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Bwindi Budget Gorilla Trekking Tours

4.8/5  –  122 Bwindi Reviews

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is an undisputed highlight of a holiday to Uganda. This popular park protects a magnificent range of forested hills and is inscribed as a Unesco World Heritage Site on account of its rich biodiversity, which includes 120 mammal and 350 bird species. The main attraction of Bwindi is the opportunity to track the endangered mountain gorilla, several groups of which have been habituated to tourist visits. The park also hosts many other localized creatures, from l’Hoest’s and Ruwenzori colobus monkeys to Rwenzori three-horned chameleon and Grauer's broadbill. For budget travelers, while gorilla trekking in Bwindi isn't cheap, there is nowhere else so well suited to doing this iconic activity affordably.

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1-20 of 391 cheap gorilla trekking tours to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

5 Questions About Bwindi Budget Gorilla Trekking Tours

 
 

5 Questions About Bwindi Budget Gorilla Trekking Tours

Answered by Philip Briggs

Can I see the gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park on a budget?

“That depends on your definition of ‘on a budget’. All tours that include a gorilla visit in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park need to incorporate a trekking permit fee of US$600 per person, which few people would regard as cheap. As a result, any Uganda tour that includes gorilla trekking tends to be expensive compared to a more conventional safari, regardless of whether it is aimed at a budget or upmarket clientele. Having said that, US$600 is a lot less than the US$1,500 charge for a gorilla trekking permit in Rwanda. As a result, Bwindi (together with nearby Mgahinga Gorilla National Park, also in Uganda) is the most suitable gorilla trekking option for budget travelers who don’t want to cross into the unstable Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), which is the only place in the region where you can track gorillas more cheaply. If you want to keep your Bwindi budget safari as affordable and focused as possible, you should be able to reduce the cost by booking a package out of Rwanda. This is because Rwanda’s Kigali International Airport is so close to Bwindi that you will be able to track gorillas on a 2-day, 1-night package. By contrast, coming from Uganda's capital Kampala or nearby Entebbe International Airport, you need to set aside at least 3 days and 2 nights to allow for the 10-hour drive in either direction to/from Bwindi.”

1

Which other parks should I visit on a trip that includes gorilla trekking in Bwindi?

“That depends greatly on the duration of your safari. A 2-day package out of Kigali or a 3-day tour from Entebbe or Kampala will leave you with little time to do anything other than gorilla trekking and possibly another guided walk in Bwindi. If your itinerary is 4 to 5 days, you should definitely include at least 1 night in Queen Elizabeth National Park, where you can see lions and elephants on the plains, hippos on boat trips in Kazinga Channel and chimps at Kalinzu Forest. Bump that up to 6 or 7 days, and other possibilities include Lake Mburo National Park for plains wildlife and Kibale National Park for chimps, monkeys and forest birds. Ten days is the minimum comfortable duration of an itinerary that continues farther north to Murchison Falls National Park and Ziwa Rhino and Wildlife Ranch, though 12 days would be better. Two weeks would allow you to do all this then slot in a white-water rafting excursion on the Nile near Jinja.”

2

What is usually included in a budget trip that features gorilla trekking in Bwindi?

“A budget safari that incorporates a gorilla trek in Bwindi should include accommodation, meals, transport and driver/guide fees. The price should also include your gorilla trekking permit and any other fees associated with prescribed activities and national park visits. Drinks will usually be excluded from the cost of the safari, as will porter fees and tips. It is always best to clarify exactly what is included in the price of a safari before you book it.”

3

What are the pros and cons of a budget camping safari in Bwindi?

“The most obvious advantage of a camping safari is that it tends to be much cheaper than a comparable itinerary using roofed accommodation. Particularly at the budget end of the scale, campsites also often have more attractive natural locations than guesthouses and other budget rooms. A negative about camping close to Bwindi is that the high altitude tends to make it quite chilly, despite the proximity to the equator, and rain can fall at any time of year. Camping safaris also tend to involve more time wastage setting up and breaking down tents and other gear.”

4

How much does a Bwindi budget safari cost?

“The cheapest option for gorilla trekking in Bwindi, a 2-day budget safari starting and ending in the Rwandan capital Kigali should be priced at around US$900 to US$1,200. If you are starting in Entebbe or Kampala, the most affordable option will be a 3-day budget safari, which is likely to cost in the range of US$1,200 to US$1,700. Gorilla trekking in Bwindi is also incorporated into a variety of longer Uganda packages that range from 4 days to 2 weeks in duration and might visit several other national parks. Depending on the exact duration and itinerary, longer budget safaris including Bwindi typically work out at US$250 to US$350 per person per day.”

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Bwindi Reviews

4.8/5 122 Reviews
Expert
Lizzie Williams  –  
South Africa ZA

Lizzie is a reputed guidebook writer and author of the Footprint guides to South Africa, Namibia, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Zimbabwe.

A special place to be granted an audience with the greatest of apes
5/5

It doesn’t matter how many times you’ve heard it, staring a gorilla in the eye is undoubtedly a magical wildlife encounter. Every one of my visits to Bwindi has been unique and every meeting with these gentle apes an honour. Bwindi is...

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Expert
Stephen Cunliffe  –  
South Africa ZA

Stephen is a travel writer and avid conservationist whose work appears in prestigious magazines such as Africa Geographic and Travel Africa.

An Experience you will Never Forget
5/5

Trekking to see the fabled mountain gorillas is something everyone should get to experience at least once in their lifetime. Gorilla permits are certainly not cheap and the hour you get to spend with these gentle giants whizzes by in a...

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Panagiota Marouli  –  
Greece GR
Reviewed: Sep 2, 2022
5/5

This is the scenery for Tarzan & Jane story. Our guide would make way with his machete where there was nothing but dense forest in steep mountainside. One could employ porters to help with the trek, which provides income to members of the...

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Zsolt Banyai  –  
Hungary HU
Reviewed: Feb 22, 2021
5/5

Seeing the gorillas upclose is something that is hard to explain. We were lucky with the hike, after 20 minutes we already made it to the gorillas, but as far as I heard this is rather the apartment exception. Be aware, that even during...

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Virginia  –  
South Africa ZA
Reviewed: Mar 29, 2019
It was a wonderful experience Uganda's famous national park and I appreciate all their services.
4/5

It was a wonderful experience visiting Uganda's famous bwindi impenetrable forest, national park great adventures Uganda enabled me to have my 1st gorilla habituation experience. Where I got an interaction with this sweet endangered...

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Victoria  –  
Germany DE
Reviewed: Sep 8, 2017
A Challenging Yet Rewarding Adventure
5/5

When I decided to visit Bwindi to track to the mountain gorillas, I expected it to be fairly challenging, but as luck would have it, it was much tougher than anticipated. We stayed at Lake Mutanda Resort, a small camp about a 90 minute...

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