Why is gorilla trekking such a sought- after experience

Reasons to why gorilla trekking is one of the most sought for experiences in the world varies from person to another, there are few people who can give you a valid reason why they are so interested in gorilla trekking.

The plight of mountain gorillas in Africa came about in the 1960s predominantly through the work of Dina Fossey, she dedicated her life to mountain gorillas whose population was declining at that time. Her conservation efforts including research brought the world’s attention to the presence of mountain gorillas and launched the start of mountain gorilla trekking.

Mountain gorillas are one of the closest relatives to humans and they are only found in central and East region of Africa which is a reason to why many people visit, mountain gorillas are also endangered species which many people wish to visit them.

  1. Where can I trek mountain gorillas in Africa

Though the population of mountain gorillas has increased tremendously in the previous years, mountain gorillas are still endangered and they face a number of treats. Some of the major threats are as follows

Habitat loss and human encroachment – The increasing population of humans have posed a great threat to the habitats of the gorillas which are already limited, this has put the habitats on pressure.

Poaching – mountain gorillas are poached for bush meat by local communities as source of proteins, the meat is also used as traditional medicines.

Diseases – mountain gorillas are susceptible to human diseases since we share a similar genetic makeup, the gorillas immune system has not evolved to cope with human diseases and because of this, travelers with any sort of transmittable illness such as flue are not allowed to participate in gorilla trekking.

  1. Where can I trek Mountain Gorillas in Africa?

Mountain gorillas can only be found in 3 countries in the world and only in four national parks. Mountain gorillas live in two populations with one population which is the largest found in Bwindi impenetrable national park in Uganda and the second population in Virunga Conservation Area made up of Mgahinga Gorilla National Park in Uganda, Virunga national park in DR.Congo and Volcanoes national park in Rwanda.

  1. Is gorilla trekking safari

Gorilla trekking safari is completely safe most especially while in their presence, it is common to be threatened by their huge size which will make you think about your own safety. However it is important to note, mountain gorillas available for gorilla trekking have went through gorilla habituation experience making them more friendly to human presence.

  1. When is the best time to trek gorillas in Africa

Gorilla Trekking can be done all year round, however the best time is during the dry season running from June to September and December to February. What makes dry season perfect for gorilla trekking is that the trails are relatively.

Wet season runs from March to May and October to November, gorilla trekking can still be done in this season however the trekking is more challenging.

The advantage of trekking in the wet season is that the rates for lodges are discounted.

  1. What do I need to pack or wear for gorilla trekking in Africa

To enjoy gorilla trekking, you need to have the perfect items for the experience and these should not miss in your packing list

Hiking shoes or boats – it is important to have well fitting and comfortable shoes, if you get waterproof boats the better as the trails used on gorilla trekking are often waterlogged and muddy.

Warm jacket or sweater – Early morning treks are cold that is why it is recommended to bring a warm jacket or sweater for the first hours of the mornings.

Rain jacket – it can rain at any time of the day in gorilla national park since they are dominated by tropical forests, that is why it is advised to have a rain jacket with you.

Hat, sunglasses and sunscreen – at the higher altitudes the sun is so hot that is why you need a hat, sunglasses and sunscreen.

Walking stick – they are provided during the briefing and during the trek, they make the trek through the steep incline of the forests a lot easier.

Longsleeved shirt and long pants – they will protect you from scratches, bites, cuts and thorny vegetation.

Water and packed lunch – it is unpredictable how long the trek will last so it is important to have some water and snack with you, you should carry a lot of water and snacks to energize you.

  1. How long is gorilla trekking?

It is hard to know how long the gorilla trekking will last as it can take approximately 30 minutes – 6 hours depending on the gorilla family you were assigned, where it stayed the previous night and their movement.

You are given hour of being in their presence.

  1. How much is a Gorilla Permit

The cost of gorilla trekking permit depends on the country you are intending to do gorilla trekking that is either Uganda, Rwanda or Democratic Republic of Congo.

DRC – $ 450

Uganda – $ 700

Rwanda – $ 1,500

Although the cost for the experience varies, as you take part in gorilla trekking you contribute significantly to the conservation efforts of mountain gorillas.

  1. Dos and don’ts of gorilla trekking
  • You are required to keep a distance of 7 meters from the gorillas
  • All trekkers must be a minimum age of 15 years to take part in gorilla trekking
  • A maximum of 8 visitors are allowed to see a group of habituated gorillas in a day
  • Always keep your voices low to watch out for other forest wildlife and not to scare the gorillas
  • Do not litter in the forest
  • Do not eat in the presence of gorillas
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