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We launched a partnership with the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund (DFGF) - the pioneer in mountain gorilla conservation - which opened its educational Ellen DeGeneres Campus in Rwanda to the public in June 2022.

The Go2Africa and DFGF partnership will provide our clients a deeper and richer gorilla trekking experience when visiting Rwanda, offering a choice of four immersive Gorilla conservation experiences that will also help to raise funds for the non-profit organisation. All proceeds will be donated to DFGF’s local children’s outreach program, which invites Rwandan school children to the campus to learn about gorilla conservation and biodiversity.

What are the Immersive Gorilla Conservation Experiences?

Mountain gorilla in foliage in Rwanda | Go2Africa
Credit: Alexandra Avila – Reya Communications

These four experiences can be booked in conjunction with any of our Gorilla trekking tours in Rwanda, and will take travellers into the heart of the area first brought to the world’s attention by pioneering primatologist Dian Fossey.

1. Behind the Scenes Campus Tour 

Mountain gorilla encountered on a gorilla trek, Rwanda | Go2Africa
Credit: Alexandra Avila – Reya Communications

Embark on a private two-hour guided tour of the new Campus with a DFGF researcher, with behind-the-scenes access to their new purpose-built scientific labs and centres. The Conservation Campus also includes a public exhibit designed to educate students, community leaders, and tourists about gorillas, conservation, the region, and Dian Fossey – including interactive virtual reality and 360° film screenings.

Minimum Donation: $100 per person over the age of 15, with a minimum donation per group of $800. 

2. Gorilla Trek with a DFGF Researcher

Silverback mountain gorilla in Rwanda | Go2Africa
Credit: Alexandra Avila – Reya Communications

DFGF started as a scientific organization with Dian Fossey’s first campus based in the forest, studying the gorillas and understanding their habitat. The DFGF continues to spend their time in the forests and will provide unique and valuable knowledge and insights about the wildlife, ecosystem and their conservation work – alongside you – on your sustainable gorilla experience.

Minimum Donation: $500 per group (matched by Go2Africa), plus an additional $1,500 gorilla trekking fee.

3. Private Gorilla Conservation Master Class

Gorilla trekking in Rwanda | Go2Africa
Credit: Alexandra Avila – Reya Communications

A great way to start or end your day of immersive gorilla experiences, a representative from the DFGF will meet up with travellers at lodges in the campus vicinity for a two-hour master class in gorilla conservation. They are passionately keen to answer questions or share their favourite trekking stories. The DFGF wants visitors to not only learn but be inspired and engage with conservation – which these one-on-one and exclusive conversations will facilitate.

Minimum Donation: $500 per group, matched by Go2Africa.

4. Silverback Sundowner

Baby gorilla seen while gorilla trekking in Rwanda | Go2Africa
Credit: Alexandra Avila – Reya Communications

Enjoy an evening hour with breathtaking views and Fossey Fund staff! Guests are invited to tour the exhibit followed by a private cocktail hour experience at the Virunga Overlook to meet up with gorilla experts to share their experiences and answer questions. A selection of wine, non-alcoholic drinks, and light snacks are included. The silverback sundowner hour is from 5 pm to 6 pm. This option requires pre-booking and donation.

Minimum Donation: $100 per person, with a minimum donation per group of $500.

“The Ellen Campus was designed to help accelerate our scientific research, allowing us to better protect endangered mountain gorillas and their habitat. It will also serve as an entry point to conservation activism for the thousands of travellers who trek these parks. This partnership with Go2Africa will allow us to introduce passionate travellers to our important work while also raising necessary funds to keep the work going. We’re excited to engage with visitors at our new Campus this spring.”

– Dr. Tara Stoinski, CEO, Diane Fossey Gorilla Fund

Award-winning journalist and writer, Bruce Wallin, hosts the ‘Travel that Matters’ podcast and he interviewed Dr. Tara Stoinski about the extraordinary scientific and conservation work the organization does in Rwanda. They talk about how the new Ellen DeGeneres Campus is going to enhance one of the world’s most iconic travel experiences, as well as how you can play your part in vital initiatives:

Ready to Start Planning Your Rwanda Gorilla Trekking Experience?

Get in touch with one of our Africa Safari Experts to help tailor-make your next adventure of a lifetime:

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