Rwanda

Why Rwanda? Mountain Gorillas. Golden Monkeys. Volcanoes National Park. Lake Kivu.

Here is our suggested best-selling Rwanda Safari & Extensions.  We recommend adding these short safaris to the beginning or end of your Kenya or Tanzania Safari.

Of course, there are lots of options & permutations... so contact us to tailor-make a safari just for you.

Why a Rwanda Safari? 

Gorillas - Trek to see critically endangered Mountain Gorillas in the Virunga Mountains; only 700 remain in the wild. This park was made famous by conservationist Dian Fossey who worked to protect the gorillas.

 

Golden Monkeys - Trek in the Virunga Mountains to see these beautiful & endangered monkeys.

 

Lake Kivu - One of the Great Lakes of the Albertine Rift Valley. Views of Mt Nyiragongo.

 

Chimpanzees - sightings are hit & miss, but they do occur in steamy Nyungwe Rainforest. Tanzania & Uganda offer a more guaranteed chimpanzee experience.

 

Rwanda Gorilla Safari

Highlights: Gorilla trek, Golden Monkey trek, Virunga Mountains.
Is this for me? For anyone interested in seeing gorillas in their natural habitat.

 

Rwanda Mountain Gorilla Safari Highlights
   Day    Location
  1-3  

Virunga Mountains:  Transfer to Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda. Home to critically endangered Mountain Gorillas & Golden Monkeys. Trek into the National Park for amazing encounters.

  4   Kigali - continue on safari or onward home.
 
 

Rwanda Mountain Gorilla Safari Itinerary
         
   Day   Activities & Highlights  
  1   Pick up at Kigali airport.  Drive to your lodge set in the foothills of the Virunga Mountains. Relax & prepare for your gorilla trek tomorrow.  (D)  
 
  2   Early start today to go trekking in the Parc National des Volcans within the Virunga Mountains, in search of Mountain Gorillas.  This park was made famous by conservationist Dian Fossey, who publicised the plight of the remaining Mountain Gorillas.  
You will be split into groups of 8 people, and then hike up into the park to find 'your' gorilla family. This can take as little as 30 min, or up to several hours. Once you've found them, enjoy up to an hour with the gorillas; watch their fascinating behaviour, and (usually!) gentle mannerisms towards each other.  (B L D)
 
 
  3  

Today you have the option to go on a second day of trekking to see gorillas. 

Alternatively, there are a variety of other optional activities available: trekking to see the Golden Monkeys, a day of hiking on the Visoke/ Muhavura volcanoes, trekking to Dian Fossey's grave, a visit to Lake Kivu, and more.

The forest itself is beautiful, and there are many interesting birds, reptiles and invertebrates, other than the star primate attractions.  (B L D)

 
 
  4  

Drive back to Kigali, through the terraced countryside.  Time-permitting, enjoy a Kigali city tour, including a visit to the genocide museum. 

Transfer to the airport for your flight back home, or to continue with your adventures on a Kenya or Tanzania Safari.  (B)

 
 
Rwanda Safari Photos
Rwanda Gorilla Safari from only $3,585*
More Luxury or Exclusivity? from $4,985 to $6,000+
*Price includes 1x gorilla trek permit (currently US$ 750 pp)

Extend your Holiday 
We recommend adding your Rwanda Gorilla Safari to the start or end of your Kenya or Tanzania Safari.  
You can then explore different parks or regions, focus on particular species, relax by the beach, go scuba diving or discover local culture... it's your choice.
Below are some ideas. Contact us for specific recommendations just for you.

 

Lake Kivu, Rwanda - min 1 night

Want to relax for a day or 2 on a lake's beach after your trek?
After your gorilla trek, why not head to the beach to relax and unwind?  This beach is on the shores of Lake Kivu, one of the Great Lakes of the Albertine Rift Valley.  It's one of the world's 20 largest/ deepest lakes, reaching a depth of almost 500m. We don't recommend swimming in the lake.

On clear nights, you can even see the glow of the lava lake of the nearby Volcano Nyiragongo.

Incl. transport, transfers, accommodation, breakfast.
From US$ 350 pp for 1 night. 

   
 

Tanzania Safari - min 5 nights
Want to see the World Heritage listed Serengeti &/or Ngorongoro?
Start your Gorilla Safari adventure with a Tanzania Safari, and visit the famous Serengeti.  In season, you have the chance of seeing the Great Migration - wildebeest, zebra and Thompson's gazelles  on the move. 
Ngorongoro Crater is a 20km wide unbroken caldera, with a self-contained ecosystem complete with resident wildlife including lions, hyenas, critically endangered black rhinos, old bull elephants, zebras, hippos, flamingos, and more.

See our Tanzania Safaris page for more options for a Tanzania Safari. 
Incl. accommodation, game drives & transport in 4x4 safari vehicle, all park & conservancy fees, transfers, most meals.

From US$ 3,289 pp for 5 nights.

   
 

Kenya Safari - min 5 nights
Want to visit famous Masai Mara & stunning, arid Samburu?
From the wide open grass plains of the Masai Mara to the red, arid hills of Samburu, this is wildlife viewing at its best.
The Masai Mara is famous for the spectacular river crossings of wildebeest during their Great Migration into the Masai Mara from the Serengeti.  This supports large numbers of predators, including lion prides, hyenas, and of course Nile crocodiles.  It's also a great place to see cheetahs hunting on the Plains.

Samburu is a stark wilderness area with bright colours, and unique wildlife that occurs nowhere else. Look for the 'Samburu 5': reticulated giraffe, Grevy's zebra, Beisa oryx, Somali ostrich & the unique gerenuk.

See our Kenya Safaris page for more options for a Kenya Safari. 
Incl. accommodation, game drives & transport in microvan or 4x4 safari vehicle, all park & conservancy fees, transfers, most meals.
From US$ 3,595 pp for 5 nights.

   
 
   
Rwanda Safari Photos
Prices

The long answer:  The world's best wildlife destinations are often expensive because of strict government controls, high park fees & complex logistics.  Amongst other things, it also depends on accommodation quality, location & exclusivity; what type of vehicles are used; whether you're flying around a lot; and how many days you spend in-country. 

 

Whatever your budget, we will recommend the best possible adventure to suit you.

 

  Rwanda Gorilla Safari*  
  Standard from:  US$ 3,585
  Luxury from:  US$ 4,985
 
  Extensions
  Lake Kivu:  US$    350
  Tanzania Safari: US$ 3,289
  Kenya Safari: US$ 3,595
 
  Seasonal Pricing  
 
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
 
 
  Seasons    Low    High    Peak  
 
    Seasons shown here are based on accommodation pricing, which is based on holiday seasons.  For wildlife seasons & the best time to go, see our "Seasons" tab or contact us and tell us what you really want to see & do on safari.    
     

 

Prices based on 2 people travelling, sharing a room.
*Rwanda Gorilla Safari price includes 1x gorilla trek permit (currently US$ 750pp).

 

Choose your own Private Safari or a Small Group - contact us for your tailor-made adventure!

 

No hidden costs - Guaranteed!  
We include everything possible to make your adventure as easy as possible.

Accommodation & responsible travel

We are strongly committed to the principles of responsible travel, and therefore recommend accommodations that are trying to do the right thing - by the environment, their staff & local communities, and their guests!  Environmental initiatives include using renewable energy such as solar power, using low-impact structures, reducing waste, and recycling wherever possible.  They support their local communities by providing employment as well as educational, medical, and other support; some even include profit-share arrangements. Many have, or support, anti-poaching units to de-snare and protect the wilderness areas within which they operate.

 

Great, so what's the difference between a luxury vacation and an even more luxurious or exclusive one?

       
  Standard   More Luxury & Exclusivity
  Good quality lodges &/or tented camps,
which tend to be on the simple side.
Food is of a good standard, often presented 
as a self-serve buffet.
  Small & intimate lodges or camps, often on a
house drinks & extra activity inclusive basis.
Usually in the best locations for wildlife viewing.
High standards of Guiding, food & service.
       
  Accommodation featured:   Accommodation featured: 
 

Gorilla Mountain View Lodge 
Le Bambou Gorilla Lodge 
Gorilla's Nest Lodge (Ranch Rooms) 

Kivu Safari Lodge

Nyungwe Forest Camp

  Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge
Jack Hannah's Cottage 
Volcanoes Virunga Lodge
Lake Kivu Serena Hotel 
Nyungwe Forest Lodge 
       

We clearly explain what's included & what's not:

 

Inclusions: All your accommodation, most meals, 1 Gorilla viewing permit, quality vehicle with qualified Driver/Guide, all airport transfers, all park & conservation fees.

 

All government taxes, fuel surcharges, Park & Conservancy entrance fees are included and correct as at date of quote. However they are subject to government & local authority imposed changes, often without notice (!) and therefore beyond our control. We will always endeavour to minimise their impact and inform you if a supplement is required.

 

Exclusions: International airfares to & from your chosen destination. Extra Gorilla, Golden Monkey, or other permits. Visa fees, personal & travel insurance, excursions not specified, drinks unless specified, laundry, telephone or internet costs, gratuities, and all other personal expenses. Some airports now charge safety fees, which are payable directly at each airport upon departure.

 

Additional things to consider: Busy times of the year normally have a supplement added by the accommodation providers - Easter, Xmas & New Year holidays.  These will be included in our costs - so no surprises when you get there!

 

Seasons

Your chances of seeing gorillas are pretty much the same throughout the year - we're not allowed to say 'guaranteed', but we can say 'very high'! What changes is the chance of rain, how green the vegetation is, and how far you may need to hike to find your gorilla family!

 

So if you're constrained to travelling at a particular time, don't worry: we'll recommend the best places & parks - and the best locations within the the parks - to visit at that time. 

 

If you have any other specific interests - such as the Chimpanzee Habituation Experience in Uganda, seeing The Great Migration in Kenya or Tanzania or Okavango Delta in Botswana in flood - then you do need to travel at the right time of year, AND to the right area.

 

Guide to the safari seasons & the best time to go to Rwanda for Gorilla Safaris


  December - February
Short dry season following the short rains.
Gorilla families will move up & down the slopes in search of good foraging.
   
  March - mid May
Classified as the long rains.
Chances of rain are high, although this usually won't last all day. 
Lush, green vegetation & beautiful wildflowers. 
Gorillas will often be lower down on the slopes, resulting in shorter hikes.
   
  mid May - September
Dry season, decreasing chance of rain, although it's still possible! 
Gorillas may sometimes climb higher whilst foraging.
   
  October - November
Short rains, bringing relief after the dry season.
Delicious bamboo shoots on lower slopes, which Gorillas & Golden Monkeys love!
   

 

Whatever time of year you choose to travel, rest assured that when you choose to travel with us, we will advise you of the best safari locations, safari seasons and safari dates for your particular interests.

 

How can we help you?