Articles from Britannica Encyclopedias for elementary and high school students. Virunga Mountains in Congo is one of the top Congo Safari attractions tat a traveler can visit and be able to explore the wilderness in DRC. Located in Uganda’s Kisoro District, MGNP is another national park whose limits include a section of the Virunga Mountains. Virunga Mountains, volcanic range north of Lake Kivu in east-central Africa, extending about 50 miles (80 km) along the borders of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, and Uganda. All are volcanoes. There are ten habituated mountain gorilla groups accessible to tourists and tourism has been highly important in their survival. The Okapi is a zebra/giraffe type species, considered to be endangered. The virunga mountains are a chain of mountains that are shared by three countries that is Uganda, Rwanda and Congo and interesting about the mountains is the rich biodiversity that is protected in the different national parks that house the mountains that is to say Mgahinga national park in Uganda, Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda and the Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Corrections? The range runs east-west, perpendicular to the rift valley in which lie Lakes Kivu and Edward. The mountain gorilla (Gorilla beringei beringei) is one of the two subspecies of the eastern gorilla.It is listed as endangered by the IUCN as of 2018.. The Virunga Mountains also known as the Virunga Massif offer one of the most unique tourist attraction sites in Africa. They are located between Lake Edward and Lake Kivu. The Virunga Mountains (also known as Mufumbiro ) are a chain of volcanoes in East Africa, along the northern border of Rwanda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), and Uganda. The 2002 Nyiragongo eruption destroyed much of the nearby city of Goma, Congo, leaving thousands homeless. Virunga National Park lies in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, but mountain gorilla habitat extends across country borders to southwestern Uganda and northeastern of Rwanda, covering over 790,000 hectares. The 11,358 ft tall Mount Nyiragongo and the 10,049 ft tall Mount Nyamuragira, which are both located in the DRC, are the two active volcanoes in the range. Several facts that travelers need to know about Virunga national park of the democratic republic of Congo such as; Virunga lies next to the Albert Rift Valley and Lake Edward. The Virunga Mountains also harbor different kinds of animals’ part from mountain gorillas, plant species, butterflies species, moth species and various species of birds some of which are endemic to his area. The Virunga mountain stretch on an 80 kilometers long area between Lake Kivu and Lake Edward. AVERAGES Virunga Mountains FACTS THE PARK WAS FOUND IN 1925 IT IS SURROUNDED BY VOLCANOES Nearly half of the world's 700-some remaining mountain gorillas live in the Virunga Mountains ELAVATION IS 14,787 THE AVERAGE WEATHER IS 50 DEGREES AVERAGE RAINFALL IS 40 INCHES PER YEAR THE In 1861 the British explorer John Hanning Speke saw the Virunga Mountains from a distance; in 1876 the British explorer Sir Henry Morton Stanley obtained a clear though distant view of the three eastern volcanoes; and Count Adolf von Götzen, a German, explored the two western volcanoes in 1894. Amazing Facts About the Mountain Gorilla. It is 14,557 ft tall, making it the second tallest mountain in the Virunga Mountains range, and the 13th tallest in Africa. They span parts of Uganda, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. That is the same height a skydiver would jump out of a plane. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. An expedition of 20 porters were tragically killed during a hailstorm and snowstorm in on Mount Karisimbi in 1908. The live high in the steep mountain forests of four different national parks in Africa in Uganda, Rwanda and Congo. Of its eight major volcanic peaks, the highest is Karisimbi at 14,787 feet (4,507 meters). Six of the major peaks in the Virunga Mountains … The best book on Africa's mountains I know of is: Hermann Kiendler, Afrika: die höchsten Berge des Schwarzen Kontinents, Panico Alpinverlag, Köngen 2011, 408pp. Virunga National Park. 10 Facts about Mountain Gorillas Mountain Gorillas share 98% DNA with humans. The lava field of these two volcanoes has remained active, with notable eruptions occurring in 1912, 1938, 1948, the 1970s, and 2002. Get exclusive access to content from our 1768 First Edition with your subscription. Omissions? The volcanic mountain range features eight major volcanoes. The gorillas attract around 20,000 tourists each year and people booking tours directly and indirectly helps fund the conservation and protection of their home. The name Virunga (“Volcanoes”), probably of Swahili derivation, has prevailed over the earlier Mufumbiro (“That Which Cooks”), which is still used in Uganda. Individual volcanoes bear Rwandan descriptive names, such as Sabinio (Sabinyo; “Old Man with Large Teeth”) and Muhavura (“Landmark,” or “Guide”). These primates are threatened by habitat loss, poaching, disease, and war. Virunga Mountains, Virunga also spelled Birunga, also called Mufumbiro Mountains, volcanic range north of Lake Kivu in east-central Africa, extending about 50 miles (80 km) along the borders of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, and Uganda. Visit Virunga! Farther north are the Rutshuru Falls and the Mai ya Moto sulfur springs. The 11,358 ft tall Mount Nyiragongo and the 10,049 ft tall Mount Nyamuragira, which are both located in the DRC, are the two active volcanoes in the range. The Virunga Mountains (Virunga massif/Virunga ranges) is a block of Chain Mountains found in East – central Africa. Several tourist activities are offered in the park, like gorilla visits, golden monkey visits, lake and cave tours, and volcano climbing activities. They live at elevations of up to 8,000 to 13,000 feet (1,500m- 4000m). The peak straddles the border between the DRC and Rwanda. The tallest peak of the Virunga Range, Mount Karisimbi, is an inactive volcano. Mikeno and Sabinio are the oldest of these, dating from the early part of the Pleistocene Epoch (the Pleistocene began about 2,600,000 years ago and lasted until about 11,700 years ago); their craters have disappeared, and erosion has imposed a jagged relief. Only two of these volcanoes are active, while the others are dormant. What Is The Difference Between Near East and Middle East. The Virunga Mountains stretches its boundaries in the countries of Uganda, Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo. Navigate parenthood with the help of the Raising Curious Learners podcast. The Virunga Range lies along the borders of Uganda, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo which leis in the eastern part of Africa. Many lesser cones flank the major volcanoes. The name "Virunga" is an English version of the Kinyarwanda word ibirunga, which means "volcanoes". The Virunga Mountains ( Official Website) The Virunga Mountains are also referred to as the Mufumbiro Mountains/Virunga Massif; is made up of 8 volcanoes found in three countries; Uganda, DR Congo and Rwanda. The highest point in Central Africa, Margherita Peak (16,795 feet [5,119 metres]), whose summit bears residual features of glaciation, is located on the eastern fringe of the Rift Valley on the border of Congo (Kinshasa) and Uganda.…. Karisimbi is Africa’s eighth-tallest mountain, and its summit usually remains snow-capped during the dry season. The southern sector of Congo’s Virunga National Park includes those portions of the mountains that are within Congo; the southern flanks of the central and eastern mountains comprise Volcanoes National Park in northwestern Rwanda; and Gorilla National Park includes the Ugandan slopes of Mgahinga. Virunga mountains straddling the borders of Rwanda, Uganda and Democratic Republic of Congo, the Virunga are not mountain range as such, but a chain of isolated freestanding volcanic cones strung along a fault line associated with the same geological process that formed the Rift Valley. The Virunga Volcanoes are on pages 270 to 301. Other major mountains within the range include Mount Muhabura (13,540 ft), Mount Bisoke (12,180 ft), Mount Sabyinyo (12,050 ft), Mount Gahinga (11,400 ft), Mount Nyiragongo (11,400 ft), and Mount Nyamuragira (10,031 ft). All maps, graphics, flags, photos and original descriptions © 2020 worldatlas.com. Later in the Pleistocene (about 900,000 to 130,000 years ago), Karisimbi, Visoke, Mgahinga, and Muhavura appeared, all but Karisimbi possessing a crater summit. Mount Mikeno is a dormant volcano located in the DRC. Around one third of the world’s mountain gorillas live in the resource-rich Virunga mountains, the exploitation of which threatens the species’ very existence. The park was established in 1925, and designated as a World Heritage Site in 1979. Along with its abundance of wildlife, Virunga National Park has an exceptional diversity of landscapes ranging from the glaciers of the Rwenzori Mountains, at over 5,000 meters, to impenetrable forests, savannas, rivers, and lake ecosystems. The main crater of Nyiragongo is about three-quarters of a mile (1.2 km) across and contains a liquid lava pool. It is commonly known for being a home to the golden monkeys and the endangered mountain gorillas. Introduction. It stands as the second highest of the Virunga ranges and the 13thtallest mountain in African continent standing at an elevation of 4,437 meters above sea level. The Virunga Mountains are a mountain range, or group of mountains, in east-central Africa. The park protects a significant population of mountain gorillas and golden monkeys, as well as numerous other species. Mount sabyinyo is an extinct volcano in eastern Africa in the Virunga Mountains located north-east of Lake Kivu, one of the African Great Lakes, and west of Lake Bunyonyi in Uganda. The most recent eruptions were recorded in 2006 and 2010. This article was most recently revised and updated by, https://www.britannica.com/place/Virunga-Mountains, Virunga Mountains - Children's Encyclopedia (Ages 8-11), Virunga Mountains - Student Encyclopedia (Ages 11 and up). Only two of these volcanoes are active, while the others are dormant. Established in 1991, the park has an area of about 33.7 square km, which makes it the country's smallest national park. It lies on the border of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda and Uganda. Far less abundant and more beautiful than oil or gold, this majestic great ape is the Congo’s real treasure. Located in northwestern Rwanda, Volcanoes National Park has an area of 160 square km and includes five volcanoes of the Virunga Mountains. The most recent eruptions were recorded in 2006 and 2010. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. MGNP is developing as an eco-tourism destination in Uganda. The 14,787 ft tall Mount Karisimbi is the Virunga Range’s highest volcano, and the 11,923 ft tall Mount Sabyinyo is the oldest mountain in the range. There are about a thousand mountain gorillas remaining on Earth, and about half live in the forests of the Virunga mountains in central Africa. The Virunga Mountains, which are also known as Mufumbiro, are a chain of volcanoes, spread along the borders of Uganda, Rwanda, and DR Congo in East Africa, located between Lake Edward and Lake Kivu. The Virunga Mountains lie between Lakes Kivu and Edward and extend into Rwanda and Uganda. Mountain Gorillas got their name for a reason. There are eight major peaks. Virunga national park is one of the national parks found in democratic republic of Congo, the park is generally forested and lies in the Congo- Nile watershed area covering an area of 7,768 square kilometers. Modern access to the western volcanoes is from Goma and Gisenyi (Rwanda); the remaining mountains are located within the circuit of roads connecting Goma and Rutshuru (Congo), Kisoro (Uganda), and Ruhengeri and Gisenyi (Rwanda). The six volcanoes of the centre and east are extinct. 17 Facts about Mountain Gorillas: There are several interesting things about gorillas and that’s why they are highly sought after by both the tourist and poachers. In recent years, the wildlife in the park have been significantly damaged due to high rates of poaching and the Congo Civil War. The volcanic mountain range features eight major volcanoes. These 5 facts about Virunga national park give travelers knowledge / key points about Virunga national park which was initially called Albert national park due to the fact that it was founded by king Albert 1 of Belgium. At 14,557 feet (4,437 meters) Mount Mikeno is the second highest peak in the Virunga mountains and the 13th highest mountain of Africa. The Karisoke Research Center was established to study the mountain gorillas living in the region. Virunga is Swahili for volcano. Roughly one quarter of the world's population of the endangered mountain gorilla species is located in Virunga National park. Not more than 20,000 years ago Nyiragongo and Nyamulagira emerged at the western end of the chain, both with extensive craters. The word “ibirunga” (comes from Kinyarwanda dialect) which literally means “Mountains” is where the word Virunga is … Updates? Located in East Africa, the Virunga Mountains are a series of volcanoes that extends along northern part of Rwanda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), and Uganda. 5. The great volcanoes of this range, clothed in cloud forests, include the dormant Mikeno, Karisimbi, Visoke, and Sabinio (Sabinyo), as well as the active Nyiragongo and Nyamulagira. Facts about Virunga Mountains – Virunga mountains also known as Virunga mountain ranges are situated three countries of east Africa and they been protected under one world heritage site to form the Virunga conservation massif. In English, there is Mary Jobe Akeley, Congo Eden, Dodd, Mead & Co., New York 1950, 356pp. The range lies between the Lake Kivu and Lake Edward, and is an extension of the Albertine Rift Mountains. Of its eight major volcanic peaks, the highest is Karisimbi, at 14,787 feet (4,507 metres). A fitting name for these volcanic mountains with the highest point at 5,100 meters. Mount Mikeno is situated in Congo at the Virunga national park. Conservation protects the mountains’ alpine vegetation, as well as wildlife that includes the golden monkey and the mountain gorilla. Virunga National Park spans an area of 7,800 square km in eastern DRC and encompasses parts of the Virunga Mountains within its boundaries. Virunga is the world's only park to house three great ape species, including the mountain gorilla, chimpanzees, and Grauer's gorillas. After purchasing a permit for your gorilla visit, you will trek through the forest to enjoy watching and learning about these magnificent animals with … They are located in the East African Rift Valley and it is alleged that they are park of this Rift. Thus, a number of protected areas in the form of national parks have been established in the mountain region. Presently, however, only eight visitors are allowed in the park per day to see the great apes. The slopes of Mount Mikeno play host to a number of Virunga’s critically endangered mountain gorilla families. Encyclopaedia Britannica's editors oversee subject areas in which they have extensive knowledge, whether from years of experience gained by working on that content or via study for an advanced degree.... A crater of Mount Nyiragongo, Congo (Kinshasa). Unfortunately only in German. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). The Virunga Mountains The Virunga Mountains: Virunga Volcanoes is a chain of about 8 volcanoes. The park’s magnificent volcanic mountain ran… The Virunga Mountains rise out of densely populated plateaus that are inhabited mostly by Rwandan cultivators and, in certain areas, by cattle herders. The mountain range is a branch of the Albertine Rift Mountains, which border the western branch of the East African Rift. Virunga National Park is Africa’s oldest National Park and home to the world’s largest lava lake found on top of Mount Nyiragongo one of the most active volcanoes in the world that has erupted over 32 times. By Oishimaya Sen Nag on February 13 2018 in Environment. Three of the eight major volcanoes in the Virunga Mountains range are located in this national park, and it is also a critical habitat for endangered mountain gorillas. Tourism re-opened in Virunga National Park at the beginning of 2014 and continues to go from strength to strength, receiving endorsements from publications including Travel+Leisure, NYT and Town and Country to name a few! The mountain gorillas are a critically endangered species and the Virunga Mountains is one of its last remaining habitats. Its one of the toughest mountains to climb among the Virunga. The national park is home to several threatened species, including mountain gorillas, African elephants, and African buffaloes. The mountain is also said to date by to the Pleistocene Epoch. The mountain is part of Virunga National Park and is a critical habitat for highly threatened mountain gorillas. …boundary is composed of the Virunga (Mufumbiro) Mountains, the Ruwenzori Range, and the Western Rift Valley (, …Kivu and of Rwanda, the Virunga volcanoes form an east-west–trending range. The mountain carries the local nickname "Old Man's Teeth," because its serrated summit resembles worn teeth in a gum line. Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article. The Virunga Range is a volcanic region which has the most mesmerizing sights of the 450 mountain gorillas which live in this region of volcanic pleasures. Virunga National Park. +250 780 870 670 +256 701 703 573 info@virungaparkcongo.com The crater of Muhavura contains a small lake. The 14,787 ft tall Mount Karisimbi is the Virunga Range’s highest volcano, and the 11,923 ft tall Mount Sabyinyo is the oldest mountain in the range. Virunga National Park (covering an area of 790,000 ha) comprises an outstanding diversity of habitats, ranging from swamps and steppes to the snowfields of Rwenzori at an altitude of over 5,000 m, and from lava plains to the savannahs on the slopes of volcanoes. The Virunga Mountains comprise of eight mountains that are found within the Albertine rift that is mount sabyinyo, karisimbi, Gahinga, Bisoke in Rwanda, Muhabura which is shared by Rwanda and Uganda, with Mikeno, Nyiragongo, and Nyamuragira in Congo all of which are dormant mountains apart from mountain Nyamuragira and Nyiragongo which have experienced volcanic activity. The first maps resulted from the major expedition of Adolf Friedrich, duke of Mecklenburg, which was undertaken in 1907–08. The word “Virunga” comes from the word “Ibirunga” which means “Mountains”. 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