2 days Gorilla trekking safari in Rwanda is the ultimate adventure experience in this country. Many people plan for years to be able to watch the mountain gorillas in their natural habitats. Rwanda’s volcanoes national park is among the four parks where mountain gorillas are currently inhabiting. This 2 days tour is especially suitable for people who are flying in from the other African cities while on a business trip or from Kigali while attending a conference or business. This gorilla safari will bring you close to these massive but gentle animals that live in a communal family led by the dominant silver back. In some gorilla groups you will find more than one silverback in which case it implies the other silver-backs had to submit to his leadership or breakaway and start their own families.
Volcanoes national park is about 2 hours drive from Kigali. As you travel to the home of mountain gorillas in the Virunga volcanoes, enjoy the scenery of ‘the thousand hills’. Gorilla trekking will take you in the deep jungles as you search for these massive animals. Your ranger guide in communication with the trekkers who leave early morning will soon lead you to the location of the gorillas. You are allowed to spend up to one hour with gorillas, and get within five feet of a Gorilla once you locate them. In certain instances the young gorillas may come closer to you or out of curiosity touch you but you are not expected to respond because the silverback could respond violently as it tries to protect the young one from you.
- Gorilla trekking in volcanoes national park
- Iby’Iwacu cultural village
Day 1: Drive from Kigali to Volcanoes national park
On arrival at the airport, welcomed by a Kagera Safaris representative and transferred to your hotel in Musanze formerly known as Ruhengeri. Alternatively if you were already in Kigali you will be picked from your hotel or designated location and drive to Musanze. The drive from Kigali to Musanze takes about 2 hours with great scenery along the way. The drive to musanze takes you through different villages and town along the road. Enjoy the scenery of the thousand hills with great views of valleys and pathways to different homes and trading centers. Be expectant to meet the massive mountain gorillas on your trek after briefing from ranger guides early the next. We advise that you get enough sleep the day before so that you prepared for both a short hike and along hike depending on where the gorillas nested.
Journey time – 2 hours
Meal plan – Lunch and Dinner
- Upmarket – Mt Gorilla view lodge
- Mid range – Le bambou gorilla lodge
- Budget – Garden palace hotel
Day 2: Gorilla Trekking in Volcanoes national park
Trekking the mountain gorillas in their natural habitat of the Virunga volcanoes is an experience that will stay with you every waking moment. Arise early and your driver guide will transfer you to the briefing area at the park headquarters. Enjoy the traditional dances and coffee as you wait to receive your briefing from the ranger guide. You will then be given information on the groups to trek and you transfer to meet your ranger guide. After further briefing on likely distance to travel and expected behavior while in the forest, you start your trek into the jungles of volcanoes national park. For some gorilla groups, you are expected to drive out a bit before starting the trek. You are advised to take a long a porter to help with your day pack and some of your gadgets, it is easy to think that you do not need one but they can be helpful if the gorillas nested further a way from your starting point.
Meal plan – Breakfast and Lunch
- Gorilla permit
- Ground transport
- Bottled water in vehicle
- Full board accommodation for one night
- Service of an English speaking driver guide
- All mentioned activities except for the optional ones
- Extras at the accommodation i.e. drinks, telephone, laundry etc.
- Tips to porters and driver/ guide
What to bring
- Wear long trouser and long sleeved tops
- Insect repellent
- Garden gloves
- Sun hut
- Rain jacket
- Waterproof hiking shoes
Gorilla trekking tips
- Warm clothing is advised especially the evenings and morning are chilly.
- Bring water along on your trek, eating, drinking and smoking near the gorillas is forbidden – designated time and place will be communicated by your ranger guide.
- Photography is permitted, although you must not use flash.
- Porters are available to help you carry your day pack for a small charge.
- Mountain gorillas live at high altitude and this may cause difficulties for some visitors. You should pace yourself, walk slowly and drink plenty of water.