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Primate trekking in Gishwati-Mukura national park

Primate trekking in Gishwati-Mukura national park

Primate trekking in Gishwati-Mukura national park

Are you looking for primate trekking in Gishwati-Mukura national park? Gishwati-Mukura national park was gazetted mainly to protect the endangered chimpanzee species that had found their home in this area. The national park is 36 sq. km and is situated in the western part of Rwanda near Nyungwe forest national park another home of chimpanzees. Primate trekking is the most done activity in Gishwati-Mukura national park and it’s done throughout the year by persons above the age of 15 years.

Apart from the park hosting chimpanzees, it’s also home to other animals such as buffaloes, golden monkeys, blue monkeys, duikers, olive baboons, vervet monkeys, civets, l’hoest’s monkeys, serval cats, and black and white colobus monkeys among others. The park is also home to over 232 bird species among which White-headed wood hoopoe, marital eagle, strange weaver, red-throated alethe, purple-breasted sunbird, etc. Other than primate trekking, other activities done in Gishwati-Mukura national park include Birding, nature walks, and community tours.

Primate trekking in Gishwati-Mukura national park

On the day of chimpanzee trekking, you will wake up early in the morning at your lodge for breakfast and after meet your driver who will transfer you to the park offices. There you will meet park wardens who will brief you about the trekking activity and then armed ranger guides will be assigned to you to lead you into the jungle to search for these apes.

While searching for chimpanzees, the trekkers get opportunities of meeting different park animals such as serval cats, olive baboons, L’Hoests monkeys, duikers, blue monkeys, golden monkeys, black and white colobus monkeys, civets, and vervet monkeys. When the trekkers meet the chimpanzees, they have been looking for, they will be given 1 hour to be around them as they learn about their habits, take photos, and see them do daily activities such as hunting, feeding, nesting, and playing among others.

How to book chimpanzee permits for Gishwati-Mukura national park

For you to trek chimpanzees in Gishwati-Mukura national park, you need to have a valid chimpanzee trekking permit that is got from the Rwanda Development Board or a local tour operator. Africa adventure vacations limited is a local tour company that can help you in booking a chimpanzee trekking permit for Gishwati-Mukura national park. All you need to do is send us an email containing the days you want to travel and using these days we shall check for the availability of permits with the Rwanda Development Board.

Once the permits are available, we shall send you details of how you can send us money, and the moment we receive them, we shall go ahead and book permits for you. Tourists can also book the permits for themselves by sending an email containing the dates they want to travel to the Rwanda Development Board and once the permits are available you will send them money and your permit will be kept.

What to pack for primate trekking in Gishwati-Mukura national park?

For you to have an amazing primate trekking experience in Gishwati-Mukura national park, you need to come with all the equipment necessary for primate trekking. These include waterproof hiking shoes, a pair of gaiters, gardening gloves, long-sleeved clothes, insect repellents, sunscreen, a hat, a rain jacket, first aid kit, face mask, sanitizer, drinking water bottle, and energy-giving snacks.

What is the best time to visit Gishwati-Mukura national park for primate trekking?

Gishwati-Mukura national park can be visited at any time of the year for primate trekking but there are months that are better than the rest. The drier months are the best to visit Gishwati-Mukura national park and these occur from June to September and December to February. The dry months are characterized by little or no rainfall that makes the trekking trails less slippery, the vegetation is short in the park giving clear views of the primates, and the roads leading to the park are passable.

Tourists can still do primate trekking in Gishwati-Mukura national park in the rainy season of March to May and October to November to enjoy huge discounts on accommodation facilities but during these months, there is plenty of rainfall that makes the trekking trails muddy and slippery, the vegetation is tall leading to unclear views of primates and the roads leading to the park are impassable.

Where to stay on a primate trekking safari in Gishwati-Mukura national park?

Gishwati-Mukura national park has only one accommodation facility located inside the park but this shouldn’t make you worried because several accommodation facilities are built around the park. Where to stay depends on your budget because the accommodations range from budget to mid-range to luxury options such as Gishwati Lodge, Kivu Paradis Resort, Nirvana Heights Resort & Spa, Inzu Lodge, Family Rest Kivu, Rushel Kivu Lodge, Musanto Hotel, Hakuna Matata Lodge, Kivu Peace View Hotel, Hotel Pardis Malahide, and Palm Beach Resort among others.

Rules and regulations of primate trekking activity in Gishwati-Mukura national park

The primate trekking activity starts with a briefing where participants are taught about the rules and regulations of the trekking activity.

Trekkers with signs of transmitted diseases such as cough and flue are not allowed to trek primates

Armed ranger guides lead the trekkers into the jungle searching for the chimpanzees as they protect them from dangerous wild animals.

8 people are allowed to trek a single chimpanzee family in this park

You must wash your hands before entering the jungle to search chimpanzees and you also wash after trekking

While in the jungle, you must keep your voices low

When you meet the chimpanzee family you have been looking for, you have to keep a distance of 7 meters.

You are not allowed to use a camera that has flash while taking chimpanzees photos.

While in the jungle, you are not allowed to eat or smoke around these primates

When you are with chimpanzees and you feel like coughing or sneezing, you are advised to turn your head away from the direction of chimpanzees and cover your mouth to reduce the risk of the spread of diseases.

While in the jungle, you are not allowed to litter, you must keep your rubbish with you until you get out of the forest.

When you want to ease yourself, you need to inform your tour operator and they dig for you whole when you can ease yourself and thereafter you have to cover it

When you meet the endangered chimpanzees, you are given 1 hour to be around them as you learn about their habits, take photos and watch them do daily activities

You are not allowed to have direct contact with the chimpanzees as they might mistake it for hostility.