Is Gorilla Trekking Safe in Uganda and Rwanda?
Is Gorilla Trekking Safe in Uganda and Rwanda?
Yes, trekking gorillas in Uganda and Rwanda is safe. A pleasant vacation area is one that is safe, and in Africa, the safest places to go gorilla trekking are Uganda and Rwanda. To take a vacation and escape the hassles of daily life, one saves his or her hard-earned money. Nobody wants to take a vacation where there is a chance they won’t make it back home alive.
Safaris for trekking gorillas in Uganda take place in Bwindi Impenetrable and Mgahinga National Parks, both of which are in the country’s far south-western region. The Bwindi Impenetrable National Park was divided into two sectors, the southern sector and the northern sector, due to its enormous size. The park currently boasts the most habituated gorilla families in the world, and for ease of management, these families are grouped into gorilla trekking regions. The Buhoma area, Ruhija area, Nkuringo area, and Rushaga area are among the gorilla trekking regions in Uganda.
Rwandan gorilla trekking takes place in Volcanoes National Park, which is located in the country’s northwest. The park is 160 square kilometers in size. Volcanoes National Park has predominantly mountainous geography. A lovely green picture of lofty mountains and lowlands is created by its five Virunga volcanoes. Mountain Karisimbi, Mountain Bisoke, Mountain Muhavura, Mountain Sabyinyo, and Mountain Gahinga are some of these volcanoes. Volcanoes National Park is home to about 13 gorilla trekking families, including the Amahoro family, group 13 family, and Hirwa gorilla family.
Regulations for Gorilla Trekking
All parties engaging in gorilla trekking operations must abide by laws and policies that are in place in both Uganda and Rwanda. Be it the hotels, travel companies, ranger guides, gorilla researchers, or any other number of entities.
This is in line with the policies of the Rwanda Development Board or Uganda Wildlife Authority to ward off con artists. For quicker oversight of their client services, the stakeholders must be trained and registered by the government.
Political stability has existed in Uganda and Rwanda for a considerable amount of time. After the war in the 1980s, Uganda’s administration managed to keep things relatively stable politically. The Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is one of the sites you may visit without worrying about someone stopping you to rob you or brandishing a pistol at you. The participation of key security agencies, such as the tourism police, in conservation.
Following the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, the nation started a rehabilitation program for the victims, as well as protecting the conservation parks that were impacted. The main wildlife park and source of foreign cash for Rwanda is Volcanoes National Park. The rangers and other internal security agencies of the Rwandan government secure all activities taking place in the park.
A collaboration between Uganda and Rwanda focused on gorilla conservation has been established. One gorilla trekking family is therefore permitted to go freely from Uganda into Rwanda without encountering any restrictions. Mountain gorillas are free-ranging apes who ramble around the jungle in search of food to sate their hunger. The Nyakagezi gorilla family occasionally wanders into Rwanda while living in Mgahinga National Park.
Accessibility to Gorilla Trekking Parks
With an upgraded road network, getting to the gorilla trekking sites from Kampala, Entebbe, or Kigali is now easier. Despite the fact that parks like Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda, Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in Uganda, and Mgahinga National Park are all situated in entirely inaccessible regions. In the past, getting to them was difficult, but the roads have been improved, and additional building is being done. From the Ugandan metropolis of Kampala, there is some public transportation that goes to Kabale, from where you can take a variety of connections to go to Bwindi I Impenetrable National Park.
Public transportation is accessible in Rwanda from Kigali City to Musaze, where passengers can then travel to Volcanoes National Park. A daily domestic flight service is running in Uganda, further opening up this formerly isolated region. From Kajjansi Airstrip or Entebbe Airport, you can choose to land at Kihihi Air Strip or Kisoro Airstrip. Those who are averse to long journeys on winding roads have chosen this alternative; however, you must make reservations in advance. Both Uganda and Rwanda have charter flight arrangements.
Professional Ranger Team in Gorilla Parks
It is a great adventure in the forest to go gorilla trekking with trained and experienced ranger guides. Both the Uganda Wildlife Authority and the Rwanda Development Board have given their employees extensive training on gorillas and have even kept them up to date on certain gorillas’ histories.
By the time you find the gorillas, you feel a closer connection with them because the rangers readily share information about a gorilla family, making the walk interesting.
A team of rangers observes the mountain gorilla families that will be walked in the early morning. Based on their observations, they provide input to the authorities, which escorting rangers use to inform visitors for the day. Like humans, gorillas exhibit variable behavior depending on the circumstances present in the wild.
Research Organizations in gorilla trekking
In both Uganda and Rwanda, a number of local and international research organizations are working to save gorillas. Beginning with the late American philanthropist Dian Fossey, who founded the Karisoke Research Center in Rwanda. After she discovered that integrating people in the protection of mountain gorillas is one method to conserve them, her initiative gave rise to gorilla trekking. Some of them take part in gorilla habituation, treating the gorillas, performing checkups on the gorillas, taking a gorilla census over time, and many other activities. These aid in gorilla conservation, which has increased the number of the animals in Rwanda and Uganda, and keep them accustomed to human presence. Gorilla Fund, UNESCO, Gorilla Doctors, and others are a few of the organizations. These groups offer a lot of guidance regarding the gorillas’ way of life and behavior. Over time, this has made gorilla trekking experiences better.
Estimated time to the Airport before gorilla trekking and after Gorilla Trekking
Few hours separate Kigali Airport from Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park. On a meandering beautiful road, the trip can take between three and four hours. This explains why a person can get off an early-morning international flight and attend a gorilla trekking briefing at ORTPN the same day. Although Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in Uganda is around 8 to 9 hours away from Entebbe Airport, getting there is quicker and simpler with domestic daily flights to upcountry airstrips like Kihihi and Kisoro Airstrip. The domestic flights take about 2.5 hours to get to the airstrips, after which you connect with a transfer vehicle and drive to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park for a further hour. After a gorilla trekking safari in either Uganda or Rwanda, you can easily connect to the international airport at any time, even on the day of departure.
Limiting the number of Gorilla Trekkers
Gorilla trekking would result in food loss for the mountain gorillas, which are primarily vegetarian. To prevent trampling on the forest, the number of trekkers allowed to see gorillas is restricted to a maximum of 8. Those interested in going gorilla trekking in Uganda or Rwanda must attend a briefing at the ranger station, which is the ORTPN in Rwanda and the Uganda Wildlife Authority park offices in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park or Mgahinga National Park in Uganda. The rangers walk you through the procedures for going gorilla trekking as well as the typical gorilla behavior.
After that, you are split up into groups of no more than eight trekkers to spend the day following a particular gorilla family. If there were more trekkers, it would be difficult for the rangers to look out for each traveler personally, which could result in some tourists getting lost in the bush or having a less enjoyable experience. The numerous individuals attempting to get a glimpse of the mountain gorillas would make them feel ambushed. The mountain gorillas become agitated by this and hide.
Well Organized administration in Gorilla Parks of Uganda and Rwanda
The Volcanoes National Park is under the control of the Rwanda Development Board. In Uganda, Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and Mgahinga National Park activities are overseen by Uganda Wildlife Authority. These organizations make ensuring that park rangers are properly trained, maintain park trails, plan and take part in mountain gorilla censuses, and much more. All parties involved in gorilla trekking in either Uganda or Rwanda must abide by the rules established by these authorities. Penalties are imposed on defaulters, and those who work hard are rewarded. All of these work to maintain the parks’ high standards while giving tourists value for their money and protecting gorillas.
Why book with Dav Safaris for gorilla trekking in Uganda and Rwanda?
Dav Safaris has experience of planning incredible trips to Uganda,and Rwanda but we have now expanded to include safaris in Kenya and Tanzania. If contacted, a member of our staff will assist in giving you reliable information as soon as possible.