Nyakamwe gorilla family in Virunga national park
Nyakamwe gorilla family in Virunga national park started forming in 2014. The family was led by a silverback called Nyakamwe and this was from Rugendo gorilla family. When Nyakamwe was leaving Nyakamwe gorilla family, he left with his brother Humba to form their own family.
They were able to form a group of about 16 members but because of fights between these two brothers, a separation took place and Nyakamwe was able to go with 10 members while Humba went with 6 members. Nyakamwe received a new member to the group and this was Kabila from Kabirizi group after the fight.
With new deaths and births, Nyakamwe gorilla family has managed to increase each year and as of today, the family has 14 members. Trekking Nyakamwe gorilla family in Virunga national park can be done at any time of the year if you have a valid gorilla trekking permit.
Trekking Nyakamwe gorilla group in Virunga national park
Trekking Nyakamwe gorilla family in Virunga national park starts with a briefing early in the morning at the park officers. Trekkers must wake up early in the morning to have breakfast and then meet the drivers to transfer them to the park offices. At the park offices, they will meet park wardens to teach them about the rules and regulations of the gorilla trekking activity.
Later armed ranger guides will lead the trekkers through different trekking trails to search for Nyakamwe gorilla family. The activity takes 2-5 hours of passing through different vegetation covers meeting different birds and animals such as duikers, bushbucks, okapi, kobs, giant forest hogs, elephants, topis, and much more. When the gorilla family is located, the trekkers are given 1 hour to be around the apes, watch them do daily activities, take photos and learn about their habits.
Trekking permits for Nyakamwe gorilla family
A total of 8 permits is available for Nyakamwe gorilla family every day in Virunga national park. These gorilla trekking permits are issued out by Institut Congolais pour la Conservation de la Nature but you can easily get them with a help of a local tour operator at the same price. Each trekking permit in Virunga national park is $450 for foreign non-residents, and foreign residents, $200 for East African citizens and Congolese while in the low seasons the permits go for as low as $200.
Booking permits for Nyakamwe gorilla family
Local tour operators are the best that can help you when booking trekking permits for Virunga national park. Africa adventure vacations limited does help travelers interested in trekking Nyakamwe gorilla family. What you will do is send is an email containing the dates of the month and year you want to travel and using these dates, we shall check for availability of the permits with Institut Congolais pour la Conservation de la Nature.
When the permits are available, we shall let you know and send you an email containing the banking details of how you can send us money. After receiving the money, we shall book the permits for you. All travelers intending to visit Nyakamwe gorilla family are advised to book the trekking permits in advance of 3-4 months to avoid inconveniences.
Best time to trek Nyakamwe gorilla family
Nyakamwe gorilla family in Virunga national park can be trekked at any time of the year since the park is always open. But there are some months that are better than the rest and these are the dry months of June to September and December to February. During these months, there is little or no rainfall, the trekking trails in the park are less slippery, the vegetation is short with clear views of the gorillas and the roads leading to the park are passable.
Travelers can still visit Virunga national park for Nyakamwe gorilla family trekking in the rainy seasons to enjoy huge discounts on gorilla permits and accommodation facilities. The rainy season occurs from March to May and October to November but the challenge with this period is that there is plenty of rainfall that makes the trekking trails muddy and slippery, the vegetation is tall with unclear views of the park animals and the roads leading to the park are impassable.
What to pack for Nyakamwe gorilla family trekking?
What to pack for Nyakamwe gorilla family trekking includes waterproof hiking shoes, long-sleeved pants, long-sleeved shirts, gardening gloves, a rain jacket, a hat, sunscreen, insect repellents, sweater, cotton stocks, toiletries, first aid kit, drinking water bottle, energy-giving snacks, facemask, sanitizer, camera, a pair of binoculars, backpack,
Accommodation on Nyakamwe gorilla family trekking safari
There are several accommodation facilities inside and around Virunga national park where trekkers on Nyakamwe gorilla family trekking safari can stay. These do range from budget to mid-range to luxury options and where to stay depends on someone’s budget. Some of the accommodation facilities are Lulimbi Tented Camp, Nyiragongo Volcano Summit Shelters, Bukima Tented Camp, Mikeno Lodge, Tchegera Island, Kibumba Tented Camp, and much more.
Activities to combine with Nyakamwe gorilla trekking in Virunga national park
Chimpanzee trekking: Chimpanzee trekking is one of the activities in Virunga national park you can combine with trekking Nyakamwe gorilla family. The chimpanzee trekking permits need to be booked in advance just like those of gorilla trekking. Trekking chimpanzees in Virunga national park is done in t5he southern part of the park where a few of the chimpanzees are habituated.
The trekking activity in Virunga national park is led by an armed ranger guide and it gives you an opportunity to meet some of the park animals such as buffaloes, duikers, okapis, topis, kobs, mongoose, bongo, leopard, okapi, birds, and plant species. Once the chimpanzee family is located, 1 hour is given to trekkers to be around these apes, watch them do daily activities, take photos and learn about their habits.
Birding: Travelers to Virunga national park for Nyakamwe gorilla trekking shouldn’t miss out on birding activities that are carried out in the different birding spots in the park. The birding activities in Virunga are led by armed ranger guides who protect you from dangerous wild animals and rebels. If you are intending to do birding in Virunga, we advise you to come with a birding book, voice recorder, and a pair of binoculars.
Birds of Virunga national park include Rwenzori double- collared sunbird, narina trogon, alpine swift, tropical boubou, mountain greenbul, handsome spurfowl, red-chested cuckoo, black-headed waxbill, grey-headed negrafinch, bronze mannikin, diederik cuckoo, Rwenzori turaco, dusky crimson-wing, hadeda ibis, African thrush, white-headed wood hoopoe, thick-billed seedeater, and green sandpiper.
Other bird species in Virunga national park include Rwenzori batis, archer’s ground robin, shelley’s crimsonwing, stripe-brested tit, klass’s cuckoo, barred long-tailed cuckoo, baglafecht weaver, collared sunbird, variable sunbird, stonechat, white-necked raven, mountain oriole, and rufous thrush among others.
Hiking: Virunga national park has the 2 most active volcanoes in the world so while on Nyakamwe gorilla trekking safari, you don’t have to miss out hiking any of these mountains. Travelers can hike mount Nyiragongo or mount Nyamuragira but they must have a hiking permit. The activity starts early in the morning and it’s led by the armed ranger guides who protect the hikers from the dangerous wild animals and rebels.
Hiking to the summit if any of these mountains takes 5-6 hours of passing through different vegetation covers meeting different birds and animals such as warthogs, bushbucks, duikers, okapi, giant forest hogs, buffaloes, topi, kobs, elephants, olive baboons, monkeys, aardvark, and bongo among others.
There are different stopovers during the hiking where hikers posse to relax and eat some of the foods and drinks. Once the summit is reached, the hikers will enjoy great views of the lava lakes, Lake Kivu, Virunga volcanoes, Mount Rwenzori, Virunga national park, Kahuzi Biega national park, homesteads, and plantations. Nights are spent at the summit and descending is always the next day.