Virunga Lodge

Rwanda

The magnificent Virunga Lodge is the premier luxury gorilla lodge of Rwanda and one of Africa’s finest and most renowned lodges. The lodge is perched high on a ridge with stunning views of the Virunga Volcanoes and the Musanze valley to the west and Lake Bulera and Ruhondo to the east.

It offers the finest views in Africa, uniquely decorated rooms in the Rwandese style, fantastic food and exceptional and personalised service by our carefully trained staff. It is the first accommodation choice for the luxury traveller tracking the endangered mountain gorilla.

Each of our ten luxurious bandas has a private terrace from which our guests can watch the sunrise over the dramatic landscape of mountains and lakes. Luxuriously appointed, with the accent on vibrant Rwandese fabrics and stylish locally inspired furniture.

Each Banda has an individual fire place, a luxury shower room with a double vanity, and charging station.

The two deluxe bandas – called Ibirunga and Ibiyaga added in 2014 have their own private sitting room and more refined interiors.

Lodge overview

  • Wifi access in the main lodge building and Dian Fossey Map Room
  • One complimentary massage per guest
  • Premium wine, whisky, and cocktail menus
  • Complimentary laundry and boot cleaning service
  • Butler service for each room from July 2017.
  • 10 Stone guest bandas with tile roofs (2 deluxe, 6 doubles and 2 twins) reflect the local building style.
  • Guide cottage available
  • Bandas are individually named after lakes in the area.

Ready to book your stay at Virunga Lodge? Contact our sales team now!

Africa’s Most Romantic Hotel

World Boutique Hotel Awards

On November 9th 2016, Virunga Lodge won Africa’s Most Romantic Hotel at the World Boutique Hotel Awards.

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Activities at Virunga Lodge

Tracking mountain gorillas through the dense African forests is a magical experience. Only eight visitors are allowed per gorilla group each day, and to minimize possible transmission of human diseases, visitors are asked to maintain a distance of 7m (about 22 feet) from the gorillas. Typically, tracking can take from 3 to 8 hours and requires some agility and fitness; however, all fitness levels can be accommodated and no one should feel deterred from missing this once in a lifetime experience.

With only a small number remaining in the world, the Golden Monkey can be found in the foothills of the volcanic mountains of Mgahinga National Park in Uganda and in Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda. Characterized by its bright golden body, cheeks and tail, with contrasting black limbs, crown and tail end, these playful primates are a pleasure to watch. Whether you choose to do this on the Rwandan or Ugandan side, the walk will take you from the bamboo stands and forested gorge on the lower levels of the volcanoes, to the elevated heath and moorland higher up.

Located in a beautiful meadow nestled between the Karisimbi and Visoke volcanoes are the graves of Dian Fossey and some of her beloved research gorillas. For anyone interested in gorilla conservation in Rwanda, or interested in Fossey’s personal story, the trek to her grave is highly recommended. This trek starts early in the morning, can take 6-8 hours and is operated by the National Park.

Both Uganda and Rwanda offer some of the world’s best bird watching, with a vast diversity of bird species. Uganda has over 1,000 bird species with 150 found only in Uganda. Rwanda has over 700 bird species and is home to the second highest number of Albertine endemics in the Albertine region. Each of our lodges offers the chance to see a number of different birds, with the vast majority endemic to the Region.

In the late afternoon we invite you to enjoy a performance by the local community’s traditional dance troupe, which is supported by the Volcanoes Safari Partnership Trust (VSPT). The VSPT has been working with the dance troupe at the Volcanoes Safaris’ Virunga Lodge in Rwanda, since 2004.

Today, the group is made up of 24 dancers and two dance trainers. The dance troupe performs the traditional Rwandan ballet called The Intore, which is based on the courtly victory dance of the Rwandan mwami (kings).

Guests of Virunga lodge have easy access to the Virunga chain of volcanoes, which offer challenging hikes and stunning panoramas. The three most popular volcanoes to climb are Mt. Gahinga, Mt. Sabyinyo, and Mt. Muhavura. These hikes are of varying difficulty and typically take a full day. The treks starts at 7:00am from the park headquarters, from where visitors will have to drive / be driven to the base of the volcano.

On a free afternoon at Virunga Lodge we recommend taking advantage of the lodge’s unique position by meandering down the mountain slope, through local villages, and to Lake Bulera, which sits at its foot. Passing through the local communities offers a colorful peek into village life and opportunities to visit local schools and community centers.

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Safaris at Virunga Lodge

This short & sweet stay offers the opportunity to engage with the endangered mountain gorillas and the local community, and is the perfect addition to any larger Africa itinerary. As the premier luxury destination for tracking the endangered mountain gorillas in Rwanda, Virunga Lodge offers guests unparalleled panoramas, beautiful accommodations, and personalized service.

View our 4-Day Virunga Safari

Pack for a Purpose

We are proud members of Pack for a Purpose, an initiative that allows travelers like you to make a lasting impact in the community at your travel destination. If you save just a few kilos of space in your suitcase and take supplies for the projects we support in need, you’ll make a priceless impact in the lives of our local children and families. Please click here to see what supplies are needed for our project/projects at Virunga Lodge.