5 Top Reasons Why You Need To See Gorillas In Uganda
5 Top Reasons Why You Need To See Gorillas In Uganda: Sitting in silence on the cold ground of a Ugandan forest for 60 minutes might be one of life’s greatest privileges. There are fewer than 900 mountain gorillas in existence, and gorilla trekking provides a rare opportunity to observe the everyday interactions of these gentle and mysterious primates.
Mountain gorillas only live in the dense vegetation of Uganda’s Bwindi impenetrable national park and along the dormant Virunga mountain range that stretches across Rwanda’s volcanoes national park, Uganda’s Mgahinga gorilla national park and the Virunga national park in Congo. In 1981, environmentalists estimated there were only 254 mountain gorillas left in the world, but the small population is rising slowly thanks to the intense international conservation efforts. Since these critically endangered creatures can’t survive in captivity, the only way to see them is by trekking up to their natural habitat the misty cloud forests that can reach altitudes of about 14,763 feet.
Here are the top five reasons to make Uganda your base for this incredible journey.
You will be where half the world’s mountain gorilla live.
There are two gorilla trekking spots in Uganda, Bwindi and Mgahinga national parks. Gorillas don’t pay mind to political borders, so populations across the Virunga are relatively fluid. Uganda has an edge, however since Bwindi alone is home to half of the world’s mountain gorillas. Bwindi is also called ‘the place of darkness’ due o its dense treetops that are ancient, montane and lowland forest spanning 128 square miles. The region was named a UNESCO world heritage site due to its incredible biodiversity and the lager number of endangered species that call it home.
You can fight habitat destruction by supporting community enrichment
Habitat destruction is the main threat to mountain gorillas. Communities around the parks are heavily populated, and residents have traditionally used land around national park boundaries for farming and lodging. Since tourism is now Uganda’s most lucrative industry, and the majority of tourists come to see the gorillas, trekkers are encouraged to seek out ways to give back to the communities they visit. One popular option is to hire a porter, who is always a local resident and occasionally a reformed poacher. The landscape within the park is unpredictable and difficult, porters help guide trekkers through river crossings and up steep muddy inclines.
You will find more affordable trekking permits
There are strict regulations in place to make sure the gorillas stay healthy and wild starting with the gorilla trekking permit process. Daily viewings of each gorillas group are extremely limited, so visitors should apply well before their desired dates. In Uganda a permit costs vary depending on the season. In April, May and November permits are $450. The rest of the year, they will be costing $600. Most trekking in Uganda takes place in Bwindi where there are multiple starting points and several gorilla families to track. Visits are led by park rangers and groups of eight are allowed to observe the gorilla for one full hour, in silence and at a safe distance.
You can take on challenging terrain
One look at southwestern Uganda’s green terraced hills and rolling volcanic slopes and its clear the area of the country is not for the faint hearted. Add in high altitude and the challenging terrain, and gorilla trekking in Uganda premises to be the adventure of a life time. It is hard to reach the gorillas; it requires navigating uphill and downhill trough thick tangles of vines, thorns and roots. The appropriately named Bwindi impenetrable forest national park is only accessible by foot. There are no paths, no signs, no directions and more often than a lot, no clearing. The reward seems that much better after all of the hard worked.
Other primates will inevitably cross your path
Uganda is a primate lover’s dream. In addition to mountain gorillas, Mgahinga is home to another endeared species, the golden monkeys. These furry, comical monkeys live high up in bamboo forests. Tracking golden monkeys I s very similar to tracking gorillas, but the trek itself is not quite as challenging. Further afield, Bwindi has the L’Hoest monkeys, gray-cheeked Mangabey, and blue monkeys. In kibale national park chimpanzees steal the show. Patos monkeys roam around Murchison falls national park while the blue monkeys and the red tailored monkeys are dominant in Queen Elizabeth national park.
Book with us to see the gentle giants in Uganda and have a complete Uganda safari tour. To arrange a gorilla tour with us , simply send us an inquiry on email@example.com or call us directly on 256775630809 / +256784912876 to speak to our reservations team.