“They’re here” our ranger whispers, motioning with his hand to our right. The anticipation that followed us on a hot and tiring trek through bamboo jungle and stinging nettles, so thick and overgrown we had to cut a path with a machete, leapfrogs up a good few notches. This is it! A rare opportunity to step into the world of an endangered mountain gorilla family awaits… a mesmerising hour where time both stands still, and yet whizzes past in a flash. Words fail me when it comes to recounting this humbling experience… surreal, poignant, breathtaking. I’m trekking The Agashya group in the Volcanoes National Park, Rwanda. Originally called group 13, named after the initial 13 family individuals at the time of habituation, this family has grown to 27 members led by one Silverback. Critically endangered, with an estimated 880 surviving in the wild, mountain gorillas can only be found in the rainforests bordering Uganda, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
I’ve travelled far and wide, but my trip to Rwanda – known as the Land of a Thousand Hills – and my gorilla trekking experience tops my list of travel experiences, hands down. It’s why I love my job as product and marketing manager at Wild Frontiers. Here, we don’t just ‘sell’ safaris, we live and breathe safaris; it’s our passion and we have been sharing our knowledge, experience and love of Africa since 1991.
Explore Queen Elizabeth National Park with its amazing selection of wildlife, including tree climbing lions, enjoy a boat cruise on the Kazinga channel linking Lake Edward and Lake George, and trek gorillas in the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. These are just a few of the reasons to visit Uganda. Crossing the border into Rwanda, discover Volcanoes National Park, where you can trek gorillas, take a forest walk in search of golden monkeys, or hike to Dian Fossey’s grave. A visit to the genocide memorial in the capital city of Kigali gives a haunting insight into the dark past from which Rwanda has risen to become one of the cleanest, safest African countries.
Stop dreaming, come discover and come explore. We’re waiting to take you there…