About the Safari

The 10 Days Rwanda Gorilla & Cultural safari is a comprehensive Rwanda safari trip that gives a cross country encounter of Rwanda. This Gorilla safari includes the Kigali city encounter with its rich heritage, the Akagera National Park which is the home of Rwanda’s game and several water bodies including the second largest lake in Rwanda – Lake Ihema which is a boat cruising haven, the Butare encounter with the Nyanza palace, Nyanza memorial and the National Museum, trekking Chimpanzees in the pre historic forest of Nyungwe and community tour, water relaxation on Lake Kivu, whole day Banyarwanda cultural tour at Iby’iwachu cultural village, gorilla trekking in Volcanoes National Park and eventually the eco tour at Urwibutso Ecotourism project at Nyirangarama.

Safari highlight

Day 1: Do Kigali city tour
Day 2: Transfer to Akagera National Park & do boat cruise.
Day 3: Game drive & transfer to Butare.
Day 4: Encounter Butare & transfer to Nyungwe Forest National Park
Day 5: Carry out Chimpanzee trekking & cultural experience
Day 6: Drive to Gisenyi town.
Day 7: Encounter the Iby’iwachu cultural village.
Day 8: Do Gorilla Trekking in Volcanoes National Park.
Day 9: Undertake Golden Monkey tracking experience.
Day 10: Drive to Kigali city.

A Gorilla in Rwanda

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Description:

Day 1: Do Kigali city tour

After your breakfast, embark on Kigali city tour to mark the beginning of your 10 days Rwanda gorilla Wildlife & cultural safari. On this city tour, you have a lot to enjoy ranging from the sorrowful Gisozi Genocide memorial site to the Presidential Palace which belonged to the former president Juvenal Habyarimana where you will also be able to see the remains of the FALCON 50 presidential plane that was brought down on 6th April 1994. You will also encounter the amazing Kigali suburbs including down town Kigali and Hotel des Mille Collines – the site for the Movie Hotel Rwanda.

Accommodation:

Kigali Serena Hotel (Luxury/upmarket),Hotel Chez Lando (Midrange/standard) or Murugo Rwanda Hostel (Budget/basic).

Day 2: Transfer to Akagera National Park & do boat cruise.

You will embark on the drive to the Akagera National Park as part of your 10 days Rwanda Gorilla Wildlife and Cultural safari after breakfast at your Hotel. It is 130km great scenic drive about 2.5 hours passing through the amazing farmed hill sides of Rwanda as you draw down the lowered landscapes of Eastern Rwanda widely shaped by Savannah influence. You will arrive early for Lunch and relaxation after which you will embark on an amazing boat cruise on one of the multiple lakes in Akagera and the second largest in Rwanda – Lake Ihema where you will be able to enjoy the amazing sights of water waves, animals that inhabit it including; the Hippos and Nile Crocodiles – the second largest reptile in the world not forgetting the splendid water birds and other wildlife drinking on the Lake side.

Accommodation:

Akagera game Lodge (Upmarket/Luxury), Ruzizi Tented Camp (Midrange/Standard) or Dereva Hotel (Budget/basic).

Day 3: Game drive & transfer to Butare.

You will wake up very early to embark on a game drive so as to spot early risers and night hunters drawing back to their hideouts. You will be able to see herds of wildlife beginning their grazing routine and dawn of the sun on the magnificent Akagera Savannah landscapes. Animals to be spotted include; buffalo, elephant, giraffe, zebra, Impala among others. You will return to the lodge for breakfast and relaxation after which you will transfer to Butare 247km about 4 hours’ drive. You will arrive in the afternoon and visit the Nyanza palace – the ancestral home of the royal Kings of Rwanda including King Musinga and his successor King Rudahigwa.

Accommodation:

Barthos Hotel (Upmarket/Luxury), Hotel Faucon(Midrange/Standard) or Shalom Guest House (Budget/Basic).

Day 4:Encounter Butare & transfer to Nyungwe Forest National Park

Wake up for an early breakfast after which you will visit the National Museum at Butare (Ethnography museum) with about 100,000artifacts, the genocide memorial sites at Murambi and Nyanza to pay tribute to the victims of one of the catastrophic events that man has ever experienced in the modern times. You will then transfer in the afternoon to the largest montane forest in East Africa that survived the ice age – the Nyungwe Forest National Park. It is 155km about 3 hours’ drive amidst the scenic views of the farmed hillsides of Rwanda. You will arrive in the evening for an overnight.

Accommodation:

Nyungwe Forest Lodge (Luxury/Upmarket), Nyungwe Hill Top Hotel (Midrange/ Standard) or Gisakura Guest House (Budget/Basic).

Day 5: Carry out Chimpanzee trekking & cultural experience

Wake up for an early morning cup of coffee before embarking on Chimp trekking experience at 08:00am in the Forest of Nyungwe – Rwanda. The experience is quite rewarding as you see Chimps roll down the tree branches; munching fruits, young ones playing amidst their amazing sounds. Their playful and food gathering tactics will leave you in a state of marvel prompting you to fill your camera with amazing photos. In the evening, you can opt to do a community tour to adjacent eco-villages like Friends of Nyungwe Cultural Village and Banda Cultural Village to get immersed in the way of life of the local people and enjoy their traditional performances.

Accommodation:

You will spend an overnight at your previous lodge.

Day 6: Drive to Gisenyi town.

Transfer after breakfast to Gisenyi town 240km about 6 hours’ drive to the north of Nyungwe forest. The journey is quite interesting as it involves the drive along Lake Kivu and the landscapes that overlook it. You will arrive in the afternoon and relax on the famously known Lake Kivu beaches. You will do a boat cruise to explore the adjacent islands and it is also to your discretion to participate in the water and beach sports. Accommodation: Lake Kivu Serena Hotel (Upmarket/Luxury), Hotel Gorillas Lake Kivu (Mid-range/ Standard) or Malahide (Budget/Basic).

Day 7: Encounter the Iby’iwachu cultural village.

After breakfast, continue on your 10 days Rwanda gorilla wildlife and cultural safari by transferring to Iby’iwachu cultural village in Musaze 110km about 2 hours’ drive through the rewarding scenery of Rwanda hill sides and the protruding views of Virunga Volcanoes. This day is designed to have a whole day encounter with the local people – Rwandese at the Iby’ iwachu cultural village. yu wil get immersed in the local peoples’ way of life, how they prepae their food, their architecture, their customs, their replica of the King coronation, Indeginous medicinal Knowledge and their entertainment. It is a whole day experience and you can opt to spend a night in their traditional hut or continue to sleep in Volcanoes National Park.

Accommodation:

Virunga lodge (Upmarket/Luxury), Gorillas Mountain View Lodge (Midrange/standard) or Kinigi Guest House (Budget/Basic).

Day 8: Do Gorilla Trekking in Volcanoes National Park.

Wake up for an early cup of coffee, before gathering at Kinigi Park Headquarters for briefing about the gorilla trekking activity at 08:00am always conducted by park rangers. This gives highlights about the dos and don’ts while trekking gorillas. After briefing, you will traverse the jungle in search of the splendid mountain gorillas in the company of the park ranger guide which stretches between 2 – 8 hours. You will walk through the luxuriant vegetation, climb raised gradients, ascend down the valleys before you encounter the great mountain gorillas as they munch their food and get astonished by the young gorillas playing and demonstrating their tactics which will prompt you to use up your camera space unknowingly. Your one hour with gorillas is done and return to the lodge for relaxation. You will embark on the visit to the splendid twin lakes of Ruhondo and Burera in the evening.

Accommodation:

You will spend your overnight at the previous lodge.

Day 9: Undertake Golden Monkey tracking experience.

Wake up for an early breakfast before gathering at the park Headquarters – Kinigi to embark on the golden monkey tracking activity as part of your 10 days Rwanda Gorilla wildlife & cultural safari. Briefing starts at 08:00 am after which you will head to the forest in search of these rare and endangered primate species – golden monkeys. In your one hour encounter with them, you will be astonished by their amazing skin color and structure of their nose not forgetting the playful tactics and the chatters of these golden monkeys. Retreat to the lodge for lunch and relaxation. In the evening you can take a visit to the Ruhengeri town and market to enjoy the experience of the African markets or can opt to hike the Dian Fossey grave and her research center at Karisoke.

Accommodation:

Spend an overnight at your private lodge.

Day 10: Drive to Kigali city.

After breakfast, embark on the transfer back to Kigali city. The amazing scenic views of the hill sides en route may not be so enough, therefore a further stop at Urwibutso Ecotourism project at Nyirangarama will generate a complete memory overload. With its foundation in 1983 by Sina Gerald as a bakery and restaurant, the project has expanded to dominate organic fruit and vegetable production and processing in Rwanda. The community members of Rulindo district have benefited a lot from this project in terms of education, incomes and jobs. You will then continue to Kigali city in the afternoon.

End of safari.

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Wild Facts

    Hyrax

  • Scientific Name: Rock hyrax (Procavia capensis), yellow-spotted hyrax (Heterohyrax brucei), tree hyrax (Dendrohyrax dorsalis)
  • Size: 12 inches at the shoulder
  • Weight: 5 to 9 pounds
  • Lifespan: 12 years
  • Habitat: Dry savanna to dense rain forest
  • Diet: Herbivorous
  • Gestation: 7 months
  • Predators: Leopard, pythons, large birds, servals, civets
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