Is gorilla habituation in Bwindi worth the money?
Is gorilla habituation in Bwindi worth the money?: We do think that gorilla habituation is worth the money charged which is $1500 per person per trek in Bwindi gorilla park. Gorilla habituation is a process of making mountain gorillas get used to human presence and this started in Uganda in 2014. The activity was done to give travelers an opportunity to encounter mountain gorillas for more than one hour. The activity is done is first done by rangers, researchers, and conservationists, and then alter trekkers are also allowed to be part of the activity when mountain gorillas are less wild.
Gorilla habituation is worth $1500 because it allows a group of only 4 trekkers to be around mountain gorillas for whole 4 hours in their natural habitats. The gorilla habituation in Bwindi is worth the money more than the gorilla trekking in volcanoes national park which is at the same price and allows you to be around mountain gorillas for 1 hour. If you are a traveler intending to encounter mountain gorillas then it’s better you pay $1500 for gorilla habituation in Bwindi where you will encounter gorillas for 4 hours than pay the same amount of money in volcanoes national park to encounter gorillas for 1 hour.
The gorilla habituation in Bwindi is worth the money because it allows you to be close to mountain gorillas, and interact with them in their natural habitat. This experience is done nowhere in the world but in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park and in the Rushaga and Nkuringo regions. The gorilla habituation experience in Bwindi is worth $1500 because it gives you a chance to learn different mountain gorilla behaviors in the 4 hours given.
Gorilla habituation in Bwindi is worth the money because it gives you a lot of time for photography. During the 4 hours, you don’t have to rush to take photos of the mountain gorillas like those carrying out gorilla trekking. You do take time and take the best shots and any time you want and also record the best videos. Lastly, the gorilla habituation is worth the money because unlike gorilla trekking where a group of 8 people is allowed to trek, with gorilla habituation it’s only 4 people who trek a semi-habituated gorilla family avoiding congestion.
How much is a gorilla habituation permit in Bwindi?
To habituate the Bwindi gorillas, you need a gorilla habituation permit which is usually got from Uganda Wildlife Authority or a trusted local operator. A single gorilla habituation permit costs $1500 for foreign non-residents, $1000 foreign residents, and UGX750,000 citizens of East Africa. There are a few gorilla habituation permits in Bwindi and so travelers intending to habituate these apes, especially in the dry season are advised to book at least 3-4 earlier in advance.
The gorilla habituation experience in Bwindi
Done on Bikingi and Bushaho gorilla families, mountain gorilla habituation gives travelers an opportunity to spend 4 hours with the endangered mountain gorillas. The gorilla habituation starts early in the morning at Rushaga and Nkuringo sectors in the south of the park. Trekkers must wake up early in the morning for breakfast and then move to the sector offices for a briefing from the park wardens. These teach about the rules and regulations of the gorilla habituation activity, check if the permits are valid, and get rangers to lead the trekkers in the jungle.
The armed ranger guides are joined by researchers and conservationists who lead the trekkers throughout the trek. The activity goes through different trekking trails where trekkers get opportunities to see other park animals such as buffaloes, duikers, monkeys, elephants, giant forest hogs, birds, and plants. The activity takes 2-7 hours and this depends on the location of the mountain gorilla family and the speed of the trekkers. When the semi-habituated mountain gorilla family is located, the trekkers are given 4 hours to be with the mountain gorillas, do activities that make the apes get used to human presence, learn about their habits, watch them do daily activities, take photos, and record videos.
The most appropriate time to habituate Bwindi gorillas?
Bwindi gorillas can be habituated at any time of the year but there are certain months that are better than the rest. The dry months are the most appropriate times to do gorilla habituation in Bwindi gorilla park and these do happen from June to September and December to February. They are characterized by little or no rainfall that keeps the trekking trails muddy and slippery, the vegetation is short and thin with good views of the mountain gorillas and the roads leading to the park are in good condtion.
Bwindi gorillas can still be habituated in the rainy season of March to May and October to November because the park is always open. Those that will visit the park in that period shall enjoy huge discounts from accommodation facilities because lodges are at a very low price to attract the few tourists in the park. Travelers should however note that during the rainy season, the trekking trails are muddy and slippery, the vegetation is tall and thin with unclear views of the gorillas and the roads leading to the park are in a bad state.
Accommodation on a gorilla habituation safari?
There are only two sectors in Bwindi where mountain gorilla habituation is done and these are Rushaga and Nkuringo regions. Travelers must stay in these regions for them to make it to the briefing point in time. These sectors have lots of accommodation facilities where travelers can stay depending on their budget and choice. The accommodations do range from budget to midrange to luxury options like these below.
Accommodation facilities in Rushaga sector
Rushaga Gorilla Lodge, Four Gorillas Lodge, Ichumbi Gorilla Lodge, Rushaga Gorilla Camp, Bwindi Jungle Lodge, Gorilla Valley Lodge, Lake Mulehe Gorilla Lodge, Nsongi Camp, Rushaga Gorilla Haven Lodge, Rushaga Gorilla Resort, and Wagtail Eco Safari Lodge.
Accommodation facilities in Nkuringo sector
Nkuringo Bwindi Gorilla Lodge, Gorilla Heights Lodge, Clouds Mountain Gorilla Lodge, Bwindi Backpackers Lodge, Mutanda Eco Community Centre, Nshongi Camp, Crested Crane Bwindi Hotel, Lake Mulehe Gorilla Lodge, and Virunga Campsite