Mountain and Lowland Gorilla Trekking Safaris in Congo

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Are you wishing to visit mountain and Lowland gorillas in DR Congo?  With less than 880 left in the wild, book with us offering budget gorilla safaris in Congo that provides you a unique and unforgettable opportunity to interact with these great, shy, powerful and graceful primates in the world. Mountain gorillas are a subspecies of the Eastern gorilla living in the Virunga Mountains across Uganda, Rwanda and the DRC, as well as the Bwindi Forest of Uganda.  However we also offer gorilla watching in the lowland forests of Republic of Congo in Kahuzi Biega National Park.

As their names suggest, there are two different subspecies of gorilla that are often parted into one. There are distinct differences, though; the mountain gorilla is larger, with longer hair and shorter arms than their lowland gorilla cousins. Lowland gorillas are much more likely to be seen in the trees, and prefer a more heavily forested, flatter habitat than the mountain gorilla.

Gorilla trekking in Kahuzi Biega National Park is a great thrilling encounter with the few remaining eastern Lowland gorillas in Congo, which rewards you a clear comparison of mountain gorillas and Lowland gorillas in Africa. Kahuzi Biega National Park lies west of the Bukavu town in south Kivu province set in both mountainous and lowland terrain. It is one of the last refuges of the rare species of Eastern lowland gorillas and unique for its biodiversity of rain forest habitat. The park has a rich diversity of flora and fauna and provides protection to 1,178 plant species in the mountainous region of the park, with some 136 species of mammals 349 species of birds.

Mountain and Lowland gorillas both live in family groups called “troops.” Large troops with as many as 30 individuals have been seen, but the usual makeup of these families is quite a bit smaller. A gorilla troop usually consists of one dominant male, a handful of his females, and their immature offspring. Adult male children will split off from their family unit to travel alone; around the age of 15, males will begin collecting their own harem of females and start their own family group.

Between leaving their parents and collecting females of their own, immature lowland males will occasionally form their own troop, sometimes attached to a parent group. There is some difference in the physical features between the two, although it can be hard to distinguish at a glance. Both have very long arms their arm span is longer than they are tall but mountain gorillas typically have shorter arms than their lowland cousin. They also have a larger nose and jaw, and larger teeth.

In physical size, gorillas are the largest living species of primates. They are ground dwelling and are primarily herbivores. When first discovered, gorillas were classified as a single species. However they are now classified into two species and four sub species according to geographical location and physical characteristics. Three of these four subspecies are critically endangered.

Generally, gorillas are very shy and reserved towards people. They will attack only if they are surprised or threatened or if a person behaves in the wrong way. If the human makes an unexpected movement, the silver back male can react with horrific roaring and bluff charges.

A lowland gorilla safari in Congo, access by tourists is strictly controlled to ensure minimal impact to the gorillas and their habitats.  Tourists have to be in good health and must be accompanied by official guides. Permits are essential and need to be purchased in advance – often several months in advance, since they are in limited supply and soon sell out.

Besides visiting Eastern Lowland gorillas in Kahuzi Biega National Park, you can take a visit the mountain gorillas in Virunga National Park and also have a chance to hike Mount Nyiragongo.

Virunga Africa’s oldest national park, the beautiful and other-worldly Virunga, in the east of the country bordering Rwanda and Uganda, reopened this year after the war ended. Mountain gorillas’ habitat is limited to protected national parks in two regions of Africa. One group of gorillas lives in the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in Uganda. The other group is spread over three national parks in the Virunga mountain region of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda and Rwanda.

To reach the park most tourists fly into Kigali airport in Rwanda, then take a three-hour taxi ride to the border crossing at Gisenyi. The park provides secure transportation to its headquarters, Rumangabo, where Mikeno Lodge offers 12 luxury bungalows. Excursions include spectacular Nyiragongo volcano, where trekkers can also camp in the collection of 12 shelters on the summit of Mount Nyiragongo, next to the bubbling lava lake.

Visiting Virunga will help save the gorillas, and is a statement of support for the honourable rangers who have lost many of their colleagues in recent times, fighting on the front line of conservation to protect an asset, not only for their country, but for the rest of humanity.

In Uganda, visitors trek habituated gorilla families in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and offering protection to half of the world’s gorillas in their habitat. Gorilla tracking is also offered in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park, within the Virunga Volcanoes region.

In Rwanda, gorilla trekking is available in the montane cloud forests of Volcanoes National Park. The park lies in north-western Rwanda and borders Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park in Uganda. Volcanoes National Park is known as a haven for mountain gorillas and golden monkeys.

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