Facts about a Congo Gorilla Trekking permit -Congo Safari News
Congo safaris have been made popular because of the natural habitat of the elusive mountain gorillas in the country found in Virunga National Park. Mountain Gorillas were moved from the critically endangered list to endangered but then the gorillas of Congo have seriously been threatened by political instability. To trek a gorilla in Congo, a traveler needs a Congo gorilla trekking permit as a must. A Congo gorilla trekking permit is a card issued by the Virunga National Park Authority as a pass to trek a gorilla to any tourist above the age of 15 years spending a maximum of 1 hour in the presence of the gentle giants.
Congo Gorilla Trekking permit Costs
To trek a gorilla in Congo, non-nationals are required to pay USD 400 per person per trek.
Congolese residents pay USD 150 for Congo gorilla trekking permit per person, per trek.
USD 200 is paid for a single permit by Southern African Development Community nationals.
NOTE: The Congo gorilla trekking safari permit price is the lowest in the world. In the low season, permits can go for up to USD200 for non-nationals.
How to get a Congo Gorilla Trekking Permit
Booking your permit prior is essential and this can best be done through a tour operator in Congo. A tour operator is more familiar with the system and can help with all the necessary bookings. The tour operator also offers all the other necessary information and updates about the park.
Congo Gorilla Trekking Rules
After purchasing a Congo gorilla trekking permit, you are assured of undertaking a gorilla trek in Congo and therefore you start planning for the trip. However, gorilla trekking has guidelines and its very necessary to know of them before setting off for your safari and here they are;
- Always wash your hands before you move out to the gorillas, to reduce risk of any kind of disease spread.
- Do not make noise within the jungle, try to lower your voices. Asking your guide questions is however allowed.
- Carry your camera but remember that flash photography is not allowed, so take a recommendable camera for capturing these amazing memories.
- Maintain a 7m distance away from the gorillas at all the times. The more you keep a distance, further you give them space the more they become free and comfortable with your presence.
- Always remember to stay in tight groups during the whole trekking process.
- Don’t smoke, drink or eat in the forest. Eating or drinking increases the risk of food/drink droplets falling, which could intensify the chances of spreading diseases.
- Sometimes the gorillas can charge and become furious towards visitors. In this case, follow the ranger’s example (crouch down slowly, gorillas are shy, so do not look them directly in the eyes and do not be tempted to run as this may aggravate the situation).
- Do not try to touch the gorillas, they are still wild animals and should be treated as so.
- After the trek and meeting the gorillas, keep your voices down until you are 200 meters away from the gorillas even with the excitement.
Mountain Gorillas live in 4 national parks and the trekking rules are almost similar, on a Uganda safari or Rwanda safari they are applicable with simple variations. However, on the Uganda gorilla trekking safaris or Rwanda gorilla trekking safaris, you need to be aware of the specific country gorilla trekking permit details like prices and discounts.