Project Description

BEST OF RWANDA

12 Days & 11 Nights | Rwanda

Kigali, Akagera National Park, Volcanoes National Park, Nyungwe Forest National Park & Lake Kivu

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HIGHLIGHTS

GREAT FOR

Honeymooners – Some of Rwanda’s most extravagant accommodation is included

Photographers – See all the country’s scenic and wildlife highlights in one itinerary

AVAILABLE ACTIVITIES

Gorilla trekking

Golden monkey trekking

Game drives

Night drives

Birding

Boating

Seasonal catch-and-release fishing

Cultural tours

Bicycling

BEST TIME TO GO

High Season: May to October

Green Season: November to April

OVERVIEW

When we talk about ‘the best’ of Rwanda, we don’t only mean the most sumptuous lodges with wine cellars, serene spas, helipads or heated private plunge pools. We also mean the best wildlife viewing, incredible scenery, exciting activities and more unusual experiences like markets, memorials and cultural touchpoints.

Starting in Kigali’s most sought-after boutique hotel, you get to explore this fascinating city that balances the past, present and future with a can-do attitude from its citizens. Next, Akagera National Park and its consummate conservation success story beckon. Volcanoes National Park is another high point thanks to a growing population of once highly-threatened mountain gorillas. Then you’re whisked to the secret gem of Nyungwe Forest National Park and the glittering shore of Lake Kivu.

VIEW DAILY ITINERARY

THIS ITINERARY WAS DESIGNED BY JOANNE

If you’ve always wanted to see the gorillas, just go for it! It’s as amazing as they say and I enjoyed every second of my precious hour with them. I’ve also visited Akagera, which is lush and beautiful, and where the game is making an extraordinary comeback.

TRIP SUMMARY

DURATION

11 Nights / 12 Days

DESTINATIONS VISITED

Kigali, Rwanda

Akagera National Park, Rwanda

Volcanoes National Park, Rwanda

Nyungwe Forest National Park, Rwanda

Lake Kivu, Rwanda

ACCOMMODATIONS VISITED

DAILY ITINERARY

Although Rwanda is most famous for its primaeval rainforest that is home to shaggy mountain gorillas, its capital city is also very worth exploring. In mere decades, it has turned around to become a shining phoenix with an eye on modernity. For your two days here, your driver-guide will show you the incredibly moving Kigali Genocide Memorial, the sights and sounds of Nyamirambo old town and possibly even the bird sanctuary in Umusambi.

Your hotel is The Retreat, a slick eco-resort.

Why we love The Retreat:

  • International design standard that uses green principles
  • Alfresco meals in the verdant tropical gardens
  • Full gym, guided yoga and spa treatment
  • African-Asian-Italian cuisine with local produce
READ MORE ABOUT THE RETREAT

Not many people associate Rwanda with a classic safari but it has a burgeoning reputation as a great place to spot wildlife thanks to the wondrous work done in Akagera National Park. Slowly but surely, large mammals have been reintroduced and today it is an official Big 5 zone, harbouring lion, leopard, rhino, elephant and buffalo.

At Magashi, expert guides will take you on day and night game drives in the park and their concession to find topi, hippo and zebra.

Why we love Magashi:

  • Arguably one of the best lodges in Akagera
  • Exhilarating night drives in the concession
  • Traditional kugisha suppers next to the fire
  • Superb boating, fishing and birding
READ MORE ABOUT MAGASHI

It’s quite a long travel day today but that gives you the chance to nap or just take in the landscape, villages, pedestrians, fields, houses and everything else that map up Rwanda. From Akagera, you head back to Kigali and then onto Volcanoes National Park.

Pristine rainforest shelters families of mountain gorillas and tracking them is a must-do for any wildlife lover. From your lodge – the aptly named Gorilla’s Nest – you will set off with an expert tracker to find them.

Why we love Gorilla’s Nest:

  • Much pampering, from boot cleaning to massages
  • Walking and running trails through the forest
  • Archery, yoga, reiki and chakra rebalancing
  • Roaring wood-burning fireplaces in every room
READ MORE ABOUT GORILLA’S NEST

After three days of gorilla trekking, watching golden monkeys and walking Mount Sabyinyo, it is time to head to your next destination: Nyungwe Forest National Park. A fairy-tale landscape of mature mahogany trees, soaring ferns and birds, butterflies and acrobatic monkeys, it is a splendid oasis to relax after your gorilla trek.

Again, you check into one of the area’s best lodges – Nyungwe House. Stretch tired legs with gentle nature walks or go mountain biking if you feel energetic enough!

Why we love Nyungwe House:

  • Tasteful design inspired by traditional imigongo patterning
  • Beautiful location near the Gisakura tea plantation
  • Scenic helicopter flips to nearby Lake Kivu
  • Thirteen primate species live around the lodge
READ MORE ABOUT NYUNGWE HOUSE

It is always worth ending a holiday on the water as a way of completely relaxing before starting your return journey home. Dotted with traditional fishing boats and mirroring the clouds above it, Lake Kivu is part of the system of Africa’s Great Lakes where people live simply on the shoreline.

The Cleo Lake Kivu is your hotel for two nights and gives you excellent proximity to the historic town of Kibuye as well as kayaking, boating and hiking on your doorstep.

Why we Cleo Lake Kivu Hotel:

  • Lovely views over the glittering water
  • Interesting meals that elevate traditional dishes
  • Genuine Rwandan hospitality
  • Comfortable rooms with air conditioning and Wi-Fi
READ MORE ABOUT CLEO LAKE KIVU HOTEL

For a small country, Rwanda certainly packs a punch! Today, you wend your way with your driver-guide back to where it all began, the central heartbeat of Kigali. Retracing some of your steps gives you the chance to reflect on sharing a glance with a silverback, being amused by golden monkeys or the thrill of spotting one of Akagera’s shy leopards.

Once in Kigali, you can opt to fly home or consider a few days on the beach in Kenya or Tanzania.

INCLUDED

  • All activities specified
  • All transfers specified
  • Private vehicle if booked (extra cost)
  • All meals, drinks and sundowners
  • Laundry

EXCLUDED

  • International flights
  • Helicopter flights
  • Items from the safari shop
  • Pre- and post-itinerary accommodation
  • Visas
  • Travel insurance
  • Medical insurance, tests and vaccinations where stipulated
  • Tips / gratuities

PRICE IS IMPORTANT

This itinerary is here to inspire you and prices may change due to availability, season and the year that you plan to travel.
Contact us for a customised quotation

WHY BOOK WITH BIGGESTLEAF TRAVEL

  • We are passionate about what we sell

  • The most competitive and flexible rates

  • We offer personalised and customised experiences

  • Our consultants specialise in different safari-experiences
  • We have over 10 years’ experience in the travel industry

  • Our quick response and turnaround times