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6 Day Rwanda Primate Safari Holiday

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6 Day Rwanda Primate Safari Holiday

Welcome to 6 Day Rwanda Primate Safari Holiday, the “land of a thousand hills”. This luxury tour has been designed to show you the best highlights of this fascinating country from a primate’s-eye view of Nyungwe Forest on a canopy walk, to close encounters with chimpanzees and the gorillas of the mist. In the evenings you will stay in the best lodges in the country, known for their excellent service and exceptionally beautiful locations.

Highlights.

Day 1: Arrival in Kigali

Day 2: Visit Genocide Memorial & Transfer to Nyungwe Forest National Park.

Day 3: Chimpanzee Tracking & Canopy Walk (optional)

Day 4: Transfer to Volcanoes National Park

Day 5: Gorilla Tracking

Day 6: Return to Kigali to End the Safari.

 

 DETAILED ITINARERY.

 Day 1: Arrival in Kigali

At the airport, you will be greeted by your guide and driven to your hotel in a quiet leafy street in the heart of downtown Kigali. Over a complimentary drink by the hotel’s pool bar your guide will brief you on the details of your upcoming adventure. If time allows, you are free to explore the city today. Your guide can take you on a city tour or visit the craft markets to browse amongst the pottery, carvings, batik, weaving, musical instruments, leather, and fabrics on offer. Prepare to use your haggling skills!

Accommodation:

Luxury: Kigali Serena Hotel

Midrange: Flame tree Village.

Budget: Hotel Chez lando

 

Day 2: Visit Genocide Memorial & Transfer to Nyungwe Forest

After an early breakfast, drive to the Genocide Memorial in town before setting off to Nyungwe Forest. The Genocide Memorial is a place of commemoration for the 250,000 victims buried in mass graves in the area and an important remembrance of the unfathomable brutality of the 1994 genocide. The exhibit is an intensely emotional experience but also an educational one, where you will learn about the darkest hour in Rwanda’s recent history.

En route to Nyungwe, you will have a stop at the town of Butare, about 135km from Kigali. Here you can visit the Butare National Museum displaying a range of ethnographic objects that will give you an insight into the rich traditional life and culture of the country.

Proceed with the journey reaching Nyungwe Forest National Park late in the evening. It is one of the world’s oldest and arguably Africa’s most beautiful rainforests. The forest is incredibly biodiverse with 13 known primate species in residence, from colobus monkeys, mangabeys, blue monkeys, and, of course, our nearest relatives, the chimpanzees. Nyungwe Forest is also famous among the birding community who come to spot some of the 310-bird species recorded here, 26 of which are endemic to Rwanda.

Accommodation options.

Midrange: Nyungugwe to view hill Lodge.

Budget: Gisakura guest house.

 

 Day 3: Chimpanzee Tracking & Canopy Walk (optional)

Today you will venture deep into Nyungwe Forest National Park in search of the chimpanzees. On a Chimpanzee Tracking experience in Nyungwe Forest, you will have the opportunity to follow an experienced guide into the forest to observe these fascinating creatures at a close range. Watching them interact with each other and go about their daily routine of grooming, playing and foraging is an incredible experience.

While your chances of encountering chimpanzees are high during your tracking excursion, it is never 100% guaranteed. These are, after all, wild animals with wills and minds of their own! From the trails below the foliage, you will now head up high into the forest canopy on one of East Africa’s first canopy walks. The network of suspension bridges will lead you on a 1.5-hour walk over a deep gorge, through beautiful and lush vegetation and different animal habitats. The canopy walk is an optional activity. Should you want to spend your afternoon enjoying the luxurious comforts of the lodge or doing one of the complimentary activities on offer there, just let your guide know in advance.

Accommodation options.

Midrange: Nyungugwe to view hill Lodge.

Budget: Gisakura guest house.

 

Day 4: Transfer to Volcanoes National Park

After an early breakfast, drive to Volcanoes National park. It is part of the great Virunga mountain range and its 5 volcanoes that form the border between Rwanda, Uganda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Besides being one of the most scenic sights in Africa, the park is also the gateway to face-to-face encounters with the iconic mountain gorillas.

While the main draw of visiting Volcanoes NP is to see the real gorillas in the mist, there are other fantastic activities to experience here like, tracking excursions to find the rare golden monkeys, spectacular volcano hikes, and a visit to the Dian Fossey research center. Speak with your Travel Consultant if you would like to extend your stay in the park for an additional day to include one or more of these activities.

Accommodation options:

Luxury: Mount Gorilla View Lodge

Midrange: Le’ Bambou Gorilla Lodge

Budget: Muhabura Hotel.

 

Day 5: Gorilla Tracking

After an early breakfast, drive to the park headquarters for a briefing about the dos and don’ts before Encountering the rare and endangered mountain gorillas is an experience of a lifetime. In the company of an experienced park ranger, you will be tracking the whereabouts of one of the habituated family groups who live in the park and can tolerate the presence of humans for a brief period every day. 6 Day Rwanda Primate Safari,  Your gorilla tracking experience will be an exciting, yet challenging, journey along forested (sometimes muddy and slippery) slopes, tangled vines, thick vegetation, and bamboo forests before you reach the territory of these gentle giants.

En route, your ranger will point out telltale signs of previous gorilla activity like dung, nests, and chewed bamboo shoots. Depending on the location of the gorillas on any given day the walk can take anything from 1 to 7 hours. Once the family of gorillas has been located, settle into the environment and enjoy the hour you have to quietly observe these fascinating primates whose habits and mannerisms remind us so much of our own. Encountering the mountain gorillas in the wild is a truly humbling and emotional experience, one that you are sure to remember for the rest of your life.

Accommodation options:

Luxury: Mount Gorilla View Lodge

Midrange: Le’ Bambou Gorilla Lodge

Budget: Muhabura Hotel.

 

Day 6: Return to Kigali to End the Safari.

Enjoy your last morning in the rainforest today. After early lunch, your guide will drive you back to Kigali for your departure flight. Farewell dinner with your guide in Kigali is included in your meal plan today before you are driven to the airport. Should you depart on an earlier flight please let your Travel Consultant know to deduct the meal from your package.

 

INCLUSIONS.

  • 2x airport transfers
  • Transportation in a 4WD Extended Landcruiser
  • All fuel for the tour
  • Professional English-speaking driver/guide
  • Accommodation as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • Welcome drink on arrival day
  • Drinking water in the vehicle
  • Park entrance fees
  • Activities as listed
  • 1 Chimpanzee Tracking permit per person (USD 90)
  • 1 Gorilla Tracking permit per person (USD 1.500)

EXCLUDED

  • International flights
  • Visa
  • Meals that are not part of your accommodation
  • Activities that are mentioned as optional in the program
  • A porter to carry your daypack during gorilla tracking (recommended)
  • Government tax or increments in park fees
  • Personal insurance (medical/travel)
  • Tips and gratuities to your driver/guide, rangers, site guides, porters, hotel staff, etc.
  • All expenses of a personal nature (e.g. drinks, laundry, souvenirs etc.)

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