I didn't want to miss the Mountain Gorillas when in Uganda this summer. It is a long 9 - 10 hour drive from Entebbe to Bwindi, and much of the road is under construction. when construction is done, it will be a comfortable and shorter trip. My plane landed at 11:30am, and I was at my lodge by 10:00pm.
My lodge, Broadbill Forest Camp, was only 10 minutes from the entrance I used for the trek. My guide, Shaun Sendyowa, selected the gorilla entrance I would use, and made a good choice of locating the Camp near that entrance, as he knew we would be late in arriving. Other visitors had driven one hour from their lodge, before arriving at the entrance early that morning.
Each entrance has different characteristics: flat, steep, bogs, or dryer. If you have concerns about your physical ability to manage on steep hillsides covered in vines, then be sure to tell whoever is making the arrangements. You want them to select an area you can manage.
I went in at the Ruhija sector. I don't have a personal comparison to the other entrances, but from photos I had seen online, it seems this entrance is steeper and potentially more difficult then some. I loved it, and had no problems with the terrain. Each of us paid a "holder" $15US to carry our small backpack with our lunch and other personal items. The holder also offered a helping hand as needed, but was not overly solicitous. Two visitors in my group had trouble with footing, and they benefited from all the holders helping them.
I was traveling solo, and placed with five English speaking visitors about my age. The guides, holders, visitors were respectful of the environment, the gorillas. The permit seems expensive, but it isn't when you understand how much it does to protect this area of the world. It truly is a life experience worth the effort it takes to dive deep into it.
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