Mount Nyamuragira

Mount Nyamuragira or Nyamulagira to some people is one of 8 volcanoes spread along the western branch of the East African rift valley. This chain of volcanic mountains is widely known as the Virunga massif or Mufumbiro ranges. These 8 volcanoes are stretched over the international borders of 3 countries of Uganda, Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda. The region is famous for being the sole place that hosts endangered mountain gorillas.

Nyamuragira is recorded as the most active volcano in Africa with more than 40 eruptions from the late 1880s. It’s in form of a shield volcano found roughly 25 kilometers north of the beautiful Lake Kivu. Its name is picked from a local Kinyarwanda term “kuragira name”, which is translated as “herding animals”. Nyamuragira’s latest eruptions happened in 2011 and left the people of Goma in despair.

Perched within the Nord-Kivu Province, Nyamuragira is just 13 kilometers northwest of another extreme volcano – Nyiragongo. Mount Nyiragongo last erupted in May 2021, leaving havoc to the city of Goma as the lava flow destroyed anything it came into contact with, expect people who were already evacuated. These two along with Bisoke are the only 3 active volcanoes in the Virunga ranges and therefore a point of great interest.

mount Nyamuragira

Mount. Nyamuragira covers an estimated area of 580 square miles and a volume of about 500 cubic kilometers. This volcano portrays low shield features in contrast to the steep-sided profile of Mount. Nyiragongo. At the summit of its 3,058 meters above sea level sits a massive caldera running at least 2 kilometers and height of 500 meters. This caldera previously possessed a lava lake that just disappeared with no explanation by science.

Activities to relish on Mount Nyamuragira.

Exciting Hiking adventures.

Mount. Nyamuragira offers one of the most exciting hikes on the African continent. Guests who opt for a hike on this shield volcano are presented with an action-filled and adrenaline-inducing activity of conquering one of the world’s most active volcanoes. A hike here presents you with beautiful views of the Virunga National Park and the adjacent Nyiragongo that paints a red hue on the skies as dusk draws.

Mountain gorilla trekking.

The Virunga national park and oldest park in Africa is home to a portion of the last surviving of these endangered species. A visit to Nyamuragira offers you a chance to meet one of man’s closest relatives and the largest primate on earth. A face-to-face encounter with a gorilla will never leave you the same even if meeting them for the 100th time.

In addition to this opportunity of trekking mountain gorillas, Congo offers the cheapest permit compared to other destinations – Rwanda and Uganda. This also comes with fewer crowds and much privacy for guests. Plan a visit to mount. Nyamuragira and embark on an enthralling gorilla adventure.

Birding

Mount Nyamuragira is located in the Virunga national parks which makes it an awesome birding destination due to the rich diversity experienced in this area. Birders are guaranteed an opportunity of meeting numerous bird species including a few endemic to the Albertine rift region. Bird species you might encounter include Kivu ground thrush, Rwenzori Turaco, speckled mousebirds, olive woodpeckers, paradise flycatchers, yellow-billed barbets among others.

Best time to visit Nyamuragira

Mount Nyamuragira like most East African destinations is an approved all-year-round destination that can be visited at any point of the year. The dry months of June to September and December through February however offer the best tourism activities, especially for hiking and mountain gorilla trekking. This is when the vegetation isn’t too dense, cooler temperatures and when trails are more maneuverable.

The rain season meanwhile also comes with advantages of its own. This presents itself as the best birding season with new migratory species flying in. In addition rates on accommodation, gorilla permits, and most activities are chopped as an incentive and fewer crowds are met as it’s the low season.

Visit mount Nyamuragira to find out more about this great volcano for yourself.

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