Rwanda: Gorilla Tracking
Dr. Dian Fossey described the intensely beautiful mountain range on which she spent the las two decades of her studying Rwanda’s endangered mountain gorillas.
Parc National des Volcans, situated in the far nothwest of Rwanda, home of the rare mountain gorilla – and the rich mosaic of montane ecosystems, which embrace evergreen rainforest – the Virungas and bamboo forest, open grassland, swamp and heath. The lushly forested slopes of the Virungas form an appropriate dramatic natural setting for what is arguable the most poignant and memorable gorilla tracking experience to be had in the wilds Africa. The main base for gorilla tracking, Ruhengeri is an agreeable place to spend the night before tracking, from which one can explore the little known but compellingly lakes Burera and Ruhondo.
- Be eco-friendly, which contributes by conserving the natural environment, improving the well being of the local people and developing the national economy.
- A maximum number of 6 visitors may visit a group of habituated gorillas in a day for one hour. This minimizes behavioral disturbance to the gorillas and the risk of their exposure to human-borne diseases.
- Always keep your voices low.
- Do not leave rubbish behind, whatever you bring into the forest must be carried back with you.
- Always follow the guide instructions and trails, the guide will inform you when to get your cameras ready.
- Always wash your hands before you head out to the gorillas.
- When with the gorillas always keep a minimum distance of 5 m (15 feet), this is to avoid transmission of diseases from human.
- Do not drink or eat while you are near the gorillas.
- Some times the gorillas charge, follow the guides example, do not look the gorillas directly in the eyes. Do not try to take pictures or attempt to run away. Running away will increase the risk.
- Photography with flash is not permitted.
- The maximum time to spend with the gorillas is one hour. However, if the gorillas become agitated or nervous, the guide will terminate the visit earlier.
- If you are feeling ill, or you have a contagious disease volunteer to stay behind. If you feel the urge to cough or sneeze when you are near the gorillas, always turn your head away and cover your nose and mouth in order to minimize the spread of bacteria or viruses.