Primate safari holidays in Africa are stepping up there game as tourists are yarning to meet the rare giants. Rwanda is becoming the African primate hotspot as gorilla trekking is the leading attraction coupled with nature conservation.
Rwanda is one of the lucky countries to that host only mountain gorillas that the world pride in and jealously protects. She is a basket full of primate fun that you can easily identify during the safaris like the mountain gorillas, golden monkeys, chimpanzees, black and white monkeys, blue monkeys and so much more.
Being a mountainous nation, Rwanda gives the mountain gorillas a comfortable home to stay as there is regular food supply and shelter. It has one of the historic forest that have seen thousands of years over 25000 years. The Virunga area is a veteran of the ice age period and this gives it an upper hand in giving refuge to unique wildlife including enchanting primates.
Gorilla trekking in Rwanda is only done in Volcanoes National Park and only a gorilla trekking permits gives entry to any interested participant. For conservation reasons only 8 tourists are allowed to meet any gorilla family per day just for one hour.
This is because the gorillas are habituated to be in the presence of a few humans for just one hour. It is also believed that this number is manageable and reduces on the chances of trampling on the vegetation which is the main meal for the gorillas.
Mountain gorillas are believed to be freer without human interference so that they can easily reproduce but in case the amount of time with the gorillas is increases there will be interference.
Rwanda hosts the golden monkeys which are one of the rare species of primates in the world. Scientifically golden monkeys are called Cercopithecus mitis Kandit. They are also residents of Volcanoes National park in Rwanda which is renowned for mountain gorillas.
There bodies are covered with golden orange colored far that makes them look outstanding. Trekking golden monkeys is a very interesting primate walk to be in accompany with. When you locate them you need to be on your trots as they have a busy schedule.
They live in troupes of about 2000 to 4000 members under the leadership of an alpha male. It’s a rare species of monkeys that Rwanda shares with Uganda in Mgahinga National Park and D.R.Congo in Virunga National Park.
Being a nature conservation country with great forest cover, Rwanda gives sanctuary to huge primates like the Chimpanzees in Nyungwe National Park. Chimpanzees world over thrive in captivity and zoos but Rwanda gives them the freedom to take control of own life.
A part from gorilla trekking, taking a chimpanzee trekking safari in Rwanda gives you a chance to make a comparison between the gorillas and chimpanzees. They have genes about 98% human bringing them closer to human beings. They are susceptible to human infections so they should be treated with kindness.
Trekking chimpanzees in Rwanda is a lifetime experience and time to get closer to human cousins in animal world.
Other Rwanda Primate Experiences
Its doesn’t matter if you are doing gorilla trekking or chimpanzee trekking in Rwanda, the forest woodland in Rwanda provide a comfortable homes to other primates
Other primates present in Rwanda forests include the blue monkeys, red tailed monkeys, olive baboons, black and white colobus the list is endless. Volcanoes National park is like the congested street of primates as each troupe is busy with day today activities.
Thousands of birds especially the Albertine endemics are also present in Volcanoes National Park to give you the best melody. Its just the best choice of Africa primate safari to take on holiday.
Each time you enter the Rwanda Volcanoes forest or Nyungwe forest, you need a ticket. Booking a Rwanda gorilla trekking permit or Chimpanzee trekking permit or Golden monkeys trek is the trick to confirming your primate safari.
These fees are like facilitation to the conservation work that Rwanda highly promotes. The world ancient forest have for years been deforested but a few remains have to be strictly conserved as homes to great primates.
The Rwanda Development Board is the selling body for any of these tickets but getting through when you make a call is quite challenging. You need availability for these permits because of high demand worldwide.
When you finally get availability for the dates of your choice, this doesn’t guarantee that they will be available in the next hour because of the high demand. First come first serve basis is the criteria used because of limited number of permits especially for the gorilla permits.
What is the Age Limit for primate safaris in Rwanda
15 years and above for gorilla trekking experience in Rwanda, 12 years and above for chimpanzee trekking in Rwanda and any age for golden monkeys. This is because of the forest challenges you go through while in the forest.
The forests are sometimes a little rough and may not be favorable for certain age bracket this is why all these limits have been set.
Primate destinations in Rwanda are open all year round but the drier seasons are more convenient to take. This is June to September and the forest are less wet yet the ground being volcanic easily gets soggy when it rains.However these months are also the high peak seasonswhen gorilla permits are booked in advance plan appropriately to have a full blast.
Other Rwanda Safari activities that you can combine with Primate Tours
Visit to the Dianne Fossey grave takes you in the history of a great American philanthropist who was martyred for defending the mountain gorillas. Her work is the basis on which gorilla trekking activities are being conducted.
Kigali city tour give you an insight into the life of local Rwandese. When combined with the genocide memorial you walk into what happened to natives during 100 days of ignorance in 1994.
A visit to the Rwanda Museums takes you through the opportunity to enjoy the ancient history of Rwandese.