Mountain Hiking Adventures in Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park

Besides hiking through the jungles and the steep slopes of Volcanoes National Park to view a group of rare mountain gorillas that feature as the most famous and most sought after adventures in the remarkable Rwanda, you can also embark on various hiking experiences that this spectacular country provides to the world travelers. Hiking experiences in Rwanda are largely conducted in Volcanoes National Park, northwestern Rwanda that features the remarkable Virunga Mountain ranges that make up 3 out of the eight famous volcanoes that make up the Virunga Massifs. They include Mount Bisoke, Mount Muhabura and Mount Karisimbi all these are perfect for hiking adventures in the remarkable Rwanda.

For any interested hiker, you are encouraged to consider proper packing prior making your actual safari to Rwanda and most importantly, your packing list should include long sleeved shirt/T-shirt, rain jacket, energy snacks, bottled water, hat, water proof hiking boots that are light weight, long trousers, day pack and many more.

Below are some of the most incredible sites that you should consider hiking

Dian Fossey Tombs Site Hike

Hiking to the Dian Fossey tomb site is one of the best places that you should consider in your bucket list if you are to be rewarded with breathtaking experiences. If you are planning for your gorilla adventures in Volcanoes National Park, adding Dian Fossey tomb hikes in your travel itinerary is worthwhile you are on Rwanda safari. The site lies around the Karisoke research center. You will spend about half an hour’ drive to the park headquarters to the trail-head and after you will spend about 10 minutes to reach the park boundary where you will start hiking via the thick jungle for about one and half hours’ to 3 hours but this will depends on your physical fitness and number of times that you make stopovers to catch a glimpse at the magnificent sceneries and then you will spend about 1 to 2 hours descending back to where you started. The hike to these tomb sites offers you a chance to explore more about what Dian Fossey did especially in ensuring that mountain gorillas were saved from extinction. She established the Karisoke Research Centre to aid her research work and the center stands between Mount Visoke and Karisimbi. The hike usually lasts for 3 to 4 hours depending on your hiking speed.

Karisimbi Volcano

Lying at the border between Rwanda western side of the Great East African rift valley and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) exist magnificent Mount Karisimbi one of the most stunning Virunga Massifs. This volcano stretches up to 4507 meters above sea level making it the tallest out of all the eight remarkable Virunga Mountain ranges and fifth in Africa. This mountain lies within the Volcanoes National Park surrounded by Mikeno Mountain in the north, Bisoke in the east and Nyiragongo Mountain along the rift valley. For hikers who are planning to explore this mountain, be prepared to spend at least 2 days and you have to be physically fit, first you will have a stop at 3700 meters for overnight stay and then finalize with the remaining distance the following day. Karisimbi Mountain lies at proximity to Karisimbi research center.           Its name was derived from Kinyarwanda word denoting white shell and this meant the white capped summit of the mountain.

Mount Visoke

Whereas mount Visoke is situated both in Rwanda and the DRC, the Crater Lake and summit all stand on Rwanda side. This mountain stretches up to 3700 meters and a hike to its summit takes you through numerous vegetation types especially the afro montane zone that comes with incredible plant species like the huge lobelias. You will spend around five hours or more while hiking through this stunning mountain. Interested hikers are encouraged to be at the Kinigi park headquarters as earlier as possible for morning briefing before setting off for the actual hike. Hiking through this mountain costs $75.

In conclusion, Rwanda is not only famous for mountain gorilla trekking adventures but also for natural and human features that make it one of the best safari destination for one to engage in variety of activities. For visitors on gorilla trekking safari to Volcanoes National Park, hiking adventures to any of the listed volcanoes should be a must in your travel plan.