Volcanoes National Park


  • Release your inner Attenborough and come face to face with mountain gorillas
  • Take in the breath-taking views of mist shrouded mountains and volcanic lakes
  • Pay your respects at Karisoke – the final resting place of Dian Fossey
  • Try and keep up with the endemic and nimble golden monkeys


The forested slopes of the Volcanoes National Park are spectacular and full of drama and this was the very first national park to be created in Africa. A chain of free-standing volcanoes are home to local snake spirits, active volcanoes and the place where Dian Fossey lived - and died - for Mountain Gorillas. With peaks reaching nearly 4,500 metres, rare forest elephants and a network of rugged trails, this is a park that is as spectacular as it is thrilling and despite its popularity, it is still the best place to see Mountain Gorillas.

Straddling the borders of Rwanda, Uganda and the DRC, the massif itself includes six active and three extinct volcanoes so wherever you look there is a photograph waiting to be taken. Whilst the gorillas are the draw, an extra day or so spent at one of the lodges will allow you to explore the rural villages dotted around the region, taking in a few lively markets and traditional Intore dancing – something which the region is also famous for.


Spend time at the Mountain Gorilla Veterinary Project, with whom Steppes has worked closely over the years to gain a privileged insight into gorilla conservation. Alternatively, join the great and the good at the annual Kwita Izina ceremony in Ruhengeri, where each June, gorillas born in the last year are officially named. 

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