Hot springs are one of the magnificent tourist attractions that have attracted tourists to Rwanda much as they are rarely explored, owing to the fact that they have not been widely promoted by the Rwanda Development Board as it does with the other tourist activities such as gorilla trekking, Chimpanzee and other primates tracking, canopy walk, Mountain Biskoke and Karisimbi hiking, cultural encounters and game viewing in Akagera National Park. These hot springs offer breathtaking scenery and are widely known for their healing waters and hot temperatures capable of boiling eggs or potatoes within a few minutes. Their hot springs include;
- Gisenyi hot springs
Also referred to as the magic waters, Gisenyi hot springs are situated within Gisenyi district on the eastern shores of Lake Kivu, few kilometers from the southern side of Gisenyi Town. The hot springs have a number of vents with brecciated and silicified quartzite with waters boiling from 70 to 75 Celsius Degrees. Gisenyi hot springs are known as the sick bay where locals bath whenever they experience discomfort or illnesses such as chest pain, stress, and flue in addition to aiding in digestion. When you visit the area, you will find half-naked children, women and bare-chested men lying peacefully in the warm waters while others boiled eggs in tins underneath the openings of the hot springs.
Also near the hot spring is Bralirwa, the local beer and soft drinks manufacturer above an elevated cliff that tourists can always explore after visiting the hot spring.
Nyamyumba hot springs
These hot springs are found within Rubavu district, only 7 kilometers from Rubavu Town and have over the years attracted both local and foreign tourists much as the number of tourists is still low because of impassable roads during the rainy season hence making the site impassable. It is widely known for its medicinal values (healing flue, chronic muscle pain, fibromyalgia, arthritis, and rheumatic diseases) as well as offering opportunities for relaxing and swimming in the warm waters.
Nyakabuye hot springs
Located along the Cyangugu road, approximately 60 kilometers from Cyangugu Town and 241 kilometers away from Kigali City are the Nyakabuye hot springs (also referred as Bugarama hot springs). They are found within the base of a limestone quarry near the prominent Cimerwa Cement factory and before reaching there, you will have to walk through small trails that head to these tinny springs filled with water.
With their high temperatures, it is very possible to boil eggs or potatoes within only 15 minutes. Locals usually swim/bathe within the warm waters and also fetch drinking water because the water is said to possess healing powers against a number of ailments, owing to the existence of chemicals and minerals such as potassium chloride, sodium chloride, Calcium phosphate, Lithium sulphate, and magnesium chloride. Also, there are several beautiful species of water lilies (referred to as Nymphaea Thermarum) that are found in the area. The hot water from these hot springs has been scientifically proven to heal muscle pain and many diseases.
Therefore, on top of their beautiful sceneries, hot springs are popular for their healing powers against ailments and discomforts such as chest pains, muscle stains, and flue among others due to the existence of a number of chemicals and minerals such as lithium sulphate, sodium chloride, and calcium sulphate among others.