How many people can go gorilla trekking in Mgahinga national park
How many people can go gorilla trekking in Mgahinga national park: Mgahinga national park is located in southwestern Uganda and it’s one of the areas to go gorilla trekking. The national park was gazetted in 1991 to protect endangered mountain gorillas and vegetation. Over 90 mountain gorillas do live within Mgahinga national park and gorilla trekking is the main activity done here.
Mgahinga national park is a small famous national park with only 33.7 sq. km of land. The national park is a gorilla trekking area with some mountain gorillas fully habituated for tourism activities. Nyakagezi mountain gorilla family is so far the only one living in the hilly areas of Mgahinga national park. Some tourists normally ask how many people can go gorilla trekking in this park of only 1 mountain gorilla family and below is the answer you have been looking for.
How many people can go gorilla trekking in Mgahinga national park?
8 people can go gorilla trekking in Mgahinga national park. According to rules and regulations of gorilla trekking set by the Uganda Wildlife Authority, a maximum of 8 people does visit a gorilla family a day. Mgahinga national park has only one mountain gorilla family fully habituated and this means that only 8 people can visit the members on a day.
Nyakagezi is the only mountain gorilla family in Mgahinga national park and it comprises 10 members. The members of the group are named Ndugutse, Mark, Mafia, Nshuti, Rukundo, Mutagamba, Bugingo, Mathew, Nkanda, and Furaha. Lucky 8 tourists with gorilla permits can visit the mountain gorillas of Mgahinga on a particular day.
The price of gorilla permits for Mgahinga national park
To encounter mountain gorillas of Mgahinga national park, you must have a gorilla trekking permit issued by Uganda Wildlife Authority. A gorilla trekking permit for Mgahinga national park costs $700 for foreign non-residents, $600 for foreign residents, and UGX250,000 East African citizens. The gorilla trekking permit of Mgahinga national park is sold to persons above 15 years.
How to buy gorilla permits for Mgahinga national park?
Travelers that are interested in Mgahinga national park gorilla trekking can obtain the permits from Uganda wildlife authority or a trusted local tour operator. All you need is are the dates of the month and year you want to travel. You do send them to your local tour operator or reservations office at UWA. They use the dates to check for the availability of the permits.
Once the permits are available, you are asked to pay for the permits and then provide your personal details. Once you are done sending the money, your gorilla permit is booked and you will be able to trek mountain gorillas. A local tour operator picks up your gorilla permit from UWA and those who book directly pick up the permits at UWA offices in Kamuwokya.
Why is a gorilla family visited by only 8 people?
Each mountain gorilla family fully habituated in Bwindi and Mgahinga national park is visited by a maximum of 8 people. This rule was set by Uganda Wildlife Authority for different reasons. Only 8 people trek a mountain gorilla family to avoid over crowdedness around the members, to reduce behavioral disturbance of mountain gorillas, and to reduce on the risk of the spread of human diseases like flu and cough.
Visiting mountain gorillas of Mgahinga national park
The day of gorilla trekking starts with trekkers moving to Ntebeko for a briefing from the rangers. The briefing is done to help trekkers know the rules and regulations of the activity as well as what to expect from the trek. A maximum of 8 people is allowed to trek Nyakagezi on a day. These people are given armed ranger guides to lead them in the jungle.
The armed ranger guides use different trails to search for where the mountain gorillas could be. The search goes through different areas where these apes normally hang and these could be trees with fruits or areas with enough food. Searching for Nyakagezi gorilla family takes 2-7 hours of meeting different animals and birds that live within the park.
When the members of Nyakagezi gorilla family are located, trekkers are given 1 hour to be around them. This is to enable them to learn about the habits of these apes, take photos and watch them do daily activities like nesting, grooming, coupling, eating, breastfeeding, and resting among others. After trekking, trekkers go back to Ntebeko to collect their gorilla trekking certificates.
Things to pack for gorilla trekking in Mgahinga national park
Tourists that are going for gorilla trekking in Mgahinga national park need to go well prepared with the right essentials in order to have the best of gorilla trekking. Essentials for mountain gorilla trekking include long-sleeved shirts, long-sleeved pants, waterproof hiking shoes, gardening gloves, long cotton stocks, a pair of gaiters, a light backpack, sunscreen, insect repellents, a camera, a pair of binoculars, drinking water bottle and energy giving snacks among others.
When to go gorilla trekking in Mgahinga national park?
Travelers can go gorilla trekking in Mgahinga national park at any time of the year, however certain months are better than the rest. The dry seasons months from June to September and December to February are the best to go gorilla trekking in Mgahinga national park and this is because they have less rainfall. During the dry season, trekking trails are dry and passable, vegetation is short with good views of gorillas, and roads leading to the park are passable.
Travelers but maybe budget travelers that love discounted things can go gorilla trekking in Mgahinga during the rainy season which occurs from March to May and October to November. During the rainy season, the lodges and tour operators reduce prices and this favors budget travelers, The rainy season has never been the best for gorilla trekking in Mgahinga because trekking trails are muddy and slippery, vegetation is tall with unclear views of wildlife and roads leading to the park are impassable.