#1 Rwanda: Easy In, Easy Out
Africa’s most straight-forward gorilla trekking is found in Rwanda, the tiny Central African country that punches way above its weight in sheer natural beauty. Its flagship reserve, Volcanoes National Park, lies only 80 kilometres (50 miles) from the capital’s airport and is home to about half of the world’s remaining mountain gorillas.
This is authentic Gorillas in the Mist country – you can even pay your respects at Dian Fossey’s grave. It’s a well protected and monitored reserve full of monkeys and forest birds where the chances of encountering gorillas are a reassuring 90 percent (as with any activity involving wild animals, there are no guarantees). Speaking of statistics, some 10 percent of the revenue from tourism goes to community projects around the park, reinforcing the positive impact of gorilla trekking and making conservation of the great apes meaningful to rural communities in a very practical way. In fact, in some cases, reformed poachers are now employed by conservation projects that allow them to earn a legitimate income.