5 Days Rwanda Gorillas & Wildlife
Rwanda has a lot to offer and explore on any safari but this 5 days Rwanda Gorillas & Wildlife safari takes visitors to only 2 best national parks in Rwanda – Akagera national park at the border of Tanzania which is a savannah park and Volcanoes national park at the border of Uganda.
Savannah wildlife such as buffaloes, giraffes, antelopes, among will be observed as well as trekking the mountain gorillas in Volcanoes national park. Visitors have an opportunity to explore the story of Dian Fossey – a primatologist and researcher who saved mountains gorillas from extinction.
Day 1: Transfer to Akagera national park
Take a drive to Akagera national park in the North-Eastern part of the country upon picking up from either the hotel or airport in Kigali. Akagera national park is the only savannah park in Rwanda that offers the best of wildlife that roam in its savannah plains.
It is home to Lake Ihema which provides water to the wildlife and as well offering beautiful scenery to the visitors. The driver-guide will drive you to the park and make all the clearances at the entrance of and then embark on a mid-morning game drive to spot some mammals and birds. The journey from Kigali city to Akagera national park does not exceed 3 hours which means that you will have ample time to relax at the lodge.
Day 2: Game drive and boat cruise
The morning game drive normally takes about 3 hours, starting immediately after an early morning breakfast. Animals like Masai giraffes, buffaloes, Burchell’s zebras, olive baboons, leopards, spotted hyenas, antelopes, rhinos and elephants maybe spotted. The game drive in Akagera is done under the supervision of a park ranger who is well informed and knowledgeable about the park.
After the second day of your Rwanda Gorillas & Wildlife safari, head to the lodge for hot lunch that will be followed by a cruise on Lake Ihema. This lake is the second-largest in Rwanda after Lake Kivu and is located at the border of Tanzania. While on the boat cruise, spot hippos, crocodiles among others and variety of bird species. Late in the evening, return to the lodge for dinner and leisure while preparing for the next day’s departure to Volcanoes national park.
Day 3: Transfer to Volcanoes National Park
Be served with tasty breakfast and then transfer to Volcanoes national park home of mountain gorillas. The park covers an area of 160 Square kilometers and it is covered by five of eight Virunga volcanoes. This park is known to be home to the grave of the renowned primatologist researcher Dian Fossey who founded the Karisimbi research center. The volcanoes include Muhabura, Karisimbi, Bisoke, Sabinyo and Gahinga. The drive takes about 3 hours including stopover time and it’s accompanied by sights of rolling hills. On arrival, you will check in to the accommodation facility.
Day 4: Gorilla trekking and Visit Dian Fossey Grave
For any park, activity starts with a briefing, immediately after breakfast, head for a briefing at the park offices that starts before the gorilla trekking experience. Rules and regulations like not using a flashlight camera, not spitting in the forest, not mimic, do not litter the forest, keeping in the designed trails. Also, information about the forest and the park algae is offered, you are put in a group of 8 visitors to trek one gorilla family. The trek begins with help of the park ranger guide and on setting your eyes on a group of gorillas for the first time, you will have an hour in their presence at a distance of 10m. Trekking can take about 3-8hours but it is rewarding.
Head back to the lodge and be served lunch which will be followed by an afternoon hike to the graveyard of Dian Fossey. The trail rewards you with different bird species, primates among others. You will see that the grave of this primatologist with other gorillas that were killed by poachers. Return to the lodge after experiential moments filled with history and education.
Day 5: Transfer back to Kigali
Head back to Kigali city after breakfast and if time allows, you will take a short city tour and explore places like the presidential Palace museum, Rwanda genocide memorial center, and local markets. After, you will be dropped at the airport in Kigali and fly back home. This will mark the end of your 5 days Rwanda Gorillas & Wildlife safari.