A Rwanda gorilla safari takes you to Volcanoes National Park or Parc National des Volcans in French which is found in Rwanda in the eastern region of the African continent on the geographical coordinates of 1o29’S 20o32’E. Volcanoes National Park lies 160km or 2-hour drive from Kigali Rwanda’s capital city in Musanze village in the northwestern region of Rwanda. Volcanoes national park is part of the Virunga ranges and the greater Virunga conservation area. Volcanoes National Park is bordered by Mgahinga National Park of Uganda in the north, Virunga National Park of D.R. Congo in the North West.
As you undertake this gorilla safari Rwanda to Volcanoes National Park, you have to bear in mind that Volcanoes National Park experiences tropical rain forest type of climate with an average temperature range of 18-220C, minimum temperature range is 7-15OC and maximum temperature range is 22-26oC. It receives an average amount of rainfall of 60 mm or 2.4iches every month. The annual rainfall amount received in this forest ranges between 1400-1900mm or 55-75 inches throughout the year with most of it received in two periods of double maximum between February- May and between September – December. The humidity levels range between 77-88% every day.
Besides having to see mountain gorillas during your gorilla trekking safari Rwanda in Volcanoes National Park, this park is still home to a number of other attractions like the golden monkeys and 5 out of the 8 Virunga ranges that is- mount Bisoke, Karisimbi, Muhambura, Gahinga and Sabinyo, tropical rain forests that cover the lower slopes of these ranges. Apart from Volcanoes National Park, mountain gorillas can also be found in other destinations in the Virunga region and these are DR Congo’s Virunga National Park and Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable National Park as well as Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. This means that you have a chance to engage in a gorilla safari Uganda which puts you in position to see any of the 18 gorilla families that have been habituated for a truly awesome Uganda gorilla tour. Uganda gorilla trekking safaris are usually packaged in form of short gorilla tours in Uganda or long gorilla safaris Uganda.
This gorilla trekking safari Rwanda puts you in a position to listen to the conservation journey that led to the creation of this park. This journey began as early as 1925 when a small area between mount Karisimbi, Bisoke, and Mikeno was gazatted by the Belgian colonial government to offer protection to the mountain gorillas against poaching and this makes Volcanoes National Park one of the earliest game parks to have been gazetted on the African continent. In 1929, the boundaries of this park were further extended into Rwanda and Belgian Congo to cover an expanse of 8090sqkm of land in these 2 countries but later on the park got split into 2 different national parks i.e. Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda and Virunga national park in D.R. Congo when these 2 countries got their independence.
Rwanda gorilla safaris usually give you a chance to tourists who visit Volcanoes National Park to take a hike to the Dian Fossey tombs and have an insight into the life story of the remarkable Dr Dian Fossey who dedicated a big part of life towards conservation of these incredibly beautiful creatures. Volcanoes national park became a research station for an American natural researcher Dian Fossey who set up a research centre for mountain gorillas on land between the mounts of Bisoke and Karisimbi in 1967. Dian Fossey devoted her life to understanding these gentle mountain giants and she is greatly credited for making it her personal mission to make the whole world understand that these gorilla species faced extinction if nothing was done to ensure the survival and continuity of this species of gorillas. Unfortunately, in 1985, Dian Fossey was brutally murdered at her home by unknown assailants and its believed that this act of cowardice was perpetrated by mountain gorillas’ poachers who saw her works as a threat to their business of poaching. She was buried inside this park next to her favourite gorilla named Digit as a tribute to her outstanding work efforts to see to it that these gorillas are given a fair shot at survival. Dian Fossey’s works have been highly appreciated by the larger international community and her work and legacy have been portrayed in a documentary film entitled “Gorillas in the Mist” which is based on her autobiography.
Conservation in Volcanoes National Park has not come without glitches becomes from time to time the park has had to deal with a number of challenges like between 1969-1973, Volcanoes National Park lost over 1sqkm of land to pyrethrum plantation, in 1992, Volcanoes National Park became the battleground during the Rwandan civil war which saw the closure of the park centre and halting of all tourist activities within the park. Being located at the border, the park sometimes faces a challenge of rebel infiltrations but these are usually easily and quickly stopped in their tracks by the Rwandan armed forces hence securing the park for tourism activities. Since 1999, tourism has been flourishing within the confinements of the park without any major incidents occurring. As of today, Volcanoes National Park spans to about 160sqkm of land.
You can add other activities on your gorilla safaris Rwanda in volcanoes national park-like bird watching as this park is home to 178 bird species, hiking to any of the Virunga ranges like mount Bisoke, Karisimbi, Muhambura, Gahinga and Sabinyo. Here are some of the gorilla trekking packages in volcanoes national park.
- 1 Day Rwanda Gorilla Safari Tour
- 2 Days Rwanda Gorilla Trekking Safari Tour Volcanoes Park
- 4 Days Gorilla Safari Rwanda- Tracking-Safari Dian Fossey Tomb Tour
- 5 days gorilla & chimpanzee
Long gorilla safaris
- 8 days Rwanda adventure & classic gorilla trekking safari tour
- 8 days gorilla trekking safari Rwanda chimpanzee tracking tour