As you plan a gorilla trekking safari Uganda on your Africa safari tour, be sure that there is something unique about the Mountain Gorilla trekking safari experience in Uganda. Gorilla trekking tours in Uganda take place in the remote rain forests of Uganda in only two National Park; Bwindi Impenetrable National Park Uganda and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. Besides being home to these endangered mountain gorillas, Bwindi and Mgahinga initially were home to the forest people; the Batwa pygmies. Batwa is one of the most treasured indigenous tribes besides the Ik.
On your Uganda gorilla safari day, you are expected to be at the park headquarters before 8am for briefing about the Do’s and Don’t s of the gorilla safari tours in Uganda. After briefing, get your excitement ready to trek and the reward for your trek is getting close to these gentle apes. As part of your adventure, you will get a kind feeling and acknowledgment that they are much the same as us,since you will watch them in heir closely attached family groups, obviously headed by a “parent”, the dominant silver back there to serve as their defender and protector.
In spite of the fact that these apes are still considered as endangered species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, Mountain Gorilla numbers have continuously been growing with each year, as their remarkable numbers of new borns and less deaths on account of strict conservation effort and protection of their habitat. There estimated to be more than 1004 gorilla species, residing in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in Uganda and in the Virunga conservation area; home to the Volcanoes National Park Rwanda, Mgahinga Gorilla National Park Uganda and Virunga National Park in Congo.
Practical guide to booking a gorilla trekking safari in Uganda
Get a Uganda safari tour company of your choice like Prime Safaris & Tours Ltd, get your gorilla trekking permit booked for you before you confirm your flights dates and after pay so your permit is secured on time. There are a good number of tourists that are interested in gorilla tours in Uganda so there is a lot of competition for Gorilla permits especially during the peak seasons of June – September. Uganda offers a maximum of 144 Gorilla permits per day, and 8 available for Gorilla habituation.
The numbers of tourist traveling to see mountain Gorillas in the wild increases each year, therefore it is important to book your Uganda Gorilla Safari tour ahead of time. Accordingly, the government of Rwanda has doubled the cost of Gorilla permits from $750 to $1500 Per Person for 1 hour with the Gorillas to limit the number of visitors. A gorilla permit in Uganda still goes for $600 Per Person, while Congo Gorilla Safari permits go for $450.
Uganda is very safe to visit and comfortable for a safari Uganda or Uganda safari with no security issues. Visitors are guided by well-trained rangers, escorted by military armed guards during gorilla trekking in the wilderness. Visitors’ safety is a priority since tourism is a major revenue earner for these countries’ budgets.
What to pack for gorilla trekking
Gorilla trekking Safaris Uganda take you climbing through the wilderness in search for mountain gorillas, it is essential that you pack the right clothing and footwear to protect you from nettles, slippery grounds, branches and many more.
And for that matter, don’t forget the following…
- A pair of waterproof hiking boots, as the trails get slippery when it rains.
- Dress in long trousers to protect your skin against nettles, thorns, long sleeved shirts and a light rain jacket in case of rain.
- A pair of sturdy garden gloves to protect your hands, in case you touch nettles, thorns, vines, etc.
- Insect repellent is a must.
- Essentials for your trek
- Keep on time for your briefing! If you skip the briefing, you cannot trek to see gorillas.
- Hire a porter to carry your day pack.
- A hiking stick comes in handy.
- Work on your physical fitness.
- Note that gorilla trekking is possible even for the very old and the disabled.
The Batwa cultural experience in Uganda
Echuya Batwa, mostly known as Pygmies, are the most marginalized, vulnerable and voiceless group of indigenous people in Uganda. The Batwa were the first inhabitants of the forests of Bwindi and Mgahinga, but were affected forever with the establishment of the National Game Parks. When Uganda Wildlife Authority established the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and Mgahinga National Park in 1991, the indigenous Batwa were evicted from their forests, and didn’t even receive any compensation. They were pushed to live on the edges of the other Ugandan society, experiencing consistent and extensive discrimination. And the Batwa became conservation refugees.
Visiting the Batwa
We always tailor this experience after gorilla trekking as it gives a tourist ample time to rest and freshen the mind. The Batwa Experience activity was created by the Batwa pygmies themselves to educate their children and to share their heritage and traditions with the rest of the world. A moment with them will give you one of the undisputed and memorable encounter with a marginalized culture. This tour gets more interesting since this is the very destination for Uganda Gorilla trekking safari tours in the forests of Bwindi and Mgahinga in Uganda.
Trekking to see gorillas is a standout amongst the most fulfilling and fascinating adventures, not to only save the critically endangered species, as well as to help the poor communities around the national parks.