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Mountain Gorilla Family Rwanda Ss
Mountain Gorilla Family Rwanda Ss

Top 10 Rwanda Activities

What To Do In Rwanda?
A truly rewarding experience. Rwanda is a country where the rewards are exceptional, but you should prepare yourself for some emotional encounters, whether that is coming face to face with a critically endangered mountain gorilla on the forest slopes of the Virunga Mountains, or a visit to the genocide memorial, before enjoying vibrant Kigali life. It’s a country in the midst of being reborn and there’s a delightful optimism and a determination to get things completely right going forwards. For the traveller, there is also a treasure trove of unique experiences and some of Africa’s finest safari lodges to be discovered. When you visit Rwanda with Journeysmiths, you are a part of the process of the rebuilding of a potentially great nation.

We’ve compiled a list of our favourite experiences to inspire your imagination.
  • In the Midst of Gorillas
  • Trek to the Chimps
  • Explore Kigali
  • The Thousand Hills by Helicopter
  • The Big Five in Akagera NP
  • Visit the Genocide Memorial
  • A Tour of the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund
  • An Evening with Gorilla Doctors
  • Golden Monkey Trekking
  • Tea Picking in Nyungwe
Gorillas In The Virunga Mountains Rwanda Ss By Onyx9
1. In the Midst of Gorillas
To look into the amber eyes of a mountain gorilla, the world’s largest primate, is a moment that can never be forgotten. You’re in their environment, deep in the Virunga Mountains of Rwanda, and you’ve trekked along mountainous forested trails to be with these mighty close relatives.

A toddler gorilla may tumble and play nearby, or be clutched for comfort; another may forage for food, and you may be lucky enough to encounter a silverback. Such things are likely scenes when you have been granted one of the 96 daily permits to spend an hour with the gorillas of the Volcanoes National Park. Your expert guides will be familiar with each one of them by name and character, for they are our family and deserve to be known.
Chimp In Rwanda Istock 527224640 1 Credit Guenterguni
2. Trek to the Chimps
A rustle of leaves reveals the roost of a chimpanzee high in the branches of a fig tree, as curious about you as you are about him. This will be the first of many rewards for your early-morning departure into the midst of Rwanda’s Nyungwe Forest. Each trek is different, but the chimpanzees thrive here so you will always have encounters with these tremendous and spirited primates.

Along the way, you will also see numerous other of the dozen or so primate species that flourish in the forests of Rwanda, from the ubiquitous vervet monkey to the shy owl faced monkey, but for a connective experience with a fellow ape, chimpanzees take some beating.
Kigali Market Rwanda
3. Explore Kigali
To have spent time in Kigali, Rwanda’s capital city, is to experience the positivity of African growth and development. It’s a bustling place with its eyes firmly set on the future, and you will visit its markets, art galleries and the workshops of innovative entrepreneurs with a local guide when you stay at The Retreat.

You’ll also sample the world-renowned coffees, participate in banana beer making, and discover the wealth of Rwandan cuisine during a cookery class. Not only is The Retreat a stunning luxury refuge, but it is a training centre for the Rwandan hospitality industry, so you will be in good hands as you are shown the breadth of local culture.
Game Drive Helicopter Akagera National Park Magashi
4. The Thousand Hills by Helicopter
It’s known as the land of a thousand hills, and there is no better way to appreciate this than from the air. By helicopter, it’s just a short hop to Akagera, Nyungwe or Volcanoes National Parks, or you could have a scenic flight around colourful Kigali.

Our recommendation would be to take the opportunity to fly to the Virunga volcanoes, passing over the Twin Lakes and Lake Kivu on the way. You will be struck by the lush forests that adorn the rolling landscapes as you skim above the lush canopy.
Wildlife Leopard Close Akagera National Park Magashi
5. The Big Five in Akagera NP
Lying on Rwanda’s eastern border with Tanzania, Akagera National Park is an open expanse of wilderness comprising rivers, lakes and grasslands. As one-third of it is classed as wetland, it teems with life and has been a beacon of success for the re-introduction of many keystone species.

The thriving populations of elephant, rhino, buffalo, lion, leopard, giraffe and zebra in a relatively small area will guarantee a spectacular safari experience for you. It’s a gem of a place to provide your Big Five experience, but also to introduce you to endemic and rare oddities such as the red-faced barbet and the papyrus gonolek.
Genocide Memorial Kigali Rwanda Istock 530482419
6. Visit the Genocide Memorial
Despite the vibrancy and positivity that you will encounter every day of your time in this glorious country, Rwanda’s recent history is challenging. It is estimated that during just 100 days in 1994, up to 800,000 Rwandans were murdered by their neighbours during a brutal tribal civil war. It is perhaps one of the darkest moments in human living memory, and yet there is recovery, reconciliation and hope.

A visit to the Genocide Memorial is more powerful than words can do justice to: it simply cannot be missed if you come to Rwanda, for it will remind you of both the capacity of humans for indescribable cruelty as well as forgiveness and love.
Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund Rwandaistock 673442720
7. A Tour of the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund
In the shadow of Rwanda’s looming volcanoes, the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund welcomes visitors who are interested in the work of the conservationists working with gorillas and the ecosystem that supports them. Pride of place in the development is the Ellen DeGeneres Campus, a large multi-agency centre where the central mission is education.

Wander along the interpretive trails amongst 250,000 native plants, before feasting your senses in the 360-degree immersive video theatre. Over a cup of coffee in the superb Gorilla Café you’ll reflect on how every aspect of the campus, even down to more than 2,000 local construction jobs it created, is inspirational.
Gorilla Sabyinyo Parc National Des Volcans
8. An Evening with Gorilla Doctors
In the mid-1980s, it was estimated that there were fewer than 300 mountain gorillas left in the world, for they had suffered decades of poaching, loss of habitat, life-threatening injuries from snares, and illnesses spread by humans. During an evening with local veterinary experts, you will hear about the tragedy of those days – including the murder of Dian Fossey – and recent hope as they work tirelessly to care for our closest primate relatives.

You’ll learn how the gorillas are monitored, how they are treated, and also how experts reach out to Rwandans to protect their threatened forest-dwelling neighbours.
Golden Monkey In Rwanda Istock 914974866 Credit Eei Tony
9. Golden Monkey Trekking
You’ll laugh and smile as you attempt to capture photographs of the high-speed antics of the playful and inquisitive golden monkey flash-mob marauding around you. These sprites of the bamboo forests on the lower slopes of the Virunga mountains are gregarious and delightful, but don’t let the 80 or so members of the troop fool you into thinking that they are common: they are a critically endangered endemic species only found in this mountain range.

You’ll spend about an hour with them whilst they frolic and play, swinging at high speed through the trees and chasing each other in circles. They will enchant you with their vitality.
Tea Pickers Maxime Niyomwungeri 704538 Unsplash
10. Tea Picking in Nyungwe
There’s a deep richness to the greens in Nyungwe National Park. It’s a place of massive rainforest trees, of drifting mists and of leafy abundance where you can almost feel the vegetation growing in front of your eyes. On the fringes of the park, there’s a different but equally lush environment, where the plants resemble glossy green clouds: these are the tea plantations.

You’ll immerse yourself in the culture of tea on the Gisakura Tea Estate where you will be involved with picking, drying, brewing and tasting whilst learning every aspect of the fine art of tea production. Finally, you will sip Nyungwe’s own full-bodied and rich variety of tea in the Tea Lounge whilst gazing out over the pristine natural forests beyond the plantation.
Your Rwanda Safari Awaits
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We are a boutique travel specialist. For over 30 years we have been creating luxury tailor-made safaris to the timeless savannahs of Africa. Your time is precious and with a world to see, we understand the importance of getting it absolutely right for you, every time.We are a boutique travel specialist. For over 30 years we have been creating luxury tailor-made safaris to the timeless savannahs of Africa. Your time is precious and with a world to see, we understand the importance of getting it absolutely right for you, every time.
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