The scariest best decision as a solo female traveler. After being grounded and locked indoors for most of 2020 the travel bug bit me. When borders started opening up, I noticed more photos of people traveling and Uganda, specifically for gorilla trekking, caught my interest. My travel companion decided against traveling after I suggested Uganda, mainly out of fear.
I too become fearful and concerned about traveling internationally solo. I found gorilla safaris tours as a recommendation from a solo female traveler. My first interaction with Jackie was so professional and helpful. A week later I bought my plane ticket and booked with gorilla safaris tours.
I did 6 nights and 7 days gorilla safaris in Uganda. My accommodations were absolutely beautiful, comfortable and exceeded my expectations. The meals were fresh, local and very filling. The excursions were moments of pure bliss. Emma, my tour guide, made sure I was given a tour wherever I stayed or went. He went over and beyond to ensure I had the best experience, yes which I did.
At every national park, I had an extraordinary experience due in part to the one and only Mr. Emma. He knew every road, tree, and animal. I loved how he would share how to find animals while out on safari using most of your senses. One thing that I learned about Emma is that most of the people know him. At each destination, we were greeted with such a welcome. I highly suggested requesting Emma. Other tour guides would call or come up to him for questions, advice, and how to solve problems.
The next morning was a delicious breakfast and early departure for our game drive. Again, we marveled at active hippos, elephants, and lions. We told our guide Emma which animals we were especially interested in, and somehow, we managed to see them!! (We also saw lots of other creatures as well, but those mentioned were important to us.)
The road time was substantial, and Emma kept his focus and dedication to safety the entire time. We knew we would have a lot of time in the vehicle, and it was no problem to let Emma know when we needed a restroom or snack stop. The vehicle was quite comfortable, by the way, with seats that reclined and a pop-top for the safari.
Gorilla trekking in Uganda is a lifetime experience. My thinking, I trekked 10 hrs. in Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and everything turned out to be good. We arrived at the next night’s lodging, in preparation for our gorilla trek the next morning. Again, plentiful food and comfortable lodging at Ichumbi Gorilla Lodge.
The gorilla trek was remarkable but tough! Keep this in mind. Extraordinarily steep inclines, slippery trails, the works! Normally a gorilla trek is between 1 and up to 8 hours trekking. Our group was gone for 6 1/2 hours!!!!! Just be sure you are fit. We loved our group (eight of us) and our guide. We definitely got lucky with that.
The rangers were so helpful. Helpful to the point of literally holding my hand (for most of the trek) to help me up the steep hills I consistently slid down with each step. The way the rangers and scouts communicated with the gorillas was something out of a movie. You don’t realize how massive and gentle these creatures are until you have a silver back walking mere feet in front of you. This is what I came to Uganda for and left with such gratitude for everything else Uganda has to offer: people, culture, nature, food and kindness.
Being within 10ft of a gorilla family and a silver back is an experience that cannot quite be put into words. Am humbled by the sheer majesty of these animals. Truly a once in a lifetime experience. This was the scariest best decision I have made as a solo female traveler. I can’t thank Emma and his amazing team for making this trip safe, fun and memorable. I recommend gorilla safaris tours for your safari trip in Uganda.