Experience the thrill of encountering mountain gorillas up close in their natural habitat, found only in Uganda, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Uganda is home to half of the world’s population of mountain gorillas, making it the top destination for gorilla trekking. The mountain gorilla, classified as Endangered by the IUCN Red List, can be found in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in Uganda and the Virunga Mountains in three adjacent national parks: Mgahinga Gorilla National Park in Uganda, Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda, and Virunga National Park in the DRC.
These apes are intelligent and friendly, living in social groups with distinct roles such as silverbacks as leaders, fully developed female gorillas as caretakers, and young gorillas playing and climbing in the trees. Trekking to see these gorillas can take anywhere from 1-9 hours, depending on their location, the terrain, and the weather. The tracking is done on foot through the lowland and montane forests of Bwindi and Virunga. In Bwindi, there are 14 habituated mountain gorilla groups available for tourism, while in Rwanda there are 10. During the trek, you can observe the gorillas feeding on foliage, epiphytes, and fruits, and building nests in the trees.
There are strict rules in place to protect the gorillas and their habitat, including restricted visiting hours, no smoking or eating/drinking, and no flash photography or use of flashlights. Visitors are also required to maintain a distance of 5-7 meters from the gorillas at all times, and keep noise levels low to minimize disruption to the gorillas’ daily routine. AA Safaris can help you obtain the necessary permits for your gorilla trekking experience.