Intrepid Travel is advising travellers that it is still offering permits to see the gorillas in Rwanda for US$750, despite local authorities announcing that prices would double from May.
As one of the few travel companies which pre-purchases permits for its scheduled group treks in Volcanoes National Park, Intrepid’s guests will be among the last to enjoy the experience at the reduced price on scheduled group tours.
The Rwanda Development Board announced in May that gorilla permits would double in price to US$1,500 effective immediately in a bid to strengthen conservation efforts and contribute more to the development of communities in the area.
Intrepid offers gorilla safaris as part of eight African itineraries ranging from 16 to 64 days. The 16-day overland adventure tour through Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda, includes a close encounter with the gentle giants in their natural habitat.
Despite the steep cost, the gorillas continue to be a drawcard for the region, with sales for Rwanda tours up more than 20 per cent for 2017.
“A gorilla encounter is an extraordinary experience that stays with you for life. Although it is one of those rare bucket-list moments that it’s hard to put a price on, we are in a fortunate position to be able to save our guests hundreds of dollars this year,” Intrepid Travel Africa product manager Jenny Gray says.
“However, with Uganda maintaining its permit cost at US$600, some Intrepid tours will move to neighbouring Bwindi National Park from 2018 to keep costs down for travellers.”