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Gorilla Trekking in Virunga National Park compared to Mgahinga National Park. Both Mgahinga and Virunga National Park in Congo are located within the Virunga mountain ranges, they are home to the endangered mountain gorillas and the beautiful extinct volcanic mountains great for hiking and adventure. In the great Virunga mountain ranges Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is made up of 3 extinct volcanoes which include Muhavura, Gahinga and Sabinyo whereas Virunga National Park encompasses two active volcanoes, Mount Nyiragongo and Nyamuragira.
Gorilla Trekking in Virunga National Park compared to Mgahinga National Park, the whole truth is that both parks have mountain gorillas and there is no big difference when it comes to the experience obtained at the end of your trek given the fact the vegetation in both parks is the same. However There are many things you can base on to compare gorilla trekking in Mgahinga National Park with that in Virunga National Park for you to choose where to book and go for your gorilla trekking and these include the following;
In terms of Vegetation and trekking experience, The habitat of the Mountain gorillas in both Mgahinga and Virunga National Park are in the Virunga/hills with mainly bamboo as the main vegetation, this makes it easy to trek through and better viewing of the gorillas because of the kind of vegetation giving you an opportunity to take clear photographs and encounter experience.
In terms of accessibility, Both Mgahinga and Virunga National Park in Congo can be accessed through Kigali which is the easier and short accessible route for both parks. This is indeed very true and no one can run away from it. People used to avoid gorilla trekking in Mgahinga because of the 10 hours drive from Entebbe International Airport to Mgahinga but now we arrange tours to Mgahinga via Kigali which then becomes 4-5 hours drive only. With this, you land in Kigali, use the East African Tourist Visa (which allows you to visit both countries at ago) and then trek gorillas in Bwindi. However you will need to cross borders to access both parks.
In terms of Lodges, Both National Parks have Budget, Mid Range and Upmarket Lodges where you could choose to stay during your trek. Mgahinga National Park is the best place for gorilla trekking for those interested in staying in luxury lodges compared to Virunga National Park. These lodges offer great and luxury services some are ranked among the best in Africa and the country at large for exampleGahinga Lodge and Chameleon Hill Lodge.
In terms of Gorilla families, Virunga National Park has more gorilla families open for trekking than Mgahinga National Park. Virunga National Park has 8 gorilla families with 64 permits available every day compared to one gorilla family in Mgahinga National Park with 8 permits only available for gorilla trekking.
In terms of the best gorilla trekking experience, the whole truth is that both Mgahinga Gorilla National Park and Virunga National Park have mountain gorillas and there is no big difference when it comes to the experience obtained at the end of your trek. Chances of seeing gorillas in both Parks are 98% so which ever park you visit you will be able to see these great apes in their natural environment.
In terms of affordability, it is much cheaper to see gorillas in Virunga National Park Congo than in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park in Uganda. This issue of price difference is basically out of policy difference between these two countries Uganda and Congo. Congo is trying to promote its gorilla tourism to attract more travelers after a long turmoil in the region that caused a lot of insecurity. The experience and duration spent with gorillas is still the same? A gorilla permit in Virunga National Park costs $400 per person per trek for the high season months of Mid-December to mid-march then June to October and then $200 for the low season months of mid-march to mid-May and then mid-October to mid-December every year. This gives you an opportunity to spend one-hour encounter with the mountain gorillas in Virunga National Park. Gorilla Trekking in Mgahinga compared with Virunga National Park
The Gorilla permit in Mgahinga Costs $700 Per person per trek for the Foreign non residents, $600 Per person for residents and $70 for East African Citizens (Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, Kenya, Burundi and South Sudan), this gives you an opportunity to spend one hour encounter with the mountain gorillas in Mgahinga National Park.
In terms of safety and security; Mgahinga Gorilla National Park is the best place for gorilla trekking compared to Virunga National Park. Both countries have experience a long term insecurity between borders of these parks and DR Congo various rabble attacks and the Ebola outbreak which negatively affected the gorilla tourism activities for many year, however Uganda has since well managed to control the situations and now it is much stable and safer for gorilla trekking compared to Congo. During your gorilla trekking in Mgahinga you will be escorted by armed and well trained rangers to protect you from any uncertain attacks of wild animals in the park and just in case the rabbles or poachers.
In terms of distance to see Gorillas in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park and Virunga National Park in Congo, The issue of walking longer or short distance depends on the given gorilla family allocated to you on the day of trekking at of the national parks. In both parks gorilla families are allocated depending on the interest and physical fitness of given individual. If for example, you want a shorter trek, you will have to inform the park authorities on the very day of trekking so that you are allocated such a family. If you want a medium or longer trek, then you do the same. It should be noted that while they will try to give you a family that requires shorter walks, the behavior of gorillas might affect the experience if for example gorillas decide to move further as you look for them you will need to move a longer distance still.
Best time for gorilla trekking in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park and Virunga National Park in Congo.
Gorilla trekking in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park and Virunga National Park in Congo is possible all year round. The best months to track gorillas in these parks include; June to August and December to February since they receive the lowest rainfall and the forest is less slippery. On the other hand, when you happen to travel during March to May and November there are chances of higher rainfall, you will be able to get discounts from some lodges for your accommodation. Gorilla Trekking in Mgahinga compared with Virunga National Park
Why book your gorilla trek in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park and Virunga National Park in Congo with Eco Adventure Safaris?
Eco Adventure Safaris takes pride in customizing tailor-made safaris. It has a very diligent and trustworthy team. Your queries are answered within 30 minutes by our team of professional tour consultants. These consultants will make you a travel plan for you, answer to all your questions and make sure all your services are booked in advance for you to avoid inconveniences. There some Mountain Gorilla safari Packages to Volcanoes National Park and Bwindi impenetrable National Park and these include; the 3 days Mgahinga Gorilla safari, 4 Day Gorilla safari in Congo, it all depends on your preference. Feel free to contact us about Gorilla Trekking in Virunga National Park compared to Mgahinga National Park