While both Rwanda and Uganda offer unforgettable gorilla experiences, there are some notable differences between the two that can influence your choice of destination:
In Rwanda, gorilla trekking takes place in Volcanoes National Park, which is in the northwestern part of the country. The park is relatively close to the capital city, Kigali, making it more accessible for travellers with limited time; drive from Kigali to Volcanoes National Park takes about 2 to 3 hours.
In Uganda, gorilla trekking is conducted in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and occasionally in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. Bwindi is located in southwestern Uganda and is more remote, requiring a longer drive from the major city of Kampala or Entebbe. The journey to Bwindi can take around 8-10 hours depending on the location of the trekking sector.
Gorilla trekking permits in Rwanda are generally more expensive compared to those in Uganda. Rwanda has set a higher permit fee as part of its conservation efforts and to promote sustainable tourism; the cost of permits in Uganda is relatively lower, attracting budget-conscious travellers.
In Rwanda, gorilla trekking groups are usually smaller, with a maximum of 8 visitors per gorilla family. This can provide a more intimate and personalized experience with the gorillas. The trekking terrain in Volcanoes National Park is often considered less challenging compared to some sectors of Bwindi, as the latter’s terrain can be steeper and more rugged.
In Uganda, the group sizes for gorilla trekking can be slightly larger. The group size is carefully managed to ensure a safe and intimate encounter with these majestic creatures, allowing travellers to witness the wonders of the wild while minimising the impact on the gorillas and their habitat.
Both Rwanda and Uganda have gorilla families that are accustomed to human presence, ensuring a safe and enriching experience for visitors. The number of habituated gorilla families differ between the two countries, each family has a unique composition and social dynamic, adding to the diversity of both experiences.
Rwanda and Uganda provide remarkable gorilla experiences, each with unique features. Rwanda is favoured for its proximity and smaller trekking groups, while Uganda offers a more budget-friendly option with longer journeys. The decision depends on personal preferences, travel constraints, and desired trekking experiences.
Discover a World of Wonders beyond the Gorillas! Explore Volcanoes National Park, The Peaks of Rwenzori, and immerse yourself in the captivating culture and vibrant atmosphere of the cities.
Our team at Travel Focus Group had the pleasure of attending an enlightening information evening about Rwanda and Uganda. We’re here to address any enquiries you may have. Get in touch with Travel Focus Group to unlock the full potential of these remarkable destinations!