Top 5 Activities Done in Volcanoes National Park Rwanda
Top 5 Activities Done in Volcanoes National Park Rwanda : Volcanoes national park known as Parc National de Volcans ‘’PVN’’. The park is the top most visited destination situated in northern province of Rwanda in Musanze village. Volcanoes national park is one of the oldest national parks in Africa, gazette in 1925 mainly to conserve the endangered mountain gorillas. However, the park harbors with other wildlife species including buffaloes, duikers, forest hogs, spotted hyenas, bush pigs, primates like great mountain gorillas, golden monkeys, chimpanzees, bird species and volcanic mountains many more.
Below are the highlight activities done in Volcanoes national park as listed;
Gorilla trekking is the highlight activities done in the park which gives visitors a chance to explore into the forest in search of the habituated gorilla’s groups ‘’18’’ where 12 gorilla families are open for trekking and the remaining families reserved for research. Gorilla trekking starts early in the morning with a briefing at the park headquarters about the rules, regulations and expectations. After briefing, allocate a gorilla family to trek by the park guide who is knowledgeable about gorilla trekking trail heads. Trekking mountain gorillas in Rwanda Volcanoes national park starts around 8:00am and its unpredictable experience which takes 30 minutes to 7hours depending on the movements of the gorillas. Once the gorillas located, you will be given one hour with them in their natural habitat that gives you an opportunity to learn about their behaviors, habits, memorable photography and record the moments. Gorilla trekking is worth an activity. However, Rwanda gorilla trekking permit costs USD1,500 per person per trek. Gorilla trekking permits can be bought through Rwanda Developed Board or trust worth tour operator like Achieve Global Safaris.
Golden monkey tracking
Golden monkey tracking is the second selling or done activity in the park. Volcanoes national park is a house of two habituated golden monkey families available for tracking on a daily basis. Golden monkeys tracking starts in the morning with a briefing at the park headquarters about the dos and don’ts of golden tracking. Then after park rangers allocates you to the group to trek and a park ranger who guides you to forest trails to follow during tracking. This experience can take about 30 minutes to 4 hours. Once the golden monkeys are found, you will be allowed to spend one hour in their nature habitat to learn about their lifestyle, behavior, watching them swinging on the tree branches to another as you take photos it’s really a memorable experience.
Volcano climbing can be done on 5 Virunga mountains out of 8 that are found in Volcanoes national park but the 8 Virunga mountains are found in three countries namely Uganda, Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo. Those 5 mountains include Mount Karisimbi, Mount Bisoke, Mount Gahinga, Mount Sabyinyo and Mount Muhavura.
Hiking Mount Karisimbi requires someone to be physically fit because is the highest mountain among the Virunga volcanoes sitting at the elevation of 4,507 meters above the sea level. Hiking to reach the summit takes 2 days, the first day you will have an overnight at an altitude of 3700metres, then continues to hike the next day. The hiking provides great views of birds, primates, vegetation many more and if you make it till top of the summit you will be amazed with rewarding views of Muhabura volcanoes, Nyamuragira volcano, Mount Nyiragongo and a large forest among others.
Hiking Mount Bisoke is located at the border with Democratic Republic of Congo and stands at an elevation of 3711 meter above the sea level. It takes about 6 hours to access the top offering spectacular views of a crater lake.
Hiking Mount Muhavura, this mountain is shared by two national parks Rwanda Volcanoes national park and Uganda Mgahinga gorilla national park. This mountain stands at an elevation of 4127 meters above sea level. During hiking you will be amazed with spectacular views of the landscape. Hiking takes about 6 to 8 hours, once you access on top you will have great views of the crater lake.
Hiking Mount Gahinga, stands at an elevation of 3474 meters above the sea level. During hiking you will have rewarding views of the primates, vegetation, bird species and once you reach on top you will have gainful views of a swampy caldera.
Hiking Mount Sabinyo, the volcanic mountain can either be hiked from Mgahinga gorilla national park Uganda or Volcanoes national park. This mountain stands at an elevation of 3645 meter above the sea level. When you tend to hike to the top, you will be standing in between three countries at the same time, Uganda, Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo.
Dian Fossey Hike
This is truly an incredible activity in Volcanoes national park where you will be able to hike through the forest with great views of small primates, visit Dian Fossey’s grave a primatologist who was murdered during 1985 carrying out research about endangered mountain gorillas. The hike takes about 3 hours with remarkable views of the primates, animals, birds, vegetation many more. Hiking to the research center gives quite amazing opportunity of learning about Dian Fossey.
On your visit to Volcanoes national park, you will have a community walk to the local people where you will have great opportunity of meeting and interacting with them. You will also visit Iby’Iwacu cultural village where you will learn about the local people lifestyle, visit the kings house, enjoy traditional dances, taste their traditional dishes, taste their locally made brew from bananas, be entertained through their traditional music, dance and drama, learn how to made craft items like baskets, mats many more.
When to visit Volcanoes national park
Volcanoes national park can be visited throughout the year though the best time is in dry season in the months of June to September and December to February. During the dry season receives less rainfall in the national park which eases road condition and gorilla trekking trails passable as compared to the rainy season when trails are slippery.
Getting to Volcanoes National Park
Volcanoes national park can either be accessed by road transport and air. When you choose to travel by flight from Kigali international airport to connect to the park takes about 2 hours.
Book now your trip to Rwanda a land to thousand hills and enjoy the remarkable safari to Volcanoes national park.