Great Migration Gorilla Trek    (5 Days)


Guided by Jim Heck

March 28 to April 1, 2021

$14,830

Price is for the gorilla trek plus the full Tanzania Great Migration Safari

EWT’s Great Migration Safari led by the famous guide and African expert, Jim Heck, is the most dramatic safari left on earth!  Begin the Great Migration Safari with a trek to the Mountain gorillas, and there may be nothing as exciting in the wild!

In November, 2018, after thirty years of intense conservation, the Mountain gorilla [gorilla berengei berengei] was moved off the “critically endangered species” list to the “endangered list.” It is a testimony mostly of the good that people like you have done paying to see them. (See Jim Heck’s blog about this momentous event).

This will be Jim’s 53rd gorilla trek. As a young guide taking National Geographic photographers, he was among the first non-scientists to see them up close.

There are about 1,000 left in the wild. Their three cousins, the eastern highland gorilla [gorilla berengei graueri], the lowland gorilla [gorilla gorilla gorilla] and the Cross River Gorilla [gorilla gorilla diehl] are noticeably different in appearance. The rarest of them all is the Cross River Gorilla with less than 300 left found in the deep and remote jungles of Cameroon. The eastern highland gorilla numbers about 5,000 individuals and is found mostly in the eastern forests of The Congo. The lowland gorilla, which is the gorilla kept in zoos, numbers about 50,000 and is spread out across the whole of equatorial Africa up to the Congo forests. The mountain gorilla is the largest and fuzziest of all subspecies.

About fifty mountain gorilla families live and are studied in the region of central Africa known as the Volcanoes National Park. Seven old volcanoes (none remain active) compose this spectacularly beautiful part of Africa. The area spans three countries: Uganda, DR-Congo and Rwanda. Almost 80% of it, however, is in Rwanda.

Mountain gorillas have survived for only one reason: tourism. The tens of thousands of visits which began in 1979 have resulted in a greater awareness and interest in these gigantic animals, and the considerable funding of research and protection which ensued. The famous researchers, like George Shaller and Dian Fossey, did much to bring the plight of gorillas to the public’s attention, but it is tourists like you who have saved them.

This tour offers three options for the length of your tour:

2021 Dates Sharing Single
Tanzania Great Migration (12 Days) March 31 to April 11 $ 9,995 $ 11,330
Tanzania Great Migration, including the Gorilla Trek (15 Days) March 28 to April 11 $ 14,830 $ 16,450
Zanzibar Extension (4 Days) April 11 to 13 $ 1,390 $ 1,990

 

Few people know Africa as well as Jim Heck. For more than 45 years he has worked, lived and guided in Africa. His popular blog, Africa-Answerman, includes investigative journalism of some of Africa’s most critical news stories as well as anecdotes and features of daily African life. His award-winning novel, Chasm Gorge, will soon be followed by a second book, The World by Ole Kulet. His companies have organized safaris into Africa for more than 20,000 visitors. In 2016 he became the first American named an honorary senior elder by Kenya’s Maasai tribe.

Jim was the first westerner allowed to leave Addis after the Red Terror; had canoes overturned among crocs and hippos on the Zambezi; been charged by an elephant that he hit with a plate of waldorf salad; lost in the jungles of Cameroun; marooned in the Ituri Forest and rescued by Rhodesian sanction busters; and was among the few outsiders to travel through Uganda during the time of Idi Amin. Jim has never lost a client or fired a gun.

There’s no better safari and no better guide to take you there!

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Dates & Pricing

Details

*Contact EWT for the best international air fares and for recommendations on how to use your frequent flyer miles.

Day 1: KIGALI

Sunday, March 28, 2021

Whenever you arrive in Kigali Jim will greet you and spend tonight with you at the luxurious Kigali Serena Hotel.

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Day 2: PARCS des VOLCANS

Monday, March 29

For those interested Jim will accompany you this morning to the Genocide Museum.  Later in the morning the group drives up to the volcanoes arriving at the lodge for a later lunch.  This is an area of absolutely magical beauty, a highland rain forest in which live most of the last mountain gorillas on earth.  The park is far more developed, more heavily researched, higher, and better managed than the smaller sections of the area run by Rwanda's neighbors, Uganda and The Congo. So it is definitely the preferred venue for trekking to see mountain gorillas.  The afternoon is free.  Dinner and overnight at Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge.

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Day 3: PARCS des VOLCANS

Tuesday, March 30

Trekkers gather at park headquarters around 7 a.m. for a briefing by the rangers.  Shortly afterwards, joined by "hackers", and as many porters as you'd like to hire, the trek begins.  The rangers take you through the forest to where they know the gorillas were the day before.  At that point they begin tracking the gorillas through the highland jungle, and this determines the difficulty.  Sometimes, the gorillas haven't moved very much so they're found quickly.  Other times they've moved a lot!  A trek can be less than an hour long and reach altitudes no higher than 8,000' or it can take most of the day and go as high as 11,000'.  Once found visitors are given one hour with the gorilla family.  Enjoy a picnic lunch on your way down the volcano.  Dinner and overnight at Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge.

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Day 5: KILIMANJARO / TARANGIRE

Thursday, April 1

Morning flight to Kilimanjaro airport in northern Tanzania.  After proceeding through customs and immigration, take a quick flight into Tarangire National Park where you join those who have booked only the Tanzanian section.  Game viewing begins immediately!  Click here for the Tanzania daily itinerary. 

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