Gorilla Guardians Village – Ibyi’wacu 

The Gorilla Guardians Village also known as the Ibyi’wacu village is located in Rwanda near the Volcanoes National Park in the northern province of Rwanda. This village showcases the culture of Rwanda and the tourists have the opportunity to encounter them. The village was set up by the government of Rwanda for the former poachers who were hunters and gatherers living within the park. These poachers were usually hunting the gorillas for food. The government set up this non-profit village to change the poachers’ lives as they shouldn’t believe in hunting down wildlife for food.  They have now transformed into cultural dancers, craftsmen, and other activities that have transformed their lives.

The communities that live in this village include the Hutu, Tusi, and Batwa. These communities offer different cultural performances, crafts, and many others. One will enjoy on their Rwanda safari near the Volcano National Park. The Gorilla Guardians Village acts as a merging center for all of Rwanda’s tribes and communities. Additionally, the Gorilla Guardians Village is 16 years old. It has changed and transformed the lives of the former poachers. Gorilla Guardians Village or Ibyi’wacu village where Ibyi’wacu generally means the home to treasures. This village brought the lives of the poachers to a better one and left out hunting and gathering from the park.

Gorilla Guardians Village

What to do in the Gorilla Guardians Village?

While on your Rwanda gorilla trekking safari, a visit to the Ibyi’wacu village is one of the interesting destinations to do some activities including;  

Visit of the king’s palace

While on your Rwanda gorilla safari in the Gorilla guardians village, the visit to the king’s palace is one of the essential activities that one has to engage in. While on the visit to the king’s palace, a traveler will be able to see how the kings in ancient times used to rule and manage their communities. These kings during their time were usually feared and respected by the subjects. The ceremonial activities were all done within the palace and this gives a clear view of the Ibyi’wacu village.

Banana beer brewing

This is one of the essential activities. In the past the brewing of banana beer was usually done during ceremonial times like weddings and crowning of the kings and queens. Travelers on their Rwanda safari will engage in the brewing process. They will start with the collection of the ripened bananas and yellowish banana leaves. Then they will start with the pounding of the bananas and then later mix them with the leaves. Then the juice coming out of the banana will be mixed with clean water and then later filtered.  After filtering, it will be ready for drinking by the travelers.  Usually, they also have the brewed beer which is banana juice mixed with sorghum that is ready for drinking. The results from this activity will be a lesson for the natives of the area to keep learning and continue protecting the gorillas.

Participation and preparation of the local cuisines

While on your visit to the Gorilla Guardians Village, the preparation and participation of the local cuisines where will start with the gathering of what to use for cooking like vegetables, firewood, and many others. Then you will start with the grinding of millet to make millet flour and then it will be mixed hot water to make millet cake. The other meals prepared are plantains, sweet potatoes, stews, beans, and many others.

Visit the traditional healer

 The Gorilla Guardians Village is one of the communities in Rwanda that portray one of the Rwandese cultures where travelers on their Uganda safari will participate in this activity and know-how traditionally they treated the sick. In the modern world, the use of traditional herbs is one of the most ignored types of medication.

Batwa community visit 

While on your Rwanda safari, the Batwa community visit is one of the most interesting. You will engage the first inhabitants of the forests who are the shortest in the world. During a visit to this community, you will learn about their way of life. For instance, how they would gather food, hunt, make fire, and many others. Through encounters with them, you know they live in their daily life. Furthermore, the Batwa communities can also be found in the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Mgahinga Gorilla National Park, and Semuliki National Park in Uganda.

Where to stay?

While on your Rwanda gorilla safari to Gorilla Guardians Village, there are a variety of homestays within the community. The travelers on their Rwanda safari, are required to choose from a variety of accommodation facilities in the Volcanoes National Park. Here are some suggestions; Bistate Lodge, Villa Gorillas, Da Vinci Gorilla Lodge, Mountain Gorilla View Lodge, and many others.

 What is required to visit the Gorilla Guardians village?

While on your Rwanda safari, the visit to Gorilla Guardians village travelers need to have the personality to engage in these activities available within the village as a form of motivation to the community.  More so, a traveler on the Rwanda safari is required to have in mind the environmental conservation. There is no littering and also do sustainable tourism practices in the community.

What is the best time to visit the Gorilla Guardians Village?

Travelers on their Rwanda safari can visit the Gorilla Guardians village at any time of the year. This activity is usually done after their gorilla trekking in the Volcanoes National Park. Each season has something for visitors to this village. Participate in crop planning and harvesting during wet seasons and dry seasons respectively.

How to access the Gorilla Guardians Village?

The Gorilla Guardians Village can be accessed by either road or air. By road, you will take a drive through the tarmacked roads. The road covers a distance of about 110 kilometers which is about 2 hours and 30 minutes drive. You can schedule a domestic flight from the Kigali airport to the Ruhengeri airport near Kinigi Park headquarters in the Volcanoes National Park. Then later you with a short drive to the village.

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