Gorilla tracking in Africa is one of the unique African activities where you are directly involved. This is like a treasure hunting moment. You really keep hopes of finding the gorillas high as the time of meeting them is unknown.
Mountain Gorillas are residents of one of the ancient forests that is believed to have existed during the dinosaur era.
Bwindi Impenetrable forest is home to the mountain gorillas in Uganda. Volcanoes National park is home to the Gorillas in Rwanda. Virunga National Park is home to the mountain gorillas in D.R. Congo.
These are the only countries in the entire world that are natural homes of the mountain gorillas.
What else to see during gorillas tracking
The Bwindi Impenetrable forest has double meaning that is to say Bwindi is a local word meaning impenetrable. This double explanation indeed represents the actual appearance of the forest.
This is like “Neverland forest” of Uganda as it is huge and thick. When you hike and stand on the slopes of the hills close by, you get to see amazing canopy levelled on different layers.
Sometimes you may get visiting monkeys at your window if you spend the night closer to the pack. Birds too may pay you a visit to sing soothing lullabies as night closes in.
In the forest, a number of excited jungle entertainers show case there skills. Enchanting monkeys like black and white colobus, vervet monkeys, grey cheeked mangabey, red tailed monkeys, olive baboon.
For birders, this is Africa’s birding haven as the biggest number of Albertine endemics can be identified easily other than any other place in East Africa.
Eye captivating water falls, a dense network rivers, amazing ridges, swamps and other interesting items make up the Bwindi Forest.
In case you watched the film “Jungle book” or “Jumanji”, this is a place to put any of these films to life.
As instructed by the ranger during briefing, you are expected to stay closer to the rest of the group. This is because Bwindi forest is vast. You can easily get lost in the case you are lagging behind and out of sight.
Dropping any waste in the wilderness pollutes the natural appearance of the environment. The mountain gorillas entirely depend on what the forest provides. When you litter, you reduce on the chances of vegetation thriving to feed the mountain gorillas.
Ask for a stick for extra support as the ground gets slippery and tough as you move along.
In case you wish to ease yourself, it is best to ask for the ranger guide to excavate a hole for you and cover afterwards beyond recognition.
How is the moment with the mountain gorillas?
As you approach the area close to the mountain gorillas, you may hear them murmur at each other. Wait for your ranger guide to give you a go ahead to take photos as he has to first observe there behavior.
Watch the family do there day today activities and you just have one precious hour with the gorillas. Ensure you take photos for memories and then return to your lodge.
Take nothing from the wilderness part from memories or photos and leave nothing behind.
Is it possible to add another activity with gorilla tracking?
Indeed. Below is a sample itinerary that you can follow inclusive of gorilla tracking and game drives.
Day 1 Drive To Bwindi Forest Park
Get up early for a ride to Bwindi Forest. This is about 8 to 9 hours on the road including breaks enroute. Enjoy the vegetation cover that you pass-by arriving late afternoon to check in.
Accommodation: Gorilla Forest Camp/ Engage Lodge/ Trekker’s Tarven Lodge
Day 2 Gorilla Tracking in Uganda
Having taken breakfast, head to the ranger station for briefing. You will be advised on how to behave while in the forest.
Start on the trek to see the gorillas but keep watch on the interesting monkey to bird drama. The forest is full of amazing moments that you shouldn’t miss.
As you get closer to the gorillas, try to keep calm and prepare yourself for the first time encounter. It is one of the unforgettable moments especially that time when you stand before his majesty Silverback.
Take your time watching the gorilla family do its day duties then get back to your lodge.
Day 3 Drive to Queen Elizabeth National Park
As the name states, Queen Elizabeth Park is a royal park in Uganda. A number of animals are residents here. Start your drive early morning so as to enjoy a game drive into the park.
You may get to see animals like huge herds of buffaloes, elephants, water bucks, Uganda Kobs, bush buckers to mention but a few.
Check into your lodge.
Accommodation: Mweya Safari Lodge/ Jacana Lodge/ Simba Safari Camp
Day 4 Game Drive and Launch cruise in Queen Elizabeth National Park
An early morning game drive is super plan for seeing alot of wild animals. You may get to see animals like lions, leopards, hippos, hyenas, warthogs, fox to mention but a few.
Carrying your well charged camera, after lunch you have the opportunity to embark on a boat cruise on Kazinga channel. This is the congregation ground for numerous animals that move ashore to quench thirst.
Incredible numbers of birds flock the shores of Kazinga Channel including both local and foreign birds. It is amazing to see birds in flight leaving the shores while others find space to enjoy the cool shores.
The vegetation surrounding the shores is eye captivating as it a mixture of wood land and grassland, shrubs can be seen around the lake and so much more.
Watch the night slowly draw in
Return to the lodge
Day 5: Return home
Having enjoyed your African trip, get into your safari car to drive to Entebbe airport. Enjoy the fun you might have missed on the first day. This is however dependent on the time of your return flight.