What is the difference between gorilla tracking and trekking? – There are many occasions where people have confused Gorilla tracking and trekking though the two have a slight difference. Gorilla trekking involves tourists being led by a National Park ranger guide in search a Mountain Gorilla family in the wild, this involves hiking so it requires physical fitness as Gorillas live on higher elevations of the Virunga volcanoes straddling in Uganda, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo and Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park in south western Uganda.
Gorilla tracking is done by expert National Park ranger guides, park staff and researchers. This involves tracking down a specific habituated Mountain Gorilla family and locating them based on their last known location, where they spent the night, and their feeding area. The Gorilla trackers do this for different reasons, for instance the researchers do the tracking for research purposes, for census and while the expert rangers do the Gorilla tracking to ensure that the visitors who come to see the Mountain Gorillas get to see them and as such guarantee a 99% chance of seeing the Gorillas despite the fact that the Gorillas are ever moving about in their different locations within their respective National Parks. Gorilla tracking is similar across the different Gorilla tracking National Parks of Uganda which are Bwindi Impenetrable Forest and Mgahinga Gorilla National Parks, Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park and Virunga National Park of the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Gorilla trekking is when visitors go into the thick tropical rainforests of Bwindi Impenetrable, Mgahinga Gorilla, Volcanoes and Virunga to look for the Mountain Gorillas with help of the expert ranger guides. The terrain in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, Mgahinga Gorilla National Parks of Uganda, Volcanoes National Park of Rwanda and Virunga National Park of the Democratic Republic of Congo are all the same, composed of thick tropical rainforests and bamboo, this means that the experience here is the same. The variations are very minimal, based on the steepness of some parks of the mountains, and hills of the Virunga Massif.
Gorilla trekking usually starts very early in the morning, the guests have to get an early morning breakfast then report to the respective briefing points by 7:40 am where they are taught about the Gorilla tracking rules and regulations before being allocated to a Gorilla family to track, with a maximum of 8 people Gorilla family. The Gorilla trekking activity itself takes between 30 minutes to 8 hours. The Gorilla trekking time differs based on several factors ranging from terrain, movement of the Gorilla families, strength and skill of the travellers etc.
However it is indeed very thrilling to finally meet the Mountain Gorillas no matter how long the trek has been. You are allowed a maximum of 1 hour to observe and take photos of the Mountain Gorillas. During this time, you can be able to ask the ranger guides any information you want to know about these gentle giants.
Different guests have different preferences of how difficult they want the Gorilla trek to be, some prefer long hikes of adventure through the thick forests, and others prefer the shorter hikes while others may be constrained to choose shorter hikes because of age and or medical conditions. At Great Adventure Safaris, we ensure that we find out as much as we can about the guest right from the time they send us an inquiry to when they book their Gorilla trekking tour. We therefore help choose the best sector for each guest or group of guests to ensure that they get the best out of their Gorilla trek, based on their preferences. We are able to even talk with the park wardens / rangers on trekking day of your trip such that you are allocated to Gorilla families based on your preference.
Gorilla trekking can be done in Volcanoes National Park found in Rwanda, Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park in Uganda and Virunga National Park in Congo. The cost of Gorilla trekking permits differs per country; Uganda Gorilla trekking permits cost USD700 per person per trek, Rwanda Gorilla permits costs USD1500 per person per trek and the Democratic Republic of Congo offer the lowest Gorilla trekking permits at USD450 per person per trek.
Mountain Gorillas are the largest living primates living in the world; they are divided into two species of Eastern Gorillas and Western Gorillas. The two species are further sub divided in to Eastern low land Gorillas, western lowland Gorillas, Mountain Gorillas and cross River Gorillas.
Great Adventure Safaris have several Uganda Gorilla trekking tour packages, Rwanda Gorilla trekking tour packages. Browse our website and select your preferred Gorilla trekking package and request for a quote. We shall send you a reply with a quote within the shortest time after receiving your inquiry. If you need to read some of our reviews about Gorilla trekking with our previous clients, please check our Trip Advisor page and safari booking.