Mountain Gorillas in Volcanoes National Park

In Rwanda, you will find 12 gorilla families conditioned to the presence of humans. A maximum of 8 people can visit each gorilla family daily. Get ready for a truly unforgettable experience.
Where and When
In the forests of the Volcanoes National Park. All year round.
The duration of the stay with the gorillas is 1 hour. The trek to meet the gorillas lasts between 1 and 5 hours, depending on the distance to the assigned gorilla family.
What's Included
Trekking and national park permit fees, trackers and national park ranger-guide.
More information
Difficulty: Medium Approximate time: from 1 to 5 hours one way Type of route: With a guide from the P.N. of the Volcanoes and in a group
Gorilla trek:
At 07:00 in the morning you must be present at the Volcanoes National Park headquarters to register. Gorilla permits are rare (only 96 per day) so it is important to reserve them in advance. For the high season it is advisable to do it at least 1 year in advance. When registering, the gorilla family you are going to visit is assigned. When you know the name of the group of gorillas, all you have to do is look in the barracks gardens for the area marked with the name of each family. At this point is where you meet with the park guide who will take you to the gorillas and with the other people who will make up the group that will visit this family of gorillas (maximum 8 people). The guide will explain the composition of the gorilla family and other information. After the explanations and indications received, the next step is to reach the starting point of the trekking that the guide will have indicated. At this point the group and the guide meet again to start the trekking until they reach the gorillas. A group of trackers will have entered the forest to track the gorilla family. Since the gorillas do not make long journeys, the trackers will be able to find the gorillas taking into account the area in which they were found the day before. The trekking time to reach the gorilla family will depend on the distance and the pace of the group. The times can vary a lot from trekking to trekking, so on some occasions you may have to walk 1 hour to find the gorillas and on others up to 5 hours.
Visiting time and number of visitors:
From the moment you come into contact with the gorillas it is only possible to stay with them for a maximum of 1 hour. With this measure it is intended that the gorillas can spend most of their time dedicated to their daily activity in peace. The other reason to limit this time is to reduce the gorillas' exposure to possible human illness. Because gorillas are highly sensitive to human diseases, if the national park staff detects that you are sick (cold, flu, etc.) they have the authority to cancel your visit to the gorillas to avoid any risk of contagion to the gorillas. that without a doubt would prove deadly for the whole family and even other gorillas with whom they might interact. For these reasons, only a maximum group of 8 people a day can live this experience that we know is unforgettable for any nature lover. The minimum age to see the gorillas is 15 years old.
Mountain gorillas are found in their natural environment, in the wild, so they move daily, although the distance they cover is generally short. It is essential to be able to walk through the forest for at least 5 hours to find the gorillas. Sometimes the guide will have to clear a path through the vegetation with a machete. At other times, it is possible that a fallen tree must be avoided and it is very possible that a short slope must be ascended. For all this it is important to have an adequate physical and health level to carry out this trekking.
Environmental conditions:
The trekking takes place through the rain forest so you should expect that there will be mud and at some point the path will be slippery. Inside the forest there is humidity, there are insects and there are plants, some of them nettles. For many people all these circumstances are part of this incredible experience. But it may also be the case that for other people getting into nature is a challenge.
Gorilla encounter:
Visiting mountain gorillas have previously had to be accustomed to human presence in order for the gorillas to allow people to stay with them. Visiting regulations dictate that the distance between you and the gorillas should not be less than 7 meters. There are times when the gorillas want to move so sometimes it is inevitable that we cannot get far enough out of the way and the gorillas walk right past us. The guide and trackers are on hand at all times to give any indications that are necessary. During your stay with the gorillas you will be able to enjoy their presence, especially the younger ones who like to play with each other. The adults generally remain calm, resting, eating some plants or simply watching us with their large brown eyes. The guide is also the authority in the park so you should always follow his instructions. When the time comes, he will give instructions to start the return march. We are sure that time will have flown for you and even if you wish to stay a little longer, you must follow the instructions.
Mountain Gorillas in Volcanoes National Park
1,500.00 USD per person
Maximum number of people:
8 people
Minimum age:
15 years old