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When to go to Rwanda

The Best Time to go to Rwanda

Realistically, Rwanda can be visited at any time of the year for a gorilla safari. The best time visit Rwanda is from mid-May to mid-October, this is the long dry season and has perfect conditions for tracking gorillas.

There are four seasons to consider when planning your Rwanda safari, however the weather is fairly temperate and favours travel year round, thanks to its compact size, proximity to the equator and high altitude, which gives it a fresh highland feel and consistent temperature. The average daytime temperature is around 30°C or 86°F. The capital of Kigali enjoys an average temperature of 21°C or 70°F as you cna see from the weather chart below.

Find out more about travelling to Rwanda with our practical planning FAQs.

Rwanda Weather Chart & Best Time To Go

Best time to go to Rwanda

 Best time to go key

The above bar is a quick reference when to go guide for Rwanda holidays showing the best and worst times to go. As referenced above, you can actually track gorillas year round in Rwanda, however you will want to bear in mind that the rainier months will make tracking more difficult with muddy conditions.

Rwanda weather chart

March – mid-May

This is Rwanda’s long rain season, and it can be unrelenting, which is particularly marked in the mountainous regions. Gorilla tracking is less suited to this period, although if you are looking to track the chimpanzees in the Nyungwe area this can be an optimum time, as the figs and fruits within the forest ripen and they tend to see seen lower down in the trees eating, are more stationary and also seen in larger groups.

Mid May – mid-October

This is the long dry season with ideal conditions for gorilla tracking in Volcanoes National Park and for visiting the Rwanda wildlife overall, so if you have complete flexibility with your dates we would recommend travelling during this time. Animal sightings are more common in this time, with golden monkeys and mountain gorillas as well as habitat tolerant species such as buffalo and elephant all more visible in the dry season. As gorillas reside in the rainforest, we still recommend taking waterproof clothing even during these drier months. This is also peak season in Rwanda, so prices can be higher.

Mid-October – November

A short rains period, these months can also be great for birding, as trees and plants are flowering and visible birdlife is prolific, and it is even possible to enjoy specialist birding trips (specifically late November/early December or late May). Green seasons also make for excellent photography conditions, with rains tending to be quick and heavy before clearing to blue skies – ideal for capturing scenery.

December - February

Another peak time to travel, this short dry period is also better for animal sightings.  The drier periods can also be ideal for those looking to hike, canoe or climb, with no need for shelter from rain. Lodge prices tend to be higher during these busier times of year.

Experts View

Paul our Rwanda expert says, "my favourite time to go to Rwanda is probably during the month of June as this is where they name the newborn gorillas in the gorilla naming ceremony also known as ‘Kwita Izina’.

Recommended Safaris

Gorillas, Chimpanzees and other Primates
Gorilla tracking in Rwanda safari
Rwanda gorillas and conservation safari

 

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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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