Things to do in Volcanoes National Park Rwanda
Things to do in Volcanoes National Park; Volcanoes national park is renowned as the top most visited safari destination that lies in northern province of Rwanda in Musanze village. Volcanoes known as Parc National de Volcanos ‘’PNV’,’ Is also one of the oldest national parks in Africa that was gazette in 1925 to conserve the unique mountain gorillas. The park being the top visited Rwanda safari destination in the country, it harbors with other wildlife species including forest hogs, spotted hyenas, buffaloes, forest elephants, duikers, bush pigs and primates unlike the endangered mountain gorillas, golden monkeys, chimpanzees, bird species and Volcanic mountains among others.
Things to do in Volcanoes national park as highlighted below;
Gorilla trekking is one of the charming and gainful activities done in the park which gives visitors a great opportunity to visit their closer cousins in the jungle, that acquire trackers with guided guides to enter the forest in search of the habituated gorilla families. Volcanoes national park is a home of about 18 habituated gorilla families where 12 gorilla families / groups are open for tourism and the rest for research purposes. You will be grouped in 8 individuals before trekking and after you will allocate to the gorilla trek assigned for you, you’re required to physically fit. Gorilla trekking can last 3o to 8 hours depending on their movements. Always ensure that you carry your packed lunch boxes, enough bottled water, rain jacket and hike in comfortable rubber boots. This activity starts in the morning with a briefing about the rules, regulations and expectations. Then after take-off trek in the mountainous areas as you view other species of monkeys, birds and animals. Once you meet a gorilla family to trek in their nature environment, you will have an opportunity of one hour to learn about their habits, behaviors, take photos and a great moment of capturing videos. To all travelers wishing to take part in gorilla trekking, you are required to have a valid gorilla trekking permits which goes at USD1,500 per trek per person for all nationalities. They can be purposed direct to Rwanda Developed Board or a trusted tour operator.
Golden Monkey trekking
This activity sounds as thrilling and a unique one on African safaris which can be done in few destinations in Africa. Volcanoes national park is one of them, to hosts two habituated golden monkey families available for travelers who enjoy the unique way of tracking in life time. Golden monkey tracking starts in the morning with a briefing at the park headquarters. After briefing you will head out in search for golden monkeys guided by the park rangers who lead you to trail to trek. This activity takes about 30 to 4 hours to spend them in their nature habitat learn about their interesting lifestyle as you enjoy photo shot.
Volcano climbing -Hiking Mount karisimbi
The Virunga mountains has 8 mountains which are found in three countries that is Uganda, Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo. But five of Virunga mountains out of 8 can be explored in Volcanoes national park namely; Mount Sabyinyo, Mount Bisoke, Mount Karisimbi, Mount Gahinga and Mount Muhavura
Hiking to mount Karisimbi takes 2 days to access the summit where by on your firs day you will have an overnight at altitude of 3700metres and continue from where you stopped the next day. Hiking is gainful experience here with other opportunity of viewing bird species, vegetation and primates. The moment you reach the top of the summit it will be more thrilling with great encounter of Mount Nyiragongo, Nyamuragira Volcano and Muhabura Volcanoes, thick forest around many more.
Hiking Mount Bisoke; sits at the border with Democratic Republic of Congo and stands an elevation of 311meter above the sea level. Reaching its summit, it takes 6 hours with gainful views of a crater lakes.
Hiking Mount Muhavura; This mountain shared by Volcanoes national park in Rwanda and Mgahinga national park in Uganda. It stands at an elevation of 4127 meter above the sea level. The hike till the top takes 6 to 8 hours with spectacular views of the scenic landscape, twin lakes that is Lake Burera and Ruhondo as well as crater lakes.
Hiking Mount Gahinga; It stands at an elevation of 3474 meters above the sea level, while hiking you will be rewarded great views of a swampy caldera, vegetation, bird species and primates.
Hiking Mount Sabinyo; It stands at an elevation of 3645 meters above the sea level and if you get a chance you reach top you will be standing in the midst of three countries which is rewarding, Uganda, Rwanda and Congo.
Dian Fossey Hike
Visiting Volcanoes national park, never leave without hiking to Dian Fossey’s grave a primatologist who left an impact on the history of Rwanda economy plus the Tourism Board. The hikes take about 3 hours with gainful view of the primates, birds, vegetation’s and others. You can as well hike to the research center which gives a chance to learn more or discover who really was Dian Fossey and the legacy she left behind.
On visit to Volcanoes national park, if time allows you can visit the local people around the park, villages where you get to learn about their interesting traditional dances, way of living, interesting stories, have taste of their locally made brew from bananas, dance and drama, learn how make craft materials like neckless, mats, baskets among others.
Best time to visit –Volcanoes national park
Volcanoes national park is all year visited though the best time to enjoy the activities carried out without complain of rain, park’s slippery is the months of June to September and December to February.
Volcanoes national park can either be accessed by road or by Flight. From Kigali Capital to reach the park takes 2 to 3hours’ drive.