A Guide to Gorilla and Chimpanzee Trekking in Uganda 2024 – 2025 :  This book contains crucial practical information to help you prepare for your gorilla and chimpanzee trekking trip in Uganda. We talk about how to get your trekking permits, the minimum age for gorilla trekking, and the finest trekking areas.

Chimpanzee Trekking in Kibale National Park

Need some assistance in planning your gorilla and chimpanzee trekking in Uganda? Rest assured that Explore Rwanda Tours is pleased to assist you in planning your Uganda itinerary and obtaining gorilla and chimpanzee trekking permits. Please contact us if you need any further information or advice.

A Guide to Gorilla and Chimpanzee Trekking in Uganda.

Where to go for Gorilla Trekking in Uganda?

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park protects around 459 mountain gorillas, including 19 habituated groups that can be tracked throughout the year.

The park has four gorilla trekking locations:

Buhoma and Ruhija are in the northern region of Bwindi National Park, while Nkuringo and Rushaga are in the Kisoro District in the southeast. Explore Rwanda Tours collaborates with lodges in the park to provide visits to the Nkuringo and Rushaga families. Mgahinga Gorilla National Park, which borders Rwanda, preserves Uganda’s Virunga highlands. The park has only one gorilla family which visits can visit at any time of the year.

What to expect during gorilla trekking in Uganda?

Your gorilla journey will begin early, so make sure you arrive on time.  Depending on where you stay, the travel from your resort to the trek’s beginning point might take up to 60-90 minutes on muddy roads. As a result, you’ll likely get up before dawn, prepare your breakfast and lunch, and travel to the starting location during the morning darkness.

You will be assigned a ranger/ park guide by Uganda Wildlife Authority once you arrive at the park for your briefing. Each group has a maximum of eight visitors and several UWA rangers. You can ask a porter to take your bag. Don’t feel obligated to inquire; they are local men and women who are eager to make some money by transporting your goods.

The gorilla trekking experience in Uganda normally starts around 8.30 a.m. The time it takes to find the gorillas depends on where they were seen the day before, which might range from one hour to five hours. When the rangers uncover a gorilla family, you get to spend an hour with them. The one-hour limit is meant to keep the gorillas from growing used to human interaction. Once the time is up, the gorillas are left alone for the remaining 23 hours of the day.

It’s crucial to understand that you may walk entirely at your own pace. The 1-hour sighting begins when the entire group is there, so don’t feel pressured by other trekkers. Following the gorilla sighting, you will return to the beginning location where you parked your car.  A gratuity to the rangers and porters is greatly appreciated.

How can you obtain a gorilla trekking permit in Uganda 2024 – 2025?

If you intend to embark on a gorilla trek in Uganda, you should secure your trekking permits well in advance. The Uganda Wildlife Authority offers permits, but exclusively to tour operators. As a visitor, you cannot visit their offices in Kampala and make your own arrangements.

To arrange the trekking permits on your behalf, we will want the following information:

  • All trekking participants must provide their full passport name, nationality, date of birth, and passport number.
  • Preferred start place and date.
  • If the ideal date is already booked, consider the second best dates.

We will acquire the permits on your behalf after receiving evidence of payment.

A Guide to Gorilla and Chimpanzee Trekking in Uganda 2024 - 2025
Gorilla Habituation Experience

Where to go for Chimpanzee Trekking in Uganda?

Kibale Forest is Uganda’s premier chimpanzee trekking destination, with a 95% probability of seeing a chimp family. Trips begin every morning and afternoon at Kibale Forest National Park. It is suggested that you reserve your permits in advance.

We are glad to assist you in obtaining chimpanzee trekking permits for Kibale Forest. We can only do this once you have confirmed your self-drive tour or vehicle rental reservation with us in Uganda.

Chimpanzee Trekking at Budongo Forest Reserve.

It is located near Murchison Falls National Park. The morning is the best time to view chimps, with an estimated 80% probability of encountering them. The trek is organized by Uganda Lodges – Budongo Eco Lodge. Permits may be obtained on-site or reserved in advance through Uganda Lodges. The Budongo Forest costs US$ 130 during the low season (March-May, October-November) and US$ 100 the rest of the year.

Chimpanzee Trekking in Kalinzu Forest-Queen Elizabeth National Park.

It is located on the route connecting Mbarara city to Queen Elizabeth National Park. A hiking permit costs $130, and chances of spotting chimpanzees are estimated at 50%. Even if you don’t see the chimps, the trek is still an enjoyable experience.

Chimpanzee Trekking in Kyambura Gorge in Queen Elizabeth National Park.

It is situated in the extreme eastern section of Queen Elizabeth National Park. It’s a difficult hike down to the gorge and into a separate mini-ecosystem. Trekking is a wonderful pastime, although visitors seldom undertake it.

There is no assurance that you will see the chimpanzees (roughly a 40% probability), but there are lots of other animals to see, and the gorge is an excellent destination in its own right. Permits cost $80 and may be purchased at the Katongo Park Headquarters or in advance by visiting the UWA office in Kampala.

What is the age limit for gorilla and chimpanzee trekking in Uganda?

The minimum age for a gorilla trek in Uganda is 15 years. For chimp trekking, you must be at least 13 years old.

How fit should you be for gorilla and chimpanzee trekking in Uganda?

The difficulty of the trek is determined on the weather and closeness to the gorillas and chimps. Although the trek might last six hours, this is unusual. Participating on a gorilla or chimpanzee trip requires only moderate fitness (walking). People of all ages go gorilla and chimpanzee trekking in Uganda, including those in their late 70s. A porter can help, and a native walking stick is a fantastic tool. The correct apparel and traction boots will also make the event go more smoothly. Enjoy!!

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