Is Gorilla Trekking Worth It?
Is Gorilla Trekking Worth It? Mountain gorillas can only be found in four national parks in the whole world, which are volcanoes national park Rwanda, Virunga national park DR Congo, Bwindi impenetrable forest national park, and Mgahinga gorilla national park in Uganda. Mountain gorillas stay on high elevations of subtropical and tropical rain forests.
Mountain gorillas are very calm and quiet animals but can become very aggressive when provoked, they express their annoyance by moving on two legs, beating chests, making loud hots, tearing and throwing vegetation and if the opponent does not back off with these warnings a gorilla will attack. Female mountain gorillas also fight for the protection of their loved ones if there is any threat.
Trekking mountain gorillas is worth it because you will have time to meet eye to eye with the human closest relatives in their natural habitat for a maximum of one hour. Mountain gorillas cannot be found in zoos because they cannot survive in captivity. The Batwa group of people have also benefited from gorilla trekking activities through traditional performances and acting as porters. The conservation efforts have led to the increase of mountain gorilla numbers from 300 in the 19th century to about 1008 mountain gorillas living in the world today.
Gorilla trekking is also worth it because the money got from gorilla permits is used for the conservation efforts of these great apes, the conservation efforts will enable the upcoming age group to also meet eye to eye with mountain gorillas so everyone who treks mountain gorillas contributes to conservation.
Conservation of mountain gorillas is also with considering the fact that the local communities also benefit from gorilla trekking, Uganda allocates 20% of gorilla trekking fee to the locals and 10% is allocated to the local people of Rwanda. This has also led to the creation of awareness of the importance of mountain gorillas and locals no longer have to poach mountain gorillas for bushmeat because they’re contented with the money given to them.
Price of gorilla permits
Gorilla trekking is the most expensive tourist activity in Africa with Rwanda offering the most expensive gorilla permits at $1500 per person per trek, Uganda gorilla permits cost $700 for foreign nonresidents, $600 foreign residents, and shs250,000 East African citizens, DR Congo offers the cheapest gorilla permits with each costing $450 in the dry season and $200 in the low season all this per person per trek.
Best time to visit mountain gorillas
The best time to trek mountain gorillas in Uganda, Rwanda, and DR Congo is during the dry season of June to September and December to February when these months have less rainfall with trials being passable and the roads leading to the park being dry.
This normally happens in the months of June, July, August September, December, January, and February. During these months less rainfall is experienced as it’s overtaken by the sunshine.
January-February and June-September is the best period to do gorilla trekking both in Uganda and Rwanda. Although this period is termed as year-round up activities, these two countries during this period are always experiencing dry seasons hence enabling visitors to choose trekking in the dry season also known as the high seasons.
December is also another busy month. It’s the busiest month of the year based on the fact that the whole world is always off for Christmas holidays and year-end. Therefore, we strongly advise you to book your gorilla trekking permits as early as possible to avoid disappointments and for proper planning.
If you need the best gorilla trekking conditions with no worries about prices, the high season is the best for you. these countries Uganda and Rwanda have raised topography meaning the climate is fairly cool throughout the year, despite some serious walking/hiking that may result in feeling hot.
Tourists who usually come in low season experience real adventure to the fullest. This is because, during the low season, there are always few people in the jungle. There are also price reductions in accommodation facilities since fewer tourists come into the country and lodges are in less demand in this season and there is always availability of gorilla and chimpanzee permits because of fewer tourists coming in.
While in rainy seasons you may incur some challenges in traveling both in Uganda and Rwanda, a day is never lost due to rains, surprisingly days have both rain and sunshine, this means that despite wetness and coldness its usually favorable for you to continue with your activities as stated in your itinerary whether it rains or not gorilla trekking is conducted daily as it has never been canceled due to the bad weather.
What to pack for gorilla trekking?
You need to pack waterproof hiking shoots, hiking jeans, long-sleeved shirts, garden gloves, a rain jacket, a camera and extra batteries, a hat, sunglasses, a pair of gaiters, a light backpack, insect repellents, energy snacks, enough drinking water, face mask, and sanitizer.
In conclusion, if your are still asking if it is worth to pay the price for Gorilla Trekking in Uganda, Rwanda or DR Congo, well, gorilla trekking is every person’s dream come true that every traveler should try and most of those who have had an opportunity of trekking the great apes have never regret