Golden Monkeys in Volcanoes National Park
Golden monkey is the second thought activity after Gorilla trekking in Volcanoes National park- if you miss Gorilla trekking , do not miss golden monkey tracking. The monkeys are playful and inquisitive and often spend their time leaping from bamboo branches or frolicking on the forest floor. The golden monkeys live in the bamboo vegetation towards the base of the volcanoes and have overcome their initial shyness to accept their daily visit by researchers and tourists.
There are two habituated groups of Golden Monkey, one group comprises around 80 - 100 members and has its home at the foot of Mountain Sabyinyo. Golden monkey trekking is conducted in the morning and takes approximately 3-5 hours while in the bamboo forest. Like mountain Gorillas, one hour is given to the trekkers viewing, filming, chatting and photographing among others.
Golden monkey trekking starts after briefing from the Park’s Kinigi Headquarters at 07:00am. The number of visitors is not limited and the current fee for a Golden Monkey permit is US$100 per person per trek. It is advisable to book your golden monkey trekking in advance through local tour operators or book them direct from the Rwanda Development Board officials but booking can be done at the park headquarters on the morning of the trek. Porters can be hired at the entry point of the park at US$ 20 per person per day but prices are negotiable.
They are very sprightly creatures, and leap from tree to tree which is really entertaining, if a little difficult to photograph! We recommend setting your camera to a fast shutter-speed to allow for low light in the dense undergrowth and to better your chances of capturing the golden monkeys on film!
This is a great way to spend an extra day in the Volcanoes National Park and if you're interested in wildlife, this is a rare and delightful experience not to be missed!