Have you ever wondered why gorilla trekking in Volcanoes National Park is a once-in-a-lifetime experience? Let us unveil the captivating reasons that make this adventure truly extraordinary.
Rwanda’s gorilla tracking encounters take place in Volcanoes National Park, a mesmerizing sanctuary nestled on the slopes of the volcanic Virunga massif. Spanning three countries, including Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo, this park stands as one of the few places on Earth where you can witness the majestic mountain gorillas, the largest of all great apes, thriving in their natural habitat. Partnering with Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, it remains the ultimate destination for experiencing these magnificent creatures up close.
Currently, only around 1,000 mountain gorillas exist in the wild, making Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda the premier location for gorilla tracking in the region. It boasts rigorous management, well-trained rangers and trackers, and a limited permitting process. Each day, a maximum of just 80 guests is allowed, divided into groups of 8, ensuring an intimate and unspoiled experience. As demand soars from burgeoning economies like China, Russia, and Brazil, securing these coveted permits has become increasingly challenging. Rwanda, though doubling the permit cost from $750 to $1,500 in 2017, still grapples with high demand.
Dian Fossey, a renowned primate researcher, left an indelible mark on gorilla conservation when she chose to live and interact with mountain gorillas on the slopes of the Virunga Massif. Her pioneering work and the subsequent movie adaptation, “Gorillas in the Mist,” brought global attention to this unique wildlife experience. Gorilla tracking sets itself apart as the only wildlife encounter where you can step out of your vehicle and approach these remarkable creatures—an experience unparalleled among lions, elephants, buffaloes, rhinos, and the Big Five.
Volcanoes National Park sits just two hours from Kigali International Airport, easily accessible from Rwanda’s capital, Kigali. From your lodge, you embark on an early morning drive to the park’s welcome center, with the treks commencing 30-45 minutes away on four-wheel-drive roads.
For those seeking additional adventure, Uganda’s Mgahinga and Bwindi Impenetrable National Parks, located nearby, offer an alternative gorilla tracking experience. Permits here cost a more modest $600. Keep in mind that infrastructure on the Ugandan side is less developed, and the hikes are more challenging.
Unearth the magic of gorilla trekking in Volcanoes National Park by contacting Trek Africa Expeditions for a deeper understanding of this remarkable experience.