8 Days Volcanoes NP, Kahuzi Biega and Virunga National park Safari
This 8 Days Volcanoes NP, Kahuzi Biega and Virunga National park Safari takes you through the Virunga national park which is the oldest national park in Africa located on the Virunga mountains. This trip offers you an opportunity to encounter both species of the gorillas including the mountain gorillas and the Eastern lowland gorillas in Kahuzi Beiga national park. The mountain gorillas can only be found in Congo, Rwanda and Uganda while the lowland gorillas can only be found in Congo. Planning this adventure also feature hiking Nyiragongo volcano which is the only active volcano with a boiling Lava Lake.
- Day 1: Transfer from Kigali to Volcanoes National Park
- Day 2: Mountain Gorilla trekking
- Day 3: Transfer to Bukavu – DR Congo
- Day 4: Lowland Gorilla Tracking
- Day 5: Transfer to Goma and Virunga national park
- Day 6: Mountain Gorilla trekking at the Virunga national park
- Day 7: Mount Nyiragongo Hiking
- Day 8: Descend the Nyiragongo and Transfer to Goma and Back to Rwanda
Day 1: Transfer from Kigali to Volcanoes National Park
Depending on your location in Kigali city or on arrival at Kigali airport, you will be picked by our company representative who will also be driver safari guide throughout the trip. Transfer to Volcanoes National Park however, depending on the time, you may do a brief Kigali city tour for example visiting the Kigali genocide memorial and the Kimoronko market. It’s a 2-3 hours’ drive from Kigali to Volcanoes national park so it is possibly that you will have your lunch in Musanze which is the nearest town to Volcanoes national park. Later evening, connect to your accommodation for dinner and overnight
Accommodation and meals (Full board)
- Luxury option: 5 Volcanoes Gorilla lodge
- Mid-range option; Le Bambou Gorilla lodge
- Budget option; Hotel Muhabura
Day 2: Mountain Gorilla trekking
Early in the morning after your breakfast, your driver will take you to the park headquarters called Kinigi where you will receive a briefing by the park warden about the gorilla trekking activity. Gorilla trekking is a very interesting activity however it can last between 1-8 hours depending in the location of the gorillas through the rough terrain and at times muddy and steep hikes so it is important that the hikers be physically fit for the activity. Upon finding the gorillas, you will stay with them for 1 hour before heading back to your accommodation to refresh. Later afternoon, visit Ibya’cuwa community village for a cultural and tradition experience of the Banyarwanda people. Before nightfall, return to your lodge for dinner and overnight stay as above.
Day 3: Transfer to Bukavu – DR Congo
After early morning breakfast, check-out of the lodge and embark on your journey to Cyangugu border to cross to Congo. It’s an interesting drive with clear views of Lake Kivu, Rwanda’s largest fresh water lake and rolling hills of Rwanda. Drive through Nyungwe forest with great views of the forest. You will have en-route lunch and several stops for refreshments and lunch. Cross through Cyangugu border after finalising with the immigration process and proceed to Bukavu town which is the nearest town to Kahuzi Biega national park in Democratic Republic of Congo. Upon arrival at Bukavu town, connect to your accommodation for dinner and overnight stay
Accommodation and meals (Full board)
- Luxury option; Orchid safari lodge
- Mid-range option; Panorama Hotel
- Budget option; Hotel Elizabeth
Day 4: Lowland gorilla trekking
Enjoy your breakfast at your hotel before transfer to the park headquarters for briefing about the Eastern lowland gorillas. Thereafter embark on your fascinating trekking experience of the Eastern lowland gorillas in the valleys of Kahuzi as you encounter different mammals, birds and primates. The search usually takes about 1-6 hours’ trekking in the jungle depending on the movements of the lowland gorillas and on finding them, you will be allowed to spend 1 hour in their presence as you watch them interact/play with each other while you take photos and videos of the experience. After your encounter with the Eastern lowland gorillas, you will descend, meet your driver and return to your hotel for relaxation.
Later afternoon, you will go for a nature walk in the Kahuzi Biega park and visit Tshibati waterfalls, visit bukavu town, Mbayo tea plantations, the research centre and the surrounding traditional homes. Return to your lodge for dinner and ovenright
Day 5: Transfer to Goma and Virunga national park
After early morning breakfast, you will take a speed boat from Bukavu to Goma which takes 3-4 hours. Upon arrival in Goma, you will meet your other guide on an agreed location waiting to welcome you and transfer you to Goma. Check-in with the tourism office strategically located at the Grand Barrier border Post to receive Gorilla and Volcano permit which you will present at the beginning of every trek. Thereafter proceed to your accommodation to rest. Dinner and overnight stay
- Luxury option –Mikeno lodge
- Mid-range/Budget; Kibumba tented camp
Day 6: Mountain Gorilla trekking at the Virunga national park
On this day, you will enjoy another gorilla trekking experience in Virunga national park. These mountain gorillas are the same as those in Virunga national park however the difference is in the location and gorilla family. Just like the previous treks, you will wake up early, have your breakfast, go for briefing at the Virunga national park headquarters then precede for your mountain gorilla trekking adventure. You will spend 1 hour with the gorillas and transfer back to accommodation for relaxation, dinner and overnight stay.
Day 7: Mount Nyiragongo Hiking experience
After your breakfast, you will head to the park headquarters for briefing about the Nyiragongo hiking tour. You will then go for your 4-5 hour hike of mount Nyiragongo which is an active volcano. You will hike through the dense rainforest, until when you reach the summit. You will spend the evening enjoying the views from the crater and later in the night, you watch the boiling lava since the boiling lava is best vividly in the night. You will spend the night at one of the shelters at the top.
Day 8: Descend the Nyiragongo and Transfer to Goma and Back to Rwanda
After breakfast, you will briefly view the lava in the morning before you start descending from the Nyiragongo volcano. The time reached at the end is around 11:00 am depending on your speed. Meet your guide and drive to Goma border to cross back to Rwanda. Your safari guide will be waiting at the border to transfer you back to Kigali city with en-route lunch in Musanze. Upon arrival in Kigali city, you will either be dropped at a location you advise in Kigali or be dropped off at Kigali international airport for your onward flight back home or to your next destination.