Gorilla trekking in Rwanda vs Uganda

Gorilla trekking in Rwanda vs Uganda: This is a complete comparison of gorilla trekking activities between Rwanda and Uganda. Gorilla trekking is an amazing activity that involves trekking hiking through dense forest vegetation, while tracking a specific gorilla group. The activity can be very tedious and physically challenging and involves trekking identifying fresh gorilla footprints, fecal matter, as well as recently made gorilla nests. There are a lot of factors to consider when comparing gorilla trekking in Rwanda vs Uganda , as shall be discussed in this article.


  1. Cost of gorilla trekking permits:

Before visitors think of travelling to Africa to trek mountain gorillas, most first plan where they are going to trek gorillas from. In order to make the best decision on which country you will be trekking gorilla from, you will want to consider the price of gorilla trekking permits in order to stay within your budget. The cost of gorilla trekking permits vary between Rwanda and Uganda, with a gorilla trekking permit in Rwanda costing USD 1500 dollars per person, and USD 600 dollars in Uganda which will later be hiked to 700usds effective April. Although the cost of trekking gorillas is more expensive in Rwanda as compared to Uganda, this has not stopped visitors from trekking gorillas in Rwanda. So, depending on your budget, you can either choose to track mountain gorillas in Uganda or Rwanda. You will still have the best experience of your lifetime.

  1. Time and travel:

When planning on where exactly you are going to do gorilla trekking, you will want to consider the time it will take you to travel to your destination. The main entry point to Rwanda is through Kigali International Airport, which is approximately 110 kilometers from Volcanoes national park. This means that it will take about 2½ hours for one to drive from the airport to the national park. On the other hand, the main entry point into Uganda is through Entebbe International Airport that is located about 464 kilometers from Bwindi Impenetrable National park, where you can trek mountain gorillas from. Hence, visitors will have to drive for approximately 8½ hours to get to the national park. However, the long drive to Bwindi national park offers visitors amazing and beautiful sites and attractions along the way. Visitors who embark on these long road trips have a great opportunity to explore the beautiful western region of Uganda.

  1. Number of gorilla groups available for visitors to track:

There are only 10 habituated gorilla groups in Rwanda’s Volcanoes national park, while Uganda has 16 habituated gorilla groups. 15 of these gorilla groups are located in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and only one habituated group in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. However, following the recent migration of the Hirwa gorilla family from Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda to Mgahinga national park in Uganda, this means that there are two gorilla groups available for visitors to track in Mgahinga. The revenue collected from visitors trekking the Hirwa group is equally divided between Uganda and Rwanda. Uganda has the biggest population of mountain gorillas with over 400 individuals in Bwindi national park alone.

  1. Difficulty of gorilla trekking:

The difficulty of trekking gorillas in Rwanda and Uganda is also put into consideration when comparing gorilla trekking activities between the two countries. Gorilla trekking in Uganda seems to require a lot more physical strength and fitness as compared to trekking gorillas in Rwanda. This is the sad reality especially for visitors who wish to trek gorillas in Bwindi national park in Uganda. However, this has not deterred visitors from flocking the national park just to see its mountain gorillas.

  1. How safe is it for visitors to trek gorillas?

Security in both Uganda and Rwanda is excellent and visitors can be well assured of being safe while trekking gorillas in either Bwindi or Mgahinga national parks in Uganda, as well as Volcanoes national park in Rwanda. In addition to this, visitors trekking gorillas in the national parks in both countries are always accompanied by experienced guides and armed park rangers, who ensure the safety of both visitors and the gorillas.

  1. How easy is it for visitors to view gorillas?

Visitors trekking gorillas either in Rwanda or Uganda need not to worry a lot about whether you will get to see the gorillas or not. Whether you are trekking gorillas in Bwindi and Mgahinga national parks in Uganda or Volcanoes national park in Rwanda, you can be well assured that you will get an opportunity to see gorillas and even spend an hour with the gorillas.

  1. Availability of gorilla trekking lodges?

It is also important to consider the availability of gorilla trekking lodges when comparing gorilla trekking between Rwanda and Uganda. There are quite a number of gorilla trekking lodges available for visitors trekking gorillas in both countries. Visitors trekking gorillas either in Bwindi or Mgahinga gorilla national parks can find accommodation in the following lodges; Silverback Safari Lodge, Bwindi Gorilla Camp, Gorilla Resort Bwindi, Nkuringo Gorilla Camp, Gorilla Forest Camp, Mantana Camp and Rushaga Gorilla Camp, Lake Mutanda Chameleon Hill Lodge, Kisoro Traveler’s Rest Hotel, River Mucha Hotel, Amajambere Iwacu camp and Volcanoes Mount Gahinga Safari Lodge among others.

Visitors who choose to do gorilla trekking in Rwanda can find accommodation in lodges such as; Bisate Lodge, Virunga Lodge, Sabyinyo silverback Lodge, Le Bambou Gorilla Lodge, Kinigi guesthouse, Mountain Gorilla View and Gorilla Volcanoes Lodge. All these lodges offer visitors a wide range of accommodation options ranging from budget to mid-range and luxury.

Both Rwanda and Uganda are great destinations for gorilla trekking tours in Africa. Therefore visitors can consider the above factors when planning for your gorilla trekking trip to either country.

Contact us to book a gorilla trekking tour to either Rwanda or Uganda and get to enjoy trekking mountain gorillas in style and comfort.

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