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LHoest Monkey

Going on Primate Safari in Rwanda

Going on Primate Safari in Rwanda

LHoest Monkey

Primate safaris in Rwanda are one of the most lifetime adventures that one shouldn’t miss out when creating lifetime memories. That splendid and amazing moment when you have an up-close encounter with the endangered species in their habituated natural habitats. Enjoy an everyday new experience with the endangered primate species in Rwanda where you are going to meet species like the mountain gorillas and the unique golden monkeys in Volcanoes national park and also the chimpanzees in Nyungwe Forest national park.

Mountain gorillas

A mountain gorilla is one of the two subspecies of the eastern gorillas. These are descendants of ancestral monkeys and apes and are mostly found in the African continent in four destinations of Mgahinga and Bwindi Impenetrable national park of Uganda, Virunga mountains national park of Democratic Republic of Congo and then Volcanoes national park of Rwanda. These apes are known for their unique features including the thick and longer fur that allows them to live in colder temperatures. Also, the hair at their back is shorter than that on other body parts and also that on their arms is a bit longer. Mountain gorillas inhabit the Albertine Rift Montane cloud forests such as the Virunga mountains.

Gorilla trekking experience in Rwanda

In the Republic of Rwanda, gorilla trekking takes place in the Volcanoes National Park in northern Rwanda. The park is well known for setting the famous ‘’Gorillas in the Mist’’ movie which was about the primatologist Dian Fossey who played a great role in the conservation of mountain gorillas and golden monkeys. It is positioned in the northwestern direction of the country – Rwanda occupying an area of about 160 square kilometers of rain forests. Aside the rain forests, Volcanoes national park hosts five of the eight volcanoes in the Virunga Mountains including Karisimbi, Bisoke, Muhabura, Gahinga and Sabyinyo.

The Republic of Rwanda has 12 families such as Amahoro gorilla family, Hirwa gorilla group, Kwitonda gorilla group, Sabyinyo gorilla family, Agashya, Ugenda and Bwenge group that are available for gorilla safari experience. The activity involves hiking through the rain forests of the park in search of the endangered species and it starts with a briefing from the park ranger guides at the park headquarters where all the trekkers are gathered.

After the briefing, you are allocated to different gorilla families by the lead of a ranger guide. For one to take part in the trekking experience, he or she must possess a gorilla permit which costs US$1500 for the non-resident foreigners. The permits can be obtained from Rwanda Development Board or through any trustworthy tour operators.

Gorilla permits in Rwanda

For one to take part in the gorilla trekking experience, he or she should possess a gorilla permit. The permits sell out months in advance so one needs to obtain his or her permit early to secure a vacancy. The gorilla permits sell out quickly in the dry seasons during the months of December to March and June to September.

The gorilla trekking permits cost US$1500 per person and the cost includes the park entrance, park guides and rangers, and also a time with the endangered mountain gorillas.

Best time to visit Rwanda for gorilla trekking experience

Mountain gorilla trekking can be done anytime throughout the year but the best time is during the dry season which stands in the months of June to September as the jungle is neither muddy nor slippery.

The wet seasons begin in the months of April and May. Though the surfaces of the park are slippery at these times, one can still track the gorillas. In this season, fruits ripe thus make the gorillas to lower down to the forest canopy so as to get the fruits.

Chimpanzees in Rwanda

These are species of ape that are closely related to humans along with the bonobo. Chimpanzee inhabit the tropical forests and savannas of equatorial Africa from Senegal to the eastern subregion of the continent. In height, the apes stand at approximately 1-1.7 meters tall when they erect and weigh about 32-60 kg. Chimpanzees are covered by a coat of brown or black hair but the faces are bare except for a short white beard. In the Republic of Rwanda, chimpanzees can be watched in Nyungwe forest national park during the chimpanzee trekking and habituation experiences.

Chimpanzee Trekking Experience

Just like gorilla trekking, chimpanzee trekking starts with a pre-trek brief and registration from the park headquarters. After, you will be led by a park ranger through the rain forests of the park in search of the endangered apes. During the process, you will spot other species like birds, small mammals, butterflies, and many others. Once the chimpanzees are found, you will be allowed to spend an hour in their presence as you learn more about their daily lifestyles like feeding, breast feeding and many more.

Chimpanzee Trekking Permits

For anyone to go for an up-close encounter with the chimpanzees during the trekking experience, he/she must possess a trekking permit which costs US$100 per non resident foreigner.

Golden monkeys in Rwanda

A golden monkey is among the main primates that attract numerous people in countries like Uganda in Mgahinga national park, Rwanda in Volcanoes national park and Democratic Republic of Congo in Virunga National park. This primate is restricted to the highland forests especially near the bamboo trees and it is a species of Old-World Monkey. These monkeys have unique characters and can easily be recognized with their yellow patches that are seen all over their bodies.

In Rwanda, the golden monkeys are mostly seen in Volcanoes national park which is positioned in the Virunga Mountains.

Golden monkey tracking experience

After the gorilla trek, the activity of golden monkey tracking is the second done in the rain forests of Volcanoes national park. This experience highly attracts the travelers to the Republic of Rwanda since it involves hiking through the forest and sights the golden monkeys as they swing on the bamboo trees, feeding and also how they live their other ways. The park organizes only one session per day and this starts in the morning. The trekkers are supposed to report at the park headquarters by 7:00am for the briefing about the golden monkey experience.

Golden monkeys in the Republic of Rwanda are divided into two troops where the largest contains 80 to 100 monkeys and it is located in Sabyinyo and this is the most visited troop in the country followed by that in Volcanoes.

For one to take part in the monkey tracking experience, he or she must purchase a permit at $100. The golden monkey tracking permit can be obtained from Rwanda Development Board or any licensed and trusted tour operator.

Best time to track the golden monkeys

Golden monkeys can be tracked throughout the year but the perfect time is during the dry season which takes place in the months of June to August and December to February. This makes it easier for one to move since the forest trails are dry and less slippery thus making the chance of golden monkey viewing high.

Besides gorilla trekking and golden monkey tracking experiences, there is a variety of safari activities which one can do while on a safari in Volcanoes national park. Among these activities include; mountain hiking, a tour to the twin lakes of Ruhondo and Burera, and also visiting the grave of the primatologist called Dian Fossey.

For the best safari in Rwanda and other African countries at large, book with Primate Safari Experiences Limited for your lifetime memorable trip.

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