Safari in Rwanda: prices, when and where to go

Safari in Rwanda.

With safaris in Rwanda, it’s very simple. There are three main national parks and depending on what you are interested in: classic safari, mountain gorillas, golden monkeys or chimpanzees, Akagera National Park, Volcanoes National Park or Nyungwe National Park will appear in your itinerary.

Golden Monkey in Volcanoes National Park

Golden monkey in Volcanoes National Park

Akagera National Park

The Akagera National Park, which is located in the east of the country along the border with Tanzania, is responsible for classic safaris in Rwanda. The park boasts the presence of all the representatives of the Big Five of Africa. Of course, Akagera is difficult to compete with the top national parks in Africa, but fans of safari will not be disappointed. In addition, Akagera is a very scenic landscape park.

Akagera National Park

Akagera National Park

The park has Lake Ihema with small islands that are beloved by birds. Boat trips on the lake are very popular.

Hippo in Ihema Lake in Akagera National Park, Rwanda

Hippopotamus on Lake Ihema in Akagera National Park, Rwanda

Volcanoes National Park

Like neighboring Uganda, safaris in Rwanda are not limited to the classic jeep safari. In both countries, there is the concept of “primates safari” (primates safari). Primarily referring to our closest relatives, the gorillas and chimpanzees.

Volcanoes National Park is probably the best park in Africa for trekking to the mountain gorillas. Trekking conditions here are easier than in Uganda’s Bwindi, at the moment the park is home to 9 groups of mountain gorillas (previously 10, but Hirwa group recently migrated to Uganda’s Mgahinga Gorilla Park).

Mountain Gorillas of Rwanda.

In addition to the mountain gorillas in Volcanoes National Park, you can also trek to the golden monkeys. They are funny and mischievous and will not leave anyone indifferent.

Golden Monkeys in Volcanoes National Park

It would seem that everything is perfect in Volcanoes National Park. Alas, there is one major drawback – the cost of mountain gorilla permits is $1,500 (a 30% discount is possible under certain conditions). Unfortunately, this is significantly higher than in neighboring Uganda.

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Nyungwe National Park

There are several species of primates in Nyungwe National Park, but the main reason you come here is to hike to see the chimpanzees.

Directly in the forest of Nyungwe there is one group of chimpanzees numbering about 60 individuals, which is used to the presence of people. Trekking to this group is quite difficult and, unfortunately, does not always meet expectations.

Chimpanzees in Nyungwe National Park

There is a second group of 30 chimpanzees in the park in the Cyamudongo forest. Trekking to it is easier and observation conditions are more favorable, so we recommend choosing this group.

In addition to chimpanzees in Nyungwa there is also a trekking to the colobus. The forest itself is very beautiful and picturesque.

Newngwe Forest, Rwanda

On the way from Kigali to Nyungwe or on the way back, we recommend making a stop in the town of Nyanza and visiting the royal palace. The main attraction of the palace are the long-horned Inyambo cows.

Rwanda’s long-horned Inyambo cows

Not exactly a safari, but still…

The logistics of a safari in Rwanda

As with the rest of East Africa, the main way to organize a trip is a fully escorted safari. A guide and car, usually a Land Cruiser equipped for safari, are completely at your disposal throughout the trip, making the trip quite comfortable.

Akagera Aviation has recently been offering regular helicopter flights between the parks, saving you travel time between the parks.

Medical Advice

It is important to remember that when visiting Rwanda, as well as the rest of East Africa, malaria prevention and yellow fever vaccination are recommended. You may be asked to show a certificate of vaccination at entry into the country.

Visa to Rwanda

A visa to Rwanda can be applied for online at the Irembo government services portal. If you plan to visit both Rwanda and Uganda or/and Kenya during your trip, it is recommended to apply for the East Africa Tourist Visa online. When applying for it, please note that it must be obtained from the relevant government office of the country you are going to visit for the first time.

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Weather and seasonality

Due to its proximity to the equator, seasonal temperature variations in Rwanda are small. Daytime temperatures are around 25°C to 27°C almost all year round. The dry and therefore high season is from June to September. The wet rainy season is from October to May, with short rains mostly from October to December, and from March to May the high rainy season.

In the low season from November to May you can save a lot of money: discounts not only for accommodation, but also for the mountain gorillas in the Volcanoes National Park.

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Now you have an idea of what a safari in Rwanda is like. If you liked it in theory, it’s time to move on to practice, that is to book your safari in Rwanda. If you have any questions or suggestions, please call or write. We will gladly give you advice, tips and help.

Rwanda Safaris and Tours

Although Rwanda does not boast the safari experience of Kenya or Tanzania, there is still Akagera National Park where you can go on a safari adventure. Nevertheless, Rwanda is worth going for the chance to see gorillas and chimpanzees in their natural habitat. Especially for you, we have created programs that include everything from trekking to the primates to relaxing on Lake Kivu!

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Wild Safari in Rwanda - 9 Days

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