How challenging is gorilla trekking in Uganda? How long does a gorilla journey take? Am I in enough shape to go gorilla trekking? These are just a few of the queries that travelers have when preparing for a gorilla tour in Uganda, Rwanda, or the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Gorilla trekking in Uganda is not like a typical game drive or trip to the neighborhood zoo, despite being one of the most exciting wildlife encounters. Trekking in search of gorillas requires navigating challenging terrain, dense foliage, water features, hills, and valleys. Particularly if they are not used to walking for extended periods of time, the activity can be very difficult and taxing, leaving one weary and with sore knees. The activity involves more than just walking on predictable, well-paved trails. One must contend with thorns, dense foliage, and biting insects. In some of the parks, rain and altitude sickness are serious concerns.
The best piece of advice we can give a traveler is to mentally prepare before going gorilla trekking. Be prepared for erratic weather, uneven terrain, and plan changes, which are frequent in several developing nations. Even though it can be difficult for certain people, especially the unfit, 98% of people eventually finish the activity.
The experience of hiking through foreign countries and tropical vegetation is what some people find to be the most exciting part of gorilla trekking tour. They adore the chance to see birds, smaller primates, and the breathtaking surroundings. Some people even like the challenge of going up high cliffs or mud slides only to observe the primates. We are aware of a few tourists who were let down when they discovered the primates too quickly and missed out on hours of fun trekking.
How long is the walk to see the gorillas? How tough is gorilla trekking?
How long does trekking with gorillas take? Mountain gorilla tracking might take a very uncertain amount of time. We calculate that it could take anywhere from 30 minutes to 7 hours to find a certain gorilla family. Numerous factors will determine how long the gorilla journey lasts. One is the gorilla group you are assigned to and where they are on that particular day. While some gorilla families reside close to the park’s administrative buildings and lodges, the majority of them are on the move and may venture further into the surrounding forest or park. Even some gorilla families continue to elude trackers as they approach closer to them before settling down. Particularly for those who choose the gorilla habituation experience, this is true.
Visitors can spend more time with gorillas that are still in the habituation process during the gorilla habituation experience in Bwindi. Different gorilla families are assigned to those who want to go double gorilla trekking (tracking for more than one day). They will observe a difference in how long it takes them to find the groups as well as in how they behave in general. It is crucial to pick a place to stay that is close to the area where the gorilla family of your choice is known to reside. This is particularly true if you are gorilla tracking in Bwindi.
One of the four national parks where gorilla trekking is offered is Bwindi. Additionally, gorilla trekking is possible in the national parks of Mgahinga in Uganda, Volcanoes in Rwanda, and Virunga in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Every location has its challenges. Visitors to Bwindi must navigate rivers, streams, and a dense forest. The mist, higher altitude, and bamboo forests are challenges for visitors to Mgahinga and Volcanoes National Park.
Going prepared will help you have the finest gorilla trekking experience possible. Get the appropriate hiking boots, gear, rain jackets, hats, gloves, bug repellent, sunglasses, and everything else that will make you more comfortable when tracking the gorillas. Don’t forget to bring a small snack and plenty of water to stay hydrated. You must reserve your gorilla safari months in advance if you are older. This will help your tour guide arrange an easier walk for you. The closest gorilla groups can be reserved if you make your reservations in the final week of the busy season.
How fit do I need to be for mountain gorilla trekking?
Travelers must be physically able to handle the difficulties of tracking mountain gorillas. To find a gorilla family, hikers must traverse dense forests, hills, and valleys. This does not imply that people with weaker physical fitness cannot follow the primates. In actuality, the majority of gorilla trekkers are in normal physical shape. Elderly people can go gorilla trekking with the aid of sedan chairs, porters, and hiking sticks. It’s crucial for senior citizens to reserve their gorilla tour far in advance so that they can be given an easier journey and a sedan chair. Despite the fact that these Sedan chairs are designed for the elderly or disabled.
If a traveler is unfit or has large luggage, it is recommended that they hire a porter. Long-distance hiking may make even tiny bags seem weighty. The porters will assist you with ascending any problematic areas of the trip by pulling you up or providing a helping hand. At the start of the journey, hiking sticks are provided for free; treat them like gold; even if you are fit, you’ll thank us afterwards. To have a positive experience, always heed the Rangers’ instructions during the briefing, while hiking, and when you’re among the gorillas.