SECRETS TO YOUR GOLDEN MONKEY TRACKING SAFARI IN UGANDA AND RWANDA –
The only place to find golden monkeys in the whole world is in the Virunga mountains. There are two national parks where you can go to see golden monkeys that have been habituated for tourism. That is Mgahinga Gorilla National Park in southwestern Uganda and Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda.
About golden monkeys
Golden monkeys are endangered species of old world monkeys. figures show that the population of golden monkeys in the wild is about 5000. One group can have up to 30 golden monkeys. They live in bamboo vegetation because bamboo shoots are their favorite food.
They are called golden monkeys because of their gold like orange patch color on the back.
Golden monkeys swing in trees in a gymnastic way which captures attention of most photographers.
How golden monkey treks are done
- tracking gives you 1 hour to view the golden monkeys in their natural habitat.
- Golden monkey tracking permit per person in Rwanda is at $100 and $90 in Mgahinga.
- Golden Monkey Habituation Experience gives you up to 4 hours to view the golden monkeys and it’s only available in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park at $100 per person.
- No age limit required to see golden monkeys
- No limit to the number of people unlike gorilla and chimpanzee tracking
Hiking to see golden monkeys can be challenging. Because they stay along volcano slopes 2,000 meters above sea level. But, it can be done even for people who have never hiked before. Because you follow marked trails from the starting points to the large bamboo forest up the volcano slopes.
Once you reach the bamboo, you will get off the trails and walk to fi
some of these have been habituated for tourism. for instance, Mgahinga gorilla national park has 4 groups available for visitors. volcanoes national park has 2 groups for tracking.
at elevations of 2,227 m and 4,127 m above the sea level.
Get up close to golden monkeys
Your trip to Rwanda or Uganda can include golden monkey tracking. And it is pretty affordable at $90 per person in Volcanoes National Park Rwanda and $60 pp in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park Uganda.
Some troops of golden monkeys have been habituated in the respective parks where you are sure to have close-up encounters with them in their natural habitat. Golden monkeys spend most of their time in bamboo vegetation. Therefore, the hike to see them is not strenuous as with a gorilla trek.
Expect the hike to you through the vegetation in the parks comprised of bamboo combined with fairly dense tropical forests. On the lower slopes of the volcanoes the altitude range for your trek is between 2000 meters to 2500m above sea level.
Golden monkey permits give you access to visit the primates and spend 1 hour.
Exclusive golden monkey habituation permits allow you to spend almost full day with these primates. Golden monkey habituation experience is only available in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park at $100 per person.
That’s way too little money compared to gorilla tracking. And it gives you a hand to add more optional community tours.
In Mgahinga, there are ancient human tribes… the BaTwa pygmies. You would watch them tell stories around campfire or walk the BaTwa trail and there are a couple of ancient cultural practices to witness like fire making, collecting water using bamboo. You will learn more deeply about these ancient hunter gatherers. BaTwa trail can take 3-4 hours.
Rwanda is famed for its Intore cultural dance. While in volcanoes national park take full advantage to visit Iby’Iwacu cultural village for a truly authentic Rwandan cultural experience.
Where to stay – Accommodations in Mgahinga gorilla national park
Where to stay in Volcanoes National Park