Gorilla tourism, bird watching, classic game drives, nature walks, cultural experiences, hiking, and lakeside relaxation are just some of the ways to spend your safari to Rwanda. The country has experienced a dynamic transformation since the tragic genocide that took place in 1994. Memorials are scattered throughout the country, but the people of the “Land of a Thousand Hills” do not let history control their destiny, and visitors have the opportunity to develop a deep appreciation for the growth and unity of the Rwandan people.
Conservation organizations, government agencies, and ordinary Rwandans have developed strategies to ensure long-term prosperity for the next generation, founded on the country’s many natural treasures, the best-known of which are the Virunga’s mountain gorillas of Rwanda.
The country also offers magnificent hiking and trekking through dense rain forests to the summits of volcanic peaks, and even high above the tree canopy. In Rwanda you are always near amazing wildlife, both large and small. The treetops are filled with the chatter of primates and the calls of birds. Butterflies drift along wind currents in search of the perfect wildflowers. As you explore the country’s outback, you sense the presence of the sovereigns who once ruled here, and you may even meet Rwandans who keep alive ancient traditions and crafts that go back many centuries.
The top adventure activities to do in Rwanda;
The Captivating Mountain Gorillas of Rwanda
Thanks to the incredible work of Dian Fossey and other global conservationists, Africa’s mountain gorillas have captured the hearts and minds of people around the world. If seeing these creatures in the wild is your ultimate dream, tour their natural habitat in Volcanoes Park. Efforts to protect mountain gorillas from the effects of habitat destruction, poaching, and other threats have led to the creation of an amazing infrastructure that provides the privacy and support the gorillas need to not only survive in the modern world, but thrive for generations to come.
The Rwandan government restricts the number of visitors who are allowed to view the gorillas, and this means that securing your premium spot for a mountain gorilla trek is a privilege few people experience. Estimates indicate that approximately half of the mountain gorillas in the world live in the Virunga Mountains that include the Rwandan Volcanoes National Park, so your primate trek through the montane forests will be rewarded with an hour of watching the gorillas engage in natural behaviors.
The heartwarming scene will highlight the close bonds between the members of the gorilla family, as well as the playful antics of gorilla infants. The presence of a powerful silverback will stir your emotions as he sits quietly, ever watchful of his family, with a gentle nature that makes human onlookers feel connected in an unexpected way. Participating in a mountain gorilla trek in Volcanoes National Park requires a great deal of coordination, as relatively limited permits are issued each day.
World-Class Hiking & Trekking
If you daydream about climbing, hiking and trekking in the African highlands bush, Rwanda is the preeminent destination for your outdoor vacation. Both Nyungwe Forest and Volcanoes Park offer superb networks of trails that take you into some of the most breathtaking landscapes on the planet.
The most challenging of the treks takes you to an elevation of 4507 meters, to the snow-capped summit of Mount Karisimbi in Volcanoes National Park, the highest peak of the eight major volcanoes in the Virunga field. The two-day trek will challenge you physically and mentally while immersing you in the beauty of four distinct vegetation zones.
The 6-7 hour amatuer ascent hike takes you near agricultural fields, through a forest, and near the Dian Fossey gravesite before reaching the unexpected surprise of a crater lake at the summit.
Meet Other Primates
Mountain gorillas are the best-known of Rwanda’s primates, but the country offers many other scampering creatures to delight visitors, including chimpanzees, golden monkeys, blue monkeys, and black and white colobus. Chimpanzees are considered the most human-like of primates, and Nyungwe National Park is the premium destination in Rwanda for chimpanzee viewing experiences. Just before daylight, you start a journey into the forests where families of chimps live in a natural habitat.
The effort to find them makes for a wondrous combination of adventure and mystery as you follow the keen leadership of a professional guide, learning the nuances of tracking and locating these fast-moving animals. Each day the groups of chimps move through the forest in search of food before finding a secluded place to build their nests and rest for the night. Fortunately, our guides are experts in locating the chimpanzees, so your chances of seeing them are very good.
Another primate species that thrills our guests is the golden monkey, a colorful species that constantly scampers through the treetops, stopping only to dine upon fruits and leaves. The golden monkeys of Rwanda can be found in the incredible bamboo forests of Volcanoes Park, as well as Gishwati-Mukura Forest in the northwestern part of the country. Unconfirmed sightings have also been reported in Nyungwe Forest.
Experience the Culture of Rwandan People
The three cultures of Rwanda once clashed, largely over socio-economic differences, but today the Tutsi, Hutu, and Twa peoples represent a common commitment to the betterment of all Rwandan people. Through unity, collaboration, and absolute dedication, the people of Rwanda take every measure to ensure that the fabric of their country is never again torn by genocide and other crimes against humanity. Meeting some of the people from these three tribes allows you to see the value of each of their cultures and their pride in the homeland.
Our goal is to provide our guests with authentic cultural engagements with Rwandan people while ensuring the privacy and respect that villagers need to maintain their cultural traditions. The activities allow villagers to share their culture, arts, beliefs, and much more, while providing a source of income that supports education, medical care, and other valuable resources.
At Gorilla Guardians Village, outside Volcanoes National Park, guests are greeted by an amazing presentation featuring traditional drumming and dancing coupled with warm, heartfelt Rwandan hospitality. You visit a replica of the king’s house, learn about traditional medicine, meet children at the local school, and even sample some delicious food and banana beer.
During your visit to Nyungwe National Park, take some time to explore Banda Village, in the heart of the park, and Kitabi Cultural Village, on the eastern edge of the park. With advance preparation, you can even stay overnight in the villages to see another side of day-to-day life here. Families traveling with older children always find the cultural activities in Rwanda to be educational and interesting for the loved ones.
Unique & Unforgettable Beach Escape
Believe it or not, Rwanda is home to one of Central Africa’s best beach escapes! Lake Kivu is the 18th deepest lake on the planet, with a total surface area of 2700 square kilometers at an elevation of 1460 meters. Imagine spending a few days exploring Rwanda’s lush green rain forests, communing with mountain gorillas, tracking chimpanzees, and walking in the footsteps of Rwandan kings, and then traveling a short distance to a sparkling lake and lovely beach for some rejuvenation.
Lake Kivu offers endless possibilities for fun-filled beach days, including sailing, water sports, fishing, beachfront lounging, and much more! The splendid scenery does much to relax you. Explore the lake by way of a charter boat that will take you to one of the lakeside towns. Gisenyi is the most developed, with tranquil accommodations and post-colonial architecture nestled against sandy beaches dotted with swaying palm trees. Pine-covered hills invite guests to visit Kibuye, in the middle of the lakeshore, and Cyangugu, in the south.