Comparing Gorilla Trekking in Virunga National Park Vs Bwindi N.P: Are you intending to go gorilla trekking and are having difficulty deciding between Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park and Congo’s Virunga National Park? Here is a comparison based on our knowledge to assist you pick and decide where to go for a gorilla trekking experience. The fact is that both parks feature mountain gorillas, and there is no significant difference in the experience you will have at the end of your hike.
Comparing Gorilla Trekking in Virunga National Park Vs Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.
However, there are numerous factors you may use to compare gorilla trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park to gorilla trekking in Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo in order to decide where to book and travel for your gorilla trekking, including the following;
In terms of accessibility, both Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park in Uganda and Virunga National Park in Congo may be reached via Kigali city in Rwanda, which is the shortest and most direct route to both parks. This is absolutely true, and no one can deny it. People used to avoid going gorilla trekking in Bwindi because of the 9-10-hour trip from Entebbe International Airport to Bwindi, but we now offer excursions to Bwindi impenetrable national park through Kigali, which is only a 4-5-hour drive. You arrive in Kigali, use the East African Tourist Visa (which permits you to visit both countries simultaneously), and then trek gorillas in Bwindi. To reach both parks, you will need to cross borders.
In terms of lodges, both National Parks include budget, mid-range, and upscale lodges where you may stay on your walk. In comparison to Virunga national park in Congo, Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is the ideal site for gorilla trekking for individuals interested in staying in super-luxury lodges of world standards. Some of these resorts, such as Gorilla Sanctuary Forest Camp and Buhoma Lodge, are regarded among the best in Africa and the country as a whole. In comparison to Bwindi, Virunga National Park offers fewer accommodation alternatives namely Kibumba Tented Camp and Mikeno Lodge.
Landscape and Gorilla Trekking Experience
In terms of landscape and gorilla trekking experience, mountain gorillas in Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo are in the Virunga/hills with mainly bamboo as the main vegetation, whereas mountain gorillas in Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park are in a tropical rain forest with a variety of trees and plants.
Comparing Gorilla Families in Virunga and Bwindi National Parks.
Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park has more gorilla families available for hiking than Virunga National Park. Bwindi has 19 habituated gorilla family groups, which implies that 152 gorilla permits are available for gorilla trekking every day in Bwindi, whereas Virunga National Park has 8 gorilla families open for trekking. In comparison to Virunga National Park, which only has 64 permits available per day, this makes it easier to get gorilla trekking permits in Bwindi National Park, especially during peak season months.
Cost of Gorilla Permit
Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo is far less expensive than Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. The pricing gap stems mostly from policy differences between the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Rwanda. Congo is attempting to develop gorilla tourism in order to attract more visitors following a period of unrest in the region. Is the experience and time spent with gorillas the same?
A gorilla permit in Virunga National Park in Congo costs $400 per person per trip during the peak season months of December to March, then June to October, and $200 during the low season months of March to May, then October to December. This allows you to have a one-hour interaction with mountain gorillas in Virunga National Park.
The Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park gorilla permit costs $700 per person per trek for foreign nonresidents, $600 per person for residents, and $70 for East African citizens (Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, Kenya, Burundi, and South Sudan), and allows you to spend one hour with the mountain gorillas.
Safe and Security of Trekkers
In comparison to Virunga National Park in Congo, Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is the greatest site to do gorilla trekking. Both countries have long had insecurity between their borders, with various rabble attacks and the Ebola outbreak negatively impacting gorilla tourism activities for many years. However, Uganda has since well managed to control the situations, and it is now much more stable and safer for gorilla trekking than Congo. During your gorilla trekking adventure, you will be led by armed and well-trained rangers who will defend you from any unexpected assaults by wild creatures in the park as well as rabbles or poachers, Comparing Gorilla Trekking in Virunga National Park Vs Bwindi N.P.
Length of Gorilla Trekking
The question of walking a longer or shorter distance is determined by the gorilla family assigned to you on the day of trekking in one of the national parks. In both Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park and Virunga National Park in Congo, gorilla families are assigned based on the individual’s interest and physical fitness. If you desire a shorter walk, for example, you must notify the park officials on the day of the trek so that you are assigned to such a family. You do the same if you desire a medium or longer trek.
It should be noted that, while they will try to match you with a family that requires fewer treks, gorilla behavior may alter your experience. For example, if gorillas decide to go further while you seek for them, you may need to walk a longer distance.
Best Time for Gorilla Trekking in Virunga national park Vs Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.
Both parks are available all year for gorilla trekking, although it is crucial to understand that both are located in the tropics and can experience rain at any time. June to August and December to February are the greatest months to follow gorillas since they have the least rainfall and the forest is less slick. However, if you come between March and May or November, when there is a larger likelihood of rain, you may be able to secure lodging discounts from select lodges.