Rwanda Tours & Safaris
Rwanda is the travel world’s phoenix rising. From a devastating genocide more than two decades ago, it has emerged as one of East Africa’s premier travel destinations, Rwanda tours and safaris showing off a capital city transformed and world renowned national parks, which teem with birds and big game—minus the tourist hordes. There’s more reason to visit Rwanda today than ever.
Rwanda is one of only three places in the world where you can spot the last half of the world’s remaining 1008 mountain gorillas, and staring down one of mankind’s closest relatives in its natural habitat is an experience we doubt you’ll soon forget. (Mountain gorillas share 98 percent of our DNA.) Book a Rwanda gorilla trekking permit for inside Volcanoes National Park, one of Africa’s oldest national parks, and you’ll be led on a daily guided gorilla trek that tops out at eight visitors. The only other two countries that offer the same experience are the Democratic Republic of the Congo in Virunga National Park and Uganda in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park which require more vigorous hikes with 99% guarantee of great ape encounters.
Before we get into so much talk about Rwanda Tours and Safaris, let’s introduce you to our most popular tailored Rwanda tour packages that may arouse your interest in visiting Rwanda on your next trip.
Come for the mountain gorillas, stay for the food and cafe scene.
The food scene
The dishes, available in restaurants and luxury hotels like the Kigali Serena Hotel, blend traditional Rwandan foodstuffs, such as sambaza (small fish) and urwagwa (a fermented banana beer) with modern culinary methods and artistic presentation. Don’t leave the country without trying Rwandan coffee (more on that later).
The Vibrant Capital Kigali
Rwanda’s capital is on the move. From its recently completed, psychedelic Easter egg of a convention center to car-free zones and yes, Wi-Fi cafes that dole out freshly spun smoothies, locally roasted coffee, and homemade scones (Café Neo, Bourbon Coffee), Kigali is making a mad dash toward modernity. Absorb the bright lights of Rwanda’s future at the Inema Arts Center, where promising young painters debut their best work amid weekly yoga classes and cocktail hours.
Safety and Security
Safety is a priority for most travelers, and Rwanda is one of the safest countries not just in Africa, but in the world: In 2015, the country ranked fifth globally and first on the continent in Gallup’s Law and Order Index, which measures how safe people feel walking home at night. Violent crime is near nonexistent, and the terrorist threats that have plagued other East African destinations have not affected Rwanda.
The Big 5 Safaris
After acquiring lions last year, and with plans to introduce black rhinos this year, Akagera National Park is primed to become a Big Five safari destination. With elephants, buffalo, and a wide variety of antelope, you’ll get the full savannah experience and the added bonus of the park’s river boat cruises, which include rare encounters with crocodiles and hippos. Akagera provides campgrounds and tents for a small fee, but honestly, “glamping” on the edge of Lake Ihema at the Ruzizi Tented Lodge is the way to go. Even better? All proceeds benefit the park.
The Art Scene
Kigali may not have the nightlife of Kampala or Nairobi just yet, but its art scene is flourishing. This is due to a combination of factors, not least a traumatic collective past creating a need for therapeutic expression and also a strong economy creating an indigenous market to support artists. Check out Ivuka Arts, Inema Arts CentER and also Heaven Restaurant and Boutique Hotel which displays many up and coming Rwandan artists.
Lake Kivu, in the far west of the country, is an otherworldly sunken mountain valley. The steeply ridged islands are actually the tops of sunken mountains. It’s a beautiful chill out spot, with great lakeside hikes and white sand beaches on the lakes shore. It’s a four or five hour drive from Kigali, with good, paved roads the whole way. The drive itself is an attraction, with beautiful scenes the whole way through coffee growing country.
Friendly and Open People
This is something often said but rarely meant but truly, Rwandans are some of the friendliest people you’ll ever meet! They’re so welcome and open. If you want to experience true African hospitality, Book up a Rwanda tour!