Virunga National Park Activities
Virunga National Park Activities are the ventures in which travelers can engage when they visit the park so they can spice up their Congo Safari. Virunga national park is famous for having Africa’s most active volcano mountains Mount Nyiragongo and Mount Nyamuragira but aside from that, it is home to a number of mountain gorilla families that are found within the Virunga mountain ranges, over 700 bird species which is the ultimate birder’s paradise.
For botanists, they will have the best time in the park with the different vegetation covers that are scattered around the park which include the montane forests, the swamp vegetation, montane forests, and savannah grasslands among other attractions. While you visit the park, you will participate in a number of activities which will be exciting and will make your Congo safaris memorable. Some of the activities that will be carried out include the following;
There are a number of Virunga National Park activities that can be carried out but among the activities that can be carried out in the park, gorilla trekking in Virunga should be included on your to-do list while on a Congo safari because of the adventure that awaits you in the park. While in Virunga National Park, you will be able to visit one of the many gorilla families in the park like the Bageni gorilla group, Rugendo group, Mapuwa gorilla group, Munyaga gorilla group which are some of the gorilla families that can be found in the park with a number of interesting histories that will be told to you when you carry out gorilla trekking within the park.
While carrying out gorilla trekking in the park, you will hike through the park to access the mountain gorillas in the park because they’re usually found within the high elevations of the park. Through the hike, you will see a number of attractions like bird species like; Ruwenzori turaco, grey throated barbet, narrow tailed sterling and the African fish Eagle among the common bird species that can be seen while you search for the gorilla family that you are assigned to trek in the park. You will also come into contact with a number of primate species like; the chimpanzee, black and white colobus monkey species, the red tailed monkeys, the grey-cheeked mangabey among other monkey species.
Get yourself a gorilla trekking permit at only 400 USD which is cheaper than the price for gorilla trekking in Volcanoes National Park Rwanda at a cost of 1500USD and gorilla trekking in Uganda in Mgahinga National Park and Bwindi Impenetrable National park t only 600 USD but will be increased to 700 USD on 1st July 2020
Hiking the Virunga Mountains
In virunga national park, there are 3 Virunga Mountains that you will get to hike in order for you to have a great experience while in the park. In the park, there are three virunga mountains that can be hiked two of them being the active volcanoes among the eight volcanoes of the Virunga Mountains. In Virunga National Park, you will hike mount Mikeno and the 2 active volcanoes Mount Nyamuragira and mount Nyiragongo. While hiking the mountains, you will find out the interesting facts about mount Nyiragongo hike which include the active lava that can be seen bubbling in the earth’s crust among other interesting facts.
Chimpanzee habituation can also be carried out in the park to ensure that you have an amazing time while on your safari. Chimpanzee habituation in virunga national park started as early 2014 by the Frankfurt Zoological Society. Therefore you can participate in the chimpanzee habituation activity while you visit Virunga National Park. With chimpanzee habituation in the park, you will go with the habituation team to participate in the habituation process whereby you will see the team how it trains the chimpanzee groups on how to get accustomed to human presence. which is a fun experience because unlike chimpanzee trekking that takes only one hour, chimpanzee habituation takes as long as the habituation team takes to train the chimpanzees.
With the guided nature walks in the park, expect to have a relaxing time while you move around engaging with nature. The park is the perfect place to go for nature walks because of the relaxing attractions that can be seen including the green vegetation where rivers flow within, the dense green forests which are habitats to the 700 bird species that can be seen during the nature walks, you will have the perfect opportunity to carry out photography while you walk through the plains where a number of animals can be seen like the duikers grazing, zebras among other animal species.
The park is a birder’s paradise given the fact that it has over 700 bird species some of which are endemic to the Albertine Rift, and also the park as well and the others are migratory species which will give you the perfect opportunity to see the different species of birds. Among the bird species that can be seen while in the park include; Ruwenzori turaco, grey throated barbet, narrow tailed sterling and the African Fish Eagle, the blue turaco, Ross’s turaco, coqui Francolin, long-tailed cisticola, bubbling cisticola, Miombo wren warbler, Chubb’s cisticola.
Other activities that can be carried out around the park include visiting the Lwiro chimpanzee sanctuary which is located on your way to virunga national park and a few kilometers from Kahuzi Biega national park.
The chimpanzee sanctuary was established to give refugee to the orphaned chimpanzees that lost their parents during the second Congolese war. Many chimpanzees were injured, they were left to die but with the efforts of conservationists, ranges, they established the sanctuary to ensure they give a better life to the chimpanzees in the park as they heal and when they are ready to get back to the wild, they will be taken to the wild. At the sanctuary you can volunteer for a day by providing a number of services to the chimpanzee, for instance, feeding the infants, playing with them among other Virunga National Park activities that will make your trip in the park memorable.