Gorilla Trekking in the Virunga Mountains

National parks in Virunga region includes: Virunga national park in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Volcanoes National park (Rwanda) and Mgahinga national park in Uganda.

Virunga region is the best world’s mountain Gorilla trekking centre because of the presence of the mountain ranges. Virunga region is composed of nine Virunga mountains namely; Mt. Mikeno, Mt. Bisoke, Mt. Karismbi. Mt. Muhabura, Mt. sabyinyo, Mt. Gahinga, Mt. Karisoke, Mt, Nyamuragira and Mt. Nyiragongo. The list of mountain ranges gives a wonderful view while trekking Gorillas in the Virunga region.

The largest number of Mountain Gorillas is found in Virunga ranges; Uganda hosts 14 habituated Gorilla groups, Rwanda has 1o habituated Gorilla group and many others in DR. Congo. For trekkers who want to meet a variety, Virunga region is the best option.

In Virunga region, you can trek both Mountain and Low land Gorillas. Mountain Gorillas can be found in Mgahinga National park, Uganda and in Volcanoes National park, Rwanda.

In Virunga region, you can choose to trek Gorillas in any of the three countries since there are near each other but you can as well decide to meet Gorillas of each country. It should be noted that Mgahinga National Park is situated in Uganda, Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda and Virunga National park in Democratic Republic of Congo- all the three parks are situated in Virunga region.

Trekkers gain physical fitness while climbing on the slopes of Virunga Mountains to search Gorillas. The trek takes approximately 4-7 hours but rarely takes a full day. Weak, sick and aged trekkers are advised to trek in Volcanoes national Park since some Gorilla groups there are found after few minutes’ walk from the park headquarter. In other word, Gorilla trekking in Rwanda is less strenuous than in Uganda and DR. Congo.

Virunga region is convenient from Kigali International Airport in Rwanda; it is 2-3hours drive to Volcanoes national park from Kigali Airport, 4hours drive from Kigali Airport to Mgahinga National park and 7hours drive from Kigali Airport to Virunga national park in DR. Congo. Therefore, after trekking Gorillas, visitors can easily fly out of the region through Kigali International Airport due to its convenience.

The ease to get Gorilla permits –  Gorilla permits in Virunga region are easily obtained from Uganda Wildlife Authority, Rwanda development boards and at DR. Congo tourism board.

Gorilla trekking in Uganda and DR. Congo takes place in tropical forest while in Rwanda; it takes place in bamboo forest. The differences in vegetation attract many to trekking Gorillas in Virunga region in order to experience different treks.

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