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Gorilla treks and primate safaris

Gorilla treks, chimp and primate safaris offer an intimate window into a world of magic and new discovery in Africa’s last refuges

Tracking Africa’s mountain gorillas is the ultimate wildlife experience for many visitors to Africa. When you reach them, you’ll have just one hour in their company, it’ll be a magical hour that you’ll never forget.

  • We find about 880 mountain gorillas in the Virunga Mountains and Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. Rwanda and Uganda offer prime mountain gorilla trekking safaris.
  • There’s a small population of mountain gorillas plus Eastern lowland gorillas in the eastern parts of Democratic Republic of Congo. (Commonly referred to as DRC, formerly Zaire.) Only safari veterans and serious adventurers need apply!
  • Western lowland gorillas are abundant in Odzala National Park in the Republic of the Congo. (Commonly referred to as Congo-Brazzaville.) Congo is especially good for seasoned travellers. Central African Republic and Gabon offer limited scope for gorilla trekking.

General notes on African primate safaris

Gorillas, chimps, monkeys and lemurs are the main attractions on primate safaris. Whether you’re a first timer or interested in very specific species, start with broad research on species, then narrow down to a specific destination.

  • For gorillas trekking, habituated groups are best. Think Uganda then Rwanda then Congo. (Rwanda is best bet for luxury.)
  • Wild gorilla trekking can be arduous. You’re probably not just targeting gorillas. You’ll also find lots of other rewards in remote forests. Think Congo, CAR, eastern DRC and Gabon. (Luxury isn’t important.)
  • For habituated chimp treks, think Mahale in Tanzania. Or Kibale in Uganda.
  • We find other wild populations of chimps, colobus and monkeys in many of the central and East African forests. In Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Congo. Also DRC, CAR, Cameroon and Gabon.
  • We find specials like bonobo and mandrill only in very specific haunts. That’s in DRC, Cameroon/Gabon respectively.
  • Lemurs are easy. Madagascar is the place to go.


Mountain gorilla treks with Billy Dodson

Gorilla Trekking in Bwindi

Here's the quickest and simplest way to trek for mountain gorillas in Uganda - it's our 4 day mountain gorilla trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest.

From $2486 4 days / 3 nightsMore info
Lowland gorillas

Odzala - Congo

Best described as an active discovery within very remote rainforests of the Congo Basin. Suitable for seasoned African travellers only.

From $10370 8 days / 7 nightsMore info
Visit Virunga and Nyiragongo volcano, eastern DRC courtesy Virunga National Park

The Virunga Safari, eastern DRC

Visit Virunga National Park in eastern DRC for mountain gorillas plus the Nyiragongo volcano hike...only safari veterans and serious adventurers need apply

From $2999 7 days / 6 nightsMore info
Dzanga-Ndoki Pangolin courtesy Tim Henshall of Kamili

Dzanga-Ndoki Expedition

Expeditionary and off-beat in Dzanga-Ndoki National Park. Suitable for adventurers, photographers, birders, specialists and seasoned travellers only.

From $5795 8 days / 7 nightsMore info
Classic Uganda safari - round the houses

Classic Uganda Safari

The complete Uganda safari with gorillas, chimps, big game and birdlife to boot - easily customisable to include East Africa's migration

From $4680 10 days / 9 nightsMore info
Easy gorilla treks in Rwanda

Easy Gorillas in Rwanda

The Rwanda gorilla treks are usually regarded as the easiest - here's the smart way to trek for mountain gorillas from Kigali into Parc de National Virunga - includes tracking permit

From $3195 3 days / 2 nightsMore info
Rwanda safari - Nyungwe courtesy Julie Brenner

Classic Rwanda Safari

Gorillas and so much more including chimpanzees and incredible bird life in the lush Nyungwe Forest, Lake Kivu and Parc des National Virunga

From $7292 8 days / 7 nightsMore info