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gorilla safaris Uganda

Gorilla Trekking In Uganda - Endangered Mountain Apes

Gorilla Safaris Uganda – Gorilla Trekking

Gorilla Trekking in Uganda the pearl of Africa is the fantastic compared to any other experience in African on Ugandan soil. The experience of trekking through the Jungle is unbelievable through the thick forests while sighting the remaining few Apes in the world in Bwindi forest Impenetrable national park. Bwindi forest is confirmed as one of the most fascinating in African which was gazetted as a national park in 1991 with Mubare family as the first group in 1993. The inhabitants poaching activities in Bwindi reduced the number of gorillas all over the world.

They were 1000 mountain gorillas in the world as per 2018 census with Uganda holding 50% of the total population. Travelers on a gorilla safaris Uganda tour get to see the endangered mountain gorillas face to face through a program known as gorilla habituation experience in Uganda. Safarivacations-Africa offers scheduled and tailor-made Uganda safari tours of Budget, luxury or mid range to all kinds of clients and groups with Gorilla trekking tours, Uganda safari and Rwanda Gorilla tours. Enjoy Gorilla trekking safaris to Uganda and learn about Mountain gorilla diet, Uganda Gorilla families, What to pack for your gorilla tour Uganda gorilla trekking cost and permits.

What is gorilla trekking In Uganda?

Gorilla tracking is a walk into a thick forest like Bwindi impenetrable national park in search for the gorillas. Mountain hike involves untidy, getting through the bush forest with experienced local guides to find a family of habituated gorillas. Gorilla trekking is awesome and leaves tourists with unforgettable story to tell.

Where are Mountain gorillas in Uganda?

Mountain gorillas are found in the Virunga Mountains in DRC and Rwanda as well as in Bwindi impenetrable national park in Uganda. Worldwide Uganda hosts 50% of the total population of mountain gorillas left with about 450 of them living in Bwindi forest. Bwindi is well known for gorilla habituation and gorilla trekking which is located bellow the equator in the southwestern parts of Uganda and is the most popular national park in East Africa and Uganda.

Bwindi Impenetrable Forest national park is a home of 19 habituated gorilla families that are divided into four sectors. The Buhoma sector, Nkuringo sector, Rushaga sector and Ruhija sector. All sectors have impressive array of luxury lodges and campsites as well as restaurants, craft stall.

Uganda Gorilla Families

Uganda Gorilla Families will guide you on the Gorilla and which families they belong to, Where you can find them (Gorilla Trekking sector) and how many you will find on your Uganda gorilla tour. Mountain gorilla are endangered primates which are found in four national parks in Africa including the main host Bwindi impenetrable national park, Mgahinga gorilla national park in Uganda, Volcanoes national park in Rwanda and Virunga national park in DRC. Uganda is the most visited gorilla destination because its harbors the highest number of mountain gorillas in the world and are found in Bwindi forest.

Travelers who opt to visit Uganda gorilla families engage in gorilla trekking activities which is the most popular activity in Uganda. Visitors above the age of 15years are allowed one hour to trek in search of mountain gorillas.

Gorilla trekking in Uganda is carried out in two protected reserved parts in Uganda Bwindi Impenetrable national park and Mgahinga gorilla national park.

Uganda Gorilla families in the Rushanga sector

Rushanga sector is an area located in the southern parts of Bwindi Forest Par and harbours the highest number of habituated gorilla families in the park. There are 8 habituated gorilla families in Rushanga and they include the following.

Nshongi Family. Nshongi Family comprises of 18 members with 1 one silverback.The group was first sighted near river Nshongi in the Rushanga sectpr which was the largest with 35 members to be habituated.

Mishaya Family. Mishaya family split from the the Nshongi famiy in 2010 because of the disagreements between Mishaya silverback which led to split with some females in the group and created his own family. Mishaya has 7 members with 1 silverback Mwine who leads the family. Mishaya silverback died at the age of 28 years in 2014.

Kahungye family. Kahungye family derives its name from Kahungye hill where gorillas were first sighted. The family was habituated in 2011 and had 27 members. The family later split and formed another family called Busingye. Kahungye family currently has 17 members with 3 silverbacks Ruhamuka, Gwigi and Rumanzi as the dominant in the entire group.

Busingye family. Busingye group has 9 members with one dominant silverback. Busingye family split from kahungye family in 2012 and derives its name from a local word which means peace. The group was named after the dominant silverback Busingye which is found of fighting other wild gorrllas so as to take to add in his group.

Bweza family. Bweza family comprises of 12 members with 2 silverbacks under Kakono silverback. Bweza group split from the Nshongi family due to the disputes.

Mucunguzi family.Mucunguzi means savior and the grup split from Bweza group. This family was named after the dominant silverback was youngest and third in command silverback in Bweza family. The family has 8 individuals with one silverback.

Gorilla families in Buhoma sector

Buhoma sector is located in the northern part of Bwindi impenetrable national park and is the most visited sector in Bwindi forest due to easy accessibility to other tourism destinations and it harbors 4 habituated gorilla groups with their families. They include the following .

Mubare family. Mubare family was the first group to be habituated in Bwindi forest hence the oldest. It was habituated in 1993 and its name from Mubare hill where the grup was first sighted. Mubare group had 12 members after habituation and under Ruhondenza the dominant silverback when it died at the age of 50years. The family has 10 members with a new baby and one dominant silverback.

Habinyanja family. The group derives its name from Nyanja swamp where it was first sighted and was open for trekking in 1999. The group is comprised of 17 members and is dominated by Makara silverback a local name that means charcoal.

Rushegura Family. Rushengula family split from Habinyanja family and was opened for trekking in2000. Rushegura family is the most easily accessible group in Buhoma because it live near the park headquarters and is known for welcoming and being friendly to visitors. The family has 21 members and is dominated by peaceful Mwirima silverback and calm leader

Katwe family. Katwe is a new gorilla family in Buhomasector and was habituated together with the Christmas family in Nkuringo sector. Katwe family has 9 members with dominant silverback katwe.

Uganda Gorilla Families in Nkuringo Sector

Nkuringo sector is located in the southern part of Bwindi impenetrable forest park which comprises of 3 habituated gorilla families

Nkuringo family. Nkuringo family was habituated in 1997 and open for trekking in 2004. It was the first group to be habituated in Nkuringo sector and is known as the first family to give birth to a set of twins in 2004 which later died.  Nkuringo family comprises of 12 members and dominated by silverback Rafiki.

Bushaho family. Bushaho comprise of 8 members and is one of the toughest groups in Bwindi forest national park. The family is dominated by Bahati silverback which were split from Nkuringo family.

Christmas Family. Christmas comprises of 6 individuals. This group is the latest and third family to be habituated in Nkuringo sector. The group was named after the dominant silverback Christmas that was born on christmas day.

Uganda Gorilla families in Ruhija Sector

Ruhija is situated in the eastern part of Bwindi impenetrable national park harboring 4 habituated gorilla families namely..

Oruzogo family. Oruzogo is the only family in Ruhja sector with the highest number of members.The group was open to gorilla trekking experience in 2011 and after habituated. The family has over 25 members with one silverback Tibikwata as the dominant of the group. Oruzogo family is famous group in Bwindi forest park because it’s the most playful family with a set of twins.

Bitukura family. Bitukura comprises of 24 members and one silverback  Ndahura and was habituated in 2008. This family derives its name from its name river and was split from another group.

Kyaguriro family. Kyaguriro family was habituated in 1999 and was the first group to be habituated in Ruhija sector with over 20 individuals and was dominated by silver back Rukina who was struck by lightning in 2015. The group later split into two that is kyaguriro and Rukara silverback.

Mukiza family. This family is also known as Kyaguriro B because it split from Kyaguriro family and is comprised of 10 members with dominant silverback Mukiza.

gorilla safaris Uganda

There are trips that are done once in a lifetime and offer incredible memories that last forever with us. This trip takes you to the Bwindi Impenetrable Gorilla Park that is home to half of the world’s mountain gorilla
This is one of Uganda’s famous trios that you will love to do when you step on African soils. The trips takes you through the incredible primate expeditions
There are trips that are done once in a lifetime and offer incredible memories that last forever with us

What is likely to happen when Trekking Gorillas in Uganda-

Gorilla trekking begins at an appointed meeting area where visitors show up at any given time for a short video and gorilla briefing with Uganda wildlife Authority? Visitors are divided into small manageable groups like 8 members to avoid scaring Gorillas.The starting point depends on the gorilla group to which you have been assigned to trek. Visitors to the Buhoma, Rushaga or Nkuringo start their trek from the UWA headquarters while others have to drive into the forest for other Gorilla groups. Travelers on a gorilla tour to Bwndi Forest impenetrable national park are supposed to follow their respective guides who will lead them through the thick Bwindi with armed guards for security purpose.

How long is a gorilla Trek?

Gorilla trekking can take some time interval of one to five hours or more because trekkers have to figure out where the gorillas have moved today. The trek is relatively hard but tourists in a good body shape and health would enjoy gorilla trekking in Uganda. Travelers on a gorilla tour who are uncomfortable carrying their luggage during the trek would hire a local porter from the surrounding village at a cost of $15 a day.

When is the Best time of the year to Trek Gorilla in Uganda?

Gorilla trekking is done throughout the year and gorilla trekking permits are issued daily. Uganda travelers on a gorilla safari tour would enjoy trekking during the dry months of the year which is January and Mid-September. Mountain gorillas can be trekked all year round in Uganda or Rwanda however the cost of gorilla trekking permits (Rwanda $1500, Uganda $ 600). It is important to note that during the drier months of June, July, August, September, December, January and February are the best time to see gorillas. During these months the land is drier through some little rains drops are experienced in the forest. In these months the forest is easy to navigate and comfortable to trek because of less muddy, less mist Not very cold, conditions and clear sky through the thick forests of Bwindi.

Top Things To Do In Bwindi Forest


gorilla safaris Uganda


Impenetrable Forest

Harbors the last worlds remaining Apes-Endangered Mountain gorillas in the thick Mist ecosystem Forest.

Bird Watching   Gorilla Trekking

Gorilla Habituation

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To see mountain gorillas in Uganda you need a document- gorilla permit that is obtained from Uganda wildlife Authority to allow you trek or spend one hour with mountain gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable national park or Volcanoes national park. Uganda gorilla permits to visit mountain gorillas in Bwindi and Mgahinga park cost USD600 for nonresidents and USD500 for foreign residents while Rwanda Gorilla permits cost USD1500 for non-residents.

Gorilla habituation experience is a process carried out by gorilla researchers by training wild endangered gorillas in their natural habitat get used to human beings. Spend 4-5 hours in the presence of mountain gorillas and get used to the amazing behavior of gorilla families in Bwindi forest park while doing gorilla trekking. Gorilla permits for habituation cost USD 1500 while the normal gorilla permits cost USD 600. Gorilla habituation experience in Uganda takes place in Reshanga sector south of Bwindi forest park. Safari vacations Africa with team offers guideline to Uganda safari vacation gorilla tour travelers on how to book your gorilla habituation permits. There are only 4 people allowed to do gorilla habituation per day.

The chances of seeing mountain gorillas in Uganda or Rwandan through trekking gorillas is the most asked question about gorilla trekking. The chances of seeing mountain gorillas in Bwindi forest national park is 98%. Travelers on a gorilla tour tend to book more gorilla permits in fear of missing to see gorillas on the first trek, therefore may be lucky with the second trek.

The truth is that Uganda Wildlife Authority has an organized schedule of gorilla trackers who wake up early morning to find where these gorillas last slept. Once they find them, they will notify to the headquarters and your ranger guide of the day will take you. Gorilla rangers will start trekking where gorillas would have slept the previous night. The advance team will keep communication if the intended gorilla trekking keep moving fast. UWA can easily take you to another family. Inquire safarivacations Africa for detailed booking of gorilla trekking to Uganda’s Bwindi impenetrable national park.

Gorilla permits are advised to be booked at least 3months in advance because of their shortage during the high season. Conatct safarivacationAfrica for the date when you intend to visit Uganda for a gorilla trekking safari to Bwindi forest or Mgahinga Gorilla national park.

Mountain gorilla tracking exercise can take from 20-40 minutes a day so one needs to prepare before trekking. Trekking gorillas depends on several factors that include gorilla movements, where mountain gorillas slept the previous day, Tracking may also depend on the number of people in your group since guides move following the slowest person in the group. Safari vacations Africa provides relevant gorilla tracking Uganda information to their guests on a gorilla safari tour to Uganda s Bwindi forest.

A maximum of 8 individuals are allowed to visit a gorilla family in Bwindi, Mgahinga or Volcanoes national park. Bwindi forest has about 19 habituated families and only 8 people are allowed per day. UWA management is forced to have more than 8 people depending on the circumstances. A maximum of 4 people are allowed to spend 4hours with mountain gorillas under training called gorilla habituation experience.

The minimum age limit for tracking gorillas and golden monkeys in Uganda and Rwanda is 15 years. The age limit for tracking chimpanzee in Uganda is 12 years old while children 10 years older are allowed to track golden monkeys if at all they’re accompanied by some adults. Before booking our gorilla tracking Uganda safari, make sure all the guests are 15 years of age to avoid sad news-refusal of tracking gorillas in Bwindi forest.  Contact safari vacations Africa for more information regarding the age limit and what to pack during your gorilla tracking safari to Uganda.

gorilla safaris Uganda