When is the Best Time to Visit Rwanda?

The best time to visit Rwanda is during the dry season of June to September. This is also the best time of year to see mountain gorillas in Rwanda as these periods offer the best hiking conditions and the lowest risk of malaria.

You can trek to see mountain gorillas and visit Rwanda outside of these optimum times of year, but bear in mind that it may be more difficult due to rainfall as well as steep and muddy hiking paths. You must be in relatively good shape before you commence your trek as you will be hiking to the mountain gorillas in the dense, tropical jungles of Rwanda.

Month by Month Guide for Travelling to Rwanda

Visiting Rwanda from January & February

Close up of a gorilla and a baby in Rwanda


During the months of January and February, high and medium-altitude regions comprising Kigali, Lake Kivu as well as Volcanoes National Park and Nyungwe National Parks, are hot in the day but cool in the evenings. Low-lying regions like Akagera National Park are hot in the day but warm in the evenings.

This is a popular time to go on a Rwanda safari and is a great opportunity to take in the breathtaking scenery of this beautiful country. The warm climate and sunshine in these months make for unforgettable forest treks. But if you are planning to visit Rwanda during this dry season, keep in mind that prices are generally higher, and you need to plan well in advance.


Travelling to Rwanda from March to May

Misty jungle terrain in Rwanda when going gorilla trekking

March is the start of the rainy season, with showers continuing right through until mid-May.  Despite the wet weather, these conditions are still good to be able to trek in search of the primates that inhabit this mystical landscape. Good quality rain gear is needed to brave the dense, wet forestry areas during this period.

April follows suit with May’s wet conditions. When deciding on places to visit in Rwanda, it's best to know that hiking around the Virungas will be tough at this time of the year.

The rains begin to ease by mid-May. This is a good month to avoid the tourist crowds, and you may have a better chance of grabbing a last-minute gorilla trekking permit. For avid birdwatchers, May falls into the breeding season and the skies are filled with colourful, winged beauties.


Visiting Rwanda from June to September

The start of a gorilla trek with a guide in Rwanda

The dry season between June and September is renowned for being the best time to go to Rwanda. There is often light cloud cover during this time of year and it makes for a comfortable climate for gorilla trekking. A highlight in June in Rwanda is the annual Kwita Izina Ceremony. This is when all the baby gorillas born over the previous twelve months are named. In September, the Rwanda Film Festival is another highlight on the calendar, showcasing local filmmakers and a selection of international favourites.


Visiting Rwanda in October to December  

A golden monkey at Kwitonda Lodge in Rwanda

If you’re planning to go to Rwanda between October and December, you will be arriving during the short rainy season. Short bursts of showers are common in these months that clear to reveal blue skies. You could also take advantage of lower costs on gorilla trekking permits, hotels and Rwanda lodges – if you are not willing to let a little mud and rain deter you.


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