The historical Musanze Caves in Rwanda

August 26, 2023 | Bujo Safaris

A brief history of Musanze caves.

Bustling Musanze caves are said to have been used as a ground for crowning of kings in the early times of Banyarwanda. The place is believed to be sacred and that's why it was used for this unique herculean ceremony. Musanze is believed to possess powers of gods in it and that's why it was used as the crowning site. 

Elders in the area believed that the place in its own way would provide compelling powers to the kings and therefore all crowning ceremonies were made here.

 A deep dive into the formation of Musanze caves.

These captivating caves were formed over 62 million years ago and they were as a result of basalt layers that compiled together from mountains of Bisoke and Sabinyo. The compiling of the rocks left behind a hole that afterwards went through the processes of weathering which formed the present day shape of the caves with naturalistic steps. 

The basalt layers later on after weathering processes were covered with soil, soil which subsequently favored the growth of lush vegetation that covers the exterior of the caves. 

Location and accessibility of Musanze caves.

Contemporary Musanze caves are located in the northern region of Rwanda in the anxiety-free Musanze district along Ruhengeri – Gisenyi Road. These radiant caves can be accessed by road transport which is approximately a two hours drive through the beaming landforms from the Kigali capital to Musanze. Various modes of transportations on the road can be used for example the buses from Kigali and express. These charge an amount that is less than $50 to take you up to the caves.

What makes Musanze caves unique?

These convulsed caves account for up to two kilometers length, they are majestically covered with lush vegetation cover that also provides euphoric views to the visitors in this area and the more fascinating fact about these caves is that they have naturalistic stairs in their interior. All these combined attract visitors from around the globe to come and have a radiant experience here.

Attractions and activities that can be done in the inclined Musanze caves.

Various exhilarating activities can be done whilst in Musanze and these include;

Canoeing at Mukungwa river. This river is just a few kilometers in the outskirts of Musanze town and it gives blissful views of the vegetation around Musanze and self-accepting canoeing that helps the visitors experience the carefree environment of Musanze. 

Visit to Buhanga Eco park. This dominant eco park was named after the first Rwandan dynamic king. The park provides a self-sustaining system that helps citizens generate their own energy, harvest and produce food and water for their own consumption. There’s views of buildings and sustainable housing for the community which are artistic in nature.

A visit to the grave of Dian Fossey. It is self-approving to note that Dian Fossey was the first primatologist who introduced the science of gorilla habituation in Rwanda and his grave was put here to commemorate his life and findings about the lives of gorillas. Gorilla habituation would have been a myth today in Rwanda if it wasn’t for the efforts of Dian Fossey. So a visit to his grave is so gratifying.

Lake Burera and Ruhondo. These magnificent lakes are also known as the Twin Lakes of Rwanda due to the way they are near each other and they provide a cheered up experience. The composed lakes are just a 20 minutes drive from Musanze town and they also provide charming views of Cyuza islands in lake Burera.

A deeper exploration of Musanze caves. A deep undisturbed and tranquil exploration of Musanze caves is quite exciting as well. In this activity you get to experience the unworried and anxiety free Musanze caves which provides a relaxing experience to travelers leaving them preoccupied and lost in the beauty of Northern Rwanda.

A visit to Imbazi. Mighty Imbazi went down in history as a former orphanage though it is currently a museum. It was made an orphanage after the genocide of Rwanda to cater for children who had lost their parents in the course of the genocide. Therefore, a visit to this well-built place leaves one engaged with the history of Rwanda.

Beautiful scenery of Virunga volcanoes. I feel well pleased to inform you that while at Musanze, a visitor gets to view clearly the dreamy Virunga volcanoes that connect with the clouds in a romantic manner. Such magnificent views provide picturesque moments to photography enthusiasts and people who appreciate natural art. The volcanoes are Mount Karisimbi, Nyiragongo and the serene Mikeno.

Golden monkey tracking is yet another attraction and activity that visitors to Musanze caves often find themselves lost in. Golden monkeys are so lively animals and unique in their own way due to their appearance that is why golden monkey tracking is such an exhilarating activity.

A visit to the Iby’iwacu cultural village. This exciting adventure helps travelers to engage in the distinguished Rwanda culture which is celebrated all over Africa. The cheered up experience of Rwanda ladies and gentlemen entertaining travelers is worthwhile.

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