How to book gorilla permits in Virunga national park
How to book gorilla permits in Virunga national park? A gorilla trekking permit is an official document that allows you to spend a full hour with mountain gorillas in Virunga DR Congo. A mountain gorilla permit in DR Congo can be obtained through a registered local travel agency or Virunga national park.
However, it’s much easier and faster to secure your Virunga gorilla permit through a trusted tour operator like Africa Adventure Vacations since it tends to be quick and less tiresome.
Another advantage of booking your gorilla trekking permits with a local agency is that such companies have knowledge about various gorilla families as well as first-hand information on the local community around Virunga national park and the different accommodation facilities that fit your travel budget.
You can also get great travel recommendations in case you wish to extend your African tour to other parts of DR Congo and the East African region in general.
Booking your gorilla permits through Virunga national park for foreign non-residents is done by contacting the Virunga reservation office and inquiring availability of permits on your dates of interest. At times the response might be fast but in case they delay, relax until you are responded. After getting feedback from the reservation team, reply and book gorilla permits as per your travel plan.
You will then be given bank details to proceed with the payment of the gorilla permit(s). The gorilla permits will also help you to apply for your Congo tourist Visa. We recommend travelers to send a scanned copy of the transaction voucher/receipt by email to Virunga national park upon payment.
Below is the price for gorilla permits in Virunga national park;
USD $400 per person for foreign non-residents
USD $ 200 for SADC nationals
USD $150 for Congolese residents
The above permit fees structure is inclusive of the Virunga park entrance however, it is exclusive of ground transportation in DR Congo and accommodation or any other related safari costs in the park.
The Virunga gorilla permits are not issued to travelers below the age of 15 years because they are considered to be children however if someone is 14 years, the parent or guardian may apply for a special request from the national park to allow his/her child track if the child is physically fit. This permission can be approved by the authority.
During peak season, tourists are advised to make an advance booking for their gorilla permits in Virunga National Park because permits are highly demanded and they tend to be competitive, hence to avoid disappointments and inconveniences, please make an advance booking at least 3 months prior to your dates of travel.
Travelers intending to do a safari in Virunga national park are advised to hire a porter at an extra fee of $15 per trek who will help you in carrying your day pack. Please note that hiring a porter helps in providing employment opportunities to the local community and this money goes directly to the porter.
When to Book your Gorilla trekking Permits in Virunga national park?
We recommend travelers to book Virunga gorilla trekking permits at least three or advance, or six months in advance. Some travelers actually prefer purchasing permits two years in advance more so those looking at visiting the park in peak season or high season which happens in the drier months of June, July, August, September, December, January, and February. Therefore, the earlier you book, the better to confirm your gorilla trekking experience since the permits tend to run out fast during this peak season.
For budget travelers, the wet season is the best time to visit Virunga national park due to crazy discounts offered by different service suppliers. The gorilla trekking permits in Virunga national park during this period go for $200 per person per trek instead of the normal price of $400. The discount on the gorilla permits normally runs from 15th October to 15th December. In addition to this, hotels subsidize their room rates in order to attract more guests.