Gorillas are have been immortalized on the silver screen in films such as King Kong and Gorillas in the Mist and their close genetic similarities to humans, remarkable intelligence, and of course, impressive size as the world’s largest primates have long fascinated humans who admire, respect and fear these large, black, hairy, bipedal creatures.
Recently, the world was devastated to hear of the passing of Harambe and Koko, two famous captive gorillas who tugged on the heartstrings of most of the general population. In the wild, gorillas are listed as critically endangered and the opportunity to spend time with a habituated group in Rwanda or Uganda has been described as absolutely life-changing.
The popular television host, Ellen Degeneres said of her experience “I can’t begin to describe what this experience was like, or how much it means to me. I’m so grateful”.
For those who wish to see the gorillas in their natural habitat, it is necessary to buy a permit ahead of time.
These permits are important measures for conservation, contributing directly to gorilla conservation funds, as well as controlling the number of people who are exposed to the gorillas, protecting them from stress and over-familiarization with humans. These permits have become highly sought-after, especially in Uganda where the price is lower than in Rwanda.
For this reason, Uganda has increased the daily limit of gorilla trekking permits, allowing more visitors to experience the once in a lifetime opportunity with these majestic creatures in their natural habitat of the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. The price for permits stay the same at 600 USD (considerably more affordable than Rwanda’s 1500 USD) and the increase comes after the habituation of two new gorilla families, bringing the number of groups up to 17.
This meets the increased demand by visitors to Uganda who make the journey specifically to trek into the rainforest and spend an hour with the incredibly rare and fascinating primates that share 95 – 99 % of our DNA. Silently revering a Silverback male with only lush green forest surrounding you is an absolute bucket list item that is now available to more lucky adventurers!
A gorilla trek really is a once in a lifetime experience and to enjoy it to the fullest it’s best to prepare yourself for this experience, we’ve compiled some great tips for future travellers.
If you are interested in becoming one of the lucky few, we offer this epic encounter on our Highlights of Uganda and Uganda Gorilla Adventures packages.