Besides the famous gorilla trekking activity in kiningi, the volcanoes of Rwanda is blessed with a number of tourist attractions that entice visitors to consider it as a priority in Africa. This was the very first park officiated in 1925 to protect the mountain gorillas from the poachers and is located in Musanze province with 5 volcanoes, 23 lakes and river some of which formed the source of the Nile.
There are a number of other activities carried out in the volcanoes like birding, visiting caves, cultural and community tourism, cycling, hiking, fishing among others and these are detailed as below.
Dian Fossey tomb.
Going to the dian Fossey tomb is one of the activities one shouldn’t miss while visiting Rwanda’s volcanoes. With in 30 minutes’ drive from the park headquarters you will immerse at Karisoke research camp where Dian’s grave the American zoologist is found. She was so dedicated to conservatism leaving a legacy up to today. This hiking is an incredible trek with views of species like elephants, forest hogs, bird among others. Dian Fossey was mysteriously murdered on 27 December 1985 and buried just next to her favorite gorilla friend digit and other gorillas killed by poachers or that died for other reasons.
Golden monkey trekking.
The golden monkeys are a species listed among the endangered in the volcanoes of Rwanda. Trekking of these golden monkeys is worth going for while in the volcanoes. Just like gorillas are trekked, a group of not more than 8 people can spend one hour with the golden monkeys once found in the bamboo vegetation’s where they live. They are active and delightful creatures to watch in there free time swing from tree to tree. They are habituated in two groups, one comprising of around 80-100 individuals.
The mountain of Bisoke.
This is one of the most memorable activities in the volcanoes. The top of this mountain has got a spectacular crater lake of ngezi, Mikeno, Muhabura and magahinga. With in 6 hour, your heart will be filled by the joy of the fresh waters.
Mountain Karisimbi hike.
Karisimbi happens to be the highest of all the major 8 volcanoes arising at an elevation of 4507 meters being the 5th highest in Africa. It’s named after the white capped summit which is usually seen on top of this volcano. It requires a 2 days hike offering views of several bird varieties, primates like monkey, gorilla and vegetation. You need relatively good health and fitness to hike through the slippery slopes to reach the peak so one may hire a porter to help in carrying your luggage.
Iby’lwacu cultural village is enclosed in nyabigoma, Musanze district. It gives the travelers a chance to share the traditions and beliefs of Rwandan’s culture from heritage, lifestyle, artifacts and there usual daily routines. Here the visitors can get close, interact with the local people and take part in number of daily activities
One can be enthroned as a king for some time exercising kings power as presented to by the village elder through a village ceremony. Experience the local dances like Intore dance; listen to the gorilla song and the sound produced by traditional musical instruments.
Learn about the traditional medicine from the local traditional healer and get to know how medicinal tree, shrubs, grass are used to cure some diseases.
Get a chance of teaching or become a student and experience the education life in Rwanda. The choice is yours to teach any lesson or attend any class and be taught.
Enjoy Rwanda’s local dish at lunch time or dinner. You can even take part in its preparations with the local women.
Experience the local banana beer from its brewing process to the final stage of enjoying the taste.
Kwita izina. This is the annual gorilla ceremony where new born baby gorillas in every family are given a name. This has become a culture and tradition in Rwanda for there famous wildlife conservation. The effort are credited to the government of Rwanda with the help of the Rwanda development board and other conservation partners and the local community especially those who were former poachers and living around the volcanoes national park. The major aim of this ceremony is gorilla conservation. This year’s kwita izina was the eleventh and was held on the 5th September in Kiningi at the foot hills of the volcanoes with its theme as “conserving now and for the future.” This has become an exciting part of conservation in tourism of Rwanda.
The rugezi swamp. This has turned out to be a habitat to several birds’ species especially the gravures swamp warbler turning it into an important point of attraction in Rwanda.
Brick making tour. One should not miss to see how local bricks are made with clay; these are always covered with banana leaves and left to dry for 2 days after which you use your hands to mold them in the right shape ready for the next processes of burning them after which a house can be put up or constructed.
Lakes Burera and Ruhondo. These are beautiful lakes located at the base of volcanoes Muhabura and close to the border with Uganda. They are surrounded by steep hills and large waterfalls with a back drop of the Virunga volcanoes mountain. these twin lakes are great spots to be visited after watching the gorillas in the Rwandan mountain .Besides being birding centres, these lakes offer boat cruises to the islands of Ruhondo and Burera enjoying the nature’s beauty. They are also a good leisure place for relaxing on the beaches
Lakes karago and Lake Nyarakigugu. The main activities offered here are fishing and birding. This offers visitors a glimpse into African methods of fishing. Visitors can practically engage themselves in these activities if interested.
Buhanga Eco Park. This is a section of the forest that offers nature walks, picnics and camping facilities. The forest is dominated by beautiful dragon trees and a habitat to a number of lovely birds.
Caving tourism. As a result of volcanic activity especially the Cenozoic rocks, 52 caves were formed in the northern province which include; the Musanze cave which is 2 km long and the most often visited cave with 31 entrances, the busasamana cave, mugongo caves that is great for caving and can easily be found close to Mr. cars property with some camping amenities.