Mount Karisimbi is an active stratovolcano in the Virunga mountains on the border between Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo. At a height of 4,507 meters, Karisimbi stands as the highest of the eight major mountains of the mountain range, which is a part of Albertine rift, the western branch of the East African Rift.
Standing at a height of 4,507 meters, Mount Karisimbi can be viewed from the three countries – Uganda, Rwanda and DRC thus serving as a tourist attraction in the three countries. During a trip in Uganda, the mountain can be viewed from Mgahinga gorilla national park as you also enjoy the endangered mountain gorillas. In Rwanda, the mountain is seen from Volcanoes national park and in DRC it can be viewed from Virunga national park.
With different vegetation zones around the beautiful mountain, it becomes a source of relief rainfall in the surrounding area thus making it a great place for the cattle, sheep and goats herders. The grass on the slopes not only feed the domestic animals bust also some wild animals thus making it a great feature in the promotion of tourism sector.
What to do while at the mountain
Given that Mountain Karisimbi is an inactive volcano, it makes volcanic research possible and easy thus attracting a number of scientific tourisms to Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda for research purposes.
Mountain Karisimbi stands as the 5th tallest mountain range in Africa and hiking is one the most done activity. Its name is derived from a word Amasimbi which means snow and this came as a result of it being snowcapped. The hiking experience requires one to have some hiking skills and should be physically fit.
Mount Karisimbi hike takes about 3 days including the descending day and hikers will climb from the edge of Volcanoes national park to the ridge of the huge caldera the extends at the base of Mount Karisimbi, crossing first the bamboo forests and then to another vegetation zone with Hypericum forests. From this zone, you continue with the hike through the caldera across a bush of giant Lobelia and Senecio where you will have another amazing and breathtaking experience.