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Dian Fossey Hike Volcanoes National Park 1 Day Tour begins from Kigali and ends in Kigali Rwanda. The actual trek is a half-day adventure and takes about 2.5 hours to climb up, 1 hour at the site, and just over 1.5 hours coming down during the wet season (in the dry season you could do it faster).
The 5 km hike up the mountain includes the possibility of seeing forest elephants, forest buffaloes, and lots of birds as you pass through various vegetation zones. In 1967, Dian Fossey arrived in Rwanda to study and protect her beloved Mountain Gorillas from poachers found in the Virunga ranges of Rwanda commonly known as Volcanoes national park.
Dian Fossey’s 1 Day Hike is about Diane Fossey who is remembered in the history of Rwanda for founding the Karisoke Research Center which was her residence until the time of her violent death in 1985.
The campsite stands at an altitude of around 3000 meters (over 9000 feet) and was abandoned during the unrest of the 1990s. Karisoke’s scientific base is located in the saddle area between two volcanoes; Mt Visoke and Mt Karisimbi (from which the name Karisoke is derived).
All that remains today is the graveyard where several of Dian Fossey’s favorite gorillas were buried. Dian Fossey is also buried near the graves of her beloved gorillas. Dian Fossey was an American naturalist who earned recognition as the foremost authority on the mountain gorilla, which is already well known.
Shortly before her violent murder in 1985, she published her own account of her 13 years of work with the gorillas in Rwanda. She has already been the subject of several biographical studies, and she was portrayed by Sigourney Weaver in the highly fictionalized 1988 movie ”Gorillas in the Mist.’‘
Dian Fossey Hike Volcanoes National Park 1 Day Tour Itinerary
0430 Hours: Dian Fossey Hike Volcanoes National Park 1 Day Tour begins with a pick up from your hotel in Kigali, followed by a 3-hour road transfer to Volcanoes National park, Musanze province (where Mountain Gorillas tracking begins).
0730 Hours: Once at the park headquarters of Kinigi we meet with the other hikers and our park ranger guide. The rangers brief the hikers about the park, and the 5 Virunga volcanoes shared on the Rwanda side and also offer insight on what to expect during the hike.
All the rangers work for the park authorities and are seasoned guides and boast a wealth of knowledge. Many of the rangers are natives who hail from the Kinigi area and have been working with the park since when they were young.
0800 Hours: The trek involves a 30 minutes drive from the park headquarters to the trailhead to access the Karisoke research camp where visitors walk for 10 minutes to the park boundary. The hike start at around an elevation of 6000 feet, and the sign at the campsite said the elevation was 2967 meters (9734 feet).
The walk from the park boundary to the research center where Dian’s grave is taken about an hour to 2 hours and a half hours and affords good views of forest hogs, forest elephants, a variety of primates, and bird species. The hike takes almost two hours one way with stops for water in between.
As the hike involves moving through the forests and hiking up the slopes, it requires some relative degree of fitness and patience. The terrain especially during the rainy season is very muddy, you need to take care where you step to avoid falling or losing a shoe. The walking sticks help with this a lot.
The trek includes an armed escort, and the guides will give you loads of information about Dian Fossey, her research centre, and the surrounding vegetation. If you’re lucky, you might also see elephants, buffalos, and a variety of birds.
1100 Hours: At the site, you will find the house from where Dian Fossey was mysteriously murdered in 1985 but the more peaceful is the place where she was buried just next to her favorite gorilla friend, Digit, and about 20 other mountain gorillas either killed by poachers or suffered death for other reasons.
After visiting all the different ruins of the research centre, you’ll stop for lunch before heading back down the mountain.
1430 Hours: Head to the nearby restaurant to get your shoes and socks cleaned.
Dian Fossey Hike Volcanoes National Park 1 Day Tour Prices
Dian Fossey Hike Volcanoes National Park 1-Day Tour Prices include:
Lunch + Drinking water + Park Ranger Fees + Relevant Government Taxes + English speaking driver/ guide + Tourist Permit Fee of 75 US Dollars per person + Return ground Transportation by a 4×4 safari vehicle from Kigali
|Dates From||Dates To||Price Per Person||Children Aged 8 to 12 Years|
|1st January 2023||31st December 2023||Request for rates||Request for rates|
* Pack some light snacks and two bottles of water
* Wear shoes that have grip, and you won’t mind getting muddy
* Bring your own gaiters to avoid the red ants or hire a pair at the Headquarters
* Cover up. The park is full of stinging nettles, wear long pants and a shirt to be on the safe side
Dian Fossey Hike Volcanoes National Park 1-Day Tour Prices Exclude:
* Visa ad visa fees
* International Air tickets
* Items of personal nature
* Optional activities not mentioned in the itinerary
* Tips/ Gratuity for your porters, driver, and guides
Items/ Things to Bring along the 1 Day Congo Gorilla Trek
* Bottle water
* Sunscreen is essential
* A decent rain jacket that’s made of breathable material
* A daypack that can fit snacks, a water bottle, a camera, and warm clothes
* Long hiking pants and long socks (You should tuck your pants inside your socks top protect yourself from ants!)
* A non flash camera, although there’s no need to bring a zoom lens on this trek (you’ll always be within several meters of the gorillas!)
* Hiking boots that are comfortable and water-resistant. You may choose some you have worn before. This way, you will know these boots will not hurt you