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Gorilla Habituation Safaris

What’s Eastern Lowland Gorilla Habituation Safaris in Kahuzi Biega National Park Congo.

What’s Eastern Lowland gorilla habituation ? There is no known actual definition of the Gorilla Habituation Experience. However, it can simply be known as the act of training wild gorillas to become used to the sight of people. It involves different groups of people like the trackers, conservationists, researchers and rangers among others who take a period of about 2 to 3 years completing this habituation experience.

Kahuzi Biega National ParkDuring the planning process for a Congo gorilla safari tour with Reliable Safari Company or kahuzi Biega National Park officials for gorilla Habituation experience like in the wilderness of Kahuzi Biega National Park.  Don’t miss the chance to spend more time than the usual time for gorilla trekking  where by you will stay with the eastern lowland gorillas for 4 hours than 1 hour for gorilla trekking. Unlike gorilla trekking for an hour, gorilla habituation in Kahuzi biega allow travelers to spend up to 4 hours with the gorillas in the jungle.

Gorilla habituation is a unique experience in a way that travelers hike along with rangers, researchers and gorilla doctors ( takes when there is any study)  who take part in taming the gorillas.  The experience is all about familiarizing wild gorillas to the presence of human beings before  a gorilla family is ready for human visitors. The taming process is a long-term experience which last for roughly 3 years and rangers must visit these eastern lowland gorillas on a daily basis with or without travelers.

Since this kind of experience doesn’t exist in virunga National Park  in democratic republic of Congo but it can be found in  kahuzi Biega National Park which is located in the eastern part of Congo. It is here that close to 6 habituated Congo gorilla groups that are open for trekking although the most lovely gorilla family that is vised in Congo for habituation safari is Chimanuka Family.

Whats the Habituation gorilla permit and where to get it

Like all Congo gorilla tours, habituation requires every participant to have a valid habituation permit which is more expensive than the gorilla trekking permit.  This permit is however quite expensive costing 600 usd for a four hours encounter and the price is constant at all seasons. Travelers are reminded to book in advance at least 1 months before and pay a deposit to secure the Habituation gorilla permit. Booking can be made directly with Kahuzi Biega National Park or through any trusted tour operator offering similar packages.  Travelers aged below 15 years are not allowed to take part as also in gorilla trekking.

Note: There are no refunds once payment is done which means that anyone who makes a late cancellation loses all the money already paid. Eight permits are issued ever day since they are only two gorilla groups each visited by four people.

When time to Start the Gorilla Habituation Experience in Kahuzi Biega

1Day Lowland Gorilla TourSince there is no accommodation near the Park as all accommodations & safari lodges are located in Bukavu town so its advised that the guests leave bukavu town at 6:30am in the morning and take the 1 and half hour drive to reach the park headquarters for briefing about the gorilla habituation trekking rules and regulations to help us in the conservation of primates in the wilderness of Congo. Its clear that gorilla trekking will start at 7:30 am in the morning . The Briefing will be short as the park rangers will watch the time for the start of trekking to enable you stay longer with the apes in the jungle.   Park rangers lead you to where they last spotted the gorilla family. The actual time for hiking is unpredictable but four hours are counted from the moment travelers set their eyes on the gorillas. Travelers are reminded to be cautious and enjoy this time carefully since time is never enough. Expect to see how gorillas make their nests and how each family member plays a different role in the family.

The silver back is the head and determines all family movements, adult females nurse the young ones while the juveniles entertain the family keeping it live. At the time you start to see discarded leaves, stems stripped of foliage, bent vegetation and knuckle prints, just know that you are already in gorilla’s territory.

What does a Gorilla Habituation Trip Look like?

The Shortest  gorilla habituation trip to kahuzi biega national park takes 3  days gorilla Habituation Safari when its starting from Kigali Rwanda and ends in Kigali Rwanda. Depending on the type of the trip your on private Guided tour or Self drive trip , its more possible than ever to enjoy even double gorilla habituation experience while on an effective price from the destination expert safari companies like Congo Gorilla Safaris.

Day 1:

Transportation to congoYou are transferred from the Kigali International Airport  passing through nyungwe forest national park to bukavu town where you will sleep for an overnight at any of the safari lodges that fits your budget.

Accommodation: Orchids Safari Club ( Luxury) , Hotel Begonias ( Mid range) and Exodus ( Budget)

Day 3:

After your breakfast at the hotel,you will jump into the 4×4 Safari jeep and  head for Park headquarter where you are to have your Gorilla Habituation Experience and also other activities that are optional. Later on, head back to your hotel for meals and relaxation to bukavu town.

Day 3:

You are transferred from Bukavu town  back to Kigali to catch your departure flight, its advisable that you book late night flight to avoid missing the flight.

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