Rwanda is one of the three countries in Africa that hosts mountain gorillas. Though Rwanda is a small country, it is among the upcoming destinations for travel in Africa. Its tourism sector is booming and rapidly developing attracting a considerable number of foreign tourists who visit the country for adventures through the “land of a thousand hills”. Rwanda is one of the richly endowed tourist attractions in the East African regional; the best place to go gorilla trekking, offering unique opportunities for chimpanzee tracking, bird watching and cultural tours.

Though Rwanda is most known for the 1994 Rwanda Genocide, it is notably a safe country to visit on the African continent. Since the end of the genocide, the government of Rwanda has done a lot to rebuild the country. Today various infrastructure have been put in place and Rwanda boasts of good roads, improved communication, good accommodation facilities and improved flight schedules.

Rwanda fairly bases its economy on tourism and mountain gorilla trekking is the major tourist activity done at Volcanoes National Park and it’s regarded as the most breathtaking activity one should not miss. The genocide memorial sites in Gisenyi and Butare are some of the attaching places you will not miss to see and hear the stories of how the war begun. Visiting the Dian Fossey tombs in the Karisoke is some thing to look at.

Things to Do in Rwanda

There are lots of adventures one can take in Africa. The top things to do include;

  • Go gorilla trekking in Rwanda- Volcanoes National parks hosts a third of the world’s total remaining population of the mountain gorillas.
  • Go for chimpanzee tracking in Nyungwe Forest National Park. You can also enjoy canopy walks, nature walks and sightseeing
  • Trace the history of Rwanda by taking a tour at Kigali Genocide Memorial.
  • You can also visit the different genocide memorial sites that are spread in different parts of the country.
  • Cultural Tours – Take a village walks, shop from various art shops that have beautiful locally made art crafts like weaved baskets,
  • Visit lakes like Kivu, the twin lakes of Bulera and Ruhondo

Places Where to Go in Uganda

Nyungwe Forest – A Primate world

One moment, the road winds un-remarkably through the steep terraced slopes that characterize Africa’s most densely populated nation. Then, abruptly, the ever-present cultivation gives way to lush evergreen forest and branches draped in tangled lianas, canopy animated by liquid birdsong and a succession of liberating views across tree-swathed mountains rolling south to the Burundi border, this termed the country as the “land of a thousand hills”. Such is most people’s introduction to Nyungwe forest National park, which extending over almost 1000km2 is the largest extant rain forest in eastern or central Africa and possibly the most scenic, with few peers in terms of biodiversity.

It’s optimistic to arrive in Nyungwe expecting to encounter a high proportion of the 75 mammal species which inhabit the shady forest interior Palm civet, Yellow-backed duiker, potto and Giant flying squirrel among them. But troops of up to 400 Ruwenzori colobus are easily located near the park headquarters, along with L’Hoest’s, Red-tailed, Dent’s and Silver monkeys, and further afield, and with greater effort of chimps.

Prominent among 275 bird species is the delightfully garish Great blue turaco, while 24 Albertine Rift endemics and the rare Congo bay owl will have serious birders salivating. A remarkable floral diversity includes 100 orchid species.

Accessible by public transport and serviced by a pleasant and inexpensive government rest house and campsite, Rwanda’s newest NP is tailor-made for budget-conscious nature lovers. More comfortable accommodation is available at Cyangugu port, about 30km west of the park boundary.

Parc des Volcans/Volcanoes National Park

Home of the Mountain Gorillas

Protecting Rwanda’s portion of the Virunga Mountains, the Parc National des Volcans was the site of Dian Fossey’s celebrated gorilla habituation and anti- poaching project, and will be familiar to some as the location of the film Gorillas in the Mist. And what a memorable location it is, this chain of free-standing volcanic mountains, whose daunting slopes swathed in giant bamboo clumps and montane forest, rise imperiously to above 4000m.

The star attractions are the world’s last 380 mountain gorillas, which are unique to the Virungas (DNA tests suggest the gorillas in Uganda’s Bwindi NP are racially discrete). Four habituated troops, each dominated by a “gentle giant” silverback, frequently allow visitors on rwanda gorilla safaris to get close enough to stare into their deep brown eyes and the most emotive, haunting wildlife experience on the continent. The supporting cast includes elephant, which frequently leave steaming calling cards on the forest trails, but more likely to be seen are the localized Golden monkey and various forest birds and butterflies.

The Virungas straddle the border with Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo, a region marked by political instability in recent decades. The area is also prone to sporadic geological upheaval: one recent eruption expelled a wall of molten lava into the Congolese town of Goma. This shouldn’t put you off: the Parc des Volcans or commonly known as Volcanoes National park has been safe for some years now and the volcanoes that regularly blow their top aren’t ecologically compatible with gorillas.

The park has got one the best safari lodges for accommodation and a few basic hotels are found in the nearby town of Ruhengeri, or with a vehicle and with an early start you can track Rwanda gorillas as a day trip from the smarter hotels in Gisenyi or Kigali. Tracking is tougher during the rains (February-June, September-December).