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Gorilla Habituation Experience in Bwindi National Park
13 Mar

Gorilla Habituation Experience in Bwindi National Park

The Gorilla Habituation Experience in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is not just more time with the Gentle Giants of the Forest, but rather it gives you a more than glimpse with the mountain gorillas. Unlike the casual gorilla trek where you are simple observing the gorilla and taking photographs in the forest, during the activity you are an active participant in the whole process.  At times many visitors want to have an interactive encounter with the Gentle Giants of the Forest and this experience in bwindi is your ultimate answer to your expectations.

The experience calls for strength to hike through the thick foliage, the self-control to keep your hands away from these soulful creatures and the opportunity to hike, appreciate every shrub, tree and bird, insect and finally the Gorillas once you have set your eyes upon them. It comes with exclusivity to allow you enjoy the sight of these mystical creatures and avails maximum viewing time as opposed to that permitted for Gorilla trekking Uganda safari.

Bwindi national park is home to 50% of the world’s remaining mountain gorillas and it currently has 15 Habituated gorilla families and 2 more gorilla families are still under habituation. The Gorilla Habituation Experience is the process through which gorillas are tamed to get used to human presence so that a particular gorilla family can be visited during gorilla treks every day. Currently, there are two gorilla families that are being habituated in Rushaga area and these are Bushaho and Biking group.

The process of habituating gorillas involves park rangers, following a particular gorilla family and spending 4 hours with them on a daily basis. In the due course, they learn about the individual behaviors of each gorilla in the family and thus they end up naming the gorillas according to their character. This takes some time and it can take as many years as possible.

Gorilla Habituation Experience

Rushaga Mountain Gorilla Families, a perfect one stop center for the Gorilla Habituation Experience

This activity can only be carried in the Rushaga sector of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and goes for a fee of $1500. It is way more expensive than the normal experience but comes with more adventure. The numbers of people for the habituation comes down to four, compared to the regular eight. Uganda Wildlife Authority put aside a gorilla family specifically for this activity.

The Difference between Gorilla Trekking and Gorilla Habituation 

A normal gorilla tracking activity grants you a maximum of 1 hour with gorillas which is not the case with a habituation activity. A habituation experience usually lasts for a whole day and gives you 4 hours instead, a perfect opportunity for you to spend more time with the gorillas.

Both activities are very unique and can-not be found elsewhere in the world. However the different is in the hours you spend following and learning about a particular gorilla family. A gorilla habituation experience allows you 4 hours with the gorillas whereas gorilla trekking allows you 1 hour with the gorillas. During the gorilla trekking safari, 8 tourists are allowed to trek a gorilla group.  However during the gorilla habituation experience  process only 4 tourists are allowed to join the process of a particular gorilla family per day. Gorilla habituation experience permit costs USD 1500 per person whereas the gorilla trekking permit costs USD 600 each.

All Uganda gorilla permits whether habituation permits or gorilla trek permits are booked through the Uganda wildlife authority.  Tour operators can help you to book the  gorilla permits for you and organize the entire safari for you.

Tourists in Bwindi Forest attend to a Gorilla Habituation Experience briefing from a Tour Guide

 

What is so special about this Gorilla habituation Experience?

The habituation experience is quite raw. You try to make gorillas used to human beings by being around them for long, feeding them and playing with them. The normal gorilla tracking activity lets you meet gorillas that are already used to human beings.

So besides the raw experience, time and cost, there is no much difference between the normal experience and gorilla habituation.

If you haven’t carried out gorilla tracking before, you will not know how little an hour is to spend around gorillas. Most tourist wish to spend much longer with these primates but unfortunately have to go by the rules. Four hours around mountain gorillas is quite enough for you to get a superb experience hence, you should not hesitate to opt for it.

Is there a gorilla habituation experience in Rwanda?

Unfortunately, there is nothing like a Rwanda gorilla habituation experience in place. Rwanda has something similar to this and turns out to be much more pricey.

The Rwanda package of booking an entire gorilla family sounds more fun but not many can afford the price. If you can afford this, you should definitely go for it or rather do a normal gorilla habituation experience in Uganda.

Want to take part in the Uganda gorilla habituation experience? Simply get in touch with us today for an affordable quote.

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