Below is the statement by the Uganda Tourism Board that it will NOT increase Gorilla Trekking Permits. It is a little hard to see - but one of the five gorilla babies mentioned below is being held by its mother behind the Alpha Male. His name is "Christmas" as he was just born in December 2016!
No price increase for gorilla tours in Uganda
The Ugandan government has confirmed that it will maintain the $600 fee per person for gorilla permits and promises that there will be no price increase in Uganda.
The Uganda Wildlife Authority today announced that there will be no price increase in Uganda for a minimum of 12 months. Gorilla tracking charges will thus be maintained at $ 600 per person in peak season and $ 450 in low season.
In Uganda, sustainable gorilla tourism is a major contributor to the protection of these rare and endangered animals. Revenues from gorilla permits help to preserve the habitat of the endangered mountain gorillas. Through tourism, the protection of animals also attracts worldwide attention and support. And gorilla tourism offers communities around national parks an economic perspective, as 20% of fees go directly to the local population in addition to tourism creating jobs. This avoids long-term conflicts between humans and animals as well as poaching.
“The mountain gorilla population in Uganda has been steadily increasing to about 550 individuals since the 1980s. This shows that our model for gorilla tourism works and both conservation and locals benefit from the tourism. We therefore have no reason to change anything or increase fees,” explains Dr. Andrew Seguya, Executive Director of the Uganda Wildlife Authority.
The Uganda Wildlife Authority has in fact been very successful in the protection of mountain gorillas. Between September 2016 and January 2017 alone, there was a real baby boom with a total of five new-born mountain gorillas. This gives hope to conservationists, in the light of IUCN recently listing the mountain gorilla as critically endangered on the latest ”red list” of threatened species.
“Once you have looked into the eyes of a mountain gorilla, you understand how important it is to protect these primates. We therefore think it is important, that not only a wealthy minority can get the chance to experience these animals in their natural environment, but everyone who loves gorillas and wants to contribute to their conservation. Besides, we feel obliged to our tourism partners worldwide to keep prices stable”, said Stephen Asiimwe, CEO of the Uganda Tourism Board.
To protect these highly endangered primates, gorilla tracking is highly regulated. A maximum of 8 visitors per day are allowed for each gorilla group. Together with specially trained rangers, tourists hike into the rainforest and track the animals. Once the group is found, visitors can stay with them for about an hour only.
In Uganda, gorilla tracking can be done in two national parks: in the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, which protects the habitat of about 450 mountain gorillas living in 36 families. And the Mgahinga National Park on the border between Uganda, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Mgahinga has between 50-100 mountain gorillas. According to WWF there are only 880 mountain gorillas worldwide. The remaining population lives in Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
In light of Uganda’s recent marketing drives in Europe, tour operators in Germany, Austria and Switzerland expect a rise in demand for safaris in favor of Uganda. Uganda is not only absolutely safe for tourists, but also offers other attractions besides the mountain gorillas, such as safari tours in the ten national parks, chimpanzee tracking, hiking and mountaineering, boat cruises on the Nile as well as an immense variety of bird species.
There is 1 Mountain Gorilla for every 9 million people left on Earth. This Alpha Male Silverback is from Mgahinga National Park in Uganda. While Mgahinga is the smallest of the Ugandan National Parks, it is also one of the easiest in which to find the Mountain Gorillas. We were fortunate that this family of 10 were only 30 minutes in the Rain Forest. More about my experiences with these magnificent, endangered species following #POATE2017. Thank you Uganda Tourism Board for this amazing experience.
These are the awesome options given by Uganda Tourism Board:
Fun Activity Options -
Option 1: White Water Rafting on the Nile
Option 2: Bungee Jump on the River Nile
Option 3: Quad Biking
Option 4: Horse Riding Along the Nile
Thx UTB – Can’t wait!
The Pearl of Africa Tourism Expo (#POATE2017) is fast approaching! The POATE Team has sent a reminder of items needed for our exciting Gorilla & Chimpanzee Trekking. These include:
· Long trousers and long-sleeved shirts
· Getters/ long socks to wear over your trousers as protection against ants
· A pair of garden gloves to protect against nettles
· A pair of sturdy, comfortable hiking boots with good ankle support is most important – try to break these in before your trip rather than wearing them brand new as you’re likely to get blisters.
The gloves are particularly poignant as those who have seen “Gorillas in the Mist” may remember, it was gorilla curiosity in Dian Fossey’s glove which first established her relationship with the gorillas.
Looking forward to the “Best of the Pearl” Fam Trip with the Uganda Tourism Board in February!
“There was no way that I could explain to dogs, friends, or parents my compelling need to return to Africa to launch a long-term study of the gorillas. Some may call it destiny and others may call it dismaying. I call the sudden turn of events in my life fortuitous.”
― Dian Fossey
Flyga Twiga Selected as One of 100 International Hosted Buyers & Media Sponsored by Uganda Tourism Board for Pearl of Africa Tourism Expo 2017 #POATE2017
Flyga Twiga LLC has been selected by the Uganda Tourism Board as one of 100 International Hosted Buyers for the Pearl of Africa Tourism Expo 2017 (POATE 2017). POATE 2017 will be held in February 2017 at the Kololo Independence Grounds in Kampala, Uganda.
According to the Uganda Tourism Board, “The Pearl of Africa Tourism Expo (POATE) is an annual tourism event in the East African region organized by Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) to bring together travel agents, tour operators, hoteliers, destination managers, media, travel bloggers and other service providers along the tourism value chain. It is a unique networking platform for all players in the Tours & Travel industry.”
POATE 2017 will include Familiarization (Fam) Trips, for which Flyga Twiga has been offered “The Best of the Pearl.” This Fam Trip includes the “encounter with chimps, gorillas & other primates through Savannah plains and West African jungles….”
Highlights of the Fam Trip include Safari in Queen Elizabeth National Park, looking for the famous tree-climbing lions. Gorilla Trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park amongst the remaining 750 Mountain Gorillas left on Earth. As well as trekking in Kibale Forest, which “boasts the highest number of primate species in the world, including our delightful cousins - the Chimpanzees. At this moment, in Uganda, there are approximately 4,950 Chimps left in the wild.”
Flyga Twiga was chosen for POATE 2017 and “The Best of the Pearl” Fam Trip due to their commitment to sustainable tourism and their unique offering of bespoke, personal Safari services in East Africa. Flyga Twiga’s founder and owner, Amy Millican, has worked with wildlife conservation and international development projects in Uganda. In addition, Flyga Twiga’s clients have come from such diverse places as the United States of America, Peru, and Haiti.
I really needed to look at something beautiful today! I've been up to my eyes in statistics from the Uganda Bureau of Statistics for some research & writing for Flyga Twiga. So, thank you Gnanaraj Sadacharam for this beautiful Zebra pic from one of your jungle trips in India. It makes me happy! Love it!
Posted today by the Uganda Wildlife Authority - Bwindi Forest National Park!