The "Parc National de Volcans" (or PNV as it's known by locals) lies along the Virunga Mountains, with 8 ancient volcanoes, which are shared by Rwanda, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Just a short two hour drive from Rwanda's capital of Kigali, the park is a central location for exploring some distinctly Rwandan experiences. While a visit to the mountain gorillas is often at the top of visitor, the dramatic landscape also offers thrilling hiking and visits to the fascinating golden monkeys.

Things to do

Volcanoes National Park map & video

Service Providers - Volcanoes National Park

These are the service providers around Akagera National Park, the list is divided into two categories; accommodations and tour operators.

Accommodation

These are accommodations near Volcanoes National Park you can click on one and visit their website for reservations.

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Frequently asked questions - FAQ

The "Parc National de Volcans" (or PNV as it's known by locals) lies along the Virunga Mountains, with 8 ancient volcanoes, which are shared by Rwanda, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Just a short two hour drive from Rwanda's capital of Kigali, the park is a central location for exploring some distinctly Rwandan experiences. While a visit to the mountain gorillas is often at the top of visitor, the dramatic landscape also offers thrilling hiking and visits to the fascinating golden monkeys.

PNV is also one of Rwanda's conservation epicenters, where many non-profit organizations base their operations. Visitors can pay homage to the legendary scientist and gorilla advocate Dian Fossey with a hike to her tomb or a visit to the Dian Fosse Gorilla Fund that continues her legacy of research and advocacy to this day. Near the park, the bustling and vibrant markets of Musanze are a place to immerse yourself into everyday Rwandan culture. Go deep into the earth with Musanze's caves - one of the area's newest attractions.

  • Facts & Figures about Rwanda

    President : Paul Kagame (2000)

    Prime Minister : Anastase Murekezi (2014)

    Land area : 9,633 sq mi (24,949 sq km); total area: 10,169 sq mi (26,338 sq km)

    Population (2014 est.) : 12,337,138 (growth rate: 2.63%);

    Capital and largest city (2011 est.) : Kigali, 1.004 million

    Monetary unit : Rwanda franc

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Volcanoes National Park / Parc National des Volcans(PNV) in French is situated in a small town of Musanze and only 12km from Kinigi, the base of the entrance of the PNV. Tourists can reach Musanze by public transport from Gisenyi, Kigali or from the airport. The drive to the park is only 2 hrs and its very possible for one to go gorilla tracking the same day and drive back to Kigali for overnight. Tourists planning to use public transport to the park should note that there isn't provision of public transport from Musanze to the headquarters of the park at Kinigi

Both trekking options start at the park headquarters at 7:00 am. You will need to register yourself. There is tea and coffee served in the main shelter and some days there is a dance presentation given by the local cultural center. The park guides will place individuals into trekking groups based on ability and your preference for which group to visit. After the assignments are made your driver will direct you to a location on the lawn where your trekking group will assemble. The park guide will give you an introduction to the group you will be visiting along with showing you a diagram of the gorilla group's family tree. Once this initial introduction is complete (10-15 minutes) you will find your driver and proceed to the starting point for your trek.

Your driver will take you to the starting point of the trek (there are multiple entry points into the park) which can be a trip of 20-45 minutes sometimes on very poor roads. Once you have reached the entry point parking lot your trekking group will reassemble with your park guide and secondary guide. Additional instructions will be given and you will be offered a walking stick for the trek. In addition, this is when you can hire a porter. The porters are all wearing the same blue coveralls and there is a defined order in which porters are selected. Ask your driver or the park guide if you want to hire a porter and they will signal to a porter to give you a hand.

The best time visit Rwanda is from mid-May to mid-October, this is the long dry season and has perfect conditions for tracking gorillas. There are four seasons to consider when planning your Rwanda safari, however the weather is fairly temperate and favours travel year round, thanks to its compact size, proximity to the equator and high altitude, which gives it a fresh highland feel and consistent temperature. The average daytime temperature is around 30°C or 86°F. The capital of Kigali enjoys an average temperature of 21°C or 70°F. You can track gorillas year round in Rwanda, however you will want to bear in mind that the rainier months will make tracking more difficult with muddy conditions.

Please limit baggage to two items per person and always use soft bags rather than suitcases. In specific cases i.e. for internal flights, luggage may be limited to 15kg per person, please see the ‘Getting Around’ section

Please note taking thin plastic bags into Rwanda is prohibited and your luggage may be searched upon arrival. To be honest this is a good thing as prior to the ban, one-time use plastic bags plagued city streets and threatened the delicate environment. Today, Rwandan cities are almost litter-free and some of the cleanest in Africa!

For more information about Volcanoes National Park please click on the link below to visit the officiel website.

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