Lake Kivu

As one of Africa’s famed Great Lakes, Lake Kivu is the largest body of water found in Rwanda. Sitting within steep terraced hills, the lake itself is visually stunning. Kivu, derived from the Bantu word meaning lake, covers 2700km² and at points is close to 500m deep!

The lake has one other secret too. Due to the fact that it sits on the tectonic plates of the East African greater rift, with volcanic activity underneath, it is filled with both carbon dioxide as well as methane. This is due to the waters of Kivu interacting with the magma beneath the tectonic plates. Currently, because 55 billion cubic metres of methane can be found deep in the lake (at around 300m), the Rwandan government will soon begin to extract the gas.

Visitors to Lake Kivu normally stay at one of the tourist towns surrounding it. These are Cyangugu, Kibuye, and Gisenyi although there are many smaller towns to be discovered by the intrepid explorer. The lake and surrounding hills are filled with a variety of activities. Many choose to take a boat trip to visit Idjwi, the tenth largest inland island on Earth, found in the waters of Kivu itself.

Although the lake is not abundant with fish as many others are in the region, avid fisherman can still catch up to 28 species including the Nile Tilapia, especially from the town of Gisenyi, the hub of water sports activity on the lake.

Kibuye, situated in the south, boasts the beautiful, warm waters found at Nayakabuye while the nearby Rugege forest is filled with a range of wildlife, hikes, and trails. Of course, as with most of the bodies of water in Africa, bird watching is a favoured activity. Expect to see malachite kingfishers, crowned cranes and pelicans to name a few. Kivu has much to offer and is an excellent place to spend some time while in Rwanda.

Check out our top Rwanda itineraries!

Just Gorillas!

  • Gorilla Trekking in Uganda
  • Starts and ends in Rwanda

Gorillas & Golden Monkeys

  • Kigali City Tour
  • Gorilla Trekking
  • Golden Monkey Trekking

Best of Both Countries

  • Gorilla Trekking (Uganda)
  • Golden Monkey Trek (Rwanda)
  • Kigali City Tour
  • Cultural Visits

Gorilla Habituation Trek

  • 4 Hour Gorilla Habituation Trek in Uganda
  • Kigali City Tour

Gorillas & Golden Monkeys

    • Gorilla Trekking
    • Golden Monkey Trekking
    • Super Deluxe eco-lodge
    • Unique eco-tourism activities
***SUPER DELUXE LODGE***

Double Trekker

  • 2 x Gorilla Treks in Uganda
  • Private Canoe Excursion
  • Scenic Hiking (optional)
  • Kigali City Tour

Gorillas & Lakes

  • Gorilla Trekking
  • Golden Monkey Trekking
  • Lake Kivu
  • Kigali City Tour (full day)

Perfect Primates

  • Kigali City Tour
  • Golden Monkey Trekking in Rwanda
  • Gorilla Trekking in Uganda
  • Chimpanzee Trekking in Uganda

Akagera & Apes

  • Akagera National Park
  • Safari Boat Cruise & Game Drives
  • Gorilla Trekking
  • Golden Monkey Trekking
***SAVE 30% ON GORILLA PERMITS IN LOW SEASON***

Gorillas, Monkeys & Chimps

  • Gorilla Trekking
  • Golden Monkey Trekking
  • Lake Kivu
  • Chimpanzaa Trekking
  • Tree Top Canopy Walk

Gorillas, Lake Kivu & Akagera

  • Gorilla Trekking
  • Visit Lake Kivu
  • Kigali City & Cultural Tour
  • Akagera National Park

Gorillas & Migration

  • Kigali City Tour
  • Gorilla Trekking
  • Serengeti National Park
  • Great Wildebeest Migration

Gorillas & Tanzania Safari

  • Gorilla Trekking
  • Community Guided Walk
  • Direct flight into the Serengeti
  • Central Serengeti (seasonal migration viewing)

Discover Rwanda

  • Game drives in Akagera NP
  • Gorillas & Golden Monkey Trekking
  • Visit Lake Kivu
  • Chimp & Colobus Monkey Trekking

Ultimate Rwanda

  • Akagera National Park
  • Nyungwe National Park
  • Gorilla Trekking
  • Golden Monkey Trekking
***SUPER DELUXE LODGES***

Gorillas, Crater & Migration

  • Kigali City Tour
  • Gorilla Trekking (Rwanda)
  • Lake Manyara National Park
  • Ngorongoro Crater
  • Serengeti National Park
  • Includes a free night on safari
***SPECIAL OFFER***

Gorillas & Southern Tanzania

  • Gorilla Trekking
  • Golden Monkey Trekking
  • Ruaha National Park
  • Game Drives & Walking Safaris
***SPECIAL OFFER***

Ultimate Apes Safari

  • Kigali City Tour
  • Golden Monkey Trek (Rwanda)
  • Gorilla Trek (Uganda)
  • Queen Elizabeth National Park
  • Chimpanzee Trekking
  • Murchison Falls & Ziwa Rhinos