How To Plan For A Memorable Trip To Rwanda : Rwanda, also known as the “land of a thousand hills,” is a small, landlocked country located in the heart of East Africa. It is a country known for its stunning landscapes, friendly people, and rich cultural heritage. It is also the home of the majestic mountain gorillas, which attract thousands of tourists each year. If you’re planning a trip to Rwanda, here are some tips to help you plan a successful and memorable vacation.
When to Go
Rwanda is a year-round destination, but the best time to visit is during the dry season, which runs from June to September and from December to February. During this time, the weather is pleasant, and the chances of rain are minimal. The dry season is also the best time to go gorilla trekking as the trails are less muddy and easier to navigate. However, if you’re looking to avoid the crowds, the rainy season from March to May and from October to November may be a better option.
The easiest way to get to Rwanda is by flying into Kigali International Airport, which is the country’s main gateway. Several airlines, including RwandAir, Kenya Airways, and Ethiopian Airlines, fly to Kigali from major cities in Africa and beyond. If you’re traveling from neighboring countries like Uganda or Tanzania, you can also consider taking a bus or hiring a private car to get to Rwanda.
Where to Stay
Rwanda has a range of accommodation options to suit every budget, from luxury lodges and hotels to budget-friendly guesthouses and campsites. If you’re planning to go gorilla trekking, it’s best to stay near Volcanoes National Park, where most of the gorilla treks take place. Some popular lodges in the area include Bisate Lodge, Virunga Lodge, and Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge. If you’re looking for a more budget-friendly option, you can consider staying at Kinigi Guesthouse or Muhabura Hotel.
What to Do
Gorilla Trekking: One of the main attractions in Rwanda is gorilla trekking. Rwanda is home to around a third of the world’s remaining mountain gorillas, and trekking to see them is an unforgettable experience. To go gorilla trekking, you need to obtain a permit from the Rwanda Development Board, which costs $1,500 per person per trek. It’s best to book your permit in advance, as they often sell out several months in advance.
Golden Monkey Trekking: If you’re interested in seeing other primates, you can also go golden monkey trekking in Volcanoes National Park. The golden monkey is a rare and endangered primate found only in the Virunga Mountains.
Kigali City Tour: Kigali, Rwanda’s capital city, is a vibrant and bustling city with a rich history and culture. You can take a city tour to explore its various attractions, including the Kigali Genocide Memorial, the National Museum of Rwanda, and the colorful markets.
Lake Kivu: If you’re looking for a relaxing break, you can visit Lake Kivu, which is located on the border between Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. You can take a boat ride on the lake, go swimming, or simply relax on the sandy beaches.
Akagera National Park: If you’re interested in wildlife, you can visit Akagera National Park, which is home to a variety of animals, including elephants, lions, giraffes, and zebras. You can take a game drive or a boat safari to explore the park.
To fully enjoy the natural beauty and unique cultural experiences that Rwanda offers, it’s important to find the right accommodation. Here are the top five lodges in Rwanda that offer luxurious and comfortable stays while immersing guests in the country’s natural wonders and rich history,How To Plan For A Memorable Trip To Rwanda.
- Bisate Lodge
Bisate Lodge is a luxurious eco-lodge located near Volcanoes National Park, which is famous for its mountain gorillas. The lodge features six elegant forest villas built using locally sourced materials, with each villa offering stunning views of the Bisoke and Karisimbi volcanoes. Bisate Lodge’s unique design and location offer guests a comfortable stay while allowing them to immerse themselves in Rwanda’s natural beauty.
- Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge
Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge is a luxury lodge located in the foothills of the Virunga Mountains, near Volcanoes National Park. The lodge is built on a hillside overlooking the park and is surrounded by beautiful gardens. The lodge has six cottages and two suites, all with en-suite bathrooms, a fireplace, and a private veranda. Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge also has a spa, a restaurant serving locally sourced cuisine, and a bar.
- One&Only Gorilla’s Nest
One&Only Gorilla’s Nest is a luxurious resort located in the foothills of the Virunga Mountains, near Volcanoes National Park. The resort features 21 private lodges, each with a fireplace, a private deck, and a plunge pool. One&Only Gorilla’s Nest offers guests the opportunity to go gorilla trekking and explore the park’s natural wonders. The resort also has a spa, a restaurant serving locally sourced cuisine, and a bar.
- Magashi Camp
Magashi Camp is a luxury tented camp located in Akagera National Park, which is home to a variety of wildlife, including lions, elephants, and zebras. The camp features six spacious tents, each with a private veranda overlooking Lake Rwanyakazinga. Magashi Camp also has a bar and a dining area serving delicious meals using locally sourced ingredients.
- Virunga Lodge
Virunga Lodge is a luxury eco-lodge located near Volcanoes National Park, which is famous for its mountain gorillas. The lodge features ten spacious bandas, each with a fireplace, a private terrace, and stunning views of the volcanoes. Virunga Lodge also has a spa, a restaurant serving locally sourced cuisine, and a bar.
Rwanda offers visitors a unique and unforgettable travel experience. Choosing the right lodge can greatly enhance the experience by providing comfortable and luxurious accommodations while immersing guests in the country’s natural wonders and rich history. Whether you choose to stay in a luxury eco-lodge or a tented camp, these top five lodges in Rwanda offer a range of options to suit every traveler’s needs and preferences