The best Rwanda top 10 things to do, places to see and tour. Also known as the “Land of a Thousand Hills,” Rwanda rests just below the equator and its size, while small—about the size of Maryland—has a rich geography with mountains, savannas, and many lakes. This landlocked nation is at a high altitude. It also has one of the 20 deepest lakes in the world, Lake Kivu.
Rwanda is fortunate to be one of only three countries where tourists can visit the endangered mountain gorillas safely. There are seven mountain gorilla families that tourists can visit, including Susa, the largest group with 41 mountain gorillas that also have rare 5-year-old twins.
Gorilla trekking in Rwanda is often described as “life changing” and with good reason. With only an estimated 800 Gorillas left in the world, seeing these gentle creatures in their natural habitat is a truly unique moment.
Other than Gorillas, Rwanda also has other primate species which include Chimpanzees, Black-and-white colobus monkeys, and the endangered Golden monkey. Nyungwe forest national park has the chimpanzees and black & white colobus monkeys. The Golden monkeys however can be found in Volcanoes national park.
The Canopy Walk is the favorite activity for park visitors. It is one of Rwanda Top 10 things anyone would love to attempt before they die. Opened in 2010, it is the only one of its kind in East Africa and the third on the continent. Getting to the Canopy is about 2 hours from the starting point at Uwinka Visitors center. Seeing the 90 meters long Canopy walkway on arrival in Nyungwe forest national park, is an amazing and awesome experience. The bridge suspended between huge trees gives one a feel of fresh air, 60 metres above the forest floor. The Minimum age for the canopy activity is 6 years old, and children must be accompanied by an adult. This activity is available through-out the year.
Rwanda has over 700 bird species and definitely you can’t afford to miss birding in all the national parks and other destinations. Rwanda’s location in the Albertine Rift makes for an ideal and stunning landscape for bird enthusiasts. Bird-watching in Rwanda can appeal to every level visitor – from the absolute novice (who maybe only visited for the primates) all the way to the most serious of birders, due to the diversity and appeal of certain species. Birding is experienced throughout the year, with the migrant bird season being from December through to February.
The Congo Nile Trail is a trail along Lake Kivu that extends from Rubavu, continues through Rutsiro via the Karongi, Nyamasheke districts and ends at Rusizi District (227 km of beautiful landscapes, including rolling hills and clear water). Trails give stunning views of the Lake Kivu coastline and offer adventurous travelers an exciting way to discover Rwanda. Biking the Congo Nile Trail can be completed in 5 days, with rich views and immersive cultural experiences along the way. This trail appeals to adventure travelers and is a great way to experience Rwanda.
Rwanda is made up of proud and unique people, happy to welcome you into their lives and introduce you to their traditions. There are strong ancient traditions of honor and hospitality. Music and dance play an indispensable role in everyday life and performances range from demonstrations of bravery and prowess to humorous songs, light-hearted dances, and rural artistry with roots in traditional agriculture. There are many different cultural experiences that you can do in Rwanda like the dancing performances, Umuganda, Crafts, Genocide memorial visit, museums and many others.
Enjoy African Wildlife Safaris in the Akagera National park located north east of Rwanda just 110 km from Kigali town.With Lake Ihema in the background and cooler temperatures, this is a safari experience unlike any of Rwanda’s neighbors. Akagera national park combines well with Nyungwe forest park and the Volcanoes National Park to offer a great safari element as it is home to many large plains game species as well as species restricted to the papyrus swamps such as the Sitatunga and the sought-after Shoebill Stork. Notable plains game species include elephant, buffalo, topi, zebra, water-buck, roan antelope and eland. Of the primates, olive baboons, vervets and the secretive blue monkey are seen during the day, with bush-babies often seen on night drives.
Tea is Rwanda’s largest export. The fertile volcanic soil and temperate climate are perfect for growing the plants that create this popular drink. Tea leaves can be seen covering the mountains – creating a stunning contrast to the blue skies, dirt roads and sunshine. Visitors can discover how tea is harvested, processed, and even get to taste the results. Also Hundreds of thousands of small growers produce Coffee all across Rwanda, but visits are primarily centred around Gisenyi, and a number of farmer’s cooperatives and washing stations near here offer tours explaining the coffee process throughout the year, and each one naturally comes with a generous tasting. Tours to the plantations can be set up by the tour agencies as the the plantations themselves don’t liaise with tourists directly.
Located just out of Musanze town which is a one &a half hour drive from Kigali city, the musanze caves are an enormous opening and are about 2km long with a huge number of bats residing inside. The caves were used as a shelter during the early war times. It’s an important place to the local people therefore access is limited to guided visits. Every tour has an expert guide who knows the history and formation of the caves. A visit to this place can be done anytime throughout the year and takes about 2 and a half hours.
One of the best Rwanda Top 10 things to do would be to Indulge in a helicopter ride above the land of a thousand hills to get a birds-eye view of our endless rolling green hills and pristine water banks. Helicopter is also a rapid way to get from one attraction to another.
Get in touch with one of our Safari Experts if you are interested in trying out one of the activities listed in the Rwanda Top 10 things to do.
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