How to book mountain gorilla safaris in Uganda?
How to book mountain gorilla safaris in Uganda? Booking a safari to Uganda to see mountain gorillas is very easy as this can be done right away on your phone from whichever part of the world you are in. The first way a person can book a gorilla safari in Uganda is by contacting the Uganda Wildlife Authority for a permit thereafter securing it they can go ahead to contact the accommodation owners and lastly the car hire service providers.
The simplest way however to book a gorilla safari in Uganda is by using a local tour company but you need to make sure they are registered so that they don’t you’re your money. Africa Adventure Vacations limited is one of the local tour companies that is licensed to book and organize gorilla safaris in Uganda on behalf of travelers. When using Africa Adventure Vacations limited to book a gorilla safari for you in Uganda, first thing we do ask you ae the travel dates so that we first secure a permit before something else.
We do use these dates to check for availability of the gorilla permits with the Uganda Wildlife Authority and once we have found that the permits are available on the days you want to travel then we shall request you to send us money for booking and once we have received it, we shall go ahead and book the permits for you.
After securing the permits we then rest assure you of meeting the mountain gorillas so what we do is we book accommodation facilities where you will stay while on your safari. For the vehicles, we don’t have to book because we do have so many safari vehicles with us at the company. Always book your safari in advance for better preparations and in the case of the gorilla permits it’s better you book 3-4 months in advance.
Where in Uganda are mountain gorilla safaris done?
Mountain gorilla safaris in Uganda are done in only 2 places and these include Mgahinga national park which is referred to as the smallest mountain gorilla park and then Bwindi impenetrable forest national park which is the most famous when it comes to mountain gorilla trekking in the world. Both of the national parks are found in southwestern Uganda in the tropical forests and montane forests of Kabale, Kisoro, and Kanungu districts.
Bwindi impenetrable forest national park alone is located in the three districts of Kabale, Kanungu, and Kisoro covering a total area of 331 km. sq. Bwindi impenetrable forest as of today harbors the biggest population of mountain gorillas that are left surviving in the world and these do live in the 4 sectors of the park which are Ruhija in the East, Buhoma in the North, Nkuringo, and Rushaga in the southern sector of the park.
Bwindi impenetrable forest national park has over 19 habituated mountain gorilla families of which 7 are found in Rushaga sector, 3 are found in Nkuringo sector, 5 are in Buhoma sector and 4 are in Ruhija sector. All these mountain gorillas are open for trekking at any time of the year with only those that possess the mountain gorilla trekking permits and exceed the age of 15 years.
In Bwindi impenetrable forest national park, we do find 2 mountain gorilla families that are currently undergoing habituation. The 2 mountain gorilla families currently undergoing habituation are Bushaho and Bikingi and these do live in the 2 sectors of Rushaga and Nkuringo in the southern sector of the park. Mountain gorilla habituation is a bit expensive compared to mountain gorilla trekking with a single permit going for $1500 for foreign residents, $1000 foreign residents, and shs750,000 citizens of East Africa. The mountain gorilla habituation permit does allow each trekker to be around mountain gorillas for 4 hours and in this time, they are allowed to make the mountain gorillas get used to human presence.
Mgahinga national park is the second national park that comes to a person’s mind when it comes to mountain gorilla trekking in Uganda. It’s located in the southwestern part of the country near Bwindi impenetrable forest national park but on the borders with volcanoes national park of Rwanda and Virunga national park of DR Congo all these protecting mountain gorillas. Mgahinga national park protects over 80 mountain gorillas and it has only 1 gorilla family that has been fully habituated in the parka and ready for tourism.
Spend 1 hour with mountain gorillas in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park and Mgahinga national park
Mountain gorilla trekking is the most done activity in Bwindi and Mgahinga and being part of this amazing activity means that you have made your dream come true. The trekking of mountain gorillas in any of these parks requires one to have a valid gorilla trekking permit. The gorilla trekking is got from Uganda Wildlife Authority or from a trusted local tour operator and this should be secured in advance of 3-4 months to avoid inconveniences.
On the day of mountain gorillas trekking in Bwindi and Mgahinga national park, the trekkers are expected to be at the briefing centers every early in the morning to hear what the rangers have to say. During the briefing time, the rangers are taught about the dos and don’ts of the mountain gorilla trekking activities and from there the ranger guides lead the different trekking groups into the jungle to search for the mountain gorilla families.
During the search, the trekkers are likely to see different park animals like hyenas, buffaloes, monkeys, elephants, giant forest hogs, duikers, birds, and different vegetation types. Upon finding the mountain gorilla family, the trekkers are given 1 hour to be around mountain gorillas and in this time they are can watch them do daily activities like nesting, hunting, the silverback patrolling, get to learn about their habits by asking different questions the ranger guide and take photos.
Spend 4 hours with mountain gorillas in Uganda
It’s only in Uganda where travelers get to spend 4 hours with the endangered mountain gorillas in the whole world. Mountain gorilla habituation is the activity that makes trekkers spend 4 hours with mountain gorillas and in the whole world, it’s done in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. It’s only possible in 2 sectors of the park which are Rushaga and Nkuringo all in the south of the park.
Mountain gorilla habituation in Rushaga and Nkuringo sectors starts with a briefing at the sector offices where trekkers are taught about the dos and don’ts of the habituation activity. the rangers there after group the trekkers not exceeding 4 people and they are led by anger guides together with researchers and conservationists into the jungle to search for these semi habituated mountain gorilla families.
During the search, the trekkers are like to spot some of the park animals such as monkeys, buffaloes, forest elephants, duikers, giant forest hogs, birds, and different plant species. On meeting either Bikingi or Bushaho mountain gorilla families, the trekkers are given 4 hours according to permit rules to be around mountain gorillas, and during these hours, they are allowed to make the mountain gorillas get used to human presence, watch them do daily activities like hunting, playing, breastfeeding, nesting, learn about their behaviors and take photos.
What is the best time to book a mountain gorilla safari to Uganda?
Booking of a mountain gorilla safari to Uganda can be done at any time of the year even if it’s 5 years before the day of trekking because the booking is always allowed to be done. However, we normally advise our clients to book their gorilla safari to Uganda at least 3-4 months in advance. Booking in advance is advised because the permits do sell out quickly most especially in the dry season since that is the time most of the people are traveling into the country and the permits being sold on at a first come first serve basis at Uganda wildlife authority.
Where to stay on when you book mountain gorilla safaris in Uganda
Tourists on a Uganda mountain gorilla safari have a lot of places where they can stay since several accommodation facilities are built in and around these parks. For the case of Mgahinga national park, the accommodation facilities include Mount Gahinga Safari Lodge, Nkuringo Safari Lodge, Clouds Mountain Gorilla Lodge, Amajambere I’wacu Camp, Lake Chahafi Resort, Kisoro Tourist Hotel, Traveler’s Nest Hotel, Ikoro Hotel, Chameleon Hill Lodge, Mountain Gahinga Rest Camp, and Mountain Gahinga Lodge among others.
For Bwindi impenetrable forest national park, you will have to use the accommodation in the sector that you are going to trek in order to keep time at the briefing point in the morning. Some of the accommodations in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park include Gorilla Safari Lodge, Buhoma Lodge, Nkuringo Gorilla Safari Lodge, Rushaga Gorilla Havens Lodge, Engagi Lodge, Jungle View Lodge, Nkuringo Bwindi Gorilla Lodge, Nkuringo Gorilla Camp, Jungle View Lodge, Gorilla Heights Lodge, Rushaga Gorilla Lodge, Silverback Lodge, Sanctuary Gorilla Forest Camp, Chameleon Hill Lodge, Bakiga Lodge, Ruhija Safari Lodge, Gorilla Heights Lodge, Four Gorilla Lodge, Ichumbi Gorilla Lodge, Bwindi View Lodge, and Volcanoes Safaris Bwindi Lodge among others.
What is the best time to book mountain gorilla safaris in Uganda?
Uganda can be visited at any time of the year for mountain gorilla trekking but there are some days of the year that are better than the rest. The days during the dry season are good to have a mountain gorilla safari in Uganda since during that period, there is little or no rainfall, the vegetation in the park is thin giving clear views of the park animals, the trekking trails are dry, and the roads to the park are passable.
Tourists intending to visit the park in the dry season are advised to book their gorilla trekking permits in advance of 3-4 months in order to avoid inconveniences since the permits are sold on a first come first serve basis. Those intending to visit Uganda for mountain gorilla trekking in the rainy season can still do so and they will enjoy the benefits of huge discounts on accommodation activities. The rainy season in Uganda happens from October to November and March to May and is characterized by too much rainy fall, slippery roads that are impassable, muddy and slippery trekking trails and the vegetation in the park is always thick giving unclear views of the park animals and unclear photography.
What to do with Africa Adventure Vacations?
Africa adventure vacations is a tour company based in Uganda licensed by the Uganda Tourism Board and a member of the Association of Uganda Tour Operators. Booking with Africa adventure vacations provides you safety and confidence during your safari courtesy of well-trained safari driver guides who are well conversant with all routes and tourism destinations in Africa. You can book with us any of the activities you want to do in Africa such as mountain gorilla trekking, mountain gorilla habituation, Chimpanzee trekking and habituation, birdwatching, golden monkey trekking, game drives, hiking, nature walks, and community tours among others. To book mountain gorilla safaris in Uganda can be done at any time of the year.