1 Day Rwanda Gorilla Tour Expedition

What exactly is Gorilla Trekking?

Gorilla trekking is an amazing and magical experience that will get you up close with the mountain gorillas in their natural habitats. Gorilla trekking entails all-day search and interaction for mountain gorillas. The encounter is reviewed as magical and the most wonderful wildlife experience in the world. Throngs of travelers swarm into Rwanda and Uganda to have this thrilling and unforgettable encounter with the gentle giants of the mountains in Bwindi, Volcanoes and Virunga National parks.

What is the best time to go for Gorilla Trekking ?

It is undeniably true that every traveler will always want to visit for gorilla trekking when really the season is at its best to have the best of the trek and adventure with the mountain gorillas. Much as gorilla trekking in Uganda and Rwanda can be all year round activity, There are often months that are considered to be the driest months; June, to September and December up to February, which makes this the best time to visit for gorilla trekking adventures. However, Bwindi Impenetrable Forest which has the highest concentration of the mountain gorillas receives rain almost daily since it is a tropical rainforest which implies that even during the driest months, it will rain or at least sprinkle drizzles.

Gorilla trekking is also divided into seasons especially if you are to go to Rwanda for the trek. There is a high season where the gorilla permits are rated at USD1500.00 and USD600.00 per person in Rwanda and Uganda respectively. If you like to save money off your travel budget, then you can opt for the low season gorilla permits available in RWANDA ONLY at only USD1050.00 per gorilla trek. You can get more help and travel advice about the best time to visit for gorilla trekking in Rwanda or Uganda here:

Where Can I go for Gorilla Trekking in Africa?

The thrilling adventure of Gorilla trekking can be done in the Bwindi impenetrable forest national park in Uganda, and the Virunga massifs which is shared by Mgahinga, Volcanoes and Virunga national parks in Uganda, Rwanda and Congo respectively. Gorilla trekking can be done in any of the three destinations or even opt to customize a tour package to cover all the three destinations for that magical experience with the gorilla giants.

How much is the gorilla permit?

To enjoy the amazing gorilla trekking experience in Uganda or Rwanda, you are required to obtain a valid permit from the national authorities who manage the gorilla parks. In Uganda, you can get the gorilla trekking permit from Uganda Wildlife Authority and travelers to Rwanda can obtain the gorilla permit at Rwanda Development Board. Rwanda gorilla permit costs USD1500 whereas visitors to Uganda only pay USD600 to trek the mountain gorillas in Bwindi National Park and Mgahinga gorilla national park.

The gorilla permit which is non-reusable, allows you to spend a maximum of one hour with the mountain gorillas once you find them after a hike and search for them.

When Can I book for the gorilla trekking permit?

Gorilla trekking permits should be booked at least 6 months in advance. The high demand for gorilla permits requires travelers to book as early as possible and secure them in time. Last minutes bookings are discouraged since they are limited and you may miss out the thrilling adventure with the gorillas. To travelers planning to visit for gorilla trekking, you can contact our tour expert planners to have an insight about the safari package. You can pay a 30% booking fee to ensure that your permit is reserved and avoid any disappointments on the day of gorilla trekking.

What is included in a gorilla trekking tour package?

Included

  • Gorilla Trekking Permit
  • Airport Transfers
  • Bottled Water
  • Experienced English speaking Driver
  • 4X4 Safari car for Transportation
  • All mentioned activities except for the optional ones

Not Included

  • Tourist Entry Visa
  • International Flight Tickets
  • Travel Insurance
  • Laundry, Alcoholic drinks/spirits
  • Tips and Gratuities

What is the age limit for Gorilla Trekking?

In both countries (Uganda and Rwanda), there is an age limit that regulates who should go for gorilla trekking in the jungles of the mountain forests. The standard age limit is 15 years regardless of the body shape and appearance. The implementation of the age limit is to ensure the safety of travelers and mountain gorillas in the jungle. However, if a child is almost making 15 years, his/her parent can sign an agreement as fully responsible for anything that may happen to the child during the trekking time. The letter is written and signed by the parent and then submitted to the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) or Rwanda Development Board (RDB) for confirmation.

How long does it take to trek and find the gorillas?

The gorilla trekking exercise in Uganda or Rwanda does vary on factors such as the current gorilla group location, their previous habitat, how are the movements, and the harmony situation between the different groups. Approximately, the trek can last from within 30 minutes to 6 hours of the search until you find. However, our tour experts are always available to give you insights on which gorilla family is the easiest to trek so that you don’t strain yourself to trek the far placed families unless you wish to exercise.  Contact any of our experts for a guided tour overview of the gorilla trekking adventure.

What should be packed for gorilla trekking?

If you are to enjoy the best of gorilla trekking in Africa, you, therefore, need to carry the best items that will be useful during the trek. Our tour experts advise that you carry long-sleeved shirts, put on khaki trousers, wear long socks to enable you tack in your trousers, garden gloves, a hat, sunglasses, hiking boots, insect repellents and some energy giving foods. More about packing list and gorilla trekking gear.

Can one do gorilla trekking in Bwindi via Kigali, Rwanda?

Since Bwindi Impenetrable forest, Uganda prime gorilla trekking destination is very close to Rwanda’s capital Kigali, this has provided a platform to allow travelers book Uganda gorilla permits at USD600 and trek the gorillas from Kigali in a just 4 hours drive to Bwindi contrary to the 8-9 hours journey from Kampala/Entebbe. Therefore, it is very possible to trek Uganda or Bwindi gorillas through Rwanda by flying through Kigali International airport and With the introduction of the East African tourist visa, one can now visit both Uganda and Rwanda without hassle. The good news also is that one can now apply for Rwanda Visa upon arrival something that is making the process of obtaining Rwanda visa easy. East African tourist visa costs USD100.00 and allows you to visit three east African countries of Uganda, Rwanda and Uganda. Contact Ikaze Rwanda Tours for amazing tour packages in Bwindi through Kigali airport. 

What about the gorilla habituation experience?

Gorilla habituation experience is a unique gorilla trekking experience that allows researchers, trekkers, and primatologists to share and interact with the mountain gorillas for a longer time (4 hours a day).  This new activity takes place only in Rushaga located in the southern part of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. The Gorilla habituation experience started in 2014 to cater for tourists that have less time but want to spend more hours with mountain gorillas. Tourists and researchers who book for gorilla habituation safaris are able to see the mountain and learn their behaviors as they get used to human presence. The reserved gorilla families for habituation 

Though quite expensive, the hours spent with the gorillas are a worthy experience to the travelers. A gorilla habituation permit costs USD1500 with a maximum of 4 hours with the gorillas and a maximum of 4 people contrary to the 8 persons allocated for the normal trek.

How many people are allowed to do gorilla trekking at ago?

To minimize the contraction of human diseases and disturbing the peace of the mountain gorillas, a maximum of eight (8) people are allowed to visit a particular gorilla family daily. This means that a total of eight permits are issued out per day for each gorilla group in Rwanda an Uganda or even those trekking gorillas in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The allocation of travelers to trek particular gorilla groups may depend on one’s ability to hike the jungles, and also the interest of the travelers about certain gorilla families. All trekkers are advised to inform the ranger guides about their hiking abilities before the trek begins so as to get a suitable gorilla family they can hike with no difficulty. 

Are there discounted gorilla permits in Rwanda?

Unlike Uganda who abolished the low season gorilla permits, Rwanda is the leading country with the discounted gorilla permits, sometimes referred to as ‘Low season permits’. These discounted permits are always available in the months of May and November. However, they come with terms and conditions; that is to say, a traveller must book for at least 3 or more days in one of National Parks in park; either in Akagera National Park and Nyungwe Forest National Park.

The discounted gorilla permits cost USD1050.00 so as to trek the mountain gorillas in the Volcanoes National Park. This discounted fee includes Volcanoes Park entry fees for Volcanoes National Park, watching mountain gorilla for one hour with habituated mountain gorillas and services of well-trained gorilla ranger or guide but does not include the cost of the safari in the other parks that are a MUST to get the discounts.

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