Gorilla trekking in Rwanda.

The gorilla trekking activity in Rwanda entails traversing through thick rainforests in search of wild mountain gorillas. The gorillas in Rwanda inhabit a section of the Virunga mountains, especially in the bamboo forests on the slopes of five of the 8 Virunga volcanoes that is to say Mikeno, Bisoke, Nyiragongo, Nyamuragira and Karisimbi. Rwanda hosts a section of the world’s only remaining endangered mountain gorillas in her Volcanoes National Park.

Volcanoes National Park.

Seated in the heart of Africa, Volcanoes National Park protects the captivating evergreen steep slopes of the Virunga Mountain ranges. The National Park prides itself on the rich mosaic of Afro-montane ecosystems and raised landscapes that form breathtaking scenery. The park gets its name volcanoes from the many volcanoes that form the area. A visit to the park exposes the traveler to the evergreen moist rainforests, riverine vegetation, bamboo forests, swamps, heath and moorland, and most notably the primates especially the mountain gorillas.

How gorilla trekking is done and what it costs in Rwanda.

Mountain gorilla trekking activities begin early in the morning at around 7:00 AM. They are kickstarted with a briefing that is conducted by the park Rangers to help equip the visitors with information on what they are to do and what to stay away from when on the gorilla trek.  The briefing usually ends at around 8:00 AM and then visitors get accompanied to the jungle to explore and meet the gorillas. This activity may go on for six to eight hours. The duration of the trek usually depends on the location of the gorilla family and the trekking speed of the visitors.

The trek takes visitors through diverse landscapes traversing through the thick forests made up of various tree species crossing various streams and hiking mountains.

13 gorilla families in Rwanda are fully habituated and readily available on a daily to be accessed by visitors. Each family is only allowed a maximum of eight people per day. The families are; Sabyinyo, Susa, Umubano, Titus, Karisimbi, Kwitonda, Hirwa, Bwenge, Agashya, Ugyenda, Muhoza, Isimbi and Amahoro. Each of the families is composed of various individuals under the leadership of a dominant silverback who is responsible for protection and guidance at all times in the jungle.

It is important to note that visitors can only trek one gorilla family at a go. Booking Rwanda gorilla permits can be done through registered tour operators. A gorilla trekking permit in Rwanda costs $1500 per person per trek.

How to get to the park.

Accessing Volcanoes National Park is quite an easy procedure since it is only 2 hours and 30-minute drive away from Kigali International Airport.

Visitors can be transported in comfortable safari vehicles by professional tourist guides who pride themselves in the experience they’ve gathered over the years and the knowledge about the gorillas in their land that they happily share and pass on to the travelers.

The park can also be accessed through southern Uganda via the Katuna border post.

Favorable time to visit.

The most favorable time to visit Volcanoes National Park is during the dry seasons. This helps the visitor to maneuver through the thick tropical rainforests and the mountainous terrain with limited hardships since they are characterized by low rainfall and therefore less mud but steady grounds.

The dry seasons are categorized into two that is to say the short dry season from December to late February and the long dry season from early June to late September.



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