How to Prepare for Gorilla Trekking in Uganda
Find out how to prepare for gorilla trekking in Uganda so that you make your trip enjoyable and memorable. When you decide to visit Uganda for a gorilla safari tour, you need to check with various airlines for availability of flight tickets that correspond well with your travel dates. At the same time, ask your booking agent or a gorilla safari company directly for availability of gorilla permits for your planned travel dates. Your air ticket must match well with the gorilla trekking safari dates. When you confirm the ticket and the permit availability, you then book with the airline and tour operator respectively. Even though gorilla tracking in Uganda can be done in any month of the year, but try to know the most ideal periods. Read about the Best time to see gorillas in Uganda. This article will help you understand that the best periods run from June to early October plus December to February.
After making the gorilla permit bookings, you then confirm that you are going to track the endangered gorillas in Uganda. Our gorilla tours are some of the best in the region. You now have a reserved air ticket and a booked gorilla permit, so you are good to visit Uganda. But remember to apply for the visa either online or physically with the respectively embassy, High Commission or Consular office near you in your country. Check out for status of the nationals of your country if they qualify for an entry visa to Uganda on arrival. In case you are going to do gorilla trekking in Uganda from Kigali in Rwanda, you are advised to apply for an East African Tourist Visa which gives you multiple entry to the 3 regional countries including Rwanda, Uganda and Kenya. This East African visa saves you from paying for several entries.
Highlights of Preparing to Visit Uganda to See Gorillas in the Wild.
- Conceive a gorilla trekking idea first
- Look into your planned budget
- Check for the availability of an Air ticket that corresponds with your preferred dates
- Confirm the gorilla trekking permit availability with your chosen gorilla safari company or travel agent
- Tell your operator what your needs are. Do you want a gorilla trek only or even other tour activities. You safari organiser should be able to offer you a package that caters for your safari needs based on available time you plan to allocate your holiday.
- As you make a gorilla tour booking, try understand the various gorilla safari options to know what can best serve your interests. These address the number of days you may choose, the directions to use to reach the gorilla parks and the means of access to Bwindi or Mgahinga.
- Book your flight ticket and gorilla permit closely at the same time
- Work on the visa to Uganda
- Then wait patiently for the travel dates
Preparation when nearing the Trip
- Ensure that you are health and physically fit. Pre-safari jogging or aerobics are encouraged to keep you healthy and fit.
- Clear your trip balance a few days to the trip. But this depends on the arrangement you made with the tour operator. But with an agent, kindly clear fully in time.
- Read about what to bring for the gorilla safari encounter. This items below are very crucial to remember when preparing for a gorilla trek in Uganda:-
- Best Hiking Boots
- Garden Gloves
- Rain Jacket or waterproof jacket
- Hair bandana or hat.
- Long Sleeved Shirts/Blouse
- Long Safari trousers
- Energy Giving snacks
- Cameras and extra batteries
- Hat and Sun Glasses
- Pair of Binoculars
- Waterproof backpack
- Mosquito repellent
- A warm Sweater
- First aid kit,
Visiting Gorillas in Uganda
How to prepare for gorilla trekking begins with an idea of visiting Uganda, the Pearl of Africa. When you look into the year’s programme, you get to understand when you will be busy and free from work. Whether you are single traveler, a couple or coming in a bigger group, you then contact your agent or a tour operator directly through whom you are to book your trip. You then also check with airline companies to confirm availability of tickets for your travel month and dates. Making a gorilla tour booking and a flight reservation have to be at the same time. The two have to correspond because a flight leads you to the gorilla destination (Uganda). After your gorilla permit booking, you now need to know how to prepare for gorilla trekking in Uganda. Getting prepared for the gorilla tour adventure begins.
Kindly not that some of the items above can bought locally to save yourself a big luggage.
Preparedness on the Day of Gorilla Trekking Adventure
A day before gorilla trekking in Uganda, you are expected to stay at a lodge near the gorilla trekking region of Bwindi where you are to see gorillas. You have to stay at any of the gorilla safari lodges near Bwindi or Mgahinga Gorilla National Park for easy transfer the next. As you plan to do a lovely primate escapade, think about the distinctive steep landscapes you are likely hike as well as the dense tropical rain forest cover.
The entire gorilla trekking process begins with you waking up, have breakfast followed by a pickup by the waiting driver guide to transfer to the park office. The park office is the briefing center for visitors. You will present your permit and passport for registration. A passport is significant in confirming your nationality. Vital items like strong waterproof hiking boots, bottled water, gardening gloves, first aid kit, energy giving snacks, long sleeved shirt, rain jacket a mention but a few. On reaching the park offices, you will be called for briefing session where a wildlife official takes you through the rules and regulations regarding the trekking process. These dos and don’ts have to be observed while you are in the forest for your safety and that of your hosts (the gorillas). At the briefing point is where you are allocated a gorilla family for tracking. During this process, if you have special needs like body weakness, aged or any particular preference like fear to trek for long, kindly ask the park authority for a gorilla group that is nearer and involve lesser hiking. You should not forget a walking stick to help you move across the steep terrain, gardens and shrubs as a third leg. In case you have many items to use during the adventure, hire a porter to help you on carrying some luggage for you.
As you trek gorillas in Bwindi or Mgahinga forest, you will likely meet other people on the same safari. The official number per gorilla family is 8 persons. It is gratifying having people from different countries, various age brackets, race and sex on the same adventure. Feel free to interact during the hiking process so that you don’t get bored. Asked your park guide questions about things you need to know. Those guides are there for you to learn what you know. Every gorilla trekking entourage is allocated armed park rangers for your own safety just in case. So when coming on the tour, rest assured that security is just enough for you. The trekking lasts between 2 to 8 hours based on many factors like weather and the whereabouts of the gorillas (the distance radius from the trekking starting point). Read more about what to pack when going for a gorilla trip.
Guidelines to observes while with the Gorillas
- Kеер a minimum diѕtаnсе of 3 meters bеtwееn уоu аnd the gorillas.
- If the dominant silverback gorilla approaches or сhаrgеѕ violently at you, better you don’t back away. Remain calm and stay where you are as you manifest submiѕѕivеness, humility and composure.
- Do not make аnу ѕuddеn mоvеѕ оr loud nоiѕеѕ.
- Do not glare into the eyes of the gorillas to avoid being misunderstood as hostile.
- Smoking, drinking, or eating аrе nоt allowed within 200 metres of a gorilla troop.
- Littering is forbidden.
- Children under the age оf 15 are nоt allowed tо trek gorillas.
Upon meeting the endangered mountain gorillas, you will spend one hour with them as you take photos in midst of admiring these are species. Your guide will notify you that time is up and then you will start walking back to the starting point where your drivers pick you up to transfer back to the park head offices. On return, you will be awarded a gorilla trekking certificate, a document that confirms that you have successfully done gorilla trekking in Uganda. This document goes permanently among your memoirs for future references. From here, you will transfer back to the lodge or any other next destination.
Selected Uganda Gorilla Trekking Tours and Safaris
You can visit gorillas in Uganda by choosing to undertake various trekking options or routes to reach the parks. You may fly into Rwanda and trek to see gorillas in Uganda. When you arrive in the country, you the transfer from Kigali to Bwindi or Mgahinga in Uganda for gorilla trekking. The other alternative would be to start the trip from Entebbe to the parks. This may be by flying to Bwindi or Kisoro or transfer there by road.