A gorilla permit is one requirement that no traveler is allowed to trek the gorillas without. It is a legal document that permits visitors to enter the jungle, hunt for the mighty apes and spend an hour with them.
Being one of the most sought after commodities in the African tourism now, trekkers book their permits in advance in order to avoid last minute disappointments. Because of their stiff competition, gorilla permits are a bit high which keeps trekkers wondering what they do with the permit after trekking the gorillas.
Trekkers keep asking themselves whether they carry the gorilla permits back home, do they just have to dump it in a trash box, or they hand it in somewhere? Well, these are right questions that all smart travelers would ask themselves on any gorilla trekking safari in Africa.
Gorilla trekking being an exclusive experience that takes travelers so close to the endangered mountain gorillas in their natural habitats, it should be closely monitored and regulated. In order not interrupt with their daily activities, a specified group of people is selected in a day and it’s the gorilla permit that proves one a trekker of the day.
Where does the gorilla permit go?
Gorilla trekking starts very early from the park headquarters. It begins with a simple briefing from the local guide at the headquarters. The briefing involves checking of the passports for basic information like the nationality and age since there is an age limit for gorilla trekking in Uganda. A visitor with 15 years of age and below is not allowed to trek the giants.
Gorilla trekking briefing still involves checking the validity of the gorilla permit to ensure that everyone is rightfully present. This gorilla document includes the particular dates for trekking the gorillas. And it’s at this time that the gorilla permit is handed in to the ranger to remain at the park headquarters just for record keeping.
Having finished the briefing and all that, now enter into the jungle to search for the mighty apes of the forest. Gorilla trekking involves walking into the jungle in search of the mighty apes in their natural setting. On encountering them, spend a magical hour with the gorillas, watching them conduct their daily lives, spot the juveniles play from one tree branch to another and also the silverbacks watch over their families.
Note that gorilla trekking in Africa can only be done in three countries of Uganda, Rwanda and DR Congo at relatively fair prices of 600 USD, 1500 USD and 450 USD respectively.
Uganda has two prime homes of the mountain gorillas, Bwindi impenetrable forest national park and Mgahinga national park. More than 450 gorillas dwell here, divided into 15 habituated families giving really up close encounters to trekkers.
Rwanda has one paramount home for gorillas which is Volcanoes national park, and DR Congo has Virunga national park. All the four gorilla parks are comfortably located in the Virunga series of Volcano Mountains. And whichever destination you choose, it offers appropriate experiences that offer lifelong memories.