This 3 days Rwanda gorilla safari and golden monkey trekking will give you two prime safari activities in the volcanoes national park – gorilla trekking and golden monkey trekking. You have an opportunity to learn a bit about the Rwandan culture by visiting a cultural village after your gorilla experience.
- Gorilla trekking
- Golden monkey trekking
- Iby’Iwacu cultural village
Day 1: Arrival for Rwanda gorilla safari & golden monkey trekking
On arrival at the airport, you will find a Kagera Safaris representative waiting to welcome you to ‘the land of a thousand hills’. You will immediately be taken on the Kigali city tour before you proceed to Volcanoes national park. . Depending on time of arrival and consequently time in the city before the drive to Musanze, you have options of places to visit which include; Kigali Genocide Memorial Center, Craft markets in Kigali and the Kandt National Museum. The city tour is optional, you can choose to immediately embark on your journey to Musanze as you await the gorilla trekking the next day.
After the brief tour of Kigali city, you have lunch in the city. After lunch you start the drive to Musanze in preparation for the gorilla trekking.
Day 2: Gorilla trekking in Volcanoes national park
After an early morning breakfast the driver guide will transfer you to the briefing area at the headquarters of Volcanoes national park. The ranger guide will share tips of how you ought to behave while on the gorilla trek. In the meantime you will enjoy traditional Rwandan dancers and pure Rwandan coffee as you wait to start your trek. After the briefing you are distributed in different gorilla groups to start the trek. Gorilla trekking requires that you be relatively fit to enjoy hiking in the Volcanoes.
If the family of gorillas you visit is nearby and you are able ot is finish this in the morning, there is an option of visiting the Iby’Iwacu cultural village / gorilla guardians village to learn more about the Rwandan culture and the people who co-existed with the gorillas for centuries.
Day 3: Golden monkey trekking in Volcanoes national park
Today after breakfast, we transfer again to the briefing area but this time for golden monkey trekking. Golden monkeys are interesting primates that reside in the Virunga regions of Uganda, Rwanda and DR Congo. The golden monkey are generally more active than the gorillas therefore making it an active tour. This requires that for great photos you will continuously follow them as they forage for food especially the delicious bamboo shoots. Sometimes they are seen getting into the surrounding gardens for potatoes. However to note is that they are generally not located too far so the trek to their habitat is much more manageable than some of the gorilla families. You will receive a briefing at the park headquarters before you start your golden monkey trek just like the previous day.
You can carry packed lunch but usually the trek lasts a few minutes and you are able to return to the lodge for lunch. After lunch the driver guide will transfer you to Kigali to return to your hotel or take your flight home.
Gorilla trekking tips
- The rain can be unpredictable in the virungas so we advise to carry rain gear
- Mountain gorillas live at high altitude and this may cause difficulties for some visitors. You should pace yourself and drink plenty of water. Eating, drinking and smoking near the gorillas is forbidden – designated time and place will be communicated.
- Waterproof walking shoes or hiking boots are essential.
- Gardening gloves for protection against stinging plants
- Long trousers and long sleeved sweaters or shirts while in the forest to avoid insect stings.
- Photography is permitted, although you must not use flash
- Porters are available to help you carry your day pack for a small charge.
- Gorilla tracking permit
- Golden monkey trekking permit
- Ground transport
- Rwandan culture experience
- Bottled water in the safari vehicle
- Full board accommodation for two nights
- 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