Volcanoes Safaris Specialists
Vice President, Industry Relations
Vice President, Industry Relations
Specializing in mountain gorilla and chimpanzee safaris in Uganda and Rwanda, this award-winning pioneer in ecotourism ensures that safaris respect the culture of local communities, the fragility of the environment and the need to use resources in a sustainable way. It’s also the only safari company to have signed the UN Kinshasa Declaration on Great Apes. Led by outstanding guides and staying at intimate ecolodges near the gorilla and chimpanzee parks, guests are assured a truly unforgettable experience with Volcanoes Safaris.
Volcanoes Safaris is the only company to own lodges at both the major mountain gorilla parks and a chimpanzee park. Each property is a cluster of individual bandas that blend seamlessly into the landscape, with minimal environmental impact. Elegant furnishings, roomy sitting areas and private bathrooms are unexpected and welcome comforts in this rugged wilderness.
Volcanoes Safaris specializes in sensitive tourism related to mountain gorillas, chimpanzees and other primates and wildlife in the national parks that are near its lodges. Volcanoes’ guides are all Ugandan and Rwandan nationals and know their countries intimately; they maximize animal viewing opportunities, while providing insight into local cultural perspectives. At the lodges, there are cozy sitting areas, outdoor terraces and dining rooms that offer plenty of space to relax, take in the stunning views and enjoy the company of fellow adventurers. Complimentary massages are also available at each lodge.
Enjoy mesmerizing 4- to 12-day journeys through the Great Western Rift Valley in Uganda and Rwanda, where the locals welcome travelers and share their rich culture. Tracking mountain gorillas requires patience and stamina, but seeing them is awe-inspiring. Track gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest in Uganda and Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda, where Dian Fossey lived and studied. View wildlife in Queen Elizabeth National Park; climb the densely forested Virunga Volcanoes; or track chimpanzees in the hidden Kyambura Gorge. The region is free of mass tourism, allowing travelers to experience the animals in their natural habitat.
Informal gatherings in the lodges’ charming dining rooms are ideal times to savor home cooked meals and swap stories of the day’s activities. Menus are thoughtfully conceived and dishes are prepared using delectable local ingredients and served with fine wine, beer and spirits from around the globe. Enjoy lunch or a sundowner on the terrace overlooking the volcanoes at Virunga Lodge and Mount Gahinga Lodge, the forest at Bwindi Lodge and the sweeping savannah plains of Queen Elizabeth from Kyambura Gorge Lodge.
Volcanoes Safaris has developed a responsible and sensitive ecotourism vision. The company believes that carefully controlled ecotourism is essential to the survival of the great apes and the conservation of their habitats; local people need to earn a livelihood if they are to appreciate the importance of protecting both man’s nearest cousins and their habitats. The Volcanoes Safaris Partnership Trust, a separate non-profit entity, works to support communities and conservation projects in Uganda and Rwanda. A portion of the proceeds from each safari is donated to the Trust, so that tourism contributes to this vital work. The Volcanoes Safaris Partnership Trust opened the Bwindi Bar located near the Volcanoes Safaris Bwindi Lodge on the edge of the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. The bar will provide a practical training institution for local disadvantaged youths living near the Bwindi National Park in Buhoma. The goal is to provide practical experience in the tourism industry and to create more job opportunities in the region.
The Virunga Lodge is a 3-hour drive or 30 minutes helicopter ride from Kigali, the Capital of Rwanda; Bwindi Lodge is in a remote jungle approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes by plane from Kampala, the capital of Uganda. Mount Gahinga lodge is a 1 and a half drive from Virunga lodge; Kyambura Gorge lodge is 45 minutes by charter or scheduled flight from Kampala.
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