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Highlights

  • Chimp trekking in ancient rainforests
  • Soul-stirring encounters with gorillas in the famous Volcanoes National Park
  • Luxury forest retreat, resort-style and city hotel accommodations
  • Great photographic opportunities
  • Learn all about the fascinating history and heritage of Rwanda
  • Lake adventures including canoeing, fishing and jet-skiing

Overview

Get to know Rwanda on this 8-day Rwanda itinerary, the country nicknamed ‘The Land of a Thousand Hills’, in East Africa. Rwanda’s gorgeous scenery, warm people and unique wildlife encounters make it a bucket-list journey.

Your adventure begins in Kigali, a vibrant city and usually the starting point for unforgettable chimp trekking and gorilla encounters. After your first night, you will be taken into the heart of the Nyungwe National Park, a quintessential tropical rainforest, surrounded by misty hills and resounding with birdsong, and the distinctive calls of the chimps. Your days will be spent chimp trekking, watching these playful creatures in their natural habitat followed by sublime evenings at the One & Only Nyungwe House, the essence of remote luxury.

Your journey continues to Lake Kivu, where you will spend a night enjoying a resort haven before heading to the renowned Volcanoes National Park. This is where more than a third of the world’s remaining mountain gorillas live in their high-altitude cloud forests. Your last few days will be centred around exploring the landscape and having one of the world’s most sought-after wildlife experiences.

Summary

  • Tour Duration: 8 Days

Accommodations Visited

Day to day

Itinerary

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Day 1: City Immersion

Kigali, Rwanda
Detailed breakdown

Day 1: City Immersion | 1 Night

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Kigali, Rwanda

On arrival at Kigali International Airport, you will be welcomed and transferred to your first hotel for check-in. Your afternoon will be spent at your leisure, and you will get settled into the Kigali Serena Hotel.

The Kigali Serena Hotel is the epitome of elegance, situated on a boulevard in the centre of the city. The hotel features stunning Rwandan artworks that create a vibrant ambience of being introduced to Rwandan culture.

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Day 2-3: Chimpanzee Trekking | 2 Nights

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Nyungwe, Rwanda

After breakfast, you will be driven to Butare, the cultural heart of Rwanda. You will visit the Butare National Museum, a fascinating display of traditional clothes, maps, photographs and historical artefacts. After a delicious lunch at a local restaurant, you will be taken to Nyungwe National Park.

For the next two nights you will stay at the luxurious One & Only Nyungwe House, in the depths of the forest on a working plantation, where the locals and crowds are scarce as you make the jungle your wild home. This national park is one of the oldest rainforests in Africa and is filled with rare primates, reptiles, orchids and exotic birds.

On your third day, you will trek the jungle in search of chimpanzee communities. You’ll see them as they gaze down from fig trees or encounter them in troops catapulting from canopy to canopy. No trek is the same and these charismatic creatures surprise and delight all who cross their ancient rainforest path.

You'll be based at One & Only Nyungwe House for 2 nights, which set on a tea plantation located on the edge of Nyungwe Forest National Park - a close-canopy rainforest 150 miles west of Kigali known for its 13 species of primates, including chimpanzees. You'll have the opportunity to see these gorgeous primates in their natural habitat on day 3 on your chimpanzee trekking experience.

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Day 4: Martha’s Vineyard of Rwanda | 1 Night

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Rwanda

After breakfast, you will check out with a picnic lunch box and be driven along the shores of Lake Kivu to Gisenyi, a beautiful lakeside town with an awe-inspiring shoreline and colonial-style hotels.

Lake Kivu is one of the greatest freshwater lakes in Rwanda and it has a secluded inland beach that is lined with leaning palms and is enclosed by green terraced hills. The rest of the day is at your leisure before retiring for the night at Lake Kivu Serena Hotel.

The hotel has a resort feel that overlooks the lake, and has its own swimming pool, tennis courts and gym. You could also spend the day fishing, jet-skiing or taking a slow canoe ride on the lake, simply revelling in the magic of the surroundings.

Lake Kivu Serena
Lake Kivu Serena
Lake Kivu Serena

Day 5-6: Exceptional Gorilla Encounters | 2 Nights

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Volcanoes National Park, Rwanda

After breakfast, the morning is yours to enjoy at your leisure before you depart to Volcanoes National Park. This national park provides a dramatic setting where rare mountain gorillas and golden monkeys reside.

Your next two nights will be at Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge, a forest retreat made of stone and terracotta tiled roofs. Enjoy views of the mist flickering from your private veranda and the roaring log fires in the evening.

There are few experiences as magical as trapsing through the forested slopes of the Virungas to meet Africa’s gorillas. Some gorilla families are elusive, and tracking can take a full day, especially when its wet and muddy but it’s well worth it to see these primates in their natural habitat. You’ll spend an hour with them before you head back to base for lunch.

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Day 7: More Gorillas | 1 Night

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Kigali, Rwanda

Another thrilling day beckons and the opportunity to spend more time trekking to see gorillas as well as the golden monkeys that inhabit this stunning landscape. You’ll head back to the lodge for a lunch before continuing back to Kigali, where your Rwanda adventure tour began.

Your last night will be spent at Kigali Serena Hotel, a fitting full circle end to your sojourn.

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Lake Kivu Serena

Day 8: Farewell, Rwanda

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After your final breakfast, you will embark on a city tour of Kigali including a visit to the Genocide Memorial, followed by lunch, whereafter you will be transferred to the airport to travel to your next destination or head home.

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Inclusions

  • Intercamp transfers
  • Scheduled activities
Exclusions tick icon

Exclusions

  • International flights
  • Airport taxes
  • All meals and drinks not specified
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Items of a personal nature