Rwanda gorilla trekking permits

Rwanda gorilla trekking permits, Gorilla trekking in Rwanda is such an exciting and adventurous activity while on  a Rwanda tour , so much so that Rwanda gorilla tours are on the rise. Rwanda has fast become a popular destination for gorilla trekking tours on the African Continent.

Visitors seeking to track mountain gorillas in Rwanda are required to have gorilla trekking permits, which cost USD 1500 dollars per person. Gorilla trekking in Rwanda is a highly sought after activity by many tourists despite the increase in the price of gorilla trekking permits.

There are 10 habituated gorilla groups in Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda, and these include; Susa A, Susa B, Sabyinyo, Hirwa, Agashya, Bwenge, Ugenda, Umubano, Amahoro and the Kwitonda gorilla family/ group. However, since October 2019, visitors who wish to track the Hirwa gorilla family will have to travel to Mgahinga National Park in Uganda, where the group recently migrated to.

Rwanda gorilla trekking permits
Rwanda Gorilla Trekking Permit

Where to trek gorillas in Rwanda.

Gorilla trekking activities in Rwanda are safe for visitors to engage in given the fact that Rwanda’s mountain gorillas are habituated. Visitors can track these habituated mountain gorillas at any time of the year from Volcanoes national park, which is located in Ruhengeri in the northwestern part of Rwanda. The national park is found within the Virunga Massif and was first established in 1925, making it one of the oldest conservation areas in Africa. There are about 18 gorilla groups in Volcanoes national park with only 10 available for tourists to track while the rest are meant for research purposes.

How much is a gorilla trekking permit in Rwanda?

Rwanda gorilla trekking permits cost USD 1500 dollars per person. This is quite high as compared to the price of USD 600 dollars for a gorilla trekking permit in Uganda which will later be hiked to $700 effective July 2020, and USD 400 in the Democratic Republic of Congo. However, the high cost of a gorilla trekking permit in Rwanda has not deterred tourists from taking part in gorilla trekking activities in the country. There is quite a high demand for gorilla trekking permits in Rwanda especially during the peak seasons.

How many gorilla trekking permits are available for tourist visiting Rwanda?

There are only 8 gorilla trekking permits available per gorilla group. This means that a total of 80 gorilla trekking permits are issued each day in Volcanoes national park. The trekking permits are issued by officials from the Rwanda Development Board, and on first come first serve basis. This means that visitors interested in trekking gorillas should purchase a gorilla trekking permit at least 6 months in advance. It is also important for visitors to know that gorilla trekking activities in Rwanda take place in groups of a maximum of 8 people per gorilla group. Trekking gorillas in Rwanda is only permitted for visitors aged 15 years and above.

Inclusions and exclusions of Rwanda gorilla trekking permits?

There are a few terms and conditions attached to gorilla trekking permits in Rwanda. A gorilla trekking permit in Rwanda is inclusive of the following expenses; salaries for gorilla doctors and park wardens, park ranger and guide fees, conservation fees, government taxes and park entry fees. In addition to this, Rwanda Development Board decided to donate 10% of all revenue earnings collected from gorilla trekking permits, to the communities living near Volcanoes National Park. This is a great way of giving back to the community and also showing them how important it is to conserve these endangered species of mountain gorillas.

On the other hand, the price on your Rwanda gorilla trekking permit excludes expenses such as; transportation to and from Volcanoes national park, accommodation, meals, porter fees, Rwanda visa fees and other expenses of personal nature.

How can one book for a gorilla trekking permit in Rwanda?

In order to book your Rwanda gorilla trekking permit, you will need to present a copy of your national ID or a valid passport. Make sure that your passport is valid for at least 6 months. Having done this, your can proceed to check for availability of gorilla permits for a specific day on which you plan on trekking gorillas. In case there are gorilla trekking permits available for this day, you can proceed to pay for your gorilla permit. If there are no gorilla permits available on the day that you have chosen, a sales official from Rwanda Development Board will give you other options for days on which you can trek gorillas and you can choose to buy a permit if you wish. Visitors are free to pay for their gorilla trekking permits using credit cards, bank transfers or mobile money. Visitors can also use a trusted tour operator to book for you a gorilla trekking permit in Rwanda.

Best Time to do gorilla trekking in Rwanda.

The best time for visitors to trek mountain gorillas in Rwanda is during the dry season which is in the months from June-September and from December- February. It is much easier for visitors to trek gorillas in these months since it’s easy to hike through the vegetation in the forest. However gorilla trekking in Rwanda can be done throughout the year.


What to pack when trekking gorillas in Rwanda.

Visitors planning to trek mountain gorillas in Rwanda should pack the following items; a light raincoat, long trousers and shirts, long stockings, a good pair of hiking boots, sunscreen, insect repellent cream, packed lunch, a camera, and mineral water. Don’t forget to also carry your gorilla trekking permit on the day that you are going to trek gorillas.

Rwanda gorilla trekking permits
Gorilla trekking Rwanda

Other activities visitors can do while on a visit to Volcanoes National Park.

Aside from trekking gorillas in Volcanoes national park, visitors can also opt to engage in other activities such as; golden monkey tracking, hiking to Musanze caves or Dian Fossey gravesite, hiking mount Karisimbi and Bisoke, and take part in community cultural tours among others.

Alternatively, visitors can combine a gorilla trekking tour in Volcanoes national park with Chimpanzee trekking or a Canopy walk in Nyungwe Forest national park, or even a game drive in Akagera national park.

Book now your gorilla trekking tour in Rwanda and get a chance to trek the last surviving population of mountain gorillas in the world.

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