Making the pilgrimage to Uganda or Rwanda to see the mountain gorillas, admired for their humanlike mannerisms and massive grace, is one of the greatest adventure trips around. In fact, it's a trip we regularly feature in the pages of ADVENTURE, in part because the high cost, low-volume tourism model helps protect the natural environment of these very endangered animals.
But these gorillas are also Uganda's biggest tourist attraction, bringing in $225 million last year. Permits to track the gorillas on site go for $500 per day. With a $1 access fee for online tracking, the UWA hopes to raise an additional $700,000 to be put towards conservation efforts this year, as well as awareness for the largely endangered animals. The initiative coincides with the United Nations declaration of 2009 as the year of the gorilla. –Greer Schott