Best Places to see Mountain Gorillas
Mountain gorillas inhabit the Virunga volcanic range which traverses three countries; Uganda, Rwanda and DR Congo, and you can track gorillas in all three. So, which is the best place to see mountain gorillas?
Well, Mountain gorilla tracking is an incredible experience wherever it is, getting up close and personal with these amazing relatives of ours is an experience that you will never forget, but there are differences between tracking in each country.
Unfortunately, the Virunga area of DR Congo remains to have its troubles and many foreign countries advise against travel to the area. We wouldn’t feel comfortable advising travellers to track in DR Congo, so this eliminates it from the equation.
So where is better to track mountain gorillas, Uganda or Rwanda? What are the differences between tracking gorillas in Uganda and Rwanda?
Well first comes the price, tracking permits in Rwanda cost $1500 per permit, whereas in Uganda it costs less than half that at $700.
Rwanda, however, is a much smaller country and it is a shorter trip to get to Volcanoes National Park from Kigali Airport in Rwanda than it is to get to Bwindi or Mgahinga National Parks in Uganda from Entebbe airport. So, if you are looking to do a quick trip to track gorillas then Rwanda is the better option. Yet, Uganda is a larger country with more to see and better savannah national parks with your traditional safari animals including lions, elephants, giraffes etc. So, if you are looking for a longer trip, seeing more of Africa’s special wildlife and a more varied travel experience then Uganda is the option for you.
In the past, tracking in Rwanda was considered to be less physically demanding than in Uganda, as the gorilla families tend not to travel as far away from the park entry gate in Rwanda. This is still largely the case, but since the gorilla families around Ruhija have been habituated (the process of getting gorillas used to humans so that tourists can see them safely) there is now an easier option in Uganda as well.
Either way, I am sure you will fall in love with both of these incredible countries and tracking mountain gorillas is an experience that surpasses the hype.
Get in touch today to plan your mountain gorilla tracking experience with our experts.