National Geographic features Uganda’s Mountain Gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest
Mountain gorilla trekking in Uganda is a worthwhile and incredibly fulfilling encounter in the thick Bwindi impenetrable forest. Seeing the amazing primates in the deep Bwindi forest is a lifetime experience as it brings you closer to the mountain gorillas in their natural habitat. The experience of watching them feed, stroll about in the forest and exist in the forest is equally rewarding.
Uganda is home to half of the population of mountain gorillas with 500 individuals as of 2019. This makes Uganda one of the best place to track gorillas in the world. Gorilla trekking in Uganda happens in Bwindi impenetrable national park and Mgahinga Gorilla national park. National Geographic recently in July 2023 featured Uganda as a destination for affordable gorilla encounters and this is not shocking as the gorilla trekking permit in Uganda costs USD 700 which is a much and affordable price compared to other countries that charge up to USD 1500 for the gorilla trek. This makes Uganda the best destination for you to do the gorilla trekking activity which brings you closer to these primates.
Uganda currently has 21 habituated gorilla families and only 8people can visit one of these gorilla families per day, a gorilla family typically has about 6 to 20 individuals including their young ones and the family is led by the adult male which is the silver back. The habituated gorilla families are named Mubare, Habinyanja, Rushegura, Katwe, Binyindo, Nkuringo, Busheho, Christmas, Nshongi, Bweza, Kahungye, Busingye, Bikingi, Mishaya, Mucunguzi, Kutu, Bitukura, Oruzogo, Kyaguriro and Mukiza. Mountain gorillas are herbivores by nature often feeding on foliage such as leaves, fruits, shoots, stems and roots.
Why you should add Gorilla Trekking to your bucket list in 2023
You should definitely consider adding mountain gorilla trekking and consider a safari to Uganda because Uganda is the best place to see gorillas in the world. The gorilla trekking is a unique wildlife adventure that brings you face to face with these incredible primates and to watch them in their natural habitat is an overall rewarding and intimate encounter.
Once you locate the gorillas with your ranger guide in Bwindi forest in Uganda, you are allowed to spend one hour watching them as they feed and exist in the forest.
How to prepare for your gorilla trekking in Uganda
To be on a safe side expect a rather strenuous hike as Bwindi forest is mountainous so it’s better to prepare beforehand so that you are physically fit for the trek. We also advise that you carry strong hiking shoes as Bwindi impenetrable forest consists of slippery and muddy terrain and strong hiking shoes are a requirement as you navigate this mountainous area.
Lastly the weather is expected to be cold as mountain gorillas in Uganda live in misty and cloudy forests so prepare for cloudy and chilly weather.
What to pack for Gorilla Trekking in Uganda
Most tourists visiting Uganda sometimes wonder what they need to pack in order to be well equipped for their gorilla trekking in Uganda adventure. The essentials to pack for the gorilla trek include sun screen to protect your skin from sun exposure, insect repellent use while the trek and at the lodge, a rain jacket or poncho as the weather depending on the season can be unpredictable, a light back pack to carry your packed lunch and drinking water as you head ut for the gorilla trek from your lodge.
You also pack hiking shoes and of course not forgetting your camera to capture memorable photos and extra batteries for the camera.
The Best time to do Gorilla Tracking in Uganda
Gorilla trekking in Uganda is available throughout the year and the gorillas can be visited at any time of the year. The trek is however easier during the dry season which is between the months of June to August and December to March. This does not mean that the gorillas can only be seen during the dry season. The gorillas can still be seen during the rainy/wet season you just have to prepare for a more slippery trek as it will most likely rain more often. This means that the gorilla trek during the rainy season can be done with the help of walking sticks, ranger guides and a porter who can be hired at a small fee of $15.
Overall the mountain gorilla trekking in Uganda is a wildlife adventure worth experiencing and Uganda offers the best sighting of the mountain gorillas in their natural habit. An ultimate and rewarding encounter in the deep and thick Bwindi Forest!