Trekking to the Sabyinyo Gorilla Family

Trekking with the mountain gorillas in Rwanda is on many travellers’ bucket lists- especially those who own an adventurous-heart. Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge understands that for many of its guests, seeing gorillas in the wild promises to be a wildlife experience of a lifetime.  A stay at the stunning safari lodge offers this adventure as an activity, as well as the bliss that comes with simply being in such a uniquely wild location.

Sabinyo Silverback Lodge is set within the foothills of a chain of volcanoes which follow each other through Rwanda and some of its neighbours. The setting itself is a highlight of a stay there with views for Africa. The lodge is close to the great Parc National des Volcans which is the national park in which the gorillas are found. Guests can organise to trek on foot with local guides and find the incredible giants there.


Manager of Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge, Nelis Wolmarans, recently guided a trek to the gorillas. This is his first-hand account of it, taken from the Governor’s Camp blog.

“From where we crossed the Park boundary, we trekked for about an hour and twenty minutes before we reached the trackers who had been sitting with the Sabyinyo Family since very early that morning. We found the 16-strong family, with majority of the group still in their nests where they settled the night before. Some of the youngsters were playing about while the adults were finding the strength to remove themselves from their warm beds. Sounds a lot like us humans, doesn’t it?

 After about 10 minutes, GUHONDA finally lifted his head and starred at all the onlookers before giving a grunting OK for us to be there.

Shortly after that we were surprised by new mom, KAREMA, showing off her 10 day old baby. Everyone huddled to one side to get a glimpse of the little one. The tiny pink face was only in view for about 10 seconds before it was carried off into the thick underbrush. What an amazing feeling it was to see such a tiny little baby in a species that has seen the brink of extinction. Dian Fossey herself believed that the Mountain Gorillas of the Virungas would not see the turn of the century, but thanks to her efforts and the awareness she created towards this amazing species, I was able to now stand in the home of the Mountain Gorillas and witness this incredible sight.”

Read the rest of his review here.

We’re sure you’re already packing your bags and finding your passport after reading that. We think everyone should experience a meaningful encounter with these magnificent creatures, like Nelis described.

Sabinyo Silverback Lodge is operated by Governors’ Camp but owned by the local community trust and responsible tourism practices are upheld.  The main lodge and the guest cottages are earthy and luxurious in construction and décor making for a comfortable and enjoyable stay there.

Tick seeing the gorillas in their natural habitat off your bucket list. They’re waiting to meet you there.

Photos and text by Nelis Wolmarans, Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge manager

Telephone: +254 (20) 273 4000 – 5