Name: Land of a Thousand Hills - Akagera National Park, Rwanda
Activities: Birding, Primates/Chimpanzees, Walking, Wildlife
Location: Rwanda
Duration: 10 days

 


Baby Mountain Gorilla

The Acquatic Sitatunga Antelope


Shoebilled Stork

Guide:

COSTS: Our prices for a minimum of 2 guests, start at approximately US$ 800 per person per day



Consult your favourite Africa Travel Specialist who works with Origins Safaris or let us know "how you heard about us?", and then we can then refer one to you. Contact us

 

  Day 1: Kigali
Visitors are met on arrival by an Origins representative and transferred to their hotel. A City tour can be arranged with the option of visiting the Genocide Memorial Sites. This is a fascinating visit to an important statement about Rwanda’s past but not for the faint hearted. The intention is to show Rwanda’s commitment to such atrocities never happening again but the evidence of what happened can be distressing. Alternative tours can be arranged should visitors prefer.
1 overnight Laico Umubano, Kigali

Days 2 & 3: Akagera National Park
After an early breakfast we set off for the beautiful drive to Akagera National Park… After settling in to the comfortable but not luxurious lodge we begin exploring the Park. Akagera has beautiful undulating plains with dense, broad-leafed woodland, lighter acacia woodland and rolling grassland with an extensive series of lakes linked by papyrus swamps forming a sprawling wetland. The game in the park is recovering after years of poaching and human presence, with elephant, buffalo, giraffe and lion and different antelope beginning to be seen. Akagera is probably the best place in Africa to view papyrus swamp endemics such the Sitatunga antelope and Shoebill stork.
2 overnights Akagera Game Lodge

Days 4 & 5: Nyungwe Forest
We depart after breakfast for the scenic drive to Nyungwe Forest arriving in time for lunch at the Butare Ibis Hotel. Afterwards we go for a nature walk in this massive montane forest, the largest in Central Africa. There are over 12 miles of pristine hiking trails in the area that expose walkers to enormous hardwood stands, numerous waterfalls, and an eye-boggling variety of other trees and insects (including some dazzling species of butterfly). With 275 bird species (24 of which are regional endemics), 13 primate varieties, and mammals ranging from leopards to forest pigs, the Nyungwe Forest Reserve is a prime example of the wonders of the African forest.

The main attraction of Nyungwe is the proliferation of black and white Colobus monkeys. Unfortunately Colobus and the other primates may be difficult to approach closely, and those such as Chimpanzee, who are extremely agile are particularly difficult to follow. However for the hiker - you will revel in hiking in the most incredible of Central African Rainforests.

On our second day we set out early at 0545 as dawn breaks and continue to explore the forest trails in search of up to 6 primate species including the agile troupes of Chimpanzees. Far from being the sweaty tropical jungle one might expect, Nyungwe lies at elevation of between 1600m and 2950m, and enjoys an agreeable cool climate. This will be a rigorous day with walking on steep and slippery jungle terrain for up to 8 hours.
2 overnights Gisakura Guest House

Day 6: Lake Kivu
After breakfast we drive west to Cyangugu on the shores of lake Kivu. Lake Kivu is a 1,000 square mile volcanic lake, which borders the Congo to the West and features a dramatic mountain coastline that is virtually uninhabited. From here it’s an exhilarating speedboat voyage to the lake resort town of Kibuye.
We arrive at the Kibuye Guest House: a chalet style hotel on the edge of Lake Kivu with a small beach perfect for swimming into the clear waters of the lake. Rooms are large and simply furnished with full bathrooms and small patios facing the lake. All rooms have air conditioning, telephone and TV.
1 overnight Kibuye Guest House

Day 7: Gisenyi
Today we drive north along the spectacular shores of Lake Kivu to Gisenyi.
1 overnight Lake Kivu Serena Hotel

Day 8: Volcano National Park
After breakfast we drive to the Park HQ to complete the formalities for our Gorilla trip and set off on one of the most exhilarating and moving wildlife experiences you can have. You get so close to these giant primates, observing them observing you – their almost human movements, innate dignity and social interaction make a unique connection within each of us.

The next day we depart at 0830 for our second visit to the Gorillas. The climb begins through the lush terraced farmland of the lower volcanic slopes. As the slopes become steeper and rockier, the vegetation becomes thick and tangled; the guides must use their machetes to help clear a path. Huge trees, clinging vines and undergrowth add to the challenge of swift streams and slippery red mud underfoot.
Usually at around 8,000 foot signs of the huge animals become apparent. Damage to the bamboo trees is an obvious sign as the gorillas relish the young tender shoots and break older stems to suck the sap. The smell of gorilla may waft by in the stray breeze or, if one is really near, it is strong and unmistakable. Sounds, which can be loud crashes or dull reverberating thuds.

1 overnight Gorillas Nest Lodge

Day 9: Volcano National Park
Today after our second gorilla trek we drive back to Kigali arriving in time to freshen up and rest before dinner at the hotel.
1 overnight Laico Umubano, Kigali

Day 10: Depart

     
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