Gorilla tracking is one of the most popular things to do in Rwanda. Almost a third of travellers who make it to Rwanda include gorilla tracking on their trip itineraries. Rwanda is one of the three countries where travelers visit the endangered mountain gorillas in their natural habitat. The other countries where travelers can see the mountain gorillas in Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). These are the only countries that host these rare species on earth!
In in all countries, gorilla tourism has been developed and today the mountain gorillas can be tracked safely in their natural habitat on pre-planned gorilla trekking safaris into the jungles of various parks within Uganda, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. These parks are Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park and Mgahinga National Park in Uganda, Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda and the Virunga National Park in Congo.
Why Go Gorilla Tracking in Rwanda
Rwanda is regarded as the best gorilla safari destination in the world and gorillas can be tracked in volcanoes national park (Parc Nationale Des Volcanoes). This park is located in Northern Rwanda, a region called Ruhengeri.
The Volcanoes National Park is located just about 2-3 hours from Kigali, the capital of Rwanda. This makes it possible to take day trips and 2 days trips to the gorillas within the park. Therefore if you are looking to short haul travel, Rwanda is the best choice for you.
Better Infrastructure – The road to Ruhengeri is in the best condition if compared with Uganda and Congo.
Good weather condition – Do not get worrie about the weather. The conditions are good for travel throughout the year.
The Earliest Places to See the Gorillas
Rwanda is the oldest place to embrace gorilla tourism
Follow in the Footsteps of Dian Fossey
Diane Fossey made Rwanda very popular for gorilla tracking as she was against the massive killing of these species by the poachers and she studied the behaviours of these giant apes for a period of over 18 years, however her work was put to an end when she was killed by the said poachers whom she had made her self un popular.
Planning a Gorilla Trek
Tracking gorillas begins at the park headquarters to get a short briefing about the do’s and don’ts while with the gorillas and also get assigned to the group booked for, and then after head to the forest but being guided by a ranger guide.
It is recommended to go gorilla trekking with tracking gears such as strong shoes/boots, long sleeved shirts or blouses, a non flash camera bottled water.
Don’t forget to go with packed lunch as meeting these giants is unpredictable it can go to half or full day passing through muddy and thick forest, but ounce you meet these giant you will forget all the troubles you’ve gone through.
Upon meeting the gorillas, you have up to one hour you are allowed to spend with these giants while observing their behaviors, taking photos and also watch them while doing their daily activities such as playing, feeding making nest among others.
In fact you will be so proud to be among the 8 members allowed to track gorillas in each group. It’s really a breathtaking moment in life one should never wish to miss in life.