Rwanda’s tourism sector has stood for long mainly because of the unique tourist attractions and the most exciting tourist activities in the Volcanoes National Park. The park is located in Musanze province, northwestern part of the country. It is mainly credited for its remarkable five of the eight Great Virunga Volcanoes which include Gahinga volcano, mount Bisoke, Sabyinyo, Muhabura and Karisimbi; the unique endangered mountain gorillas, Rivers and Lakes, Caves and others. Volcanoes National Park was gazetted around 1925 which makes it one of the ancient conversational areas in the whole of Africa. There is a lot more in offer for visitors to excite their minds while on safari to this protected area.

Below are some of incredible tourist activities for you to engage in Volcanoes National Park.

1- Mountain gorilla trekking

Mountain gorilla trekking adventure in Volcanoes National Park plays a crucial role towards Rwanda’s tourism sector.  About ten (10) families have been designated for visitor to catch a glimpse of these unique creatures while they are still in their natural habitat. Among others include the Susa A family, Sabyinyo, Amahoro, Hirwa, Ugenda, Agashya, Kwitonda, Umubano, Karisimbi and Bwenge among others. Like any gorilla destination, trekking permit is a must to have in the Rwanda Volcanoes National Park and permits are obtainable at $1500 per tourist. One permit allows you to track one habituated group in a group of eight visitors. Permits are accessible through a local tour operator or through the Rwanda Development Board head office. Your trek takes you from one hour to eight hours but this will depend on your speed, nature of the habitat and location of the gorilla family that will be allocated to you to track. Volcanoes National Park is about 2 to 3 hours’ drive from Kigali International Airport.

2- Golden monkey tracking

Besides tracking mountain gorillas in Rwanda, the Volcanoes National Park is where silver meets gold! The golden monkeys are a few fascinating creatures that are worth tracking while on safari in Rwanda. They are largely found within the Great Virunga Mountains ranges of Volcanoes National Park and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park in Uganda. The golden monkeys are a sub species of the Sykes monkey also famous as the blue monkey. There are 2 groups that have been habituated for visitors to track all of which consist of 80 individuals. The adventure begins at 7:00am local time. For lifetime experiences with these striking creatures, permits can be purchased at $100 per visitor. The trek can last up to four hours with only one hour of face to face encounter with the primates. Most of these unique species largely live within the bamboo forest of Volcanoes National Park and can be sighted playing or feeding.

3- Bird watching

Volcanoes National Park is exceptionally one of the Important Birding Areas (IBAs) in Rwanda. It refuges more than 200 unique species of birds with mainly the Albertine rift endemics. The notables for you to spot include the Rwenzori Turacos, Rwenzori double collared sunbird, Handsome Francolin, strange weaver, dusky crimson wing, collared apalis, archer’s ground robin, Grauer’s rush warbler, red faced woodland warbler and many more. Birding safaris can be combined with primate safaris in Volcanoes National Park while you are on safari in Rwanda.

4- Dian Fossey tomb hike

The Dian Fossey tomb hike is one of the remarkable activities and experiences that you shouldn’t miss out while on safari in Volcanoes National Park. This adventure allows you to explore more about Dian Fossey’s conservation life. She is credited for devoted work to save mountain gorillas that today the world boasts about. She is credited for her book which later turned into “Gorillas in the Mist” movie. This mainly talks about Dian Fossey’s life and her research camp in the Volcanoes National Park. The treks usually take up to 3 hours where you find the beloved gorillas “Digit” and her resting site. She established Karisoke research center to help her research work around 1967 and she carried out research on mountain gorillas for 18 years. Unfortunately, she was mysteriously murdered in 1985. The hike to the tomb site rewards visitors with the stunning features and wildlife species, birds and not to forget primates. This lifetime adventure currently costs $75 per person.

5- Volcano hiking

Volcanoes National Park offers refuge to several volcano mountains which are worthy hiking while on safari in Rwanda. For hikes life changing hikes, you can climb Mount Bisoke which features the most beautiful Crater Lake on its top. The adventure takes visitors up to (7) seven hours plus the two that you spend while descending back to the starting point. The hikes start at 7:00am with briefing from park official and then you will be assigned a guide. Mount Bisoke stands at 3711 meters above sea level and it features a number of stunning floras, and offers opportunity for visitors to catch a glimpse of the remarkable views of Virunga Volcanoes and the Crater Lake “Ngezi.” The hikes are less strenuous and even a person without experience can hike through it.

6- Hiking through the Karisimbi Mountain

This volcano features as the highest out of all the 8 Great Virunga Volcanoes. It stretches up to 4507 meters above sea level and features as the sixth highest in Africa. To hike to its summit, you need two days and above where you will first camp around 3700 meters and catch a glimpse of stunning Mount Bisoke. The second day takes you to the summit and return to where you started from. The hike rewards visitors with views of many geographical features, vegetation and sceneries. This mountain was named after amasimbi which denotes white shell in Kinyarwanda due to its white capped summit. The trek is breathtaking compared to Bisoke Mountain but the experiences thereafter are worthy it.

7- The twin Lakes walk

Rwanda comes with twin like Lakes that join each other. They include Lake Bulera and Ruhondo. The hike to these Lakes rewards visitors with magical views of not only the Lakes but also the Russumo waterfalls. You will also meet local residents paddling the canoes while others riding the wooden boats. The walk also comes with views of several bird-life like cinnamon breasted bee eater, common moorhen, paradise fly catchers, and stonechat, grey throated tit, long crested eagle, African marsh harrier and many more. This activity can be done in the morning and afternoon.

8- Cave exploration

Musanze caves feature among the few most historical sites in Rwanda. They are situated within Musanze town just adjacent to Volcanoes National Park. The caves have existed for over 65 million years and they have 31 entrances and extend up to 21 kilometers inside. They were formed from the flow of Basalt layers of Lava that spread form Virunga Volcanoes of Sabyinyo and Bisoke. The musanze caves offered home to many people as well as storage of supplies and food by the kings of Rwanda during the war time. The exploration lasts for two hours and visitors pay $50. It can be done in the afternoon with an escort. Other caves include the Busasamana caves which are located one kilometer and links up to many other caves such as Kazenze, Mudende and Busasamana regions. There is also Mugongo cave for you to explore and all these are among the famous 52 caves.

9- Buhanga sacred forest nature walks

Buhanga forest lies outside the Volcanoes National Park boundaries. Buhanga sacred forest features the rarest flora and diverse historical and cultural experiences of the Rwandan traditions. It is believed that most monarchical kings of Rwanda used to bath around the forest prior taking over kingship and at the end the site was referred to as a sacred place and people never cultivated on it or even cut down trees. It is also believed to sometimes change colors during certain seasons which mark the year. The walks through this forest can be done in the morning or afternoon. The trails are made of Lava stones and they extend throughout the forest.

10- Cultural encounters

For cultural experiences, visitors can pay a visit to Iby’Iwacu cultural village. This a local community project set forth by ex-poachers at the park but today they have chosen to support conservation and protection of mountain gorillas and other wildlife species. The project was largely to transform poachers from their acts to support conservation efforts in the park. You can combine cultural experiences in this village with gorilla trekking safaris and explore more on traditional styles.

In conclusion, Volcanoes National Park rewards visitors on safari in Rwanda with a number of exciting and unforgettable experiences given its distinct activities that are worthy participating. However, access to the activity centers requires a strong 4x4 car due to the nature of the roads. To those on self drive tours, you can hire a 4x4 car in Kigali at good price and recommended cars include Land cruiser, Rav4 and others.

Located in the southern part of Kivu province, west of Albertine Rift Valley, Kahuzi Biega National Park is remarkably one of the most stunning conservation areas in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). It is one of the incredible UNESCO World Heritage Sites that feature largely Eastern Lowland gorillas. Other UNESCO World Heritage Sites in DR Congo include Virunga National Park famously known for gorilla tracking, Okapi Wildlife Reserve, Salonga National Park and Garamba National park among others.

This conservation area covers an area of 6000 square kilometers which makes it one of the largest parks in the Congo. It straddles between altitude 700 and 3300 meters. Nearly, 10% of the protected area’s landscape features high mountains of mainly the extinct volcanoes that include Mount Kahuzi and Mount Biega where the park derived its name. Its establishment evolves from a zoological reserve in 1937 on mount Kahuzi with the aim of preserving the eastern lowland gorillas by the Belgian colonial government.

Before the reserve occupied an area of about 750 kilometers but it was reduced to 600kilometers in 1970 leading to creation of the Kahuzi Biega National Park with about 300 individuals of lowland gorillas. Later, it increased up to 6000 kilometers in 1975 and it was designated as a World Heritage Site in 1980. Kahuzi Biega National Park comes with two wet seasons each year and receives an annual rainfall of about 1200mm to 1800mm. This falls from the month of April to May and from October to January and the temperatures range from 19 degrees Celsius to 21 degrees Celsius.

The notable tourist attractions in this stunning protected area include the following;

Flora

Kahuzi Biega National Park comes with spectacular tropical rain forest with over 1178 species of plants. It makes up part of the Congo basin that features marshland and Riverine forest flora, thick wet equatorial rain forest in the west low land sector while the eastern mountain area comes with endless forest vegetation ranging from 600 to 2600 meters in altitude.

 Eastern Lowland gorillas

The Eastern Lowland gorillas form the largest part of tourist attractions in Kahuzi Biega National Park. These rare apes also make up the biggest number of all the sub species of gorillas in the world. They come in a jet black coat which changes into silver at maturity time just like the rare mountain gorillas. The Eastern Lowlands can be distinguished using their short muzzle, big hands, body, shorter body and head hair. These unique creatures mainly live in widest altitudinal range unlike other gorilla sub species as they can be found within the low-land area, transitional and mountainous altitudinal tropical rain forests. They are famous as the most harmonious and social living in families of 5 to 30 individuals with the silverback also known as an alpha male being their leader in the group whose responsibility entirely is to safe guard the rest of the members and establishing a home range of the family. Kahuzi Biega National Park refuges about 181 individuals of these amazing apes in the wild.

The gestation period of a female lowland gorilla is about eight and half months and breastfeeds for at least one year. They young one first crawls for about 9 weeks and starts walking after 35 weeks. They take from 3 to 4 years while with their mothers and later they can start their independent life and mating takes place at around 11 or 12 years. The alpha male gorilla can enter into deadly fight once he encounters a strange family resulting into injuries. At this moment, lots of hooting, rising on their legs, slapping and tearing vegetation, beating their chest with their cupped hands, thumping the ground with their palms and kicking with leg will be the order of the day.

Eastern Lowland gorillas depend mainly on fruits, seeds, plants, stems and tree barks as well as other minor insects especially termites and ants. Males can weigh about 163 kilograms and females can be half the male’s weight. The males can stand straight up to 5 inch and females about 5 or less. They have longer arms compared to their legs and they are shy but social, they are diurnal species and hence mostly active around day time, their lifespan reached up to 50 years while in the wild and they mostly have over 25 vocalization sounds that they use mainly for communication.

 Other wildlife species

A part from the unique eastern lowland gorillas, the park also comes with other fascinating species especially the unique eastern chimpanzees, forest elephants, owl faced monkey, bongo, forest buffaloes and eastern need clawed Galago, mount Kahuzi African climbing mouse, forest hog, Anubis baboon, leopards, hippos and many more.

Birds

Kahuzi Biega National Park is a home to about 349 distinct species of bird. The notable birds to spot include 4 species of which are listed on the IUCN Redbook list and they are the Yellow crested helmet shrike, Congo peafowl, Rockefeller’s sunbird and African green broadbill and many more. There also 44 species of amphibians, 69 reptile species and many more.

Mount Kahuzi

Kahuzi volcano stretches up to 3317 meters above sea level and it comes with the tallest peak in the in the whole of Kahuzi Biega National Park. It also covers the western side of Lake Kivu on the Albertine rift valley. It experienced its eruption effect about 12000 year ago and it inhabits most of the vegetation zones which are also determined by its altitude. The vegetation zones range from wet lowland rainforest, transitional rainforest and montane forest. The wet equatorial rain forest and a transitional forest between 1200 meters and 1500 meter altitude, transitional forest vegetation lies from 600 meters to 2600 meters. From 2000 to 2350 meters lies swamp forest vegetation that is interconnected with mountain forest. The bamboo forest thrives from around 2350 to 2600 meter altitude and higher from 2600 to the top at 3330 meters is mainly the alpine zone that comes with dry savanna grassland and endemic plants especially the senecio Kahuzicus.

Lwiro sanctuary

Lwiro sanctuary is Congo’s rehabilitation center that refuges mostly orphaned chimpanzees and monkeys. It set up around 2002 and it lies in the Tshivanga tourist center in an old Belgian research center. About 55 chimpanzees and 60 species of monkeys are taken care of in this sanctuary.

In conclusion, Kahuzi Biega National Park offers a lot more than just trekking for the eastern lowland gorillas. With variety of attractions to enjoy in this stunning park, we believe you will have the most remarkable experiences in life.

Tourism is among sectors from which Uganda and Rwanda earn a lot of foreign exchange. Tourism involves moving with tourist from one place to another with the aim of adventuring or exploring. Uganda and Rwanda are neighbors who base on tourism as their major source of foreign exchange. However; a lot of challenges are encountered as discussed below;

Poaching of wild animals and birds has reduced their number yet are among the major interests of the tourists. Tourists prefer paying their money and see a variety or stock of wild animals. Poaching is illegal and against Uganda and Rwanda laws thus measures have been put in place to control the habit of illegal hunting of animals.

To control poaching, the governments of both countries have tried their best to sensitize the local communities around National parks about the importance of tourism in their area. In such a way, they get employed in tourism sectors such as hotels/lodges and ex-poachers are now employed as park rangers and porters.

Pests and disease which attack and kill animals and birds also reduce on the number of wild game.  Wild animals are infected with diseases which also attack people and they include cold, cough and other airborne diseases.

Natural calamities like floods, strong winds, landslides among others are not only killing wild games but also tourists themselves.

Rwanda is having few National park compared to her neighbours; Tanzania, Kenya & Uganda. With only three National parks (Akagera National park, Volcanoes national park and Nyungwe Forest national park), Rwanda cannot compete favorably with her neighbors.

Stiff competition among tour companies, competition among different countries with similar wild games also but the industry on pressure.

In tourism industries, there are cases of fraud among tour operators especially those basing on internet. Some tour operators designs website with the purposes of stealing money from their clients and thereafter, they delete accounts and design new ones to kill evidence and to avoid being tracked.

Incompetent tour operators: some tour operators are half backed and cannot vivid guidance to their clients which causes misunderstanding while on the trip. It should be noted that, clients save their money for some time to be able to tour destinations of their dreams but unfortunately some are instead disappointed.

Poor accommodation- In Uganda and Rwanda, some lodges and Hotels do not meet the standards to accommodate international visitors. Some provides poor services to clients –therefore, we are hereby encouraging our clients always to use a reputable tour company to customize their safaris to avoid regret. We tour operators knows Lodges and Hotels which provide good and bad services.

Bad roads like the road which connects Queen Elizabeth National park and Bwindi Impenetrable forest Ishasha road, the road going to Kidepo Valley national Park becomes impassable in rainy season. This is a strong 4x4 car is highly recommended. Fortunately, there are many car rental companies in Uganda with strong 4x4 cars such as Land cruiser, Nissan, Rav4 and Land Rovers.

Insecurity in some parts of Uganda and Rwanda scares. Tourists want to visit stable countries and when if they realize any insecurity, they simply cancel their trips and go to another nation.

Limited funds: The Ugandan and Rwandan governments are not fully funding their tourism sectors and yet the sectors are not yet self-reliant. The government claims that, the funds to fully facilitate the sectors are not yet available and the effect limits appropriate marketing hence low output.

Hostile tribes like the Karamajongs in Uganda, the Twa in Rwanda and so on. Such people hate foreigners and not willing to help or visit their areas. However, with sensitization of local communities, some of them now welcome tourists in their areas.

Insufficient marketing of the tourism sector – it should be noted that marketing is very expensive because it involves going for exhibitions, internet marketing and so on.

Safari trips are expensive which limits domestic tourism. In Uganda, a gorilla permit is sold UGX 250,000 to a Ugandan and in Rwanda, it now costs US$1500 which is expensive to citizens.

There are many activities and attractions that can be enjoyed in Lake Mburo National park, some of them include; Game drives, these go through the park and will allow you to see many of the animal species as well as the birds. You also make sure that you have a ranger from the park headquarters to be able to point out the many bird species as well as the mammals. This park is also the only in Uganda with the Impalas, and the Eland. We also have leopards and lions. This is also the only national park were you find the Burchell zebras and the zebras can be found in Kidepo National park in north eastern Uganda.

The fantastic scenery of these rolling hills, swamps, the lakes also make Africa so real, this is also were the Tanzanian savannah meets Uganda’s most scenic style. There are also the nocturnal game drives in Lake Mburo National park that is one of the memorable activity one can do. You get chance to view all the animal creatures at night including; the lions, bush babies, and the porcupines. You will also be able to view all the things that move at night, the drive is also normally 2 and half hours in the length of having dinner at the lodge.

The boat cruises on Lake Mburo will also get you to view the flora and fauna of the lake. Along the banks, you will also get to see many animals that come to the water most especially in the dry season. You will get to see the crocodiles, hippos, buffaloes, antelopes and the 3 types of otters that are found in the park. You will also view many birds along the shores of the lake.

Nature Walk Safari

Birding in Lake Mburo National park, this park is also one of the best region for birding in Uganda with over 350 bird species that are found in the park. The bird lovers will find the swampy valleys of Miriti and Warukiri as well as at the road side between Rwonyo camps and the jetty that are good areas for bird watching and you will be lucky to see the shoebill stork, the grey crowned crane, the black belled bustard, the red headed lovebird and many more.

There are also the nature walks that are taken anywhere in the park with an armed guide / ranger from the park management. You will meet many animals including the hippos, hyenas, eland, zebras, topis, giraffes, antelopes, birds, buffaloes, and the butterflies.

There is also the Rubanga forest which has got close canopy past arrangements that have to be made with Uganda Wildlife Authority. This forest is also good for bird watching and has got 40 bird species that have been recorded in the forest. There are also many tree species that include; the Palayycaluz and the Markhamia palm, acacia.

Salt Lick Area - Lake Mburo National Park Uganda

Visit Salt Lick Area: There is also the salt lick, you will have a guided walk with an armed ranger towards the salt lick and you will see the animals as they lick the salty soil that are found there. There are also hideouts that have been created by Park management were the tourists can stand and then see the animals around. This is also an early morning nature walk and takes 2 and half hours in length

There is also fishing since Lake Mburo National park has got 5 lakes inside and this makes it easy to carry out fishing. Lake Mburo is the largest of all and the fishermen come to the lake to fish as well as the visitors to the lake. There are also 6 species of fish that are found here and Tilapia being the main specie. Spot fishing can also be carried out, the fishing gears can be arranged and the main fishing spots are found at Mazinga.
The other activities that are found on Lake Mburo National park include; Horseback riding safaris, the bicycling tours, the Igongo cultural centre, as well as the equator visits.

Getting There:

Lake Mburo National Park is just 2hrs drive from Kampala / Entebbe International Airport via Masaka Mbarara highway. The road is very nice in that, one can just rent a car in Kampala and drive your own adventure to explore Lake Mburo National Park. However, those on self drive tours are advised to hire professional rangers form the Park headquarters to help you spot un-popular animals like leopard among others.

Car Recommended to Explore Lake Mburo National Park

Only strong 4x4 Jeeps are highly recommended to take a self drive tour in Uganda's Lake Mburo National park because, some parts of the  road are very bad and impassable especially when it rains. Such cars include Toyota Prado, Land cruiser, Nissan Patrol, Land Rover, Super Custom/Min-Van or Totota Rav4 among others.

The Big 5 animals are not only the most loved and famous animals in Africa, they are also among the most dangerous animals in the world. However thousands of tourists fly into Africa mainly to spot the Big Five animals. Not everybody who flies to Africa get a chance to tick all of the Big Five animals off the list (the leopard specifically is hard to find).

We give you the lowdown on precisely where there are high chances to spot the Big Five animals in Uganda.

Elephant
The African elephant is recorded as the most vulnerable on the IUCN Red List. Elephants are found in 37 nations crosswise over sub-Saharan Africa they are wiped out in Gambia, Mauritania and Burundi. Elephant population is noticeably more divided over the African continent all the more as of late because of loss of habitat and human-elephant conflict, additionally because of poaching for ivory – the main cause, truly, for their decrease in numbers. In Uganda tourists can spot African Elephants in most of national parks in the country like Queen Elizabeth National Park, Kidepo valley National Park, Murchison Falls National Park and others, a trip to Uganda is a sure deal that you will see the Elephants

Buffalo
Buffalo is recognized as the most dangerous wild animal on the planet (there is no animal more dangerous to man), the Cape buffalo, or the African Buffalo is found in savannas woodland, or bushveld. They live near water bodies and lean prefer tall coarse grasses and shrubbery. In Uganda buffalos can be spotted in almost all the national parks in the country like; Kidepo Valley, Murchison Falls, Queen Elizabeth National Park and other wildlife parks in the country.

Rhino
Uganda is viewed as one of the few countries in Africa where you can stop the white rhino in the wild principally in reserves like the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary. One of 3 subspecies of the critically endangered black rhino can only be spotted Namibia and South Africa. Big Five lover who travel to Uganda must not miss the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary found in approximately 180kilometers north of Kampala in Nakasongola district.

Leopard
The leopards are also regarded endangered animals and they are found across sub-Saharan Africa and they are found in numerous nations of the world. In Africa they have extinct from about 37% of their verifiable range, especially in a region known as the Sahel belt, Nigeria and South Africa.

Their most prominent threat is a lot of hunting, and poisoning of carcasses for saw danger to domesticated animals, and change in living space because of development. Be that as it may, they are especially versatile and can keep living near people provided they access to prey and can find shelter.

Lion
In Africa tourists can spot lions in numerous nations in sub-Saharan Africa yet the majority of them are found in eastern and southern Africa (77%). They live, be that as it may, in just 22% of their historical territories and are wiped out in Gabon and numerous different nations where they initially lived, similar to Egypt, Algeria, Tunisia, Lesotho, Israel, and Iran.

The primary dangers to lion are a reduction in the number of their prey, and unpredictable killing by man (to ensure domesticated animals or themselves). However there are numerous lions in those zones that are protected and all around oversaw. What's more, since they are so looked for after by tourists, their presence in a national park or game reserves generates revenue – a motivating force for conservation.

In Uganda lions can be spotted in several national parks like Kidepo valley National Park in the far north eastern part of the country, Murchison Falls National Park and Ishasha sector of Queen Elizabeth national Park.

What do you always consider before you plan for any safari to that particular area of your interest? Most people choose places because they have never been there or the children demand to go to specific places. You may be lucky to have once or twice visited Africa but I assure you that you are missing a lot if have never planned a safari in Uganda.A holiday in Uganda by their nature has an element of surprise, excitement and danger associated with it, its beautiful topography and amazing landscape and its geological setups. What makes a country to pearl of Africa? It is the fact that Uganda is name to be pearl of Africa due its beautiful flora and fauna that actually lays grounds to be a frequently visited destination for tourists across the globe and this actually makes it to be the best for you and family.
I really assure you there are a multiple of most excising activities that will make your memorable daysever.
Uganda has beautiful flora due to its remoteness especially in western region. This has provided grounds for unique and tropical climate that has favored mixed types of vegetation as well rains received. This type of vegetation provides habitats for a number of animal kingdom members.

Gorilla tracking safari in Uganda

There are various national parks in Uganda which offer lifetime experience of wildlife safari. Queen Elizabeth National Park offers wide range of wildlife like climbing lions in Ishasha sector, hippos and huge crocodiles along the Kazinga channel that connects lake George and Edward, herd of elephants and many more. Bwindi National park and Mgahinga national park are famous for mountain gorilla tracking tours. Kyambura gorge is the best destination for chimpanzee tracking in Africa.

Kyambura is actually the only area within Queen Elizabeth National Park where one can see the habituated chimpanzees on any of the chimpanzee trekking tours, (However, reservations for Chimpanzee tacking are actually made at Mweya Visitor Information Centre within the spectacular Queen Elizabeth National Park). This office also offers information on game drives, and in addition sells postcards plus maps in addition to other species of primates such as the red-tailed monkeys, black and white colobus monkeys, Olive baboons as well as vervet monkeys.

Black and White Colobus Monkey

The Chimpanzee habituation process took close to 2 years and habituation simply meaning that these chimpanzees are familiar with humans and can carry on with their day to day activities in the presence of humans.

A number of different bird species that you have never heard of before are at your displace in those scattered trees in queen Elizabeth national park that include Martial Eagle, Bar-tailed Godwit, Black-rumped Buttonquail, Shoebill, African Skimmer, Lesser plus Greater Flamingo, Chapin’s Flycatcher, White-tailed Lark, Corncrake, Pinkbacked Pelican, Verreaux’s Eagle Owl, Papyrus Canary, White-winged Warbler, African Broadbill, Papyrus Gonolek and the Black Bee-eater.

A Boat Cruise to the Bottom of the Falls

Uganda is also blessed with highland areas that include Mount Elgon and mount Rwenzori among others.

Africa's longest river (Nile) has its source in Jinja (Uganda), the source is visisted by a boat cruise. On its journey from Uganda to the Mediterranean sea in Egypt, River Nile goes through Murchison Falls National Park, the biggest in Uganda. A fantastic boat cruise to the bottom of the falls offers memorable experience as you sail with Hippos and crocodiles. A hike to the top of the falls is unforgettable.

Everyone always considers what he or she buys or consumers basing on how much he or she is spending on each item thus making one a rational consumer. Customers or consumers always opt for services that are at affordable prices since money is a scarce resource. And of course people that make use of these car rental services always wanted to use less for more benefit on their trips.
Some of the simple ways on how to save money on car rentals are provided below;

Try avoiding big car rental companies

It is a fact that big car rental agencies always raise their standards and at times and ends up charging high prices for the car hire services even when these services are similar with medium companies. They are always fixed and do not appeal to everyone. Look for small car hire companies in your destination of interest for the best quote and good services. It is true that small and medium car rental companies provide comfortable and full packages because they always take their customers to be precious since they may not have a flow of customers at a given time. And though they are small or medium Agencies, they offer similar car rental services as big companies.

Consider companies that give discounts

Travelers always consider this to be a greatest way of saving money as you are given car hire services at reduced price. Companies always give discount coupons to their loyal customers in a specified period of time of traveling and also to clients that hire cars for long period of time. This always acts as one of the ways of promotion.

Deal with relatively small cars

Of course smaller cars are cheaper than big cars but this depends on the size of your travel mass, for example if you are traveling like a family, you can opt to a small car. But if you are travelling alone or few people, there is no need of travelling by a big car. A small car can serve you the same purpose and at a cheaper price. A live example is Toyota Rav4 Vs Toyota Prado, renting a Rav4 is cheaper than renting a Prado but they serve almost similar purpose, they are both 4 wheel drive (4wd), and the maintenance cost as well as cost of fuel is cheaper with a Toyota Rav4.

4x4 Toyota rav4

Consider long term rates

Try putting into consideration renting a car for a long period of time like two (02) weeks or more. The longer the hiring time, the less the cost incurred. This is because car hire companies tend to give some discounts to customers who hire cars for a long period of time.

Opt for travel packages

If you are going for a vacation in Southern or Eastern Africa and you opt to hire a car for self drive to facilitate transportation services, always do it with a tour and travel company because they work hand in hand with car rental Agencies in order to simplify some work for the traveler. By using a tour and travel agent you will have around your tour items all booked at once; that is, accommodation, car, entry fees and food and these always come with a discount. Further more, Travel Agencies can book for you a car and a professional driver / tour guide at a very low price, and all items mentioned above can be booked for you at a discounted price unlike when you book them by your self. In other words, tour operators are given discount on some items on the safari like accommodation and entry permits, and a discount can not be given to you as an individual.

In 2016, the Kenyan tourism industry recorded a 17% increase in earnings. This was because of deluge of international tourists from nations like the China, US and India.
Najib Balala, the Tourism Cabinet Secretary said Kenya recorded 877,602 tourists a year ago, up from 752,073 tourists in 2015. To cite Balala, "I am glad to report that 2016 arrival and receipts signal better times ahead for the tourism industry that had been assailed by insecurity and different challenges."

He said that the development and recuperation of Kenya's tourism industry can be ascribed to several new measures for improving security and efforts for fortifying the industry’s demand by removing tax, relaxing visa rules and developing infrastructure.

Kenya had encountered a slump in tourism after several of terror attacks focusing on Nairobi and traveler resorts in Lamu and Mombasa. Balala said that China has dominatingly grown to contribute 5% of all visitors travelling to Kenya. Other African nations likewise contributed almost 29% of all visitors travelling to Kenya in 2016.

Gorillas are one of the majestic animals in the world one can ever meet. Due to the fact these animals are so intelligent in the way they live their lives. Although some people look at them as beasts that can endanger human life, this is not the case they are wonderful animals are peaceful and herbivorous animals that cannot feed on human flesh.

The mountain gorillas are so wonderful to meet as they bring one close to nature in such a way one can easily fall in love with way they lead their lives and you can feel so petty for the people who destroy their homes. Gorillas live in very organized family, for example you can never find a gorilla on its own in the jungle. Each and every gorilla has a family it is attached to and in the family it might be a father, a mother, a child in the family or a relative to the silver back.

These gorillas are found in the small country of Africa called Rwanda located in the eastern part of the continent. This country has embarked on conserving these gorillas which has given opportunities to the people who would love to see the gorillas in their environment. People have not disappointed to the chance give to them as many people throughout the year visit this country for gorilla trekking safaris.

Rwanda has seven habituated gorilla families that can be watched by the tourists. These gorillas are found in volcanoes national park on Virunga ranges that is share by Rwanda, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. This Virunga region holds 480 gorillas half of the world’s mountain gorilla population (480) and the part that is found in Rwanda of the Virunga has 320 mountain gorillas. This makes Rwanda to having a third of the world’s mountain gorilla population.

Virunga Mountains where Gorillas Live

Mountain gorilla trekking experience is incredible as one does not need to travel for long distances to see the gorillas and the gorillas in Rwanda are seen clearly and easily as the volcanoes national park forests are not so thick. Visitors strictly spend one hour with gorillas as they watch them move around, feed, play and at times the young gorillas come near the visitors with an intention of playing. The visitors are also able to take wonderful pictures and videos in the jungle.

Mountain gorillas are one of four the subspecies of gorillas and the other being the western lowland gorillas, eastern lowland gorillas and the cross river gorillas. All gorillas are primates and classified as apes due to their well developed brains, digits on the endings of the limbs and also do not have a tail at the back. The other apes are mankind, orangutans, gibbons and chimpanzees and this means that gorillas are also among the closest cousins of mankind. These gorillas are called the mountain gorillas due to the nature of their habitats. The mountain gorillas live in forested mountain ranges of Virunga and Bwindi Forests in the east central African region. The three countries with the mountain gorillas are Rwanda, Uganda and DR.Congo.

Silverback Gorilla in the Jungle

There are less than 900 mountain gorillas left in the world today. Uganda has the biggest percentage of gorillas almost inhabiting a half of the total population and the rest of the countries share the rest. Mountain gorillas are regarded as endangered species of animals by the international union of conservation for nature (IUCN) and this means they will get extinct in the forthcoming generation if conservation efforts are not made. The decrease in the population of mountain gorillas is due to habitat loss where by the local people are settling in areas where the gorillas stay.

Diseases are also a major factor for the decreases as very many helpless gorillas die of epidemics. For instance in the early 2000s, hundreds of gorillas died due to the outbreak of Ebola in Congo and some parts of southwestern Uganda. The Ebola was transmitted to the gorillas by the local people who were infected since the gorillas have almost the same immunity as mankind. Other causes of fall of gorilla population are civil wars that are occurring in the forests of Congo and also poaching of the gorillas for bush meat.

However, measures have been put in place to conserve and protect the gorillas from getting extinct as protected areas have been put in place like Bwindi impenetrable national park and Mgahinga Gorilla Park in Uganda, in Rwanda there is volcanoes national park and Congo Virunga national parks. Also different organization plus the governments of the three countries have come up to protect the mountain gorillas. One way of protecting and conserving the gorillas is visiting them in their protected areas since it creates awareness of how important gorillas are to people as they bring joy and excitement in their lives and also the some money paid to see the gorillas is injected in the gorilla conservation work.

Visiting the mountain gorillas is much more than conservation, gorilla trekking experience comes with discovery, excitement and enjoyment. When one visits the gorillas in their natural environment he/she will see unique characteristics that cannot be found in any other animals that is the way they take care of their young ones, family organization and also their ability to use tools like tree branches to gather food and also for shelter. During the gorilla trekking experience, the visitor is able to take very beautiful photos of the gorillas if you are lucky enough you can also take a selfie with a gorilla! It is really an interesting moment to visit the mountain gorillas in their nature habitat. One can book a 15 day tour in Rwanda and Uganda to allow you track the gorillas twice in both Bwindi Impenetrable Forest in Uganda and Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda. The same tour exposes you to all the hidden treasures of the 2 destinations such as Kidepo valley, Kibale Forest, Murchison Falls and Queen Elizabeth National Parks among others, see the African Big 5 animals as well as the chimpanzees.

View of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park Uganda

There are very many online tour operators that you can contact to book yourself a gorilla trekking safari and have fun with the mountain gorillas in their natural environment before their extinction. A gorilla permit goes from 600 us dollars in Uganda, Rwanda 750 us dollars and DR. Congo 400 us dollars.