One&Only Gorilla’s Nest opened in October 2019. It provides a very luxurious base from which to head out on gorilla treks and other activities within the spectacular Volcanoes National Park!
Last October Gorilla’s Nest joined the impressive portfolio of One&Only, which includes YZ favourites Nyungwe House and One&Only Cape Town. The company is famous for its impressive portfolio of Iconic Escapes, properties at which guests can connect with culture and enjoy once-in-a-lifetime adventures. The accommodation is booked on a full-board basis and the lodge is open throughout the year.
Access & location:
The lodge is accessed via approximately 2 hours’ road transfer from Kigali. It’s situated only 5 minutes from Volcanoes National Park’s headquarters, amidst trees and with amazing views of the park.
Accommodation & facilities at One&Only Gorilla's Nest:
Guest accommodation consists of 14 rooms and 7 suites. Set up in the midst of trees, each feels very private, and the interiors are exquisitely presented in combinations of chic neutrals and vibrant patterns. At entry-level, there’s the Forest Lodge King. Furnishings include a double bed, bedside stands and lighting, and ample storage units. There’s a separate seating area too, featuring a contemporary-style chaise longue, an easy chair, a sleek coffee table, and a cosy fireplace. In-room amenities comprise a television, a telephone, a mini-bar, and Wi-Fi. The en-suite washroom is positioned to one side of the bedroom space, behind a partition, and it contains a flush toilet, twin washbasins, a shower, and a freestanding bathtub. From the living area, doors lead out onto a private balcony – this offers a couple of chairs, a table, and beautiful views over Volcanoes National Park! Next up, there’s the Two-Bedroom Forest Lodge, an excellent option for a small group or a family. If you’re looking for a little extra luxury, you could consider one of the three suite categories here. The Virunga suites have an open-air bathtub on its private deck. You then have the two presidential suites, Ingagi benefits from expansive living and dining spaces, and Silverback boasts an open-air lounge, barbecue terrace, and its own fire-pit! For further information about any of these options, please contact a member of our team.
The communal facilities at One&Only Gorilla’s Nest are similarly well-appointed. The lounge features a medley of modern-style seating around various coffee tables, all set out on imigongo-style rugs. Both floor and ceiling lighting is also modern in design, with lines that really complement the soft furnishings. There are imigongo elements in the restaurant too, where a range of tables-and-chairs are laid in readiness for delicious meals. The bar is positioned at one end of this space, with the lounge and dining areas flowing out onto a spacious deck. Here, guests can relax and dine al fresco, all the while marvelling at the views! And the gardens are perfect for a gentle stroll between activities.
*Please be aware that the swimming pool here has no depth markings and no 'No Diving' signs, so take care before you jump in!*
Activities at One&Only Gorilla's Nest:
Gorilla’s Nest offers the following experiences:
Expertly guided gorilla treks- Please note, this activity has a minimum age requirement of 15 years. Very conveniently, the distance from the property to the Volcanoes National Park headquarters can be covered in just 5 minutes. From HQ, guests set off on a trek in the company of a guide. Volcanoes is home to about two-thirds of the world’s mountain gorillas! The park’s 600 or so inhabitants are divided into 40 troops, of which eight are habituated to humans. Each trek focuses on finding one of the eight troops and spending an hour with its members, watching the majestic mammals eating and playing together. The time it takes to locate a troop can vary substantially, and your route through the forest can be pretty tough at times, but simply being in the presence of the gorillas is well worth the exertion.
Golden monkey treks- These treks are also accompanied by a knowledgeable and experienced guide. Travellers of all ages are invited to head into the forest in search of the golden monkey, an Old World species with a glorious golden patch on its back and upper flanks.
Nature walks- In addition to mountain gorilla and golden monkey, Volcanoes contains forest elephant, buffalo, spotted hyena, giant forest hog, bushpig, bushbuck, black-fronted duiker, and around 200 types of bird! Walks aim to provide sightings of all these species, and a guide is on hand to provide information and answer all your questions. During one such excursion, you could explore the Musanze Caves, complete with their colony of bats!
Volcanoes hikes- Gorilla’s Nest also offers opportunities for visitors to ascend the park’s steep volcanoes. For example, you could head up the Bisoke volcano. The views from the top, which include a crater lake, are breathtakingly brilliant!
Visits to Dian Fossey's grave- Guests are invited to walk to primatologist Dian Fossey’s grave too. Situated in the midst of rainforest at high altitude, this is next to the remains of Dian’s research centre and close to the final resting places of some of her beloved gorillas.
Village visits- Add a generous dash of culture to your stay at Gorilla’s Nest, by visiting local village Iby’iwacu. Here, you can enjoy some exuberant drumming and dancing, interact with the friendly locals, and learn about daily life in this magical part of the world.