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Rwanda

Why Rwanda holidays and gorilla safaris are truly unique...

Nestled just south of the equator, Rwanda is commonly known as ‘Le Pays des Milles Colines’ or ‘The Land of a Thousand Hills’ and mystifies with its undulating luscious mountains and chain of seven volcanoes that punctuate Central Africa’s landscape. Although primarily known for its gorilla safaris, offering one of the most emotional and spellbinding wildlife experiences known to man, Rwanda holidays offer much more to the intrepid traveller from tracking chimpanzees to climbing volcanic peaks.

Forest Primates

Rwanda overview, forest primates

Rwanda offers some of the most breathtaking scenery in Africa, be it the dramatic Virunga volcanoes bordering Uganda and Democratic Republic of Congo or the forest of Nyungwe, one of the largest montane forests in Central Africa, home to chimpanzees and large groups of Colobus monkeys. Parc National des Volcans (Volcanoes National Park) is located in northwest Rwanda and is an area of thickly vegetated rainforest and bamboo providing shelter to endangered golden monkeys and approximately one third of the world’s remaining mountain gorilla population. It is also where primologist Dian Fossey carried out her seminal work, and which was her adopted home and place of rest. Dian expressed the feeling of coming face-to-face with silverback mountain gorillas as "The expression in his eyes was unfathomable. Spellbound I returned his gaze - a gaze that seemed to combine elements of enquiry and acceptance." It is an experience only those who have lived can fully understand. 

Deep within the thickets of Nyungwe lies another gripping wildlife encounter. Here chimpanzees crash noisily through the forests, and witnessing these distant relatives and their human-like behaviour is another highlight of any Rwanda holiday. Conservation also plays an important role in local tourism and there is a strong ethos of preservation of rare primates; many visitors find it rewarding to know that they are reinforcing the good work of the local organisations by contributing to park fees and permits. 

Everyday Rwanda and Safari Combinations

Rwanda gorilla safari

Aside from the primate world, Lake Kivu is the largest lake in Rwanda, where the towns of Kibuye and Gisenyi afford terrific lake views. This idyllic lake is also home to some of the best inland beaches on the continent, remote island communities and there are ample activities such as canoeing and windsurfing on offer. With the widely documented problems of 1994 and the Tutsi genocide firmly in the past, Rwanda is a prosperous country and tourism has played a vital role in its recovery, which is evidenced in the heart-warming reception you will receive from Rwandans.

Due to its compactness, we recommend Rwanda to those who wish to enjoy a gorilla tracking safari in a shorter amount of time. With shorter connections than similar countries, such as Uganda, it is possible to see more in just a few days. If you do have more time, Rwanda works well combined with neighbouring Uganda, or alternatively the big game destinations of Kenya and Tanzania.

Download our free gorilla tracking guide. 

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Speak to one of our consultants now:

Call from UK +44(0)1273 691 642
Toll Free from US 1866 357 6569
Call from Australia 1800 66 8890
Email sales@naturalworldsafaris.com

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Free Gorilla Tracking Guide

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Travel Facts: Rwanda

Flight Time from UK 

12h00m (via Nairobi) 

Time Difference 

GMT+2 

Best Time to Go 

Jun – Mar (Exc. Nov) 

Language 

French / Kinyarwanda / English 

Currency 

Rwandan Franc (RWF) 

Main Airline Carrier 

Kenya Airways, Brussels Airlines 

Capital City 

Kigali

Mountain Gorillas in the Wild

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