Gorilla Filming Safari in Uganda – Filming permits and costs  

Gorilla filming Safari is a process of recording live gorilla videos while they thrive in their natural habitats as a tour package in Uganda. Gorilla filming safari involves capturing gorillas as they move, feed, copulate, breastfeed, make a nest, sleep among others that are later on published on media platforms for awareness, research among others thus promoting gorilla tours in the pearl of Africa, Uganda. Gorilla filming safari in Uganda is one of the most adventurous activities that is less thought after by the travelers as compared to gorilla trekking safaris and gorilla habituation experience which are usually done on a daily basis by several travelers on a Uganda safari. This fascinating gorilla filming safari was also introduced by the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) with the major aim of allowing travelers to capture different gorilla videos with in the parks for as long as they possess the requirements. 

In Africa, Uganda, Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo are the only 3 destinations in Africa where travelers can enjoy the mountain gorilla filming in the wild. The major requirement for gorilla filming safari in Uganda, Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo is the possession of a gorilla filming permit which costs differently depending on the destination intended to film the gorillas. Gorilla filming permit in Uganda goes for $4,200 per hour per group of minimum 5 people with exclusion of a gorilla trekking permit which costs $600 per person allowing one hour in presence of mountain gorillas in either Bwindi Impenetrable national park or Mgahinga gorilla national park all in Uganda. However, by July 2020, the gorilla filming permit will rise by a 40% of the initial permit cost equivalent to $5880 per group per hour excluding a gorilla trekking permit which goes for $700 per person in the group

Gorilla filming safari in Uganda is carried out in two national parks of Bwindi impenetrable national park a home to more than 50% of the remaining mountain gorillas in the wild and it can be done in any of the four sectors including Rushaga where gorilla habituation experience is done, Buhoma sector, Nkuringo sector and Ruhija sector. The other place to experience gorilla filming while on a Uganda tour is in Mgahinga Gorilla national park, a home to two habituated gorilla families with in Virunga massif which is bordering with Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda.

However, to spend ample time filming gorillas other than just one hour of trekking, then travelers need to book for a habituation permit which goes for $1500 per person that enables them to enjoy gorilla filming for at least four hours on top of $4200 gorilla filming permit per group per day 

Requirements for Gorilla filming in Uganda

  • First and foremost, one needs to obtain a gorilla filming permit which is obtained from the Uganda Wildlife Authority. This filming permit allows a group of 5people minimum to 8 people maximum and it does not involve the gorilla trekking fee or habituation fee which is paid per person per day 
  • Book a gorilla trekking permit or habituation permit of the same day as filming permit since you have to trek the gorillas in order to film them
  • Do all the clearances and obtain the media card to allow you to pass via the airport with the filming gadgets. These cards can also be obtained from the media center, Kampala Uganda and then you are set to enjoy your dream experience in the wilderness of Uganda
  • Once you are done organizing all the filming requirements, keep in mind the gorilla rules and regulations have to be followed which include the dos and don’ts while in the presence of gorillas.

These include;

  • Do not eat or drink while with gorillas
  • Try as much as possible to avoid using flashlight during filming 
  • Do not look straight to the eyes of gorillas 
  • Follow all the guidelines as directed by the park rangers 
  • Keep a distance from the gorillas 

Gorilla filming gears

Gorilla filming requires real gorilla trekking as the filmmakers move up and down in search of gorillas in the jungle and once they are finally reached, a full year is allowed for the travelers to film the live videos of gorillas in the wild. In order to record those breath taking Gorilla videos in Uganda, one needs to plan in advance and prepare the best filming gears which are not different from the gorilla trekking and habituation gears including;

  • Obtaining the best cameras to film the overwhelming videos of gorillas required for broadcasting on TVs , Radios, newspapers and all other media platforms 
  • Good hiking attire including light shoes to enable you to trek for long time in the wild, sunglasses, cap, sunscreen and long-sleeved attire to body protection against direct sunlight and  heat 
  • Insect repellant to expel away the insects that are common in the bushy and forested areas and Bwindi or Mgahinga gorilla national parks are the most forested park in Uganda 
  • Rain gadgets to protect the filmmakers in case it rains in the wilderness where there is no shelter and obviously rainfall in the tropical rain forests is unpredictable 
  • Hiking stick which is normally provided at the filming day during the briefing.
  • Enough drinking water to ensure total hydration and packed lunch box with snacks to boost energy during the trek alongside filming in the wild. 
  • Hiring a porter to assist the filming crew in carrying some gadgets is yet a crucial requirement while on a gorilla filming safari in Uganda.

When is the best season for gorilla filming safari in Uganda? 

Since gorilla filming in Uganda is done in two national parks filled with savanna grassland and tropical rain forests, it is always important to know the conditions of the park before going ahead to confirm a gorilla filming safari since you need not to be interrupted by rain and other calamities. However much the climatic conditions of Uganda is suitable for travelers all year round, it gorilla safaris are best during the dry months when the trails are less slippery and less muddy as compared to rainy months when the parks are difficult to drive through, all the hiking trails are slippery and the forest is filled with leaves making it difficult to capture those clear videos.

Gorilla Filming Safari in Uganda
Gorilla Filming Safari in Uganda

Conclusion: In addition to gorilla filming safari in Uganda, travelers enjoy similar gorilla trekking experience or habituation experience in Uganda. Gorilla filming can also be done in Rwanda, volcanoes national park at a fee of $6,000 per filming permit alongside paying the gorilla trekking fee for 8 permits each costing $1500 which makes Uganda a cheaper destination to enjoy all the gorilla tours including Gorilla trekking, gorilla habituation, and gorilla filming safari. Gorilla filming safari can also be done in the Democratic Republic of Congo within Virunga national park. So grab the charge now and experience the best of Uganda in the wilderness of Bwindi national park and Mgahinga gorilla national park where you will record the best gorilla film. And by the time you wind up with the video, you will; have spotted and recorded other different wildlife species that reside amidst the gorillas. These include several mammal species, bird species, other primate species such as monkeys, and the local people, Batwa around the parks