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How to Track Mountain Gorillas in Uganda

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Uganda the pearl of Africa is located in the eastern part of the African continent commonly known for the mountain Gorillas; it’s among the three countries in Africa known for the shy endangered Mountain and Lowland Gorillas. How to reach Uganda? Usually foreigners from different countries reach Uganda in the Eastern part of Africa by use of airplanes and you will be picked by the driver or company representative of your local tour operator you may choose to use.

In Uganda Mountain Gorillas are found both in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and Mgahinga National Park with Bwindi hosting most part of Uganda’s Gorilla population grouped in four sectors named Nkuringo, Buhoma, Ruhija and Rushaga sector. For the case of Mgahinga National Park it has only one Gorilla family named Nyakagezi gorilla family for trekking which is not the same case for Bwindi with over twelve Gorilla families for trekking plus one for habituation experience.

How to book gorilla permits?

Most tour operators sell packaged Uganda tours that are inclusive of the gorilla permit fees. If you would like to plan a trip independently, It’s always better and more secure when you book your Gorilla permit with a local tour operator to a void inconveniences, the permit is always booked in advance before your trekking dates because it is very hard and difficult to get the permit on the very day you are trekking the Gorillas as they take a long process to be produced because express production is not used, it’s also good to book for a Gorilla family which is near your hotel of residence to avoid on the extra costs which may be incurred through driving long distances in case you booked for a Gorilla family which is too far from your hotel of residence.

Therefore, always endavour to send your money for the permit to the local tour operator in time such that your permit is booked in advance and you will find it with your operator already picked from the offices of the responsible authorities. The Permit for Gorilla trekking in Uganda costs $600 USD per person per day, this permit is legal to be used by only one person on the specified dates of trekking.

How to reach the park?

Since Mountain Gorillas are found both in Bwindi impenetrable and Mgahinga National Park on arrival at Entebbe airport if its evening you will have overnight and dinner in your hotel of residence then next day transfer to Bwindi or if you arrive at Entebbe airport in late evening or early morning you will transfer direct to Bwindi by the driver of your operator. Early in the morning you start the 8-9 hours’ drive journey to Bwindi on Masaka-Mbarara high way, stop over at the equator for some brief explanations, photographs and snacks. Once you reach Bwindi it will be almost evening and you will have to rest abit and refresh in your hotel of residence getting prepared for tomorrow’s Gorilla trekking activity.

How to go gorilla trekking?

Early in the morning after your breakfast you will be picked from your hotel by the driver to the park offices for the always done briefing about the Dos and Don’ts while in the presence of these apes. Some of the Don’ts are here as you continue reading; if you have any sign of infectious diseases do not go for the trekking as you may spread these diseases to the apes and if its discovered that you have signs of infectious diseases but resisted and went for the trekking you will be charged to pay a fine, Do not eat in the presence of these apes, Always keep your voice at low tone while in the jungle, Keep a distance from these apes, Do not run after these apes, Do not touch on these apes without permission and also do not use flush cameras when taking photos of these apes.

After the briefing by the park officials you will be assigned a park ranger to lead you through the jungle and after discovering these apes you are allowed to stay around these apes for only one hour while sharing with them, experiencing their ways of living and taking a lot of Photos for memories. After your one hour stay you will be required to start the trekking journey back to the park offices for Gorilla Trekking certificate award and this is how fantastic Gorilla trekking is a great and memorable experience to archive as far as your travel and Wildlife conservation experience in Africa.

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