I went to Rwanda in East Africa to see the Mountain Gorillas. Rwanda has the highest population density in Africa and is one of the poorest countries in the world. The people still seemed very healthy and happy. They were some of the most friendly people I have come across in all my travels.

The Mountain Gorillas only exit in the Virunga Volcanoes and the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. The Democratic Republic of the Congo, Uganda and Rwanda make up the area where the Virunga Volcanoes are located. There are eight volcanoes and the gorillas live on the extinct volcanoes which are now dense rain forests. The Mountain Gorillas can't live in captivity and there is estimated to be  just over 900 remaining in the wild. I did my gorilla treks  in Rwanda's Volcanoes National Park which has 10 habituated groups of gorillas. I visited 3 separate families. Each day we would hike a couple hours up into The Volcanoes National Park to spend one magical hour with the gorillas. They limit the time with the gorillas to minimize the chance of disease transmission from us to the gorillas. They also want to minimize stress to the gorillas. We were advised to stay 21 feet from the gorillas. The gorillas don't know what 21 feet means so we often were just inches away from the gorillas. In fact at one point the big Silverback  Munyinya  of the Hirwa Group almost walked right into me before turning and missing me by less than a foot. What a fantastic experience.

I have set up the gallery separating the gorilla photos by family group. I have also included many photos of the country and people. Some of the images of people are not real sharp as they were taken through the car window as we were driving. I still included them as they give one a good feel for how the local people live.

The last day we visited a troupe of Golden Monkeys which are also endangered and live in the Virunga Volcanoes. The troupe has around 120 members. They are a beautiful monkey as you will see by the photos

Visitor Comments

  • Michael Pelton

    on January 20, 2014

    Wow Vic. Amazing as usual. Yet another trip I would have loved to be along on. I hope you weren't burdened with the health problem on last years trips. Keep roaming the world my friend. Thank you for the pics(and memories)

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