After a morning cup of coffee, embark on the thrilling game drive encounter in the savannah landscapes of Akagera National Park. The Akagera National Park features a range of wild game including elephants, masaai giraffes, buffaloes, Impala, water bucks, bushbucks, Oribi, eland, reedbuck, roan antelope, lions, leopards among other wild game are present in the park and might be encountered on the game drive. You retreat from 3 – 4 hour encounter and embark on the transfer back to Kigali to mark the end of the tour
Mount Karisimbi hike
Rising at an elevation of about 4507m above sea level is MT. Karisimbi, a stratovolcano which is the highest of the eight major volcanoes of the Virunga field and the 5th highest in Africa. It strides along the border between Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda on the western branch of the Eat African Rift valley. Karisimbi lavas have been dated from 0.24 Ma to 0.010 Ma indicating that the volcano is very young.
The name Karisimbi is derived from the word ‘amasimbi’ in Kinyarwanda which means “white shell”, referring to the white-capped summit which is often seen on top of this volcano. It is flanked by Mikeno to the north, Bisoke to the east and Nyiragongo to the west, on the other side of the Rift Valley. The mountain is situated in Volcanoes national park, popularly known for the mountain gorillas.
Climbing Mt Karisimbi is a strenuous yet very rewarding 2 days hike. The climb starts early in the morning taking 6 hours and involves navigating through the Bisoke side before reaching the first stopping place at an altitude of 3,700 metres for overnight camping before finishing off the journey the next day.
A hike to Karisimbi’s summit is not an ordinary one, but also affords sights of several bird varieties, primates like monkeys and Gorillas since the volcano lies in the primates’ park of Parc National des Volcans (Volcanoes national park). It is also known for its exotic plants in its four belts of vegetation, from the dense forest at its base to the barren volcanic core at the summit.
The hike up the summit is characterized of muddy trails especially during rainy season, though due to the altitude, it can rain at any time of the day.
You need relatively good health and stamina to hike through the slippery slopes to reach the summit which is white capped as a result of hail and sleet which accumulate in the higher elevations from its frequent storms. This implies that one may have to incur an extra cost of hiring a porter ($20 per day) to help in carrying your luggage and hiking equipment.
Karisimbi is also close to the Karisoke research center where the grave of the re-known mountain gorilla conservationist and American zoologist; Dian Fossey lies. This means that one has a chance to visit the grave as well as trek the golden monkeys in addition to the Mountain gorillas.
4 Days Rwanda Gorilla Trek & Mount Karisimbi hike
a perfect safari tour for travelers interested in hiking. Gorilla hiking is a fantastic experience as well as mountain Karisimbi all in Volcanoes national park.
Day 1: Kigali city tour – Transfer to Volcanoes national park.
Your tour guide will pick you up from your hotel after an early breakfast and be ready to head out for a grand city tour of Kigali. This tour will take you for a city tour to the Gisozi memorial site where you will learn first hand information of the horrific genocide. Or you can visit the Gokongori genocide site situated in Murambi in Kigali. The city tour will also take you to local markets, craft shops, local markets and later you will ave lunch before you drive off on a 2 hours drive to volcanoes national park, driving through beautiful views of rolling hill of the Volcanoes national park.Dinner and overnight at Muhabura Guest House (Budget)/Le Bambou Gorilla Lodge (Mid range) / Mountain Gorilla View Lodge (Luxury)
Day 2: Gorilla Tracking – Ibywacu Cultural Village
Wake up early for breakfast at your hotel, proceed with your tour guide to the Kinigi park headquarters for briefing. Go gorilla hiking with your guide and an armed guard in the Volcanoes forest in search for Mountain gorillas meet them, it’s a great opportunity to study, photograph them. Their behavior and mannerism is mesmerizing and the way they communicate, silverback controls the group is very much eye catching. In the afternoon, you will visit the Ibyiwacu cultural village where you will discover more about the Rwandese culture and also get entertained by the traditional dancers and later return to your lodge for dinner and overnight.
Day 3: Mount Karisimbi Hiking
Early morning after your breakfast, with a packed lunch from your hotel proceed to the Kinigi headquarters for registration and briefing a, you will be escorted by the Ranger guides to Hike Mt. Karisimbi, the fifth highest snowcapped mountain of Africa. Trekking is via Bisoke side and up to an altitude of 3700m where you will have dinner and overnight, half way Mt Karisimbi.
Day 4: Descend down Mount Karisimbi
Early in the morning, continue the trek up to the top of karisimbi, where you will enjoy the beautiful scenery. Then descend down the volcano, and retire to your hotel for dinner and overnight.
End of Tour