Volcanoes Gorilla Safari

Volcanoes Gorilla Safari: In full

A short 4 night in country safari, in one of the Rwanda's most exclusive lodges, Bisate. Led by a private guide using a private 4WD vehicle, this trip focuses purely on the stunning Volcanoes National Park, tracking the agile golden monkeys and spending two mornings tracking the famous mountain gorillas.


Day 1

1 night at Bisate Lodge (full board & activities) | Volcanoes National Park, Rwanda

Your private guide, with his/her 4WD vehicle, will meet you on arrival at Kigali Airport.

You'll depart on a tour of the city, and spend a couple of hours at the Genocide Museum: a humbling, and in parts harrowing memorial to the tragic occurrences in Rwanda's history. Stop for lunch at the Hotel des Mille Collines, and enjoy the views over the city.

Leaving the lively capital, you drive north-west through lush hills and bustling market towns for between two–three hours, to the stunning Volcanoes National Park – well-known as the venue for Dian Fossey's pioneering studies of the mountain gorillas. You will be based for four nights at the exclusive Bisate Lodge, close to the park's boundary. This stunning lodge has beautiful views of the nearby volcanoes and vast gardens and is a perfect base from which to explore the national park. Your stay includes local activities from the lodge, such as guided nature walks, coffee tasting and a visit to the reforestation nursery, where you'll have the chance to help plant a tree.

Day 2

1 night at Bisate Lodge (full board & activities) | Volcanoes National Park, Rwanda

Start early on your first morning for a trip to track the golden monkeys. These primates are beautiful, endangered and more agile than the mountain gorillas. They live in bamboo thickets on the lower slopes of the mountains, and tracking them can help you acclimatise to the slight altitude, before heading higher to the more strenuous hike to the gorillas the next day. Your afternoons are free, either to relax at leisure in your hotel, or to enjoy the surrounding areas. Chat to us if you'd like to add on a village tour, or a canoeing trip along the Mukungwa River.

Day 3

1 night at Bisate Lodge (full board & activities) | Volcanoes National Park, Rwanda

Early in the morning, you’ll meet at the park headquarters for a briefing on tracking the mountain gorillas, and will be allocated the gorilla family group you're going to trek.

The gorilla families are spread out, but each has its own 24-hour guard, so their locations are known; they seldom move more than 1km per day. The lower groups are often accessible by a hike of 90 minutes or even less, whereas reaching one of the higher groups can involve a strenuous 3–4-hour hike. Once you reach ‘your’ group, you'll be allowed to spend an hour with them: a truly incredible experience.

The forest paths are generally good during the dry season, but can be challenging when wet, and all have steep sections. Thus the hike up into the rainforest can be fairly strenuous, so make sure you're wearing suitable footwear, and we'd advise using the services of the local porters!

Day 4

1 night at Bisate Lodge (full board & activities) | Volcanoes National Park, Rwanda

On your final day, you'll be up early again in search of another troop of mountain gorillas. For details, see day 4.

Day 5

After an early breakfast and last views of the volcanoes, you’ll drive south-east for roughly two hours back to Kigali Airport. Here your private guide and 4WD vehicle leave you to continue your journey, either home or to your next destination.

See Prices & details for the precise dates/prices for this trip - and all the fine print.