What to do in Rwanda
Rwanda, though small and landlocked, offers remarkable diversity, making it a must-visit destination. The renowned Volcanoes National Park stands out, where tracking endangered mountain gorillas delivers a profoundly humbling safari experience. Rwanda’s richness extends to primate tracking, including golden monkeys in Volcanoes and Nyungwe, and chimpanzees in Nyungwe Forest. These treks vary in duration but generally require 2-4 hours, with up to an hour of precious ape encounter time. Beyond primates, Akagera National Park houses larger mammals like elephants, buffalos, rhinos, and lions. Private game drives there offer a personalized adventure and seamless combinations with other Rwandan destinations.
Track mountain gorillas
Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park offers the iconic and highly sought-after opportunity to trek with mountain gorillas, of which fewer than 1,000 remain in the wild. The physically demanding journey is well-suited to active individuals. Mountain gorilla permits cost $1,500 per person per trek, and trekkers receive an hour with a habituated gorilla family after a briefing at the park headquarters.
Observe the chimpanzees
In Rwanda, after gorillas, chimpanzee treks in Nyungwe National Park are highly sought-after. Observing these intelligent, social primates in their natural habitat reveals their diverse behaviors. The activity, suitable for those fit for a few hours of hiking, occurs in a park ranging from 1,600 to 2,590 meters above sea level.
Canopy tree walks
Nyungwe Forest hosts various primate species, rich flora, fauna, and birdlife. Exploring on foot offers deep insight into the ancient rainforest’s ecosystem. The canopy walk, a 160-meter suspended bridge 70 meters above the forest floor, provides elevated forest views and is a recommended activity bookable through your lodge.
Community projects and village walks
Rwandans are warm, proud, and passionate about their country, culture, and traditions. Exploring local villages on foot provides insights into their way of life. Many lodges offer community-focused activities, which can complement your safari or gorilla experiences.
Game drives in Akagera
Akagera National Park offers game drives and safaris with opportunities to see larger mammals such as elephants, buffalo, lions, and giraffes. While not on par with other East African national parks, it’s a great choice for experiencing a Rwanda safari, which can be easily combined with other destinations in the country. Private game drives in 4×4 safari jeeps with a knowledgeable English-speaking guide are available.
Visit Kigali’s museums and explore local artist workshops
Kigali, scarred by the Rwandan genocide less than 30 years ago, houses a genocide museum with the remains of over 250,000 victims. Despite its somber nature, understanding the genocide’s impact and the resilience of the local people is inspiring. A private guided tour, led by a local guide with personal experiences from the war, is available. Kigali is also emerging as a hub for local artists and artisans, and we can arrange visits to workshops and craft stores for shopping.
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