Volcanoes National Park is also known as Parc Des Vulcan’s in French and Parikia Yigihugu yibirungu in Kinyarwanda (Local language) which is found in North-Eastern in a small town called Musanze, Rwanda in East Africa. Rwandan tourism is one of the fastest-growing in Africa and has positioned itself as a luxury destination. Volcanoes National park is one of the major national parks in Rwanda and East Africa and one of the oldest parks in Africa. It is home to the endangered apes and primates that include the Mountain Gorillas and Golden Monkeys, there also many species of birds, Monkeys, trees, forest hogs, bushbucks among others in the forest as well as the unique culture. Volcanoes national park is part of the Virunga Conservation Area including five extinct volcanoes namely; Mountain Muhabura, Mountain Sabyinyo, Mountain Gahinga, Mountain Karisimbi and Mountain Bisoke. Gorilla tourism in Volcanoes National park has earned Rwanda economic development as it has attracted more visitors every year. Gorilla trekking is a lifetime experience of seeing the endangered gorillas in their natural environment and half of the population of the remaining gorillas are found in East Africa.
Volcanoes National Park is managed by Rwanda development board which is a government body governing all tourism activities in Rwanda as well as volcanoes national park. The park was gazette to protect the Mountain gorillas which were facing the threat of extinction as a result of poaching, primates and other wildlife that inhabit in the forest. The tropical forest borders Uganda’s Mgahinga national park and DR Congo’s Virunga National park and these primates have always crossed either side, this has enhanced conservation efforts from these three countries to protect the endangered Mountain gorillas and golden monkeys.
Suggested tour packages
- 2 Day Rwanda gorilla trek in volcanoes national park
- 3 Day Rwanda gorilla trek
- 4 Day Rwanda gorilla trek and Golden monkey tracking
- 5 day Gorilla trek and cultural Visit tour
What can you do and see in Volcanoes National Park?
Volcanoes National Park is one of the unique destinations in Rwanda and you should expect to see and do the following detailed activities.
Gorilla tracking in Volcanoes National Park
The mountain gorillas are the famous attraction in volcanoes national park with gorilla trekking happening every day throughout the year. Gorilla trekking is an activity that involves visiting the habituated endangered mountain gorillas in their natural environment, as you view the way they feed, move, rest and live in harmony. Volcanoes National Park has 10 habituated gorilla families for trekking every day, only 8 visitors per gorilla family are allowed to trek every day. The chances of seeing the mountain gorillas are 99% as trackers, guides and park rangers guide you. Gorilla trekking starts every day in Kinigi at 7:00am with a briefing on guidelines to follow while on the trek, even though the gorillas have 99% DNA as the humans, they remain wild, and you are advised to follow the dos and don’ts from the guides. The gorilla trek can take 30 minutes to more hours depending on the movement and location of the gorillas in the forest.
For one to be allowed to do gorilla trekking in Volcanoes national park in Rwanda, you must have a Rwanda gorilla permit for a particular date secured from Rwanda development board. The gorilla permit costs USD1500 for all nationals and you are allowed one hour of viewing the gorillas and taking photography. Booking a gorilla trek to volcanoes National Park is a lifetime experience to complete your bucket list, Encounter Africa safaris will help you book and tailor a gorilla trek tour that is affordable and memorable.
Golden Monkey tracking in Volcanoes National Park
Golden Monkey tracking refers to visiting the rare and charming golden monkeys in their natural environment. Volcanoes national park has two habituated golden monkey communities for trekking every day, and these communities have about 80 members each and the number of visitors is not limited. The golden monkey trekking permit costs USD100 for all nationals and can be obtained from Rwanda development board to allow you to visit the endangered golden monkeys. The activity starts at the park headquarters at 7:00am with a briefing on dos and don’ts by the park wardens, and later the park guides and rangers lead you to the forest to find them, you can walk for 30minutes to hours depending on the location and movement of the golden monkeys, once you find them you are allowed to view and stay with them for only one hour and after you return. Please contact us at Encounter Africa safaris to help you book a golden monkey trek to the volcanoes national park, Rwanda.
Visiting Dian Fossey Tomb in Volcanoes National Park
Dain Fossey tomb tour is one of the most popular activities done in volcanoes national park by visitors. It is one hour hike to the tomb from the Karisoke research camp. The Dian Fossey Memorial hike which is derived from the famous primatologist and Zoologist Dian Fossey from America who spent all her life in the volcanoes protecting the endangered gorillas from extinction and created awareness. She was killed by the alleged poachers and was buried in the park, and a memorial was built. She is also famous for participating in the film “gorillas in the mist”. The hike is about 2,500m to 3,000m, and this trail leads to the tomb of the late Dian who fought and rescued the endangered mountain gorillas and sensitization on conservation promoted gorilla tourism. Celebrating her charisma, love for the Mountain gorillas, her research and history makes this experience incredible.
Iby’Iwacu cultural experience in Volcanoes national park
African cultures are unique and exciting and worth experiencing while on your African trip. The Rwanda culture is one that is most enjoyable and to Participate in; The locals used to stay in the forest and even participated in poaching of the endangered species, the were later evacuated and organized into a village, the Iby’Iwacu village is found in volcanoes national park in Nyabigoma, Kinigi, Musanze district, Northern Province of Rwanda. We always tailor trips with cultural experience to volcanoes national park for you to have an incredible time, visiting the Iby’Iwacu people, you will share with local people home and heritage treasures including lifestyles, activities, artefacts, dances and ways of living of local people. Iby’Iwacu Cultural Village showcases the ways of life, traditional practices and dances to Visitors.
Bird watching in Volcanoes National park
Bird watching is another activity commonly done in Volcanoes national park, for bird watchers, the forest is a habitat to a variety of bird species. There are over 300 bird species living in the volcanoes, some of the birds are Grauer’s rush warbler a vulnerable which is a local bird species commonly seen in the swamps, francolin, the Rwenzori turaco, the Archer’s ground robin, the red-faced woodland warbler, the dusky crimson-wing, Rwenzori double collared sunbird, there is the collared Apalis and the Rwenzori batis as well as the strange weaver and many others. We do offer birding packages to volcanoes national park, Rwanda and Uganda. The professional birding guides will help you spot the birds and identify their names.
How can one access volcanoes national park?
To visit Volcanoes national park, you are required to secure Rwanda visa at USD30 at Kigali International Airport or any of the border points into Rwanda. The park can be accessed by road and its only 2 hours’ drive from Kigali city and about an hour drive from Cyanika border of Uganda and Rwanda. We use 4×4 vehicles for our all-inclusive packages that are very comfortable for your road trip to Volcanoes national park. For entry into the park, you will need to have secured a permit for any of the activity of your choice or paid park entrance fees.
Where can one stay in Volcanoes national Park
While on you visit volcanoes national park, staying in a good, clean, comfortable and beautiful lodge/camp is ideal for an incredible safari. There are many lodges and hotels in volcanoes national park ranging from budget to luxury, namely; Bisate lodge and Virunga lodge are luxury options, Sabinyo silverback lodge, five volcanoes lodge, Le bamboo Mountain gorilla lodge are Midrange options to consider, Kinigi guesthouse, Hotel Muhavura and gorilla volcanoes lodge are some of the budget hotels. The hotel rooms can sell out quickly, especially during the high season, and your accommodation choice needs to booked in advance for your visit to volcanoes national park.
Why book with Encounter Africa safaris to Volcanoes National Park?
Encounter Africa safaris offers amazing experiences to volcanoes national Park and Rwanda as a destination for the past years. Contact us for our discounted packages and also tailor-made gorilla trips, birding, cultural experiences and golden monkey tracking to the volcanoes national park. Our magic in organizing authentic experience stems from the fact that we have overtime assembled a team mixed with young and energetic staff guided by well-experienced Team and passionate about what they do. Encounter Africa Safaris is highly rated and reviewed on trip Advisor and safari bookings to help you learn on the experiences of the other travellers who have travelled with us to volcanoes national park Rwanda.