The sad news is that there are only 880 Mountain Gorillas left in the world. The fantastic thing is that we know where to locate them and there are associations that protect them. Rwanda is the destination for those who want to see Mountain Gorillas in their natural habitat. They undeniably form a part of the Top Five Natural Wonders of Rwanda. This is our guide to Gorilla Trekking Safaris in Rwanda!
Rwanda Facts and Travel Information
When to Select a gorilla Hiking safari
Rwanda has a tumultuous history, dominated notably by the genocide of 1994, when roughly 1 million people were killed, however for the last 15 years was decided to put itself back on course and eventually become a destination visited by most tourists in the entire world for its magnificent sceneries and variety of special flora and fauna.
Price of permits for gorilla trekking
Last year I was invited by the Rwanda Development Board (RDB) to explore Rwanda for 10 incredible days. Trekking for Mountain Gorillas was my #1 adventure from the nation.
The difficulty of the Hiking trails
Mountain Gorillas live.
All these hills are home to 480 mountain gorillas, meaning over half of the world population! The rest of them reside in Uganda’s Bwindi Forest. For having to find gorillas the most accessible paths are about the side of those hills, more specifically, Volcanoes National Park. This is really where 7 gorilla groups live — more teams than anywhere in the world. We visited with the Kwitonda family. Kwitonda, which means”little one,” is comprised of 18 members who contains two handsome silverbacks along with a black rear, or younger mature male gorilla.
What to expect Throughout the Afternoon of the trekking
Susa is the largest group living in the park. This massive family has 41 members, which include five year old twins named Byishimo and Impano. Volcanoes National Park is situated a three-hour drive from the capital city of Kigali. However, seeing them requires time, effort, and well-trained guides. Most of the tourists who are determined to see Mountain Gorillas choose to take part at a gorilla trekking safari.
Gorilla trekking etiquette
You can experience this experience throughout the year, but you ought to consider that trekking becomes challenging during the rainy season, which lasts from the month of November and April to May. Ordinarily, most tourists Decide to visit the gorillas between February and December, and from June to September, when Rwanda enjoys the season.
Your gorilla trekking kit
Since 2012 the costs for gorilla trekking in Rwanda climbed to $750 USD/person. Ensure you apply in advance for a license because only 80 enables per day are issued. This cash is utilized for the preservation of the park also, among others, for paying defenses to protect all 7 gorilla groups. Having a license enables you to spend one hour. This is some information regarding booking Rwanda safaris.
The degree of difficulty depends on the weather, the period of the year you stop by with the gorillas and about the class you track with. It involves around two to four hours of trekking, but it can take more if the slopes are slippery and muddy, or you can get the luck to find them following a hike. Take into consideration that you will hike in an altitude of 8,000 — 10,000 feet above sea level, so you could become lightheaded, if you came here from a very low altitude. The ideal thing to do is spend a couple of days in Rwanda, to adjust to the altitude (Rwanda is located in about 5,000 feet).
Expect a morning start and a drive into the Kinigi village, the very beginning point for trekking. The guides speak English and they know their paths, so no worries here. You then driven to the base of the park, and divided into teams of 8, will be informed about gorilla tracking etiquette and some security precautions. Your guides will lead the way and will get access to wireless communicating with the base camp at the entire time. Following some hours, or only one if you’re lucky, you’ll find the opportunity respect and to see the gorillas in their natural habitat. Although many of them will take care more about their visitors and proceed with their activities, some youngsters might be curious to see what you are all about. Keep in mind the gorilla manners!
You should make sure you don’t go near them if you have any infection a one since the gorillas share 98% of DNA. They could grab a cold and, this might be deadly for them, as they don’t have our system. One group of tourists can observe the mountain gorillas each day along with your visit is limited to a single hour.
Always maintain a distance of at least 15 — 20 feet out of gorillas, and if they approach you, it’s your duty to go away without making any abrupt moves and, quite important, any sounds (your guides will brief you before you venture outside trekking). You ought to keep down your tone throughout the visit, not worry them. They are used to seeing folks, but you ought to keep in mind that they are still wild animals. Eating and drinking throughout your visit together is not allowed.
Ensure you wear boots for trekking. It would not hurt to provide you with a few gardening gloves to earn your way through slopes and, of course, a stick will be useful too. Pants are the ideal idea and always pack a waterproof jacket. Bring water and snacks with you you’ll find a break to have a bite. You might hire local porters to maintain your backpack or assist you during the hike’s complex areas. You can take photos of the gorillas, but not use flash.
Gorilla trekking in Rwanda was one of the most rewarding experiences I’ve had in my life. Seeing these incredible creatures close up gave me a deep respect for their species and why it is imperative that we all do our part to save them. It was amazing to see how much the park rangers care about the gorillas. Every year the RDB holds a naming ceremony for 15-17 baby gorillas born every year. This event is an exciting time for the country, and an even more important stride towards gorilla conservation.
Capital city: Kigali
Languages: Kinyarwanda, French, English
Population: Roughly 11 million
Time zone: UTC +2
Currency: Rwandan Franc (RWF)
Health problems: Rwanda is a yellow fever zone. The CDC recommends obtaining the vaccine before traveling to Rwanda. In actuality, Rwanda’s authorities demands evidence of yellow fever vaccination for all travellers over 9 months of age. Nations may also ask the evidence of vaccination in just 6 months of traveling to Rwanda. The CDC recommends Hepatitis A and Typhoid vaccines for travel to Rwanda. Malaria isn’t uncommon. Check with a travel clinic to see which malaria prophylaxis therapy is perfect for you. Please be aware that it isn’t required to go to Rwanda if you would like to not take malaria medicine. Travelers can’t tolerate the side effects of malaria pills and opt to safeguard themselves by wearing long trousers, jeans, and using mosquito repellent.
Climate: Rwanda experiences two rainy seasons and two dry seasons throughout the year. The more rainy season generally brings persistent rains and lasts from March to May. The shorter rainy season lasts from October to November. The ideal time to visit with Rwanda is shortly after the rainy season, from June. In this time the roads are much safer and you won’t get bogged down by heavy downpours.
Accommodation: There are only a few options in the area. Gorillas Nest is your ideal accommodation on the foothill of the park. Also below are a few discount codes for Travelodge.co.uk.
Special thanks to the Rwanda Development Board.
Thus, what do you say? Are you planning to go gorilla trekking in Rwanda? Or you and the mountain gorillas already visited with? Have you got a few strategies to inform?