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Nyiragongo Volcano and Congo Gorilla Tours

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Climbing Nyiragongo volcano: Democratic Republic of Congo

Nyiragongo lava lake at night The hiking of this two-mile-high volcanoe starts at Kibati about 20 km (12 miles) north of Goma. The trek to the top takes approximately five hours and involves walking through lush forest and lava fields with a steep incline near the top. Climbing Nyiragongo volcano is not a piece of cake and climbers need to be fit. Having been on top of Nyiragongo, it is not easy, even impossible to describe in words the beauty of the lava lake and how stunning are views at night. You just feel like looking into a magical artwork. One just sees some areas of red spider web looking designs and other places where lava would pop, splatter and explode. Smoke that was tinted red from the volcano glow rose from several places.  Specially at night you can also feel a slight heat off the lava lake. At times, the red designs would shift around and change into new shapes. It is like cloud gazing where you can see different designs from the red cracks that you make into imaginary shapes like animals or people.

Congo Gorilla Trekking Tours: Democratic Republic of Congo

DR Congo is one of the upcoming Gorilla safari destinations in Africa. It's a home to big gorilla groups in Virunga National Park, only 10 minutes from Gisenyi Rwanda, 3hrs from Kigali (Rwanda) and about 8-10hrs from kampala (Uganda). Also Kisoro town in south western Uganda offers a wide variety of accommodation ranging from budget to deluxe. Gisenyi town in Rwanda however is a strategic place to stay for overnight before tracking gorillas in Congo. Located right on the edge of border with the congo, Gisenyi offers affordable accommodation and luxury hotels with stunning views over lake Kivu. Although in the past Congo was a dangerous place to go for mountain gorilla trekking on account of unstable political situations, for the past 5 years, it has been a safe haven just like the other two nations of Uganda and Rwanda that are a real treat to tourists.

Itinerary samples with Gisenyi town as base:

Itinerary 1: 2 DAY NYIRAGONGO VOLCANO TOUR

Day1: Set off from Gisenyi hotel at 8.00,  cross the border to Congo with Uzaze Travel guide then at 10 am start  hiking arriving at the top around 4pm. Admire the lava lake all the evening; Overnight in tents.

Day2. Walk back down from the volcano and transfer to Gisenyi Rwanda.

**The price Includes: Climbing fees, transport, porter, tents and sleeping bag.

**Not Included: Visa to Congo, flight, travel insurance, meals and drinks.

Inquire about Nyiragongo Climbing by emailing info@uzaze.com

 

Rock of Kamegeri

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Kamegeri was a leader under the reign of Mibambwe Sekarongoro Mutabazi who was burnt on that rock after he had asked that criminals be thrown on that rock after it was made red-hot.

Since then that rock cliff was attributed to him to become the Rock of Kamegeri, which is situated at Ruhango
The rock had always existed without a name but later got the name when a man by names of Chief Kamegeri decided a wrong punishment for a man who had disrespected the king, and in turn the King ordered Chief Kamegeri to be burnt on that rock because chief Kamegeri was unhuman since he was proposing horrible death for other people.

 

The strory:

 

Mwami (“King”) Mibambwe Sekarongoro Mutabazi ruled Rwanda almost 400 years ago. He was a fair and just ruler, who demonstrated concern for the poor and needy within his kingdom.
Legend has it that a man was convicted of stealing from the Mwami, who then directed two of his chiefs to devise a suitable punishment for the convicted thief. They saw this as an opportunity to demonstrate to the Mwami that they were tough and innovative, and worthy of special position and honor within the royal court. A chief named Mikoranya proposed torture upon a  wooden shaft protruding from a hut. A chief named Kamegeri proposed that a large flat rock be heated until red-hot and the criminal be spread-eagled upon it.
The Mwami asked the chiefs to demonstrate their ideas, so that he could better understand what they proposed. They eagerly went to work. After continuous bonfires for one week, the large flat rock finally became literally red-hot. The Mwami arrived with his entourage. Nearby, the protruding wooden shaft was also ready. “Is everything ready?” the Mwami inquired of the two chiefs. They nodded with great pride, expecting praise and some yet-to-be determined reward.
 

Hotel Rwanda

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Hotel Rwanda is both a movie and a hotel. It is by far the most famous building in Rwanda; though the real name is  Hotel des Mille Collines, better known worldwide as Hotel Rwanda.  The hotel is located in the center of Kigali, complete with a nice bar, pool, restaurants, and conference rooms.  The recently renovated hotel is a popular place to stay now thanks in large part to the movie.
Hotel des Mille Collines is famous for being a shelter for thousands of Tutsis and Hutu sympathizers during the 1994 genocide.  
The hotel manager, Paul Rusesabagina, bribed Hutu militias with money and alcohol until the refugees were able to flee under the safety of the UN and handed over to RPF rebels then fighting to liberate the country from militias. Due to his actions, thousands of Rwandans were saved from certain death. The hotel is famous because of the critically acclaimed film “Hotel Rwanda” starring Don Cheadle.  However, the film was shot in South Africa and the hotel in the movie is not the actual hotel. The films “Shake Hands With the Devil” and “Sometimes In April,” both about the 1994 genocide, shot on location in Rwanda and show the actual Mille Collines.
 

Genocide Memorials in Rwanda

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There are several genocide memorials throughout Rwanda where  remains of murdered  innocent people mostly of ethinic tutsis are carefully kept. All genocide memorials are open to public and foreign travellers are welcome to visit.

 

Murambi Genocide Memorial

This project is centered on the main building in Murambi, a school that has been left vacated since the genocide in 1994. The school classrooms where over eight hundred corpses have been preserved have been left untouched. After the genocide, as mass graves were being discovered around the city, it was decided that a single monument/ burial place should be created, where the victims could be laid to rest with dignity.

The memorial houses a children's section, a particularly powerful experience to read about the children- how they lived, and how they died.

On the ground floor on the main building new walls were constructed to create a space that allowed for the design of the exhibition and burial place. The open hall on the ground floor of the main building now has a pathway, which leads visitors first to an exhibition describing the context of the genocide, then into the burial rooms. The burial rooms allow some of the preserved human remains to be viewed, while at the same time they are also buried with some dignity. Some of the survivors of the genocide have been trained as guides at the centre.

 

Gisozi Memorial
It is situated in the Gasabo District, in the city of Kigali. It is where the victims of Tutsi Genocide are buried from the year 2000. It contains a cemetery, a house of exhibition on Genocide section; a library and it has a plan of teaching the history of genocide. There are about 300,000 victims buried there. It is the only memorial site in Kigali. For a real, heart-in-your-throat experience, it is important to visit two other genocide memorials, sites which actually became slaughterhouses in April 1994. Nyamata and Ntarama are about 25 kilometers from Kigali (and only about 1 km apart from each other).

Gisenyi Memorial site
You will take a taxi to see the grave of Madame Carr, an American who ran an orphanage for genocide orphans called Imbabazi. The road that leads to the orphanage is near the UNHCR Nkamira refugee camp (on the left, if driving away from Gisenyi; on the right, if driving toward Gisenyi).

 

Nyamata memorial

Nyamata is situated in the Bugesera district of Rwanda about 35 km from the capital city of Kigali. During the genocide, many people used the Catholic Church as a refuge. However, according to the testimonies given by survivors, on April 10th 1994 about 10,000 people were killed in and around the area of the Catholic Church. People from all around congregated in the church and locked the iron door with a padlock to protect themselves from the marauding killers. This church and its contents are a reminder of the horrifying violence that took place at this site during Rwanda's 1994 genocide.

 

Bisesero Memorial
It is in the Karongi District, Western Province. More than 27,000 victims of genocide are buried here. They were killed after a brave and long resistance and self defence until they were betrayed by French soldiers.

 


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