While embarking on a road trip or relaxing on a pristine beach appeals to travelers, many people want to spread their wings a bit further and experience a more daring adventure abroad. Some people climb mountains, while others swim with sharks. Seeing gorillas in the wild is another sought-after experience.
Although these beasts do present dangers, if you’re with a tour guide or locals from the area, then they’ll know exactly what to do. After all, seeing these brute-like animals in the flesh is an amazing experience. Thanks to movies like Gorillas in the Mist, and books like The One and Only Ivan, and gamers playing titles like Super Gorilla Quest and animal-themed slots like Mega Moolah, awareness of gorillas and their power is certainly there. Similar to diving with sharks, though, people tend to think that these types of adventures result in a near-death experience.
Of course, entering any wild animal’s home is a risk, but seeing gorillas in their natural habitat is safe overall. In fact, people have been studying these herbivorous and predominantly ground-dwelling great apes for centuries. Some locations around the world are home to thousands of them, too.
The continent of Africa houses a range of species
Africa is certainly the most popular destination to see gorillas in the flesh. An opportunity to combine an African holiday with a gorilla-themed jungle adventure, holidaymakers are regularly exploring Africa in more detail with a city visit and a stay in a resort, alongside a more daring escapade into the famous wild environments that Africa possesses. There are plenty of tour guides with solid reputations willing to take you, it’s reasonable in terms of price compared to other popular animal-themed adventures, and you’ll be able to see these amazing animals in their favorite locations to relax, feed and breed.
Most places can’t guarantee a sighting
One of the biggest issues with investing in an adventure of this type is that you aren’t actually guaranteed to see gorillas in the wild. In the same way boats can’t promise loads of whales to see and divers aren’t always likely to see the sharks they’re after, nations like Nigeria can’t always provide a gorilla-viewing experience. For example, Cross River gorillas are only found in Cross River State, with a sad decline in gorilla populations resulting in only around 200 to 300 gorillas being found there. In turn, this decreases your chances of seeing gorillas in an environment like this, although it’s not impossible.
Other destinations that house a selection of species are Equatorial Guinea and Angola, with both African nations having similar issues to Nigeria and, essentially, housing a dwindling population of gorillas. Both these nations also have various infrastructural issues that make witnessing gorilla populations extremely tricky. It’s possible if you find the right people willing to take you, but there is little in terms of tourism offerings in both nations, making these adventures particularly challenging. If that’s what you’re after, though, then you’re in for a treat!
The most reliable destinations are your best bet
Although we’ve highlighted the issues around seeing gorillas in certain destinations, there are more reliable places that are being explored by gorilla lovers. For example, you’re likely to see gorillas in Gabon thanks to the country’s 13 national parks. The western lowland gorilla is particularly prominent there, with places like Moukalaba-Doudou National Park standing out. Central African Republic and, more specifically, the Dzanga-Ndoki National Park is also popular in this area. Rwanda and Uganda are certainly the most popular destinations, though, with Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park and Uganda’s Mgahinga National Park capable of providing you with a truly memorable trip.