6 Days, 5 Nights Rwanda Gorilla & Chimpanzee Safari

Overview

The 6 Days, 5 Nights Rwanda Gorilla and Chimpanzee safari is one the rewarding primate encounters that you can undertake in Rwanda. The safari involves trekking mountain gorillas in Volcanoes National Park, tracking chimpanzees in Nyungwe Forest National Park, recreational encounters on Lake Kivu which is the largest lake in Rwanda, culture and heritage tours in Huye / Butare where the National Museum is built and a memorial encounter with the genocide sites in various parts of Rwanda including Gisozi and Murambi.

Safari Highlight

Day 1: Arrive in Rwanda (Kigali International Airport), visit genocide memorial tour & transfer to Volcanoes National Park

Day 2: Do gorilla trekking & do either Batwa community tour or twin lakes walk

Day 3: Do golden monkey tracking & transfer to Lake Kivu in the afternoon for an a sunset boat cruise & relaxation

Day 4: Whole day drive along the Congo Nile Trail along the shores of Lake Kivu to Nyungwe Forest National Park

Day 5: Morning Chimp trekking in Kyamudongo forest & after noon forest or canopy walk in Nyungwe National Park at Uwinka overlook.

Day 6: Morning drive through the park to Murambi genocide memorial (1000 bodies preserved) and continue to Kigali via Butare (Huye) Institute of Rwanda National Museums.  Drive to the Airport after final shopping.

Description:

Day 1: Arrive in Rwanda (Kigali International Airport), visit genocide memorial tour & transfer to Volcanoes National Park

Arrive in Rwanda through Kigali International Airport which is the main Airport in Rwanda where you will be picked by your driver guide for a courteous introduction about the safari and Rwanda in general. From here, you embark on the visit the Gisozi genocide memorial where great counts of the remains of the Rwandese people especially the Tutsi and the moderate Hutus are kept in memory of the bloody genocide that hit Rwanda in 1994. From here, you will embark on the 116km transfer about 2 ½ hours’ drive to Volcanoes National Park for dinner and overnight.

Accommodation: Mountain Gorilla View Lodge (Upmarket/Luxury) / Hotel La Palme (Midrange/Standard) or Muhabura Hotel (Budget/Basic).

Day 2: Do gorilla trekking & do either Batwa community tour or twin lakes walk

gorilla-families-virunga-volcanoes-rwanda

Wake up in the morning for a cup of coffee at your place of stay after which you transfer to Kinigi Park Headquarters in Volcanoes National Park for the gorilla trekking encounter. At 8am, you catch up with the briefing exercise by the park rangers about the gorilla trekking conduct. In this session, you will be allocated a specific gorilla family that you are going to track and in case of special concern such as mobility issues, you can notify the responsible personnel to allocate you a suitable family.  For the sake of the adventurous ones, you can also notify the responsible personnel to allocate you a more strenuous and challenging gorilla family to track. After this encounter you head to the slopes of the Virunga Volcanoes where the Park is located in search of the critically endangered mountain gorillas which only thrive in the Virunga Massif and the famous Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in the neighboring Uganda. The activity which may last between 2 – 8 hours depending on the gorilla movements will involve a 1 hour of direct encounter with gorillas coupled with unlimited opportunity to take as many photos as you wish after which you will descend back to the gorilla trekking point. The gorilla trekking in Rwanda is most times brief as the gorilla families tend to be closer to the starting point. After returning, transfer back to lodge for a short relaxation and in the afternoon you can opt to visit the Batwa people, who are among the last surviving group of short people in the whole world or visit the Twin lakes of Ruhondo and Bulera for amazing scenic views and recreational boat cruise. Retire in the evening for dinner and overnight.

Accommodation: Mountain Gorilla View Lodge (Upmarket/Luxury) / Hotel La Palme (Midrange/Standard) or Muhabura Hotel (Budget/Basic).

Day 3: Do golden monkey tracking & transfer to Lake Kivu in the afternoon for an a sunset boat cruise & relaxation

After breakfast, embark on the golden money tracking at 8am in Volcanoes National Park. It is such a thrilling encounter to see these golden apes as they roll themselves in the bamboo forest stems and play their hide and seek games. The golden monkeys are also critically endangered and are to be existing in the Virunga massif across the globe. From the activity which tends to take about 4 hours, you will have lunch, relax a little and embark on the drive to Lake Kivu 110km about 2 hours’ drive. Upon arrival, you will embark on the recreational sun set boat cruise on the largest lake in Rwanda that stretches to Democratic Republic of Congo. You can also opt to relax on Lake Kivu beaches before retiring for dinner and overnight.

Accommodation: Lake Kivu Serena Hotel (Upmarket/Luxury) / Hotel Gorillas Lake Kivu (Mid-range/Standard) or Paladise Malahide (Budget/Basic)

Day 4: Whole day drive along the Congo Nile Trail along the shores of Lake Kivu to Nyungwe Forest National Park

lake-kivu

After a relaxed breakfast, embark on the transfer to Nyungwe Forest National Park 240km about 7 hours’ drive along the Congo Nile Trail that stretches along the impressive shores of Lake Kivu. The divide marks the point of separation between catchment areas for the Nile River and River Congo. The area has good scenic views that will occupy you throughout the journey. You will drive through Kibuye town where you can stop for lunch and then through Cyangungu before proceeding for 54km to Nyungwe National Park arriving in the evening for dinner and overnight.

Accommodation: Nyungwe Forest Lodge (Upmarket /Luxury) / Nyungwe Hill Top Hotel (Mid-range/Standard) or Gisakura Guest house (Budget/Basic).

Day 5: Morning Chimp trekking in Kyamudongo forest & after noon forest or canopy walk in Nyungwe National Park at Uwinka overlook.

After an early breakfast, embark on the chimpanzee trekking encounter in the forest of Nyungwe. The encounter begins at 8am local time and takes you through the impressive montane forest that has got a considerable position in the East African region. You have an opportunity of seeing chimpanzees as they swing on tree branches, make pant hooting calls and socialize. Return from the activity which lasts between 2 – 5 hours for relaxation and lunch at the lodge. In the afternoon, you will embark on the famous Nyungwe Canopy walk which is the first of its kind in East Africa and the third in Africa. The canopy walk staring at Uwinka overlook is one of the rewarding encounters that you can have in Rwanda. It offers impressive views of the lush forest canopy and counts of primates and birds that inhabit it. Retire for relaxation, dinner and overnight

Accommodation: Nyungwe Forest Lodge (Upmarket /Luxury) / Nyungwe Hill Top Hotel (Mid-range/Standard) or Gisakura Guest house (Budget/Basic).

Day 6: Morning drive through the park to Murambi genocide memorial (1000 bodies preserved) and continue to Kigali via Butare (Huye) Institute of Rwanda National Museums.  Drive to the Airport after final shopping.

After breakfast, embark on the transfer to Kigali city 268km about 6 hours’ drive excluding stops en route. You will make a stop at Murambi genocide memorial where 1000 bodies of the people who lost their lives during the bloody genocide are preserved. You will also visit Butare National Museum to encounter great ethnographic museum of its kind in East Africa in Huye district from which you will continue to Kigali, do the final shopping and then transfer to the Airport for flight departure.

End of safari