Rwanda

The land of a thousand hills and the majestic mountain Gorillas!

Destination Menu

ABOUT RWANDA

Two decades since the genocide that rocked Rwanda, this beautiful country has risen up from its ashes and has become one of the top East African countries to visit. Rich in history and culture, Rwanda is also famous for its majestic Mountain Gorillas, Golden Monkey tracking, Chimp trekking, spectacular mountain scenery and some surprisingly diverse wildlife!

Places to Visit

Kigali

This charming, small city is the Capital of Rwanda and the main port of entry. Kigali is the country's most important business centre and houses a diverse selection of galleries, bustling markets and a growing Muslim quarter which are worth a visit. The people of Kigali are very warm and welcoming and you will feel right at home here. The city also has a Genocide Memorial Center and Museum where visitors can get a glimpse into the country’s tragic history and how far the citizens have come since then.


Nyungwe Forest National Park

A Nyungwe forest is another charming park in Rwanda. It is home to chimpanzees, Colobus monkeys and many fantastic bird species. It is believed to be one of Africa’s oldest rainforest. This majestic rainforest can be explored through hiking or even biking the scenic terrain, tracking the famous chimpanzees, experiencing the canopy walk, witnessing beautiful birds or relaxing by waterfalls.


Lake Kivu

Lake Kivu is Rwanda’s largest lake, and one of Africa’s most beautiful lakes. The lakes are surrounded by Rwanda’s gently rolling slopes and lies along Africa's Great Rift Valley. Dominating the border between Rwanda and the DRC (Democratic Republic of Congo).
This gorgeous location is the perfect place to relax after Gorilla trekking in Volcanoes or Chimp trekking in Nyungwe Forest. Lake Kivu is also one of the safest lakes in Africa, with no hippos or crocodiles. The lake has crystal clear, clean water and guests can enjoy a swim, bird watching, boating, hiking and kayaking. You can also visit the nearby villages for an authentic cultural experience or plan a visit to the coffee plantations for a tour and a taste of the best coffee in Rwanda!

Volcanoes National Park

Volcanoes National Park is the Jewel of Rwanda and the most visited park in Rwanda! Famous for its Mountain Gorillas, visitors all over the world come to this beautiful rain forest to see the Gorillas in their natural environment! Trekking this rare and endangered species is an amazing fit in itself and a once in a lifetime experience not to be missed! The park is also Home to the Golden MOnkeys and you can track these graceful animals during your stay here.



Akagera National Park

Akagera National Park offers big game viewing in a diverse savannah setting. Though wildlife here is not on the same scale as in Kenya or Tanzania, this stunning park offers you a unique safari experience and lots of exclusivity as it is rarely visited.

Quick Facts About Rwanda

Best time to visit:

Rwanda is an all year round travel destination and the best time to visit mainly depends on your travel interests and budget. The optimal time to visit for gorilla trekking is from mid-December to early February (short dry season) and from Mid May to mid October (long dry season). During this time the hiking conditions in the rain forests are easier and you also have the lowest risk of getting Malaria.

The best time to go to Rwanda for chimpanzee trekking in Nyungwe is during the rainy seasons - mid-February to early June and mid-September to mid-December - as the apes are easier to locate.  During the dry season, food is harder to find and the chimp families move further into the forest looking for food.

October to November is the short rainy season. The advantage is that hotel rates are much lower during this time and if you are on a tight budget but want to experience the Gorillas, I would recommend visiting during this time. Having said that, it’s important to keep in mind that the rains will make tracking a bit more difficult with the muddy conditions but Gorilla trekking is truly a special experience and you will certainly enjoy sitting face to face with the Majestic Gorillas! During this time, you will also get to see lots of bird species and it’s a great time for birders to visit.


Cuisine:

The Rwandan diet consists mainly of sweet potatoes, beans, corn, peas, millet, plantains, cassava, potatoes, beef, chicken and fish.  If you are a foodie, you can enjoy some of these popular cuisines in Rwanda:

  • Umutsima: A dish of cassava cooked with corn
  • Isombe: Mashed cassava leaves  cooked with Eggplant and spinach and served with dried fish.
  • Mizuzu: Fried plantains. The Plantains are really sweet and have a delicious taste!
  • Ugali : Popularly known as bugali is a  thick maize porridge dough that’s often accompanied by meat, chicken  or stews, and sukumuwiki ( Kale, Collard greens) chopped with spinach and cooked in onions and tomatoes. Eat your ugali by pinching off a piece of dough, fashioning it into a spoon, then dipping it into the greens and meat sauce.
  • Matoke: a dish made from baked or steamed plantains served with a stew or sauce.
  • Ibihaza:Made from pumpkins cut into pieces, mixed with beans and boiled without peeling them.
  • Ikinyiga: Ground nut paste
  • Kachumbari: Salad dish made up of chopped tomatoes, chilli peppers and onions.


Language:

Kinyarwanda, French and English.


Population:

Rwanda has a population of about 11 million people as of 2016 population survey.


Currency:

The currency in Rwanda is Rwanda franc. If you would like to change yours dollars or Euros to Rwandan Franc while on the ground, you can easily do this. We recommend changing your money at the airport at the Forex Exchange shops to ensure that you have some local currency in case you want to buy some items during your trip. Having said that, credit cards are also widely accepted and you can use your credit card to pay for meals while at the camp or in a restaurant. Most camps and lodges also accept payments in US dollars. When bringing US Dollars please make sure to bring dollars manufactured after the year 2000 or they will not be accepted


At African Dunes we are excited to help you tailor the perfect trip based on your travel interests and budget! Get in touch with us to get your very own personalized travel itinerary!


AFRICAN DUNES is a small owner run travel company that specializes in tailor made trips for all our guests! We cater to all budgets and all our itineraries are fully customized to cater to your very own unique travel wishes and dreams!

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