Low Season Gorilla Permits in Congo
Low season gorilla permits in Congo / Congo discounted gorilla permits are offered to attract more tourists to do gorilla trekking in Virunga National Park, in the Democratic Republic Congo during the low seasons.
Low season gorilla permits in Virunga national park in Congo are offered at half price to tourists doing gorilla trekking in the national park. Starting 15th March to 15th May 2020 and from 15th October to 15th December 2020, Virunga national park is offering its visitors discounted gorilla trekking permits at USD 200 dollars per person. This is a very low price and quite a good bargain for tourists who wish to trek mountain gorillas but have a fixed budget.
The standard price for gorilla trekking permits in Virunga national park in Congo is USD 400 dollars per person. This price covers expenses such as park entry fees, salaries and wages for gorilla doctors, park rangers and wardens, government taxes, and conservation fees among others.
However, the fee on low season gorilla trekking permits in Congo does not cover expenses such as; transportation to and from Virunga national park, international flight tickets, Congo Visa fees, porter fees, meals, accommodation and any other expenses of personal nature. This also applies for the standard gorilla trekking permits.
Gorilla trekking in Virunga national park is a very unique experience and it is totally safe for any visitor doing the activity. All gorilla trekking safaris in the Democratic Republic of Congo begin in Goma where visitors are transported in a military convoy from Virunga National Park. This is done to ensure the safety of visitors travelling to and from the national park.
Gorilla trekking activities in Virunga national park begin from Bukima, which is where the park’s headquarters are situated. It is also the starting point for most activities conducted in the national park.
Visitors doing gorilla trekking in Virunga national park are welcomed into the park by the head ranger/ warden-in-charge. After signing into the visitors’ registrar, visitors are given a short but elaborate briefing about mountain gorillas, their numbers, and rules and guidelines to follow before, when and after trekking a given mountain gorilla group.
Visitors are then placed in trekking groups depending on the gorilla groups that each will be trekking. Unlike in Uganda, visitors trekking mountain gorillas in Virunga national park do not have the pleasure to choose which gorilla group to track. A gorilla group is allocated to visitors depending on one’s age and physical capability.
Virunga national park has eight habituated gorilla groups which visitors can track. This means that visitors doing gorilla trekking in Virunga national park are always placed in groups consisting of a maximum of 8 members per gorilla group.
Gorilla trekking in Virunga national park is not as tedious and physically challenging like it is in Uganda and Rwanda. This means that visitors trekking gorillas in Virunga can take about two to six hours, inclusive of an hour that is spent with the gorillas once they have been located.
When spending time with a habituated mountain gorilla group in Virunga national park, visitors are advised to ensure that the flashlight on your camera or phone is disabled. This is to avoid irritating the gorillas since they are sensitive to flash lights and can easily be aggravated and may become hostile towards the visitors.
With the current offer of discounted low season gorilla permits in Congo, visitors are urged to book their gorilla trekking permits at least 6 months in advance. The best time for visitors to trek gorillas in Virunga national park in Congo is between June to August and mid-December to February. During this period, it is much easier for trekkers to go hiking in the mountains and in the forests as well. Also, it is during the dry season that the hiking trails in the national park are not so slippery and muddy; thus making trekking for gorillas in the park a lot easier.
Visitors planning to trek gorillas in the Democratic Republic of Congo should pack the right items needed for gorilla trekking, which include; Sunscreen, a hat/cap, insect repellent, a face mask, a good pair of hiking shoes, long trousers and long sleeved shirts, a camera, binoculars and a raincoat in case it rains. Most importantly, don’t forget to carry your gorilla trekking permit on the day you are going to trek gorillas.
Virunga national park also offers accommodation to visitors spending one or more nights in the park and these facilities range from mid-range to luxury. They include; Mikeno Lodge, Bukima Tented Camp, Tchegera Island Tented Camp, Lulimbi Tented Camp, and Nyiragongo Volcano Summit Shelters.
The national park can be accessed from Goma International Airport in Congo or from Kigali, Rwanda via the Grande Barrier at the Gisenyi-Goma border. Low season gorilla trekking permits in Congo are idea for visitors on tight travel budgets, so book one early.