Musanze Caves

Musanze Caves are Rwanda’s largest Caves and one of its most beautiful natural wonders found in Ruhengeri (Musanze district), within the Northern Province of Rwanda and just a stone throw from the spectacular Volcanoes National Park.

The breathtaking natural Caves were formed as a result of volcanic eruptions that date back to about 65 million years ago and stretch for about 2 kilometers (approximately 1.25 miles) long. The formation of these Caves is connected to the Lava basaltic layers that resulted from the eruption of Mount Bisoke as well as Sabyinyo.

The Musanze Caves were used by Rwandans during the 1994 genocide conflict as well as the other pre-colonial wars. So far, there are about 32 popular Caves lying within the foothills of Virunga Volcanoes in Northern Province of Rwanda although there are over 52 Caves within the region. The Caves are situated about 13.6 miles from Musanze Town hence travellers will be required to drive over 40 minutes from the Town to get to these beautiful natural Caves.

Even with their existence for a number of years, the Cave tours were officially launched in 2013 by the Rwanda Development Board with a number of improvements like improved trails, walkways and stairs that will make it easy to comfortably discover its inner beauty with accidents and other circumstances. From the time guided tours here were launched, the Musanze Caves have become wonderful stopover points for Volcanoes National Park travellers.

For many travellers, exploring the beautiful Musanze Caves creates imagination of a spine-chilling abandoned house with many rooms, stairs and corridors. Interestingly, there are also a number of dark places with lots of bats as well as a possibility of creating loud echoes. As earlier mentioned, the natural underground Caves hold an important cultural and historical attachment to Rwandans, owing to the fact that it was initially used as a hiding place during wars and conflicts, especially during the 1994 Rwanda Genocide.

Tours through Musanze Caves usually last 2-3 hours with hope of getting information on the rich history as well as uncovering hidden places.

Musanze Cave entry fees

Musanze Cave entry fees are currently at $55, and include guide fees but not your transportation to and from the Caves, accommodation as well as tips. However travellers are required to possess basic physical fitness to tour the spectacular Musanze Caves.

What you need for the Musanze Cave Tours

Musanze Caves Tours require Cave headlight, gardening gloves, packed lunch, hiring porters, basic first aid kit with bandages, liniment and plasters, sturdy hiking boots, toiletries (wet wipes, hand sanitizer and sunscreen), long-sleeved shirts, camera, safari pants, waterproof backpack, sunglasses, a walking sticks, face masks, helmet and enough drinking water.

Perfect time for Musanze Cave Tours

Travellers interested in Musanze Cave Tours can travel during the months of December to February and June to September because they are in the dry season. During these months, Cave floors are less muddy or slippery.

Besides exploring the phenomenal Musanze Caves, visitors to Ruhengeri can also get the chance to enjoy gorilla trekking, hike the Dian Fossey Tomb, trek the endangered golden monkeys, watch lots of bird species that include Rwenzori and Albertine Rift endemics within Volcanoes National Park, visit the Twin Lakes of Bulera and Ruhondo, tour Buhanga Eco Park, cultural tours at Gorilla Guardian Village (formerly Iby’Iwacu Cultural Village), to mention but a few.

Places to stay after or before exploring Musanze Caves

Travellers with plans of exploring the beautiful Musanze Caves can stay in Musanze Town or Volcanoes National Park with best options being Red Rocks Rwanda, Five Volcanoes Boutique Hotel, Gorilla Volcanoes Hotel, Jack Hannah’s Cottages, Gorilla Nest Lodge, Amahoro Guesthouse, Kinigi Guesthouse, Muhabura Hotel, Da Vinci Gorilla Lodge, Mountain Gorilla View Lodge, Le Bambou Gorilla Village, The Garden Palace, Bishop’s House, to mention but a few.

Getting to the incredible Musanze Caves

Musanze Caves are only 74 miles and approximately 2 hours’ drive from Kigali City. Road trips are the mainly means of getting to this magnificent tourist destination.