Gorilla Safaris

Can I Book Uganda Gorilla Safari from Rwanda?

Mountain Gorillas in Volcanoes National Park

The country where you are does not matter. What matters is the booking of your safari early enough through a trusted tour company.  As soon as you decide to take gorilla trekking tours, you need to commit to the tour and request your tour company to help reserve a permit for a given day. Booking gorilla permits during the peak season (June to early October and December to early March) can be very competitive. It is possible to acquire gorilla permits on your own but our experience shows that travelers find the process cumbersome – particularly if they are not residents. A good tour company will help you easily get permits and put together your entire gorilla tracking safari.

Acquiring a gorilla permit or pass to observe wild mountain gorillas is one of the most important things to consider when planning for a gorilla safari. It is important to book your gorilla permit as soon as you to track gorillas. All tourists must have Gorilla permits while entering gorilla habitats and are advised to obtain one at least 6 months before traveling – especially if they plan to travel during the peak season.

For those willing to do it themselves, gorilla permits in Uganda are obtained from the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) offices in Kampala. The Uganda Wildlife Authority issues over 152 gorilla permits per day. If you decide to book the permit by yourself, contact UWA by email requesting a reservation with information about your dates of travel.

Your permit will determine which gorilla family to track as well as your accommodation. There may be discounted gorilla permits in Uganda during the low seasons of April, May and November – but this is very rare these days. Mgahinga national park has only one habituated gorilla group and is generally not busy during the low season.

We will ask you to share your passport details or copy at the time of booking your trip so that they can know your age. The age is important because it determines if you qualify for gorilla trekking or could need a porter while at the park. The passport copy will also help the tour company figure out if you need a guide who speaks multiple languages.

The price of a gorilla permit includes park entrance fees and the services of the ranges/guides who will be leading you while in the forest. The rangers protect you from any wild animals by scaring them away with gunshots (rarely). The price of a gorilla permit excludes accommodation, transport, porters and tips.

It is important to book your gorilla permits and safari months in advance before traveling. This is particularly important during the peak seasons to avoid disappointment.

The price of gorilla permits is always the same. Never accept to pay for gorilla permits at a price different from that offered by the government Authorities. If it is peak season, it is better to wait or book for another month. No one should lie to you to sell it at a different price.

Never send money to a personal account when booking your gorilla permit or tour. All genuine Tour companies have a bank account. This will help you follow up in case you ever need to. Most of us in East Africa use the Pesa Pal online system or something similar.

All in all, you can book your Uganda gorilla safari in Rwanda as long as all the above is put into consideration.

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