Why an hour with the gorillas

Why Gorilla Trekking for an Hour

Gorilla trekking is strictly for an hour in Uganda, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. YES, travelers visiting to see the endangered gorillas in Bwindi Forest, Mgahinga, Volcanoes and Virunga National Parks are only allowed to spend an hour with the gorillas. Despite the very many hours you may spend in the jungle before meeting the gorillas, an encounter with these endangered specie lasts for an hour. The actual trekking time is uncertain but ranges between 30 minutes to 7 hours depending on where gorillas will be that day, physical fitness of a traveler and the hiking speed. An hour with the gorillas is counted from the moment a traveler sets his/her eyes on the gorillas. When this time comes, travelers are reminded to keep calm, be keen and utilize this one-hour very well. The magical feeling of spending an hour with the gorillas is undeniably memorable. The reasons why gorilla trekking is limited to an hour include:

Mountain gorillas are endangered

Gorilla Trekking time

A baby gorilla in Bwindi Forest

YES, mountain gorillas are one of the endangered wild animals in the wild. They share over 98% of human genes, which make them so susceptible to human illnesses and other diseases. For this case, conservation bodies in Uganda, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo limit the time people spend with gorillas to limit chances of human wildlife disease transmission. The whole world has 1006 mountain gorillas surviving in the jungles of Uganda, Rwanda and Congo. The low population of gorillas in the world calls for strict conservation. For over 6 months in 2020, governments in Uganda, Rwanda and Congo closed doors to gorilla trekking in order to protect the endangered gorillas from catching the deadly corona virus. However as of 6th October 2020, gorilla tours to Uganda, Rwanda and Congo are open and travelers are allowed to visit and trek the gorillas. Therefore, the endangered nature of gorillas is one of the reasons why gorilla trekking is restricted to an hour.

Conservation purposes
Gorilla tracking is also restricted to an hour for conservation purposes. YES, allowing travelers to spend the whole day with endangered gorillas is not right. Trekking is limited to an hour to conserve nature and promote sustainable gorilla safaris in Africa.

Gorillas need time to do their daily duties

Trekking to see gorillas

A magical encounter with gorillas

YES, like in a human family, mountain gorillas have daily activities, which they cannot do in the presence of people. Travelers are therefore limited to an hour to allow the endangered species do their routine work in peace. Every early morning, the silver back back gorillas wakes up the entire family to start up movement to anew destination, they move slowly as a family and build a new nest in the evening for a night. Gorillas need a private time to play together, mate, breastfeed and rest.

Can I spend more time with gorillas?
YES, you can spend more time with the endangered gorillas in a gorilla habituation experience. Only done in Rushaga sector, south of Bwindi Forest National park, gorilla habituation experience allows you to spend four hours with the gorillas. The experience is about training wild gorillas to get used with human presence. Travelers join a team of conservationists, gorilla doctors and researchers to train a wild gorilla family. Apparently, Uganda has two gorilla families (Bushaho and Bikyingi) undergoing habituation. The experience lasts for between 2 to 3 years before a gorilla family is declared free for trekking. Habituation experience costs $1500 per person but the magical feeling that comes with it is worth the price. Each day, 8 habituation permits are issued on first come first serve basis. Permit booking is recommended at least 5 months in advance. Booking can be done directly with Uganda Wildlife Authority or African Apes Holidays, the number one gorilla safari company.

How to prepare for your gorilla trekking
Are you planning a gorilla safari in Africa? Are you wondering how to get ready for this magical experience? No worries, African Apes Holidays guides you on how to best get ready for gorilla trekking. Firstly, reserve your permit in advance to avoid disappointments. Also ensure to do physical exercises such as jogging, walking, and hiking to ensure physical fitness. Make sure your travelling bag has all the essentials. Among the things you must carry for your gorilla tour experience include hiking boots, gardening gloves, scarf, energy giving snacks, first aid kit, rain jacket, extra batteries for the camera, long sleeved shirts, long pants and bottled drinking water. More so, check with your medical doctor to ensure you have no any health issues.

Who is and not allowed to see gorillas?
All people aged 15 years and above are allowed to do gorilla trekking in Uganda, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. The elderly and heavily pregnant women are advised to hire porters to carry them to and from the jungle. Travelers showing any signs of sickness like flue, cold and cough is not allowed to visit the endangered gorillas to avoid risks of disease transmission.

Conclusively, an hour with the endangered gorillas is a lifetime experience you ought to enjoy.

Posted by African Apes

African Apes Holidays offers you exceptional apes safaris to trek mountain gorillas, chimpanzees, golden monkeys, colubus monkeys and other wildlife experiences in Uganda, Rwanda, Congo and East Africa