About Rwanda Gorilla Safaris
Rwanda is a famous destination for Mountain gorillas, and majority of these are discovered in Volcanoes National Park. The country has 10 habituated gorilla groups with a limit number of eight visitors per day. Each gorilla permit costs $ 1500 per person per trek. Visitors are strictly given one hour to enjoy the presence of the gorillas. Gorilla trekking is such an amazing experience that needs everyone to be physically fit, since you have to hike through the thick vegetation and rugged terrain in search for the gorillas. Hiking is strenuous and so you are advised to walk on your own pace, remember to carry a bottle of water to enable you see the gorillas when you are safe and sound. Children below the age of 15years are not allowed to trek gorillas. However elders may get a chance to see these mountain gorillas, some groups are easily tracked without any difficulties. With such an adventurous safari, no one should stop you from organizing a trip in Rwanda.
For several years, these gorillas have been habituated and actually love the company of visitors. On a good day, some gorillas may get closer to you; however this should not scare you because they are not harmful. Knowledgeable guides will escort you in the forest and these are always armed just in case of anything. They are so familiar with the gorillas and can easily detect where they were the previous day. They will encourage you to follow the gorilla etiquette as it’s the only way to enjoy your search in the thick impenetrable forest.
How Many Times Can You Track The Gorillas?
Visitors are allowed to track as many times as they wish as long as they buy the needed gorilla permits for each day. In case you are to track twice, you are assigned different gorilla groups to enable you experience them differently. Permits are always on high demand and booked in advance. If you don’t plan easier, you may miss out on seeing the great mountain gorillas. Take note, a gorilla permit in Rwanda costs Usd 1500.Its expensive but the encounter is rewarding.
Best Time To Visit The Mountain Gorillas
Tracking gorillas in Rwanda is exciting since its a year- around adventure. There is not specific time, any time to good for tracking gorillas. The weather is hard to predict and so it often rains in Volcanoes National Park. Even when you expect it to be a dry season, it may still rain.
All visitors are requested to be at the headquarters at 8:30am for briefing about the rules and guidelines that govern gorilla trekking. Porters are available at a fee just in case you get tired. You may be required to walk long distances but this will depend on where the gorillas where were the previous day. However this is what makes the entire hike exciting and worth your money and time.
While at the headquarters, you are split into groups according to the assigned to you and off you go with the ranger guide.
This activity allows people who fit and can walk over slippery and muddy terrain. Its advisable to pack the right safari clothes as well as hiking boots or shoes. Some visitors tend to forget to carry these items and end up ruining their safari. The hiking boots will protect you from barbed vines, bamboo thickets, nettles and other insects. Therefore plan in advance to have everything necessary packed for your trip.
Keep in mind that the slopes are sharp and enclosed in thick vegetation. In addition, the high altitude of 5,200 feet simply means you will have to walk faster in search for the gorillas and be able to return in time. Nonetheless, there are moments when you will need to stop to catch a breath, you will supported by walking sticks which are provided by rangers. After a wonderful time with the gorillas, you are requested to report to the headquarters and there after proceed to your lodge.
Take note of the weather in Rwanda as your plan for your gorilla trek.
The climate in the Virungas is always moist, and the temperatures range from 50°F to (10°C).
Rainy Season; the heavy rains are from mid-march to mid-may, this is the time when the roads are impassible. Other months that experience long rains include October to November.
Dry Season; the best months for gorilla trekking include June to September as well as January to February.Hoever expect thunderstorms in the afternoons or anytime of the day.
Below are some of the recommended best safari clothes and gear.
*Short Sleeved Shirt or T-shirt
*A small lightweight waterproof, frameless backpack/bag
*Leather or durable canvas along with gloves
*Thick socks in addition to gaiters to put on over your pants or shoes.
*Waterproof, light hiking shoes or boots with treaded soles
*Rain jackets, pants and top with hood
*Safari hat, water bottle