How safe is Gorilla Trekking in Rwanda?
Wondering how safe Gorilla Trekking is in Rwanda? When it comes to gorilla trekking in Rwanda, many tourists have concerned about their safety which concern is understandable. This is because tourists undertaking gorilla trekking visit the Volcanoes National Park, which was a battleground for rebels and poachers over 20 years ago.
Today, however, Rwanda is safe for gorilla trekking for tourists from all over the world since for over 20 years now, there have been no rebel attacks in the Volcanoes National Park, with a lot of security within the park and its boundaries. Rwanda as a country is generally safe with travelers’ safety and security guaranteed.
All those fears should not be of any concern for any tourist as these happened in the past. The park is very much safely guarded and the safety of the trekkers is a priority. Gorilla trekking is surely the most expensive tourist activity in Rwanda with each permit sold at $1,500 which makes it a high source of foreign exchange. Since it is a key activity for Rwanda’s tourism, the local authorities do all that it takes to ensure the safety of the tourists who come to trek the gorillas. that protect the park and ensure everything is safe. With all these safety efforts, Rwanda is very safe for gorilla trekking for any travelers.
Mountain gorilla habituation is the process of getting mountain gorillas familiar with the presence of human beings. This takes about 2 years to make sure the gorillas are surely safe to visit and cannot cause any harm to humans. However, just like any other wild animal, the behavior of mountain gorillas may sometimes be unpredictable and therefore tourists have to still be cautious and follow all the rules and guidelines especially keeping the 7 meters distance and not touching the gorillas.
The people of Rwanda are very friendly and open to welcoming all foreign visitors into their country. Rwanda is considered one of the safest countries in the world and therefore the peace in the country can guarantee tourists that gorilla trekking in Rwanda is safe. Today, there are almost no cases of poaching in Rwanda which makes it very safe for tourists to visit any park in the country.
Rwanda gorilla trekking rules and regulations
For all tourists undertaking Rwanda gorilla tours, here are the rules and regulations to follow for each trek;
- Clean your hands before heading out to the forest. This is done to ensure that no infections are carried into the gorilla habitat since hands can touch so many surfaces during the trek.
- Keep your voice low as much as possible as you go trekking and even after seeing the gorillas. High pitched sounds could easily bother the gorillas and make them uncomfortable.
- Keep close to your group at all times.
- Keep a distance of about 7 meters from the gorillas. Do this at all times and keep away from the gorillas as they may not be aware of keeping this 7-meter distance.
- Do not eat or smoke during a Rwanda gorilla trek
- Flash photography is not allowed. Carry a no flash camera or turn the flash off when taking pictures or recording videos of the mountain gorillas.
- A maximum of 1 hour is spent in the presence of the mountain gorillas and all tourists should respect this.
- Do not litter or leave any rubbish in the gorilla habitat. Take back whatever you come with into the forest.
- Any persons who are ill or suffering from contagious diseases including flu and colds are not allowed to trek gorillas.
Still, wondering how safe gorilla trekking is in Rwanda? It is absolutely safe to undertake a gorilla tour in Rwanda for tourists coming from any part of the world. This beautiful land of a thousand hills also offers several other activities like Rwanda wildlife tours, cultural tours, bird watching, chimpanzee trekking, canopy walk, and other primate tracking tours.
Volcanoes National Park borders other gorilla habitats like Mgahinga Gorilla National Park of Uganda and Virunga National Park of Congo. These too offer treks with Uganda gorilla safari tours and Congo gorilla safaris respectively, with cheaper gorilla permit costs compared to Rwanda.