Ibyiwacu Cultural Village 1 Day Tour in Musanze, near Kinigi - Rwanda
1-Day Rwandan Cultural Tour Ibyiwacu offers a glimpse into traditional Rwandan culture in the Iby’Iwacu village, located in the Musanze district of Rwanda in Ruhengeri on the outskirts of the Volcanoes National Park. Ibyiwacu cultural village is a 2.5 hours drive from Kigali city. Get an opportunity to interact with the local people in this village, learn about the culture and heritage and have a hand in some of the activities, and projects employing the community that provide alternatives to poaching. This cultural tour begins with a collection from your residence in Kigali followed by a 2.5-hour drive to Musanze district, Northern Province.
Once at Ibyiwacu Cultural Village, we get a guided community walk to visit different sites and experience the everyday lives of the local people. You will get a brief history of Rwanda, grind grain traditionally, visit the king’s house replica and listen to all the Kings stories, learn about the traditional wedding ceremony, watch drumming and some of the 8 different types of traditional dances performances by men, women, and the children, try out a bow and arrow, visiting a local traditional healer to hear about the different medicinal trees, shrubs, grass and how they are used to cure local patients. Visit local schools and if you are a teacher, you could offer and attend lessons and see how children are taught in schools, attend a local banana brewery process and have a taste of local banana beer, learn ex-poachers ways of hunting techniques, in particular, Batwa (pygmies) and sample some Rwanda local food during lunch. Later in the afternoon, drive back to Kigali.
Get up close and personal with the traditional rural life of Rwandans living in the hills of Musanze, quite near Kinigi and the Mountain Gorillas, and enjoy the stunning scenery and countless green hills.
1 Day Rwandan Cultural Tour Ibyiwacu Village offers insight into the Rwandan way of life, rituals, and customs. Iby’Iwacu village is located in Ruhengeri on the outskirts of the Volcanoes National Park in Nyabigoma, Kinigi, Musanze district, Northern Province.
Ibyiwacu cultural village is a 2.5 hours drive from Kigali city. This cultural village is home to the Banyarwanda as the people of Rwanda are known. Under this group are three subgroups: the Hutu, Tutsi, and Batwa who all speak Kinyarwanda.
Your visit to this village will immensely improve the lives of reformed poachers and communities around Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park through the provision of conservation incentives, support of community enterprise development, and livelihood-based projects. The local people then preserve the Mountain Gorillas.
The Iby’iwacu cultural village (also known as Gorilla Guardians village) combines all of Rwanda’s known cultural traditions, people, and history into one place for display and a personal experience. Guests on this day tour get to see what life was like in a typical African village setting – the lifestyle, houses, traditional dances, dressing code, food, herbs, and how the ancient kingdoms were generally organized.
You will be given an opportunity to learn ancient hunting skills and try weaving baskets /mats, and carpentry. The only way to get to know the Banyarwanda is by getting close and interacting with them, and taking part in their daily activities together. The word “Iby’iwacu” is a Kinyarwada word that means “Treasures of our home and heritage”.
The village also offers opportunities to purchase local crafts, gifts, and souvenirs. A visit to this Ibyiwacu cultural village affords the opportunity to enjoy the following activities:
* Attend a local football match
* Learn how to make Batwa poetry
* Visit and even teach at a local school
* Practice traditional hunting techniques
* Learn how to brew the potent banana beer
* Demonstrations of traditional dance and music
* Learn about traditional medicine with a local healer
* Learn how to cook local food and dine with the locals
* Guided visits to local clinics and pharmacies to speak with the elderly about the Colonial era
* Visiting a replica of the King’s learning about its history, and taking on the mantle of King to try your hand at exercising power over your subjects
1 Day Rwandan Cultural Tour Ibyiwacu Village Prices
1-Day Rwandan Cultural Tour Ibyiwacu Village Prices include;
Lunch + All activities at the village and a guided community walk in the village to visit village elders, women, and children and other community projects + Entrance fee + Bottled mineral water + Return Transportation on a 4 x 4 safari vehicle from Kigali & Service of an English-speaking driver-guide
|Dates From||Dates To||Price Per Person||Children Aged 3 to 12 Years|
|1st January 2023||31st December 2023||Request for rates||Request for rates|
* The guided walk of the village takes around an hour and you can freely take photographs
* An overnight stay at the Gorilla Guardians Village is possible and costs 200 US Dollars per person per night (including breakfast, lunch, and dinner and all village activities). The village receives visitors throughout the year
1-Day Rwandan Cultural Tour Ibyiwacu Village Prices include;
* Visa ad visa fees
* International Air tickets
* Items of personal nature
* Meals and drinks not indicated in the itinerary
* Optional activities not mentioned in the itinerary
* Tips/ Gratuity for your porters, driver, and guides
1 Day Rwandan Cultural Tour Ibyiwacu Village Safari Itinerary
0800 Hours: Our 1 Day Rwandan Cultural Tour Ibyiwacu Village begins from Kigali after breakfast. We drive 2 hours (105 km/ 65 miles) West of Kigali to Ruhengeri, Musanze district in the Northern Province of Rwanda near Volcanoes National Park.
1000 Hours: Upon arrival at the Iby’iwacu cultural village you will be welcomed by a traditional African dance and drumming at the main entrance which is an indication of the beginning of many great activities that we shall enjoy. You will be taken around by a local guide who answers questions and describes everything in the village.
Activities while visiting the village may include the following:
The community walks in the village are guided by a member of the community who is able to explain the various ways of the village. The purpose of the community and will give visitors insight into the everyday lives of the village member.
It shows you how rural Rwandans live, work, eat, gather, and even how they use to hunt and trap since many of the community members are reformed poachers who today help in the conservation of the surrounding environment, primates, and wildlife – making a livelihood from the guests visit Rwanda.
Visit the traditional healer and hear how different trees, shrubs, plants, and roots are gathered – prepared and for what ailment such treatment works. Visit traditional clinics and pharmacies, the elderly, and hear their interesting stories of pre and post-colonial eras.
Amazingly, a lot of traditional medicine is quite effective and used in many parts of Africa as it is still used and applied in Rwanda. A Traditional Healer is not a witch doctor, he or she does not bestow spells or curses but used herbs, roots, bark, and plants to treat ailments.
Visit the King’s House:
Here you can be King for the moment or longer – you will be enthroned and installed as king and you can even exercise the powers of the king as the village elders give them up to you through a village ceremony.
Most have wanted to be a king of one kind or another – here is the opportunity and women can be the queen and if there are any children along they can be made a prince or princess. Only in Rwanda at the Iby’Iwacu Village can you be made King of the day, the hour, the minute.
A Visit with the Batwa People:
The Batwa people were the original people of the forest of Rwanda – they were hunters and gatherers who lived for thousands of years in the forest leaving a small ecological footprint. They were evicted by the government when parks were established – many of them became poachers – but for the people in the village that is even behind.
They will teach you how they used to hunt and gather, even show you how to shoot a bow and arrow – it is a most interesting time – there is also pottery making today and women making crafts of various kinds. You can even have craft-making and pottery-making classes here.
Traditional Dances and Music:
Watch and even participate in the dances that are performed here by members of the Iby’Iwacu Community – there are eight different kinds of dances including the famous Intore Dance which is unlike any other dance in Africa.
There are also traditional musical instruments including drums – you will also hear the famous “Songs of the Gorillas” performed by the famous Ngayabatema who is also called the Kayuku. Sometimes you just may be asked to join in – give it a try and enjoy a new cultural experience.
Traditionally prepare a meal:
Prepare a traditional Rwandan Meal which often starts in the garden and takes some time to prepare with wood or charcoal – but finally, it is eating time. You will have a chance to try an ancient grinding stone – prepare local dishes such as Ubugari and Igikoma.
Part of a traditional meal is to have a drink and here you will be taught how to make Banana Beer and you can have a drink with your meal or just taste it. Banana Beer is often used in villages during celebrations of one kind or another and your presence in the village is a reason to celebrate.
Learn some Drumming – Rwandan Style:
While visiting or staying at Iby’Iwacu Village you will have the opportunity to try playing some Rwandan drums. Most find it a lot of fun. Traditional drumming may look easy but it takes some training and coordination.
Drumming lessons are all part of the traditional village experience. Even if you do not produce great drumming music – you just might get some great pictures.