Destination Kivu Belt

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Ibere rya Bigogwe – Full day cow and hiking experience

10/10/2022 16:06

Ibere rya Bigogwe – Full day cow and hiking experience

Activity Description

Meet at the office on the main road at the Rubavu-Nyabihu Border
Your guide will meet you at the Ibere rya Bigogwe office on the main road. The office is easily located by the arch which marks the border between Rubavu and Nyabihu Districts.

Hiking to Ibere rya Bigogwe
Your guide will start with a briefing about the day ahead. After the briefing you will start your hike towards Ibere rya Bigogwe. Ibere rya Bigogwe is a large rock formation and a famous land mark in the area. The start of the hike takes you through the villages around Bigogwe. After 20 minutes of hiking you will reach the bottom of the rock. The hike continues up the hillsides towards the top of Ibere rya Bigogwe. This part of the hike is a bit steeper and more challenging but passes through a forest. After another 1 hour of hiking you will reach the top of the rock. From here you have a splendid view over the surrounding landscape and you can see Mt. Karisimbi in Volcanoes National Park and Mt. Nyiragongo and Mikeno in DRC. If the weather is clear you will see all the way to Gisenyi town. There is also a meditation point at the top commonly used for praying by locals. Enjoy some cheese and fruit while listening to the story about how this rock got its name. Your guide will also introduce you to some local plants and their traditional uses. Return by hiking to Bigogwe town.

Travel by moto to the farms (by car if you have your own)
After the hiking to Ibere rya Bigogwe it is time to set off for the farms. The same way as locals in the area, you will travel on the back of a motorbike to the farms. The views of the landscape are breathtaking as you leave the main road behind and travel up the hills. A photo stop is usually made at one of the best view points. The trip takes around 30 minutes. Helmet is provided.

Explore the green hills of the farmlands
Once you reach the farms, your guide will introduce you to the cows and cowboys. You will dress in a colorful shuka or rumbiya, the traditional attire of cattle keepers and get a Inkoni, a stick carried by all cattle keepers. Learn about the history of the green hills of Bigogwe, stories about cows and the traditional Rwandan life connected to cows. The hills at the farms are some of most lush and green hills in Africa.

Lunch
A traditional lunch is served outside on the hillside of the farms at Bigogwe.

Milking the cows and tasting of fresh milk
Milking in Bigogwe is done by hands in traditional cans or ibyansi like inkongoro in wood, and Ingare made in bamboo. Get a lesson in milking by hand by the cowboys and try milking on your own. After milking you will taste the special “Bigogwe Cappuccino” as fresh as it gets straight from the cows.

Take the cows to drink water
The cows need lots of water. Twice daily they make their way to the river for a drink. Join the cowboys and use your inkoni (stick) and gentle whistles to move the cows down to the river for a drink. Watch the cowboys as the sing and whistle for the cows as they drink. 

Cowboy games
The cowboys spend their life watching the cows. While the cows graze the cowboys have lots of free time. Many games and traditions have been invented by the cowboys. The most common games are URUKIRAMENDE or high jump, Kunyobanwa or stick fighting and Igisoro, a traditional game played with dried seeds on a wooden board. Watch the cowboys master these games and try on your own.

Traditional songs for the cows
When the cows rest after eating and milking, the cowboys sing to them. These traditional songs are called Kwivugira inka and have been passed on for generations. The songs repeat the names of the cows and include stories from legendary cows.

Making of traditional ghee
Leave the farms by motobike (or car if you have your own). Watch the traditional way women make Ikimuri or ghee by hand. Ikimuri is traditionally made by moving a large calabash or Igisabo back and forth. Learn how it is done and try making your own Ikimuri.

Return to main road and departure
It is time to say goodbye for now. Before you depart you may visit the shop and café where traditional crafts souvenirs and snacks are available.

About the Organizer

This experience is organized by Alex Ngabo and Ibere rya Bigogwe. Ngabo grew up with cows on the green hills in the area and is passionate to share this wonderful place with as many as possible.

Good to know

Extra info / What to bring

  • Hiking Shoes
  • Sweater & wind/rainproof jacket
  • The sun can be strong bring a hat & sunscreen

This Experience requires that you can do an uphill hike for 1-2 hours

Add-ons: Pick up and drop of at any hotel in Rubavu or Musanze can be organized at extra fee of 30,000 Rwf

 

From 45,000 RWF

Highlights

  • Spend time on the greenest hills in Rwanda
  • Experience traditional Rwandan life with cows
  • Taste some fresh milk products 
  • Try traditional Rwandan cowboy games

Includes

Excludes

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Contact the organizer

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Categories:Community Tours, Hiking, Tours and Activities

Ibere rya Bigogwe – 2 day cow experience and hiking with overnight camping at the farms

10/10/2022 15:44

Ibere rya Bigogwe – 2 day cow experience and hiking with overnight camping at the farms

Ibere rya Bigogwe – 2 day cow experience and hiking with overnight camping at the farms

Activity Description

Meet at the office on the main road at the Rubavu-Nyabihu Border
Your guide will meet you at the Ibere rya Bigogwe office on the main road. The office is easily located by the arch which marks the border between Rubavu and Nyabihu Districts.

Hiking to Ibere rya Bigogwe
Your guide will start with a briefing about the day ahead. After the briefing you will start your hike towards Ibere rya Bigogwe. Ibere rya Bigogwe is a large rock formation and a famous land mark in the area. The start of the hike takes you through the villages around Bigogwe. After 20 minutes of hiking you will reach the bottom of the rock. The hike continues up the hillsides towards the top of Ibere rya Bigogwe. This part of the hike is a bit steeper and more challenging but passes through a forest. After another 1 hour of hiking you will reach the top of the rock. From here you have a splendid view over the surrounding landscape and you can see Mt. Karisimbi in Volcanoes National Park and Mt. Nyiragongo and Mikeno in DRC. If the weather is clear you will see all the way to Gisenyi town. There is also a meditation point at the top commonly used for praying by locals. Enjoy some cheese and fruit while listening to the story about how this rock got its name. Your guide will also introduce you to some local plants and their traditional uses. Return by hiking to Bigogwe town.

Travel by moto to the farms (by car if you have your own)
After the hiking to Ibere rya Bigogwe it is time to set off for the farms. The same way as locals in the area, you will travel on the back of a motorbike to the farms. The views of the landscape are breathtaking as you leave the main road behind and travel up the hills. A photo stop is usually made at one of the best view points. The trip takes around 30 minutes. Helmet is provided.

Explore the green hills of the farmlands
Once you reach the farms, your guide will introduce you to the cows and cowboys. You will dress in a colorful shuka or rumbiya, the traditional attire of cattle keepers and get a Inkoni, a stick carried by all cattle keepers. Learn about the history of the green hills of Bigogwe, stories about cows and the traditional Rwandan life connected to cows. The hills at the farms are some of most lush and green hills in Africa. Your campsite for the night has been set. The rest of the afternoon is spent exploring the green hills of Bigogwe or if you wish, take a rest in your tent.

Campfire, dinner and storytelling
A campfire is lit in the evening for everyone to gather around. A traditional dinner is served by the fire. Locals from Bigogwe join and share traditional stories and songs. After dinner, stories, songs and tea you will overnight in tents at the campsite.

Breakfast by the fire
Hot milk and tea is served for breakfast by a campfire.

Milking the cows and tasting of fresh milk
After breakfast it is time to milk the cows. Milking in Bigogwe is done by hands in traditional cans or ibyansi like inkongoro in wood, and Ingare made in bamboo. Get a lesson in milking by hand by the cowboys and try milking on your own. After milking you will taste the special “Bigogwe Cappuccino” as fresh as it gets straight from the cows.

Take the cows to drink water
Cows need lots of water. Twice daily they make their way to the river for a drink. Join the cowboys and use your inkoni (stick) and gentle whistles to move the cows down to the river for a drink. Watch the cowboys as the sing and whistle for the cows as they drink. 

Cowboy games
The cowboys spend their life watching the cows. While the cows graze the cowboys have lots of free time. Many games and traditions have been invented by the cowboys. The most common games are URUKIRAMENDE or high jump, Kunyobanwa or stick fighting and Igisoro, a traditional game played with dried seeds on a wooden board. Watch the cowboys master these games and try on your own.

Traditional songs for the cows
When the cows rest after eating and milking, the cowboys sing to them. These traditional songs are called Kwivugira inka and have been passed on for generations. The songs repeat the names of the cows and include stories from legendary cows.

Making of traditional ghee
Leave the farms by motobike (or car if you have your own). Watch the traditional way women make Ikimuri or ghee by hand. Ikimuri is traditionally made by moving a large calabash or Igisabo back and forth. Learn how it is done and try making your own Ikimuri.

Return to main road and departure
It is time to say goodbye for now. Before you depart you may visit the shop and café where traditional crafts souvenirs and snacks are available.

About the Organizer

This experience is organized by Alex Ngabo and Ibere rya Bigogwe. Ngabo grew up with cows on the green hills in the area and is passionate to share this wonderful place with as many as possible.

Good to know

Extra info / What to bring

  • Hiking Shoes
  • Sweater & wind/rainproof jacket
  • The sun can be strong bring a hat & sunscreen
  • This is an overnight experience, bring extra clothes and toiletries 
  • Toilets are available at the campsite

This Experience requires that you can walk manage a challenging uphill hike for 1-2 hours

Add-ons: Pick up and drop of at any hotel in Rubavu or Musanze can be organized at extra fee of 30,000 Rwf

 

From 70,000 RWF

Highlights

  • Hike Ibere rya Bigogwe
  • Camp out on the greenest hills in Africa
  • Experience traditional Rwandan life with cows

Includes

Excludes

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Categories:Community Tours, Hiking, Tours and Activities

1 Day Hiking Mount Muhungwe and Nyamyumba Hot Springs

08/13/2022 8:43

1 Day Hiking Mount Muhungwe and Nyamyumba Hot Springs

Activity Description

Spend a full day outdoors around a Rubavu. Hike to the top of Mt. Muhungwe, Rwanda’s tallest non volcanic mountain and relax in the natural springs in Nyamyumba in the afternoon.

In the early morning our guide will pick you at 6:30 am, then we drive to Mahoko a starting point of hiking, the hiking will take 5 to 6 hours to reach the top then after we spend 2 to 3 hours climbing down to the we drive to Nyamyumba Hot spring.

After hiking we will drive to Nyamyumba not spring where you will do hydrotherapy by hot spring and enjoy this natural massage, after exhausting by hiking 2928m of altitude you will enjoy this experience until 3pm. 

About the Organizer

Wildlife conservation travels specialize in eco tours featuring Rwanda’s remarkable nature and wildlife

 

From 190 USD

Highlights

  • Vist Rubavu’s natural hot springs
  • Climb to the peak of Mt. Muhungwe
  • Get a traditional massage

Includes

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Birding Trip Along The Kivu Belt from Rubavu

08/13/2022 8:32

Birding Trip Along The Kivu Belt from Rubavu

Activity Description

Join a professional bird guide for a half day birding session around Rubavu with. 

One day birding in Rubavu gives you remarkable experience to explore beautiful common birds, water birds, endemics and palearctic migrants during period of early August to late May. As you stay in Gisenyi you can walk around and visit nearby hotspot to enjoy colorful birds and birds’ songs as well. One afternoon or morning session is enough to encounter interesting birds and lifers as well, Sebeya Riverside, Lake Kivu Shores, Hotels’ Gardens, Mt. Rubavu, Nyundo Wetlands, Mt. Muhungwe are quite interested place to visit in half day while Gishwati-Mukura National Park one day is recommendable for better experience.

Morning Session

After early breakfast at 6:00 AM birding along Sebeya River and Mt.Nengo gives you chance to see most of colorful birds as well as water birds and raptors such as Black cuckoo shrike, Gray Capped Warbler, Common Sandpiper, Palm-nut Vulture and other many Species.

Afternoon Session

After noon birding session at Mt. Rubavu offer opportunities to see interesting sunbirds, babblers, soaring raptors and Twin Cities panoramic view at the top of the mountain. this incredible experience offers you opportunites to see palearctic migrants during migration periods of Aug-May.

About the Organizer

Wildlife conservation travels specialize in eco tours featuring Rwandas remarkable nature and wildlife

From 50 USD

Highlights

  • Spend a day birding in several different habitats
  • Hooded vultures are common sightings
  • Many different raptors and babblers inhabit the area

Includes

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Categories:Birding, Tours and Activities

Ibere rya Bigogwe – Half day cow experience

08/2/2022 15:33

Ibere rya Bigogwe – Half day cow experience

Activity Description

The experience starts at the main Rubavu – Musanze Road  where your guide will meet you at the Ibere rya Bigogwe office on the main road. The office is easily located by the arch which marks the border between Rubavu and Nyabihu Districts.

Travel by moto to the farms (by car
if you have your own)

After meeting your guide you will travel to the green pastures of Ibere rya Bigogwe where the cows graze. The same way as locals in the area, you will
travel on the back of a motorbike to the farms. The views of the landscape are breathtaking as you leave the main road behind and travel up the hills. A photo stop is usually made at one of the best view points. The trip takes around 30 minutes. Helmet is provided.

Meet the cows and watch them grazing
Once you reach the farms, your guide will introduce you to the cows and cowboys. You will dress in a colorful shuka or rumbiya, the traditional attire of cattle keepers and get a Inkoni, a stick carried by all cattle keepers. Learn about the history of the green hills of Bigogwe, stories about cows and the traditional Rwandan life connected to cows. The hills at the farms are some of most lush and green hills in Africa. Spend some time with the cows and cowboys in this peaceful setting

Take the cows to drink water
The cows need lots of water. Twice daily they make their way to the river for a drink. Join the cowboys and use your inkoni (stick) and gentle whistles to move the cows down to the river for a drink. Watch the cowboys as the sing and whistle for the cows as they drink.

Milking the cows and tasting of fresh milk
Milking in Bigogwe is done by hands in traditional cans or ibyansi like inkongoro in wood, and Ingare made in bamboo. Get a lesson in milking by hand by the cowboys and try milking on your own. After milking you will taste the special “Bigogwe Cappuccino” as fresh as it gets straight from the cows.

Cowboy games
The cowboys spend their life watching the cows. While the cows graze the cowboys have lots of free time. Many games and traditions have been invented by the cowboys. The most common games are URUKIRAMENDE or high jump, Kunyobanwa or stick fighting and Igisoro, a traditional game played with dried seeds on a wooden board. Watch the cowboys master these games and try on your own.

Traditional songs for the cows
When the cows rest after eating and milking, the cowboys sing to them. These traditional songs are called Kwivugira inka and have been passed on for generations. The songs repeat the names of the cows and include stories from legendary cows.

Making of traditional ghee
Leave the farms by motobike (or car if you have your own). Watch the traditional way women make Ikimuri or ghee by hand. Ikimuri is traditionally made by moving a large calabash or Igisabo back and forth. Learn how it is done and try making your own Ikimuri.

Return to main road and departure
It is time to say goodbye for now. Before you depart you may visit the shop and café where traditional crafts souvenirs and snacks are available. 

About the Organizer

This experience is organized by Alex Ngabo and Ibere rya Bigogwe. Ngabo grew up with cows on the green hills in the area and is passionate to share this wonderful place with as many as possible.

Good to know

Extra info / What to bring

  • Hiking Shoes
  • Sweater & wind/rainproof jacket
  • The sun can be strong bring a hat & sunscreen

This Experience requires that you can walk for 1 km over uneven ground

Add-ons: Pick up and drop of at any hotel in Rubavu or Musanze can be organized at extra fee of 30,000 Rwf

 

From 30,000 RWF

Highlights

  • Spend time on the greenest hills in Rwanda
  • Experience traditional Rwandan life with cows
  • Taste some fresh milk products 
  • Try traditional Rwandan cowboy games

Includes

Excludes

More information

Contact the organizer

Map

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Categories:Community Tours, Tours and Activities

Napoleon Island

06/27/2022 15:01

Napoleon Island

Napoleon Island is one of the most popular and most visited islands on Lake Kivu. Napoleon Island is located outside Karongi. The island may not be the one of the largest in Lake Kivu but it is one of the tallest. The elevation from the water’s edge to the summit is just over 100 meters giving visitors a spectacular view of the surrounding lake, islands and shoreline.

The real name is Nyamunini island, but as you approach Napoleon Island from the distance you immediately see from where it gets its name. The profile of the island closely resembles the historical hats which were popular in European army uniforms at the end of the 18th century and Napoleon is commonly seen depicted in this kind of hat. Hence the name Napoleon Island.

Napoleon Island has been declared a conservation area. There is no development, services or construction on the island. All food and drink need to be brought with you and make sure that you leave no trash behind on the island. Hotel.

Napoleon Island Bats

Animal & Plant life

The steep sides of Napoleon Island has managed to save some of the original vegetation and animal life. As most islands on Lake Kivu it is also used by the local community for farming. The steep and rocky side of the island has made it impossible to grow anything and prevents cows and goats to get to the vegetation. The result is a rather dense forest and bush cover on parts of the island, providing a last refuge to some interesting wildlife. Some interesting bird species are often found on Napoleon Island and the taller trees give refuge to palm nut vultures and fish eagles which can often be seen. Other bird species such as hammerkop and kingfishers are common.

The most well-known mammals on Napoleon Island are fruit bats. There is a colony of as many as 40,000 straw colored fruit bats living on Napoleon Island. The fruit bats are often though to disturb and create mess or to some people they are chased away because they mean bad luck. Large trees where the Fruit bats spend the day are often cut down, so the bats have found this remote island in Lake Kivu as one of their last refuges. The bats on Napoleon Island can be found resting in the tree tops at the base of the hill. One of the hiking trails leads straight underneath the colony. If visiting, take care to disturb the bats as little as possible. If the bats feel the need to move from the island because of disturbance they can very easily get in conflict with humans.

Snakes are a common sighting on Napoleon Island. No official inventory of snakes have been made but reports of snakes including forest cobras on the islands are common. Snakes are normally shy and do not seek to harm people on purpose. Snakes will normally avoid all contact with humans if possible. Remember to thread carefully and if you spot a snake move away from the snake making sure that it has a clear escape route. Never kill, touch or interfere with a snake.

Napoleon Island

Hiking

One of the most popular activities on Napoleon Island is hiking. A hiking trail runs from one side of the island to the other side of the island. This hiking trail will take you to the highest point of the island. The highest point of the island is a bit over 100 m over the level of the lake and highest point on any of the islands of Lake Kivu. From here you have a magnificent view of the lake, landscape and surrounding islands.

Napoleon Island is not developed and there is no infrastructure at all on the island. This also includes the hiking trail so do not expect any signs benches or stairs. The trail has been formed through by visitors walking the same path to the top of the island over many years. The rock landscape of Napoleon Island makes it quite easy to walk. The island is steep to climb, but people with normal level fitness should easily manage to hike to the top of the Napoleon Island and to the other side in about one hour.  

Getting to Napoleon Island

The only way to get to Napoleon Island is by boat and will take around 30 -45 mins by a local tour boat. There are many companies, cooperatives and hotels who offer boat rides to Napoleon Island, often in combination with visits to other islands such as Amahoro (peace) Island and Monkey Island. Companies like Africa Green Tours offer visits to Napoleon Island as part of their 6-island boat tour. Most boat operators operate from the lake shore below the Museum of Environment and Eden Golf.

Boat to Napoleon Island

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Categories:Attractions, Destinations, Lake Kivu, Lake Kivu

Six Island Boat Tour in Karongi

04/25/2022 13:05

Six Island Boat Tour in Karongi

Activity Description

Explore the islands of Lake Kivu during a half day guided boat tour in Karongi with a local guide. Lake Kivu is dotted with hundreds of islands. Most islands have their own secrets and special things to see. Start the tour meeting your guide and boarding a boat in Karongi. The tour starts by heading out to Napoleon Island, one of the largest islands outside Karongi. A short hike will take you to the top of the island where you will have a magnificent view of the surrounding area and Karongi. Napoleon Island is  home to a colony of straw colored fruit bats. After visiting Napoleon Island you will continue to Monkey Island. This island got its name from the fact that there is a small group of monkey inhabiting the densely forested island. After seeing the monkeys you will continue to peace island. Peace island is perfect for swimming and has a nice walking path all the way around. After peace Island you will continue to volcano island. This island is to small to go on board but can be seen from the boat. Volcano Island got its name from the fact that it was created by a volcanic eruption. Next is  a short drive to prison island which got its name because it was used as a prison for women who got pregnant outside of marriage in historical times. The last island is farm island. This large island is used for farming by the local community. Watch macadamia nuts, banana beer production and other crops being grown here before returning back to Karongi. 

About the Organizer

Bwishyura Kivu Boat Cooperative is a cooperative of young recent graduates. Their main mission is provide visitors to Karongi with information tours at proffessional rates while supporting themselves and their families.

From 45 USD / Boat

Highlights

  • Visit 6 islands in Lake Kivu
  • Hike to the top of Napoleon
  • See Rwanda’s largest fruit bat colony up close
  • Learn about the local way of life on the islands of Lake Kivu

Includes

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Terms and conditions

12/16/2021 9:26

Terms and conditions

Sometimes mishaps happen and things do not go according to plan. It is therefore important to know the roles and responsibilities of different actors in the travel value chain. 

The Kivu Belt Destination Management Unit is a destination management organization and not an operator. We work with the tourism sector including operators in the Kivu Belt to solve problems, drive important issues and to develop and market tourism products in the Kivu Belt. Products, including tours listed on our website are not our own and are operated, managed and the sole responsibility of the specific operator managing the product. 

Kivu Belt DMU are not the source or supplier of the travel services and acts solely as an agent for the actual suppliers of such services.  The suppliers whose name appear in the information supplied are those who are responsible for providing the travel services purchased.  By using those suppliers and clients agree not to hold the Kivu Belt DMU responsible should any of these suppliers: 1) fail to provide the travel services I have purchased; 2) fail to comply with any applicable law; or 3) engage in any negligent act or omission that causes me any sort of injury, damage, delay or inconvenience. 

By using these services, clients accept the the Kivu Belt DMU is not responsible for, nor will be held liable for any injury, damage or loss suffered on the account of any conditions, actions or omissions that are beyond reasonable control.  This disclaimer includes the entire traveling party and that in the event of any disputes the Kivu Belt DMU are not held responsible.

Travel safely and enjoy your vacation in the Kivu Belt. We are always happy to help you plan and get the most out of your vacation in the Kivu Belt!

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Congo Nile Trail Expedition with Red Rocks

12/10/2021 11:18

Congo Nile Trail Expedition with Red Rocks

Activity Description

This scenic route stretching along the shores of Lake Kivu in western province from Rubavu District to through Rutsiro, Karongi, Nyamasheke to Rusizi Districts. This hike includes many delights such as coffee washing stations and tea plantations and it is a both cycling and hiking adventure that takes place along the shores of lake Kivu and through Nyungwe National park. This trail experience offers guests a chance to challenge your hiking capabilities and cycling abilities as you appreciate the beauty and the unique scenery of Lake Kivu and surrounding hilly countryside of Rwanda.

The Congo Nile Trail delivers one of the most unforgettable experiences in Africa. Hikers, bikers and kayaking enthusiasts will enjoy this network of trails and roads that run from Rubavu in the north of the lake to the town of Rusizi at its southern end.
For 227 km, this stretch of ancient dirt roads and trails twists through jungle and farmland, rows of banana trees and vast coffee plantations as Lake Kivu’s coastline and undisturbed waters lie in the majestic
backdrop. The route continues, past emerald tea plantations, to the divide that separates the Nile and Congo rivers and into the thick of Nyungwe rainforest where 13 species of primates reside. The Congo Nile Trail can be completed in 5 days by bike, 10 days by hike or 8 days by Kayak.
As you are aware Rwanda is incredibly safe, and this trail can easily be completed independently by experienced and confident hikers, kayakers, and bikers. We do recommend you take our local guide in Rubavu, who is an expert birder and a cycling guide with exquisite experience to make your Congo Nile trail a memorable experience.

About the Organizer

Red Rocks Ecotours is all about the community, the wildlife, tourism & travel thus promoting sustainable tourism through community and conservation programs. Our pioneering cultural tourism scheme involves developing our community and promoting our nature preserve through tourism

All community activities and private initiatives offered by Red Rocks work on improving the community with focus on benefitting the quality of life of community people. Our philanthropic work in the rural villages will ensure you are involved in original humanistic traditional communities as well as contribute to the social life development of people.

The cultural exchange campsite offers you an opportunity to be a part of community philanthropic travel with a commitment to conservation and responsible tourism in Rwanda.

Red Rocks Rwanda continues to create long-lasting relationships with the communities in the areas   around the Virunga Massif where we operate by building long lasting relationships with the rural communities and through the work of the Red Rocks initiative identify and sponsor long-term, viable and self-sustaining projects that will have the support of our staff and visitors. The projects that are supported by the initiative are all community collaborative and we work closely with them to determine their needs and improve their well-being.

Come and enjoy the serene beauty of Red Rocks as your stay with us will give you purpose in the most effective way by connecting you with communities and giving you an opportunity of serving others. Embark on an unforgettable philanthropic journey which ensures that we work with people to find life changing solutions to the problems faced throughout the great Virunga massive starting off at Red Rocks where you will Meet individuals from the Community and learn the traditional Rwandan way of life or discover how the local people live in harmony alongside Africa’s majestic mountains.

 

Highlights

  • Hike, bike or kayak the Congo Nile Trail
  • Experience genuine Rwanda off the beaten track
  • Professional Guide 

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Ibere rya Bigogwe

Ibere Rya Bigogwe

Ibere rya Bigogwe is an area with green rolling hills with cows where visitors experience traditional Rwandan life, hike and enjoy the views.

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Destination Kivu Belt partnership with dTravela

11/9/2021 15:00

Destination Kivu Belt partnership with dTravela

Kivu Belt Partners with Rwandan OTA Dtravela to Bring the Rwandan Tourism Market Online

dTravela, the Kigali-based travel tech software, has recently entered a partnership with Kivu Belt Destination Management Unit, the official tourist board of Southwestern Rwanda. The partnership positions Rwandan travel tech provider dTravela as the official booking solution of the Kivu Belt giving operators access to crucial technology.

The Kivu Belt Destination Management Unit is a part of Rwanda’s Chamber of Tourism with a vision to position the Kivu Belt as a globally competitive and sustainable destination for adventure- and eco-tourism. A key part of the Kivu Belt’s strategy is to ensure that the local experiences used in branding are also bookable online. Their partnership with dTravela will accelerate this process by giving operators in the Kivu Belt direct access to the market and the ability to scale up their business through the smart use of technology.  

Suppliers and local communities will be empowered to make their live inventory bookable on their own website and use a standardized booking system. To leverage this further, Kivu Belt Destination Management Unit will add booking capabilities to the Kivu Belt Travel Portal Kivubelt.travel. By collecting all products in one place, the Kivu Belt Destination Management Unit will be able to market the destination in an efficient way, generate more tourists and drive bookings to local companies.

Patrice Nostalgie, founder and CEO of dTravela, says:

“Kivu Belt Destination Management Units is leading the way for the sector in the Kivu Belt and in Rwanda. It is great to see a large regional Destination Management Organization going beyond using pretty pictures of local experiences and instead using technology to make them the key focus. Kivu Belt’s vision is very closely aligned with the philosophy and vision of dTravela. I am excited to see how the partnership will inspire to innovation and technology in the travel industry in Rwanda”.

By actively encouraging and enabling their local suppliers to use travel technology, the Kivu Belt Destination Management Unit is opening up the power of direct access to live inventory.

Henry Mugweri from the Kivu Belt Destination Management Unit comments on the partnership:

“We have been looking into a way of empowering local operators including local communities while achieving our vision of making the Kivu Belt a globally competitive and sustainable destination for adventure- and eco-tourism. After assessing the market, dTravela has been selected for their world class technology which also fits the local needs in the Kivu Belt.”

The choice from the Kivu Belt to partner up with a local travel tech provider stems in the industry’s need for a combination of local and global tools. dTravela is unique in the way they combine standard reservation technology with needs of the local Rwandan market such as payments and payouts in mobile money and a more conventional booking notification service in Kinyarwanda.

Through the partnership, members in the Kivu Belt will get access to preferential rates and free service from dTravela. The width of the partnership also ensures that smaller, but crucial actors such as community-based tourism providers can use technology to get access to new markets.

The partnership will complement the Kivu Belt Destination Management Unit’s mission to serve as a platform for actors in the Kivu Belt with the common goal of developing and promoting sustainable tourism. The partnership will also serve the Destination Management Unit’s activities of developing new tourist attractions and coordinating actors in the Kivu Belt.

Both dTravela and the Kivu Belt Destination Management Unit are confident that the partnership can provide an example for the wider Rwandan industry to follow.

Get bookable on Kivubelt.travel

As an operator, you can get your accommodation, tour, rental car or activity bookable online through dTravela.com and Kivubelt.travel to start receiving bookings.

Through a unique partnership with the Rwandan booking portal and technology provider dTravela, the Kivu Belt destination management unit has secured preferential rates and services for members of any of the associations under the Chamber of Tourism who are located in the Kivu Belt.

Set up is free and the system is financed through a small commission on bookings which can be passed on to the end customer or included in the price.

All member of the Chamber of tourism operating in or from the Kivu Belt will enjoy the following benefits:

  • 30% discount on commission for bookings generated through the Kivu Belt Travel Portal
  • 30% discount on commission for bookings generated through dtravela.com
  • Payment gateway fees included online bookings from Kivu Belt Travel Portal and dTravela.com
  • Free personal service which includes booking confirmation either by email, phone call or SMS
  • Access to free information and workshops on the use of dTravela and the benefits of online booking
  • Integration and onboarding assistance for new operators

It is very fast and easy to set up and account and you will get professional assistance and guidance from the dTravela team.

If you which to get your accommodation, tour, rental car or activity bookable online through dTravela.com and the Kivu Belt Travel Portal don’t hesitate to reach out to us and you will get set up.

dTravela

Contact: Denyse INGABIRE, dTravela

+250788727013

denyse@dtravela.com

read more on dtravela.com

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Boat Tour to Gihaya Island

10/11/2021 16:19

Boat Tour to Gihaya Island

Full activity description

Join a guided boat tour from Rusizi to Gihaya Island where the locals will welcome you with song, dance and canoe racing. On the way you will see more of the islands found outside Rusizi. You will also get a chance to see the mouth of the Rusizi River and the pass by the border between Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda.

Start the day by boarding a tour boat from central Rusizi and head out into archipelago outside the town. Pass by the many islands, boats and fishermen on Lake Kivu as you head for Gihaya Island. Gihaya Island is one of the largest islands outside Rusizi and is home to a vibrant community. The community on Gihaya Island has a unique culture and language. Having been separated from both DRC and Rwanda for many centuries they have developed their own culture, customs and language.

Once you arrive on the island, members of the community will great you with their unique songs, music and way of dancing. You are free to join in, but this is not a must. After the welcome ceremony your guide will take you on a tour of the island. You will have a chance to witness some of the small farms on the island as well as some remains from the German and Belgian colonial settlements. Unique to the island is a cooperative of fishing women. Before leaving, the women, who use local wooden canoes to get about on Lake Kivu will bid you farewell with a race in their canoes.

Before returning to Rusizi, your guide will take you past some more of the Rusizi’s islands. You will also pass by the mouth of the mighty Rusizi River and the border between DRC and Rwanda.

About the organizer

ABAGI Fishing Cooperative offers guided boat trips in the Rusizi side of Lake Kivu by fishermen who sustain their lives by fishing. The cooperative owns a range of different boats ranging from tour boats to wooden canoes. The cooperative also earns additional income by organizing tours for visitors.

Before you go

  • It is wise to bring a sweater or light jacket
  • Some walking in uneven terrain, wear comfortable outdoor shoes

Meeting Point

  • The tour starts at the fishing cooperative near the Rusizi Harbor

Fitness Level

  • This activity requires that you can walk on an uneven surface

Highlights

  • Explore the Rusizi Archipelago
  • Visit Gihaya Island
  • Meet the community on Gihaya Island who will greet you with unique songs, dance and canoe racing

Includes

More information

Contact the organizer

Map


Categories:Boat Tours, Community Tours, Tours and Activities

Birding at Peace Guest House

09/30/2021 12:07

Birding at Peace Guest House

Nestled in the quiet and calm of Lake Kivu, Peace Guest House is situated in Rusizi town (former Cyangugu), close to the Kamembe airport and the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Surrounded by trees and wildlife, we have a beautiful green garden that hosts a diverse species of birds. To date, up to 40 species have been identified here, including the Ross’ Turaco, Striated Heron and Double-toothed Barbet. You can also spot the Great Cormorant, Pied and Malachite Kingfishers and Red-chested Sunbird on the shores of the Lake.

The guest house is only 45 minutes away from the Nyungwe National Park, home to more than 300 bird species, including 29 Albertine Rift endemics and the quasi-endemic Red-collared Mountain Babbler. The Park also offers other unique attractions, such as the Canopy walkway, waterfalls, hiking, Chimpanzee tracking.

We have trained and experienced birdwatching guides who can also offer other guiding experiences. Should you be interested, please contact our reception for more information. 

Our birdwatching checklist offers you a glimpse of the diverse species of birds you can find at Peace Guest House.

Bird List

African Dusky Flycatcher
African Paradise Flycatcher
African Pied Crow
African Yellow White-eye
Augur Buzzard
Baglafecht Weaver
Black Crake
Broad-billed Roller
Cattle Egret
Chin-Spot Batis
Chubb’s Cisticola
Collared Sunbird
Copper Sunbird
Dark-capped (Common) Bulbul
Double-toothed Barbet
European Roller
Gray-backed Camaroptera
Grey Parrot
Hadada Ibis
Hamerkop
Long-crested Eagle
Northern (Common) Fiscal
Northern Double-collared Sunbird
Pied Kingfisher
Red-chested Sunbird
Red-eyed Dove
Ross’s Turaco
Scarlet-chested sunbird
Striated Heron
Tropical Boubou
Variable Sunbird
White-browed Robin-chat
White-eyed Slaty Flycatcher
Yelow-fronted Canary
Yellow-throated Greenbul

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Categories:Birder friendly accommodation, Peace Guest House

Birding at Red Rocks

09/30/2021 12:03

Birding at Red Rocks

Red Rocks Initiative offers a spacious and friendly backpackers’ hostel, campsite and cultural centre. Surrounded by rolling hills, farmlands and its lush garden comprising a mix of native and exotic trees, the accommodation attracts various birdlife. A day of birding yielded 33 bird species, including the Yellow Bishop, African Citril, Tropical Boubou, and the Red-eyed Dove.

The accommodation is situated in an ideal location. You can reach the Buhanga Eco-park, a remnant forest with more than 100 bird species and a stopover of the intra-African migrant “African Pitta” in 10 minutes. In an hour, you can drive to the Gishwati-Mukura National Park, home to more than 100 birds species, including 20 Albertine Rift endemics. While, in 30 minutes, you can drive to the Volcanoes National Park, home to the famous Mountain Gorillas, Golden Monkey and other natural attractions. Similarly, in half an hour, you can visit the twin lakes and, in one hour, the Rugezi Marsh, which hosts the White-winged Swamp Warbler and the endangered Grauer’s Swamp Warbler.

At Red Rocks, birders can also experience the Rwandan culture and support the local communities by participating in the community-based tourism activities they offer, such as traditional farming activities, basket weaving, pottery making, milking, banana beer production and homestay.

We have trained and experienced birdwatching guides who can also offer other guiding experiences. Should you be interested, please contact our reception for more information. 

Our birdwatching checklist offers you a glimpse of the diverse species of birds you can find at Red Rocks.

Bird List

African (Western) Citril
African Pied Crow
African Trush
Black-headed (Village) Weaver
Bronze Mannikin
Bronze Sunbird
Dark-capped (Common) Bulbul
Grey-capped Warbler
Hadada Ibis
Hooded Vulture
Mackinnon’s Fiscal
Northern Grey-headed Sparrow
Red-billed Firefinch
Red-cheecked Cordon-bleu
Red-eyed Dove
Speckled Mousebird
Stricky Seedeater
Tropical Boubou
Variable Sunbird
White-browed Robinchat
White-tailed Blue Flycatcher
Willow Warbler
Yellow Bishop
Yellow-billed Kite

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Categories:Birder friendly accommodation, Red Rocks Rwanda

Birding at Rwiza Village

09/30/2021 12:00

Birding at Rwiza Village

Nestled perfectly between rolling hills and on the shores of Lake Kivu, Rwiza Village is a paradise in itself. Situated in Karongi, approximately 6.5 km from Kibuye town, Rwiza offers you the ideal place for relaxation and birding.

Our huge lush garden has diverse bird species, with 42 species recorded to date, including the Scarlet-chested Sunbird, Black-crowned Tchagra, Holub’s Golden Weaver.

You can also take a boat and visit the different islands on Lake Kivu. You can spot fishing birds like the Pied and Malachite Kingfishers, Common Sandpiper, and flocks of breeding waterbirds, such as the Great Cormorant and Black-headed Heron.

Rwiza is in close proximity to the Gishwati-Mukura National Park (Mukura side), where more than 100 species, including 20 Albertine Rift endemics, can be easily spotted, along with other attractions such as Chimpanzee tracking.

In 2 hours, you can visit the Nyungwe National Park, which hosts more than 300 bird species, including 29 Albertine Rift endemics and the quasi-endemic Red-collared Mountain Babbler. The Park also offers other unique attractions, such as the Canopy walkway, waterfalls, hiking, Chimpanzee tracking.

We have trained and experienced birdwatching guides who can also offer other guiding experiences. Should you be interested, please contact our reception for more information. 

Our birdwatching checklist offers you a glimpse of the diverse species of birds you can find at Rwiza Village.

Bird List

African Dusky Flycatcher
African-paradise Flycatcher
Black-crowned Tchagra
Black-headed (Village) Weaver
Bronze Sunbird
Brown-throated Wattle eye
Cape Wagtail
Common Kestrel
Copper Sunbird
Dark-capped (Common) Bulbul
Double-toothed Barbet
European Bee-Eater
Grey-capped Warbler
Holub’s Golden Weaver
Northern (Common) Fiscal
Pied Crow
Pied Kingfisher
Red-billed Firefinch
Red-chested Sunbird
Red-eyed Dove
Rock Martin
Scarlet-chested Sunbird
Tropical Boubou
Variable Sunbird
White-browed Coucal
White-headed Saw-wing
Yellow-billed Kite
Yellow-fronted Canary
Yellow-throated Greenbul

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Categories:Birder friendly accommodation, Rwiza Village

Birding at Palm Beach Resort

09/30/2021 11:57

Birding at Palm Beach Resort

Palm Beach Resort is perfectly located on the shores of Lake Kivu, 7 km from the city centre of Rubavu (Gisenyi). It has a private beach and a big, lush garden that offers a quiet and calm place for birding and relaxing.

The beautiful garden attracts different bird species, and to date, 32 species have been recorded. Amongst them are the Common Kestrel, Hamerkop, Yellow-fronted Canary, Scarlet-chested Sunbird. The Lodge offers boat tours, and you can spot fisher birds such as the Pied and Malachite Kingfishers and the Great Cormorant.

We also offer other activities, such as hiking to Mount Rubavu,  from where you can have an amazing view of Gisenyi town, the airport and the stadium, Goma town in DRC, and Lake Kivu at the same time. Also, within 20 minutes, you can participate in the farm-to-cup tea processing experience offered by Pfunda Tea Factory.

From the Lodge, you can drive to the Gishwati-Mukura National Park in under an hour. The Park is home to more than 100 bird species, including 20 Albertine Rift endemics. You can also drive to the Volcanoes National Park, home to the famous Mountain Gorillas, Golden Monkey and other natural attractions, within an hour.

In four hours, you can visit the Nyungwe National Park, which hosts more than 300 bird species, including 29 Albertine Rift endemics and the quasi-endemic Red-collared Mountain Babbler. The Park also offers other unique attractions, such as the Canopy walkway, waterfalls, hiking, Chimpanzee tracking.

We have trained and experienced birdwatching guides who can also offer other guiding experiences. Should you be interested, please contact our reception for more information. 

Our birdwatching checklist offers you a glimpse of the diverse species of birds you can find in our Lodge.

Bird List

African Harrier Whack
African Pied Wagtail
Arrow-marked Warbler
Black-heade (Village) Weaver
Black-headed Heron
Brimstone Canary
Bronze Mannikin
Chubb’s Cisticola
Common Kestrel
Common Sandpiper
Gray-capped (Common) Bulbul
Great Cormorant
Grey-caped Warbler
Hadada Ibis
Hamerkop
Holub’s Weaver
Long-tailed Cormorant
Northern (Common) Fiscal
Northern Grey-headed Sparrow
Pied Kingfisher
Red-billed Firefinch
Red-rumped Swallow
Ring-necked Dove
Rock Martin
Scarlet-chested Sunbird
Speckled Mousebird
Variable Sunbird
White-browed Coucal
White-browed Robinchat
Yellow-billed Kite
Yellow-fronted Canary
Yellow-throated Greenbul

Discover


Categories:Birder friendly accommodation, Palm Beach Resort

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