One of the most unforgettable safari experiences is trekking for Gorillas in the Virunga Mountains! But Rwanda has so much more to be explored and is worthy of an entire holiday on its own!
One of the smallest countries on the African mainland, Rwanda is located a few degrees south of the equator in the African Great lake’s region, bordered by Tanzania, Burundi, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. The country, infamous for its dreadful genocide in 1994 when almost a million people died, has had a huge turn-around and is now one of the safest, friendliest and most incredible tourist destinations on the continent. The majority of its tourism being centred around the Mountain Gorilla Trekking experience.
There are three different locations within Rwanda that stand out from a tourism perspective. Volcanoes National park being the most famous for its Mountain Gorilla conservation success and history of Dian Fossey, the primatologist who was based here and made famous through the film ‘Gorillas in the mist’.
To the east the mountains subside to grassy savanna where you will find the lesser known, but up-and-coming Akagera National Park, run by African Parks. Akagera now harbours Rwanda’s only population of all members of the Big 5 and is also one of the largest protected wetlands in the region.
Then in the south-west of the countries lies one of Africa’s oldest rain forests – the Nyungwe Forest National Park which immensely diverse in flora and fauna. The forest is home to 13 different species of primate, with Chimpanzee’s being the main attraction.
- One of the fastest growing economies in Africa.
- Arguably the safest and friendliest country on the continent.
- Main tourism attraction is the Mountain Gorillas in Volcanoes National Park.
- Has all members of the Big 5 in Akagera National Park.
- One of the highest human densities in Africa.
- Currency known as the Rwandan franc.
Why we like it:
- Unforgettable Mountain Gorilla experiences.
- Big 5 viewing in Akagera National Park.
- Home to one of Africa’s last rain forests – Nyungwe Forest.
- Immersive backpacking walking trails in Akagera.
- Big emphasis on community development and benefits with great projects.
- Combines very well with safaris in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.
Locations in Rwanda
When to go
Much like neighbouring country Uganda, it is possible to visit Rwanda all year round. But by far the most popular time to visit Rwanda is during the two dry seasons – December to February & June to end of September. This then also means that Rwanda has two wet seasons – October to end November & March to May.
With Rwanda being a popular destination for safari it’s important to book long in advance particularly in the peak dry seasons and even more so if you wish to embark on Gorilla Trekking experiences. With limited numbers of Gorilla Permits, we recommend for these to be secured even before accommodation is confirmed to avoid disappointment.
The Walking Trail season in Akagera National Park is limited to August, September & October. This period is a suitable window between the fire season and the second rainy season of the year. The climate is usually moderate to warm with average temperatures being uniform throughout the year.
Safaris in Rwanda
Combine Volcanoes National Park with Akagera National Park and Nyungwe Forest National Park for a great all-in-one safari! Gorillas, Chimpanzees and the Big 5 all in Rwanda!
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