Gorilla Trekking Safaris

Gorilla trekking safaris

Gorilla trekking safaris

Gorilla Trekking in Uganda, Rwanda and Congo 

Gorilla trekking safaris : Gorilla trekking is one of the most sought for wildlife safari activities attracting millions of travelers to East Africa, on this activity visitors encounter these endangered primates in their natural habitat. There are less than 1,000 mountain gorillas left on the plane and they are listed on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.

Mountain gorillas are only found in Uganda, Rwanda and DR. Congo and they can only be seen in natural habitat in Volcanoes national park in Rwanda, Bwindi impenetrable national park and Mgahinga Gorilla national park in Uganda and Virunga National Park in DR.Congo.

There are two mountain gorilla populations, one found in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park which is the biggest number of the remaining population and another population is found in Virunga Conservation Area made up of Volcanoes national park, Mgahinga gorilla national park and Virunga national park.

For travelers who have had a chance to participate in gorilla trekking experience, they describe the activity as a once in a life time experience, this activity starts early in the morning with briefing at the park’s headquarters where you are taken through the rules and regulations to follow.

You are then assigned a gorilla family to trek and in groups of 8 people you proceed to the thick jungles looking for mountain gorillas, the trek lasts between 1 to 8 hours depending on the movement of the particular group you are trekking and you are allowed one hour of being with the gorillas.

uganda gorilla trekking safari

Gorilla Trekking  safaris in Uganda

Uganda – The Pearl of Africa is the best destination in the world to see mountain gorillas, this beautiful country has two gorilla parks where you can see the endangered mountain gorillas that is Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park.

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

Bwindi impenetrable national park is the best place on earth to see mountain gorillas in their natural habitat, the park is located in Southwestern Uganda stretching on the rim of the Rift Valley, The park features mist- covered hillsides blanketed by one of the oldest and most biologically diverse rainforests in Uganda dating back over 25,000 years and contains almost 400 species of plants.

Bwindi impenetrable national park is home to about 450 individuals which is the biggest population found in one area and is half of the world’s  remaining population of mountain gorillas.

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is divided into 4 gorilla trekking sectors is Buhoma sector in the North, Nkuringo sector, Ruhija sector and Rushaga sector in the south. The park has 20 habituated gorilla families which are visited on gorilla safaris in Uganda and each gorilla sector protects its own habituated gorilla families and these include.

Buhoma Sector

  • Mubare Gorilla Family
  • Habinyanja Gorilla Family
  • Rushegura Gorilla Family
  • Katwe Gorilla Family
  • Muyambi Gorilla Family

Ruhija Sector

  • Bitukura Gorilla Family
  • Oruzogo Gorilla Family
  • Kyaguriro Gorilla Family
  • Mukiza Gorilla Family

Nkuringo sector

  • Nkuringo Gorilla Family
  • Bushasho Gorilla Family

Rushaga Sector

  • Nshongi Gorilla Family
  • Bikingi Gorilla Family
  • Mishaya Gorilla Family
  • Kahungye Gorilla Family
  • Bweza Gorilla Family
  • Busingye Gorilla Family
  • Kutu Gorilla Family
  • Mucunguzi Gorilla Family
  • Rwigi Gorilla Family

Mgahinga Gorilla National Park

Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is the second gorilla park in Uganda where you can see mountain gorillas, at size of 33.7 square kilometers Mgahinga is the smallest park in Uganda.

Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is also found in South western Uganda and is part of the Virunga Conservation Area stretching along the three Virunga volcanoes including Mount Gahinga, Mount Sabinyo and Muhabura.

Mgahinga Gorilla National Park hosts over 100 mountain gorillas with 1 habituated gorilla families in the name of Nyakagezi, this gorilla family is known for its tendencies of migrating to Rwanda and Congo but currently has settled in Uganda’s Mgahinga.

mgahinga gorilla trekking

Gorilla Trekking safaris in Rwanda

Rwanda has only one park where gorilla safaris are done that is Volcanoes National Park, the park is part of the Virunga Conservation Area together with other gorilla parks that is Mgahinga Gorilla National Park in Uganda and Virunga National Park in DR.Congo.

Volcanoes National Park

Volcanoes national park is located in the northwestern part of Rwanda covering an area of 16,000 hectares comprising of afro-montane forests, bamboo forests, savanna grassland, vast swamps and 5 volcanoes “Bisoke, Gahinga, Muhabura, Sabyinyo and Karisimbi”.

Volcanoes national park has 10 habituated gorilla families open for gorilla trekking safaris and these include

Susa Gorilla Group (Susa A Family)

Karisimbi Gorilla Group (Susa-B)

Sabyinyo Gorilla Group

Amahoro Gorilla Group

Umubano Gorilla Group

Agashya Gorilla Group

Kwitonda Gorilla Group

Hirwa Gorilla Group

Bwenge Family Group

Ugenda Gorilla Family

Gorilla Trekking safaris in Congo

In DR. Congo, gorilla trekking is done in Virunga national park which is also part of the Virunga Conservation Area.

Virunga National Park

Virunga national park is the most biodiverse protected area in Africa, the park is located in the Eastern part of Democratic Republic of Congo in the eastern region in the Albertine Rift Valley.

Virunga national park was established in 1925 covering an area of 7,768 square kilometers comprising of two active volcanoes that are Mount Nyirangongo and Nyamuragira.

The thick forests of Virunga National Park hosts over 300 mountain gorillas including 8 habituated gorilla families open for gorilla trekking safaris, these gorilla families include

Kabirizi Gorilla group

Humba Gorilla Group

Rugendo Gorilla Group

Mapuwa Gorilla Group

Lulengo Gorilla Group

Munyaga Gorilla Group

Nyakamwe Gorilla Group

Bageni Gorilla Group

When is the best season for gorilla trekking safaris

Africa generally has favorable climatic conditions for gorilla trekking which is a reason to why it can be done all year round, however the most recommended months for gorilla trekking safaris are the dry months of Mid December to Mid – February. In these months less rainfall is received, the trails are less slippery and less making the trekking less tiresome.

If you are planning to visit Africa for gorilla trekking safaris, consider booking your gorilla permit about 6 months before your gorilla trekking safari to avoid missing out.

Requirements for gorilla trekking safaris

For an amazing gorilla trekking experience, you need to have the following items

  • A gorilla trekking permit
  • Porter
  • A level of fitness
  • A bag back
  • Enough drinking water
  • Comfortable and well-fitting hiking shoes
  • Energy giving snacks
  • Long sleeved shirts and long trousers.

Uganda gorilla trekking Packages

3 Days Uganda gorilla trekking safari 

4 Day gorilla trekking and queen elizabeth park safari.

6 Days Uganda gorilla and wildlife safari. 

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