September 2015 – Wilderness Safaris is proud to announce its investment into the construction of a new “gorilla” lodge in Rwanda. Expected to open mid-June 2017, Bisate Lodge will be set adjacent to the Volcanoes National Park, home to the iconic Endangered mountain gorilla.
Rwanda, situated along the Western, or Albertine Rift, is one of Africa’s most biodiverse regions. It is a haven of rainforest endemism with undoubtedly its most celebrated wild mammal being the iconic mountain gorilla of the Virunga Massif. The country’s forests also host another of Africa’s great apes, the chimpanzee, as well as a multitude of other primates such as the striking golden monkey, a little-known but magnificent inhabitant of the bamboo forest.
It is around these rare and threatened great ape and primate species that Wilderness Safaris Rwanda will build its new lodge circuit, starting with the launch of Bisate in mid-June 2017. “The opportunity to use the Wilderness Safaris model of responsible ecotourism to contribute to positive conservation and community empowerment in such a unique and exciting environment is exactly why we do what we do”, said Keith Vincent, group CEO. “More than that, we have found the Rwanda government, ecotourism industry and conservation community to be nothing but welcoming and hospitable in partnering with us to pioneer a new kind of ecotourism in this inspirational country.”
Aside from setting a new standard of luxury for lodges in the area and offering the perfect base for mountain gorilla trekking, Bisate Lodge will also be a visionary conservation and community project, with its first phase focusing on indigenous reforestation of a core 26-hectare site. This process has begun in close partnership with the 320-member Tuzamurane Cooperative.
The lodge, sited within the natural amphitheatre of an extinct volcanic cone, will comprise only nine luxurious rooms which will boast spectacular views of the brooding Bisoke, Karisimbi and Mikeno Volcanoes. “We are extremely proud to be adding Rwanda to our African portfolio and to continue building sustainable conservation economies across the continent”, Vincent added.