05/22/18

Advantages And Disadvantages Of Gorilla Trekking In Uganda

Gorilla trekking is one of the exceptional activities you will enjoy in only three countries in the whole World-Uganda, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo and the adventure has continuously been the main reason for tourists visiting the African continent. However, due to the crime and civil unrest resulting from rebel activities that contribute to death of Park rangers and kidnapping of tourists in Virunga National Park of the Democratic Republic of Congo, most gorilla tours are made to Uganda and Rwanda but due to high cost of gorilla permits ($1500) for the latter, priority is now directed to the former where permits only cost $600 per person.

Uganda gorilla tours lead tourists to the dense jungles of Mgahinga Gorillas and Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, all in the south-western part of the country. In most cases, tourists ask about the advantages and disadvantages of tracking gorillas from Uganda when booking and therefore, provided are the merits of choosing Uganda as your next gorilla trekking destination;

Two wonderful national parks to track mountain gorillas

Unlike other countries with only one National Park with mountain gorillas, Uganda has two places where you can track the Giant Apes. Therefore, you can either track these primates from Bwindi Impenetrable National Park or Mgahinga Gorilla National Park, hence you can make a choice between the two places.

Opportunity of enjoying the Gorilla Habituation Experience

Besides Uganda, there is no other place in the World to enjoy the Gorilla Habituation Experience. Unlike gorilla trekking where tourists are allowed only one hour to spend with a gorilla family, tourists on the Gorilla Habituation Experience get the chance to spend up to four hours with a gorilla family still undergoing habituation (to make them used to the presence of humans). With your permit (at $1500), you will get the chance to visit one of the two gorilla families found in Nkuringo and Rushaga sectors of Bwindi National Park.

Highest population of mountain gorillas

With over 480 mountain gorillas out of the recorded 880 Mountains Gorillas, Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable and Mgahinga Gorilla National Parks undeniably offer shelter to more than half of the World’s population of the Giant Apes. So far, there are 15 habituated gorilla families to be tracked-14 in Bwindi and 1 in Mgahinga, hence making Uganda the best destination of encountering these extraordinary primates in their natural habitats. The most interesting thing about Bwindi is that the gorilla families are distributed across four sectors-Buhoma, Rushaga, Ruhija and Nkuringo which is not the case with other Parks.

View of Bwindi National Park

More habituated gorilla families

Besides offering high population of mountain gorillas, Uganda has the highest number of habituated gorilla families-15 groups, hence over 100 permits are sold per day, contrary to 10 habituated families (80 gorilla permits available per day) for Rwanda. Having more gorilla permits makes it easy for tourists who make last minute bookings to also get the chance to meet these adorable creatures in their natural habitats.

Affordable cost of gorilla permits

Gorilla permits in Uganda cost only $600 for foreign non-residents, $500 for foreign residents and only Shs 250,000 for East African Community residents yet in Rwanda permits cost $1500 per person for all categories of tourists, hence making Uganda a cheaper gorilla trekking destination. This allows tourists to save a lot of money for other expenses and activities.

Easier access from Kigali (Rwanda)

Most intending gorilla trekkers forsake Uganda because of the long distance it takes to drive from Kampala/Entebbe to Bwindi Impenetrable and Mgahinga Gorilla National parks but did you know that for only four hours, you can be able to drive to the two National Parks? This is possible by connecting from Kigali city, thus making it possible to go on a one-day gorilla tour in Uganda as it is for Rwanda. For instance, if you leave Kigali at 4:3oam, you can reach Bwindi and Mgahinga by 7:00am to track one of the country’s remarkable gorilla families, and return to Kigali the same day.

However, there are also several disadvantages of choosing to track mountain gorillas from Uganda and these include;

Difficulty in tracking

If you have ever tracked mountain gorillas from both Uganda and Rwanda, then you are aware that it is more difficult within the former than it is within the latter because the gorillas in Bwindi (especially Rushaga an Nkuringo sectors) inhabit areas of higher elevations. Also, the mountain gorillas of Volcanoes National park are found within the bamboo forests which is not the case with those in Bwindi that inhabit the areas with dense undergrowth.

Longer distances and high costs of transport for accessing the National Parks

Besides the long distance of connecting from Entebbe/Kampala to Bwindi or Mgahinga National Park (8-10 hours), it is generally more expensive than it is when connecting fr0m Kigali International Airport to Kigali City which is only 2 hours away. Even the domestic flights to air-strips-Kihihi and Kisoro (Uganda) are generally expensive.

Much as gorilla trekking is conducted within three countries-Uganda, Rwanda and DRC, there are a number of advantages in tracking from Uganda including the fact that there are more gorilla families, low cost of gorilla permits and higher population of gorillas but there are also challenges that include the longer distance to connect from Entebbe / Kampala to Bwindi as well as difficulty in tracking.

04/23/18

5 Tips to Plan a Gorilla Trip By Independently

How To Plan A Gorilla Trip By Yourself / Independently

Rwanda and Uganda are one of the three countries in the while World to undertake gorilla safaris (the other is Democratic Republic of Congo) but if you ever make up your mind to undertake the trip from this remarkable country, make sure to plan by yourself / independently because it is cheaper than doing it through the tour operator because most of them charge a commission. Therefore if you plan for Uganda safaris and tours by yourself, you will save a lot of money and yet it is very cumbersome and involves a lot of legwork.

Gorilla trekking within Rwanda is more expensive than it is within the other mentioned countries because permits cost $1500 per person while in Uganda it is $600 yet in the Democratic Republic of Congo it costs $400 but if you plan the safari by yourself, there are high chances that you will save more money if you plan or book for it independently.

Nonetheless, booking a gorilla safari by yourself depends on the period of time you will be spending within the gorilla destination in that if you have less time (1-3 days), you are advised to use the services of tour operators while if you are spending more days (6-10) days, it is advisable to plan or book for it by yourself. Therefore, the following are the important tips to allow you plan for the gorilla trekking safari in Uganda or Rwanda independently;

Do some Research (Gather enough Information) on the price of gorilla permits and pay in advance

The first step of undertaking a gorilla safari is by first inquiring on the availability of gorilla permits because this is your ticket to participating in this activity. This information can be accessed from the website of Rwanda Development Board, sending an email to reservation@rwandatourism.com or calling the reservation office on +252 57 65 14. For Uganda permits, information is available at Uganda Wildlife Authority (info@ugandawildlife.org, Telephone: +256 414 355000 and +256 312 355000). After being sure that permits are available for the date you wished to track the gorillas, book by paying 30% and this should be done at least 6 months in advance due to the high demand for the activity. Permits currently cost $1500 per person in Rwanda and US$600 per person in Uganda, paid in Bank or by cash and can be obtained from the RDB / UWA Head offices. The balance for gorilla permits is paid 3 months to the tracking date.

Get convenient transport means to the Gorilla detonations

In Rwanda, there are usually several local bus companies with comfortable buses leaving Kigali City for Ruhengeri and there is particularly a bus station in Nyabugogo where tickets can be booked charging from 2000 to 3000 francs per person and the journey takes at least 2 hours. Because the buses just stop at Ruhengeri, you will need to get private transport means (300 to 500 francs) especially special hire vehicles to Kinigi Park Headquarters lasting 20 to 30 minutes.

In Uganda, there are many bus companies from Kampala to Kisoro where you can easily connect to Mgahinga national park and Southern Bwindi National park. The journey is approximately 10 hours and charges between 25.000 and 35.000 Uganda Shillings. From the bus station, you can connect to your pre-booked hotel or to the gorilla park by private car hire.

Booking for a place of Stay

Intending gorilla trekkers are always advised to book for accommodation within or near the Park Headquarters and not very far away from the gorilla trekking starting point. Just like the gorilla permits, tourists are advised to deposit for the room in advance to avoid disappointment, then complete on the day of checking in. There are many gorilla safari Lodges within all gorilla parks in Rwanda and Uganda. In Volcanoes National Park Rwanda, Kinigi Guest Guest House is highly recommended because it is opposite the park Headquarters, less than 5 minutes walk to the headquarters.

Pack the right items

Any tourist planning to track the mountain gorillas in Volcanoes National Park and Bwindi or Mgahinga National Parks needs to be prepared for life in the jungles-extreme coldness, dense vegetation and slippery/muddy ground during the rainy season. Therefore, make sure you don’t leave out the long sleeved shirts, long trousers, rain jacket, snacks, bottled water, waterproof hiking boots, hut, non-flash camera, binoculars, cotton socks, heavy sweater, gardening gloves and a backpack among others.

Self drive Rental and Camping

If you are a family, a group of friends or a couple planning a gorilla trip independently, you can save a lot of money when you rent a car without driver and drive your own adventure. Here, you share the cost of transport, fuel and accommodation. In other words, its cheaper to travel in group than sole. Please note, it must be a 4×4 car, and these are available from US$40 per day, for instance, Toyota Rav4, Land cruiser, Mini-vans, Prado, Suzuki Escudo, Honda CRV and many others.

Additionally, some car rental agencies rent out  cars with a full camping gear, thus saving money on accommodations. A full camping gear is from US$5 per day and it includes a water proof tent (some times roof top tent), sleeping bags, mattress, camper table, chairs, kitchen ware, crockery, cooler box, storage box, jerrycan, lam and torch.

With the tips above, it is very possible to plan for a gorilla trip by yourself with enough information and booking for permits in advance, getting convenient transport means to from the airport to the gorilla parks, booking for a place of Stay and Packing the right items.

02/19/18

Gorilla Tracking: Uganda Vs Rwanda

Uganda and Rwanda feature the three only destinations where mountain gorilla trekking is conducted in the whole world. In Uganda, gorilla trekking is only conducted in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park and Mgahinga National Park while in Rwanda it is carried out in the Volcanoes National Park. The two are considerably the best areas when it comes to mountain gorilla safaris in Africa. The other destination is the Virunga National Park in Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). However, both destinations require a strong 4×4 car with some experience of off-road driving. If you make your own arrangements to the gorillas, you are advised to hire a 4×4 car with driver in Kampala or Kigali for a safe and successfully gorilla safari. Note that, this must be a 4×4 Car such as Land cruiser Prado, Rav4, Nissan safari, Nissan Patrol and others.

Gorillas in Bwindi National Park

A face to face encounter with these apes in the wild is such a magical experience that you can find anywhere in the world, not even in the zoo except only in the thick tropical rain forests of Africa. Whereas gorilla trekking has been described as a lifetime experience, most tourists still wonder or do not know which destination to visit for their safaris. Others ask is gorilla trekking in Uganda better than Rwanda. Depending on what your interests are but you can visit one or even both as each destination comes with unique encounters beyond mountain gorillas. With this, below are some of the factors that can guide you while selecting which destination you want to visit for mountain gorilla trekking.

Considering the cost of gorilla permits, both Uganda and Rwanda a permit is a must to have for this lifetime experience. However, the difference comes on the cost of a permit. In Uganda, gorilla permits are sold at $600 per person for foreign non residents, $500 for foreign residents and shs.250000 for East Africans. While in Rwanda permits are issued out at $1500 per tourist. But the visitor experiences thereafter are equally exhilarating. A permit at hand allows you to track one habituated gorilla family.

Uganda is known to offer refuge to the largest number of mountain gorillas compared to the rest of destinations. About 480 individuals thrive within Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park and Mgahinga National Park. These also feature over 16 habituated gorilla groups that have been set for visitor experiences and in Rwanda there only ten groups that have been set for gorilla trekking. More gorilla families mean more permits for visitors. Uganda today issues about 128 permits for visitors to track mountain gorillas compared to 80 in Rwanda.

Another difference can also arise especially when it comes to the general gorilla safari plan. For Rwanda, the Volcanoes National Park is situated about 125 kilometers away from Kigali city centre and this makes it one of the most accessible gorilla destinations by road. Bwindi and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park are located far away from Kampala city centre at approximately 527 and 519 kilometers respectively requiring about 9 to 10 hours’ drive.

However, the distances have been reduced by use of direct flights from Entebbe International Airport or Kajjansi airfield to Kisoro airstrip where visitors can easily connect to the park or their choice. This also means that you need at least 3 days to have a gorilla safari in Uganda and yet Rwanda Volcanoes National Park can be visited within one or two days. The long distant drives to Bwindi or Mgahinga Gorilla National Park come with spectacular scenery especially at the Equator area at Lake Mburo National Park and Queen Elizabeth National Park which also come with stunning wildlife species, magnificent terraced mountains with Rivers and much of remoteness.

And this may not be in Rwanda if you are starting your safari from Kigali to Volcanoes National Park. A stopover at Queen Elizabeth National Park for instance allows you to explore its big game which includes the African lions and not to forget the rare tree climbing lions, African elephants, Buffaloes and Leopards as well as several wildlife species that will come your while on wildlife viewing or boat cruise along the Kazinga channel. While a stopover at Lake Mburo National Park comes with views of Rothschild giraffes, topis, buffaloes, impalas, Burchell’s zebras, warthogs, Defassa waterbucks, leopards and many more or alternatively visit Igongo cultural centre for cultural museum which comes with collective tribes of southwestern Uganda, traditional restaurant, cultural village and stunning gardens and many more. And after gorilla trekking, visitors usually complete their safaris at Lake Bunyonyi which features as the second deepest Lake in Africa with all 29 distinct islands that are confined in it. The Lake offers spectacular views of the area as well as distinct birdlife.

Mountain gorilla treks in Rwanda and Uganda begin with morning briefing from park official who takes visitors through how they are supposed to behave while in the forest with gorillas. The difference comes where the morning briefing in Volcanoes National Park is accompanied with a cup of coffee or entertainment from local dances and performances by local people. For Uganda, you have to go for cultural encounter as a different activity to visit the Batwa community. Batwa encounters are exceptionally dramatic experiences one should go for while on gorilla safari in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park or Mgahinga National Park.

In conclusion, mountain gorilla trekking in both Uganda and Rwanda is exceptionally the most thrilling experiences that come once in lifetime. While on safari, you can visit one or both and destination to help you make your own comparison in terms of experiences.

01/19/18

Tips to Book A 4×4 Safari Car in Uganda

Are you planning to go for a self drive or a guided safari in Uganda and you do not know where or how to get the best car to hire for your trips? Guided tours for long have become the most sought after experiences by most tourists on safari in Africa as most of them have a feeling that it is a safer and comfortable way to travel but due to changes in demand, self drive safaris have also picked up as it offers visitors with adequate freedom, privacy and flexibility while on safari to any destination.

Uganda features a number of Car Rental Agencies and they all offer variety of services and vehicles at varying prices. While planning your safari in Uganda, you will need that reliable and trust worthy Car Hire Company to help you get the best and comfortable car that suits within your pocket and travel needs.

There are many ways that you can rent a car and to help you get the best choice, below are some of the sources that you should consider if you plan to hire a car for a self drive or guided tour in Uganda

Online: Most car hire services in Uganda are accessible through online as most car rental companies have websites with details about variety of cars for hire. You will find a wide range of cars especially sedan, 4×4 safari jeeps, mini vans and luxury bridal vehicles as well as brief info and travel plan on national parks and any attractions that you may need to explore. Turn on the Wi-Fi or simply visit internet café and Google out more about car rental with reputation, reviews and reliability. Type any car services for instance self drive, airport transfer or car category especially the sedan, Rav4, Land Cruiser in Uganda. The website features most contact details including the agency email, mobile and telephone number and office address but the best feature is the contact form that gives you opportunity to send your inquiry directly to the agency email.

Social Media: This is another best source for you to rent a car in East Africa. The most famous social media platforms include twitter, facebook, instagram and many more. Many car hire agencies and clients advertise their products, services and up to date news via shared posts on these platforms which are views by millions of users beyond boundaries. Type in any vehicle that you need to rent or service you in need to use in Uganda in a search box of facebook, twitter or any other social media and you will get results of pages and accounts that can give you what you need.

Office: In case you are within Kampala, Uganda, you would simply give yourself time and pay a visit to the Car Hire Company’s office after all the address, telephone contacts are all displayed on the website. The perfect thing with booking a car in person is that you can always be in position to negotiate with the staff and get the best rate, you don’t need to wait for an email reply and you deal directly with the agency that offers you more authority.

Friend/Relative: You can also book a car through some one; it can be a friend, family member or even absolutely unknown person. Get first hand information on a car hire agency and what is entailed in renting a vehicle in Uganda from the previous visitors as this will guide while making the best choice at a pocket friendly rates.

In conclusion, in case you have any plans of visiting Uganda for safari to the national park, city tours, business or leisure holiday and you wish to rent a vehicle with or with no driver; then you need to consider the above tips can guide you.

 

01/18/18

Interesting Facts About Eastern Lowland Gorillas

A trek to see a group of Eastern Lowland gorillas in the jungles of Democratic Republic of Congo is remarkably one of the most thrilling adventures that come once in lifetime. The Eastern Lowland apes belong to one of the 2 (two) sub species of the eastern gorilla which lives within a few remaining tropical rain forests in Africa. It is common compared to other species and it features as one of the largest apes on earth.

Eastern Low Land Gorilla

These remarkable apes thrive mainly around the tropical rain forests of eastern and central Africa together with lowland swamps and secondary forests. They tend to spend much of their time on trees and in the Democratic Republic of Congo, they are mainly found in the dense jungles of Kahuzi Biega National Park and Maiko National Park. They are known to be the 2 (two) distinct sub species of Eastern gorilla that makes up the Eastern Lowland (scientifically known as ‘Grauer’) and the rare mountain gorillas. The only slight difference lies in their physical appearance, the two species are also distinct from each other in terms of population.

The Eastern Lowland gorillas feature among the large primates, a family that comprises of gorillas, orang utans, humans and chimpanzees. They come with unique characteristics that make their survival in the forest a bit simpler including their opposable thumbs that come in handy when they are peeling fruits.

The Eastern Lowland gorillas are herbivorous. They depend on leaves, plants, stems, nuts and berries plus termites, ants, insects and at times small wildlife species like lizards and rodents. These rare species also tend to use basic tools in the natural habitat especially when it comes to gathering food stuff. Given their huge sizes, these primates have few real predators in the wild except the large cat family especially the leopards and the crocodiles. Habitat loss features as the major threat to the survival of these primates in the wild due to continued deforestation as well as hunting by humans. Most of the areas around their habitat territories have also been characterized by insecurities that in most cases come together with poaching.

They live in families of about 5 to 30 or beyond with a silverback gorilla or an alpha male being their dominant leader whose responsibilities are largely dependent on protecting the rest of the members in the family and also mate with females. Given habitat loss and continued poaching, these unique apes have become the endangered species with less than 5000 that are left on earth today.

They make new nests each day just like mountain gorillas and the babies can share with their mothers till they reach 3 years and above. The males weigh up to 250 kilograms and they can stand up to 2 meters tall.
Like mountain gorilla trekking, visitors on lowland gorilla trekking are also given only an hour to be with the apes, explore them while they feed and play with their babies. To track these primates, you can visit Kahuzi Biega National Park which is situated around Kivu province in the north or through the Ruzizi 1 border to the southwestern side of Rwanda.

In conclusion, for absolute great ape experiences never miss to pay a visit to Democratic Republic of Congo where you explore more about the eastern lowland and mountain gorillas. The country is located in central Africa with many UNESCO world Heritage sites such as Virunga National Park, Salonga National Park and Okapi Wildlife reserve among others. You can combine other adventures within Congo or even Uganda and Rwanda with gorilla safaris and you will have the most wonderful experiences of lifetime.

05/13/17

A fabulous Honeymoon – Queen Elizabeth National Park

At the beginning of this year, my longtime friends I and my husband took a honeymoon trip to a place we had never been before. This actually still remains my memorable day ever in my life. I had never been to an African country before and I did not know how beautiful Africa was but Uganda truly gave me a true portrait of Africa. It really proves that Africa is the most blessed continents on the globe.

On the day when our friends surprised us with the good news about the package, we really had to hit the internet to look for a good tour company in Uganda that would organize our trip at affordable prices and other benefits and also to hire a car in Uganda that we would use to travel to our destination.

As we were in Uganda, we took an expedition to Queen Elizabeth national park in Western Park the home of animals and birds. I had never seen such playful and friendly creatures like elephants, hippos as well as antelopes before. As which reached the Mweya sector, we went down through large expanse of savanna grassland in search of these animals and rare bird species. Hiking through the some of the rain forest was very tiresome but this was a thriller and adventurous as we spent 5 hours searching for the bird species. We were very excited to see birds like Bar-tailed Godwit, Black-rumped Buttonquail, Shoebill, African Skimmer, Lesser plus Greater Flamingo, Chapin’s Flycatcher, White-tailed Lark, Corncrake, Pinkbacked Pelican, Verreaux’s Eagle Owl, Papyrus Canary, White-winged Warbler, African Broadbill which are very rare in our home country.

After three days at Mweya, we proceeded to kyambula where we spent one hour with amazing elephants and red eyed monkeys but this was not all about looking at these animals, this went beyond as we learnt a lot of things about elephants as well as Uganda cobs. These are animals behave like humans in the way they associate with each other and the silver back is the leader and the protector of the family. Everything done within the family revolves around the silver back. It was a life time experience that I can never forget in my entire life. I saw things that I had never seen before an animal well organized like humans, having a head animal that directs them where to go and what to do.

After finishing a long conversation with these amazing animals, we headed to the most amazing part of Uganda with wonderful physical features. What amazing lake is Lake Nyungu! A lake that has a shape of map of Africa, Lake Kigere that has a human foot like shape, I really recall it was a fantastic experience one can never forget. I remember my husband confusing me with identical twin lakes around Lake Nyungu. Those lakes explain exactly how twins look like.

Later in the evening, Kichwamba cultural site where my husband participated in amazing culture dances with local people. We could even here amazing voices of hissing sounds of small insects and tinny reptiles while feeling warmth from the camp fire. In the following morning, we took a canoe ride Kazinga channel as we popped some champagne while on the ride. In my opinion, Queen Elizabeth National park Uganda is the best place for the lovers to spend their honeymoon due to its natural setup.

Ishasha Tree Climbing Lions

 

The Ishasha Sector of Queen Elizabeth National park is a home to tree climbing lions. Once you visit the is park, don’t ever miss out a game drive in Ishasha sector for tree climbing lions along side other animals like Elephants, Buffalo, Antelopes and many Savannah bird species. We stayed at Ishasha wilderness camp where we had a fantastic guided nature walk through the park.

The park can be accessed by road from Kampala via Masaka-Mbarara and this Journey takes 6-8 hrs drive. You can book an all-inclusive tour to the park through tour companies, or if you want to drive your own adventure, you will hire a car in Kampala or Entebbe. The park can also be accessed by air to Kihihi or Kasese airstip. It is about 50 minute flight.

05/10/17

How Local Communities benefit from Uganda Tourism?

Traveling around the world is a great honor but not every one of us can travel to encounter the earth’s most interesting and attractive destination. Travel is out of access to most of the people in the world due to inadequate financial resources, family commitments or other obligations.

However for those few who travel, it is essential to have that philanthropist nature in you to give hand to the local communities you come across while on a safari. If one gives back to these local communities, one always brings a smile on those people. Do you know how blessed you will be by bring a smile on someone’s face.

So here are some of the ways on how to give back to the local communities on a Uganda a wildlife safari
By becoming a volunteer for the cause of conservation, educating the illiterate local community and also being part of the community projects that can promote local community livelihood and tourism at large. There are very many voluntary community based organization around the wildlife destinations in Uganda and also international conservation organization. These include
One can also give back to the local communities by supporting the local ventures/ businesses by purchasing their commodities like stay in a local guesthouse other than a big hotel/ lodge, , try local foods in the local restaurant other than in a fancy restaurant. Normally here in Uganda, these local communities have craft shops where one can buy curios and they have traditional entertainment so while on a wildlife safari in Uganda include the a village walk around the local communities in your itinerary.

When you purchasing commodities from the locals like food in the restaurants, curios at the craft shops pay a moderate price. Although there might be need for bargaining on the prices of the commodities you are purchasing from the locals but go over board that reduction of a dollar you may bargain for may not mean that much to you but it means a lot to the locals in Uganda. Furthermore when the locals offer good services to you endeavor to give them a tip most especially to those people who work in the hospitality industry like guides and hotel personnel. This means a lot to them you will always leave a very good mark in their lives.

Be environment conscious while on a Uganda wildlife safari: do not litter anyhow while you are in their fragile destinations, dispose your rubbish in places designated for littering, stay in eco lodge that are above environment conservation and preservation. When taking short trips always use 4×4 safari vehicles instead of taking a plane that greatly affect the ozone layer by emitting carbonic gases in the air. While in the real destination take an example of gorilla trekking in Bwindi impenetrable national park take the directives give to you while hiking through the fragile jungle, walk on the trail demarcated for the visitors. By being environment conscious leads to steady conservation and preservation which promotes sustainable tourism.

Donate to local organizations and the international ones that are established to help the needy at large. Donation can be done through giving in funds to help them, giving them commodities like clothes, shoes and other accessories and also scholastic materials like books, pens, pencils, colours among the common ones. Instead of giving something to a beggar child found along the way, look for an organization responsible for the needy to donate so that all the people can benefit wholly. In Uganda when have organizations like world vision, Sanyu babies’ home, USAID and many more.

By engaging in the above, you will have given back to the local communities on a Uganda wildlife safari and your contribution will be highly recognized and appreciated by these humble people around the tourism destinations in Uganda.

04/13/17

First Time Gorilla Trekking Experience in Africa

When my two daughters came back from college with good grades, they decide to have a Sabbath from school life. The young one decided to visit his father in Holland since it has been long without her seeing him. I was happy for her since the two’s relationship was on a rock. I supported her and she travelled to Holland. Then the old daughter told me that she wanted to try out something new in life and we brain stormed about what she wanted to engage in and she found something nature based as the best option.

After, she chose taking a wildlife safari to see animals in the wild in Africa. She decided to go for a gorilla trekking safari in Rwanda. She told me it was something she wanted to do for a long time. Many of her colleagues at school were talking about Rwanda as the best gorilla trekking destination in Africa. She really had a good time at this safari as it changed her entire life. She came back with brand new vast ideas and experience of conserving nature. You could really see it in her face that she was euphoric of nature and wildlife. She became a naturalist from that time.

While in Rwanda, she came up close with mountain gorillas and got connected to them. She took fantastic photos of these huge beasts and they look so beautiful when you look at them. She told me Africa is the future of the world since the world is on the campaign to preserve and conserve the environment in its natural state. It is Africa that has maintained its natural state. She told me she had a cultural encounter with the people of Rwanda around volcanoes national park that is the Iby’iwacu cultural village. This was an epic hell of an experience as she engaged in local activities like bricklaying and also preparation of some local food. She also visited the local herb pharmacy in this village and the herbs really worked for these people. The people of the village were so authentic and darling to the people who visited them.

She said Rwanda has a good climate. Every day is a sunny day and if you are sun bathing person, then this would be your dream destination. The people in Kigali city were also full of life and love and she said that it became her second home. She is even looking forward to travel to Rwanda again. I also got envious about her experience, I must go to Rwanda to watch the mountain gorillas in their natural environment. I cannot wait to see these beasts in their wildness.

11/21/16

Rwanda safari – Visit Lake Kivu

Lake Kivu is the largest water body in Rwanda. Lake Kivu has the most attractive scenary with fascenating shores. Lake Kivu takes up about half of Rwanda’s western border. There are three main towns along the lakeshore – Cyangugu in the south, Kibuye in the middle and Gisenyi further north.

lake-kivu

There are three towns on the shore like Gisenyi, in the north, was a colonial beach resort of note. Its waterfront area is lined with fading old mansions and a few old hotels plus the international standard Lake Kivu Serena Hotel. All overlooking a lovely sandy beach complete with a laid-back beach bar.

In the south, there are Kibuye is yet another probably the prettiest of the towns. If you’re visiting in August, you may catch thousands of kites here on their annual migration. The Bethanie Guesthouse and the Moriah Hill Resort both have beautifully locations on overlooking the lake. From here you can take boat trips on Lake Kivu to nearby islands: Napoleon’ Island with its’ colony of fruit bats and Amahoro Island (aptly known as one bar island as all it has on it is one bar.

At the southern end of the lake, Cyangugu (pronounced ‘Shangugu’) is an old border town whose fading façades tell of its past as a vital trading gateway. Here the Hotel du Lac is a delightfully old, reliable-but-slightly-shady institution, with a bar/restaurant where you’re guaranteed to find some offbeat characters. A more savory option is the Peace Guesthouse.

The real joy of this area is driving between the towns. The unpaved road gently curves back and forth as it weaves through hills and mountains beside the lake from Gisenyi to Cyangugu. Eucalyptus trees line the road, while every corner of the hills is terraced with bananas. Villagers smile and wave; you’ll end up with hands tired from waving, and feel like royalty at the end of the trip! Because of that, a wide variety of Rwanda holiday packages include at least one night in Gisenyi on the shores of Lake Kivu to experience the beauty of the place.

08/5/15

Gorilla Expeditions offering Once in a Lifetime Experience!

With my fiance, we recently returned from an amazing safari in Rwanda and our major interest was tracking the mountain gorillas. We began our journey in Kigali-Rwanda. It was the first time of our trip arranged by Gorilla Expeditions Ltd. They had arranged for Rwanda Primate Safaris to manage this portion of the journey. When our flight landed at Kigali International Airport (KGL), we were a little nervous and didn’t know quite what to expect but as soon as we collected our luggage we were warmly greeted by our guide Baker.

Thereafter, we went to Kigali for Lunch, later traveled to Ruhengeri town and then we took our overnight at Mountain Gorilla View Lodge on the edges of Volcanoes National Park Rwanda. We had great services from the local hospitable Rwandese, then the following day we prepared for our gorilla trekking experience that we enjoyed after our exciting briefing from the park chief ranger. We started our walk into the jungle looking for the endangered mountain gorillas in the mist and upon our meeting with the gorillas we took the photographs and video was so stunning and later we retired at our lodge for dinner and overnight.

Then after we transferred to Lake Kivu where we enjoyed our honey moon stay after the gorilla trekking experience and at this Lake we stayed at Lake Kivu Serena Hotel which is situated at the shores where you can relax with the panoramic view of the Lake and the surroundings. Then in the morning we had a boat ride along the Lake Kivu visiting the various fishing villages, hot springs, coffee Island and the local communities, and we visited one area and from hear we participated in the fish net alignment and then we returned to our lodge for relax again!

We highly appreciate all the staff of Gorilla Expeditions Ltd, they took great care to let us know exactly what to expect and settled us nicely into our hotel for the night. We were picked up by Baker, our guide, in the morning to begin our adventure. We spent the next few days in the care of Baker who was better than excellent! He took great care to explain everything to us, patiently stopped for any photos we wished to take, and provided us with a wealth of knowledge about his wonderful country and its people.

The gorilla encounter was amazing and the company had ensured that our every need was looked after. The porters that were available took great care to ensure that we were safe and comfortable as we hiked the mountain and they made the experience even more wonderful. Can’t say enough well about this life changing experience and the wonderful way it was all handled by Gorilla Expeditions Ltd and before you think to take your gorilla safari in Rwanda I highly recommend this company that is managed by natives of Rwanda and Uganda!

We booked a private guided tour because we were on our honeymoon. However, if you are on tight budget, Gorilla Expeditions organizes group tours, your you can book a 4×4 car and take self drive tour in East Africa. Contact 4×4 Uganda Limited on www.4x4uganda.com for reliable vehicles at the most affordable prices on the market with GPS navigation systems. This is the leading car rental Agency in Uganda with excellent cars at very good prices.