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10 Days Rwanda Safari: Big 5, Chimps, Gorillas & More!

10 Days
Home | Trips | Rwanda | Volcanoes National Park | 10 Days Rwanda Safari: Big 5, Chimps, Gorillas & More!

This 10 days Rwanda safari offers you a great opportunity to tick off three bucket list items in one epic safari – in one country! From searching for the Big 5 animals in the rolling savannah plains and lake shores of Akagera National Park – one of Africa’s conservation success stories – to the dense forest jungle of Nyungwe National Park for chimpanzees and the misty montane forests of Volcanoes National Park for mountain gorillas. And expect a few gems as you drive through this beautiful country – like rare golden monkeys, the heartbreaking but inspiring story of genocide at the Kigali Genocide Memorial and some of the best coffee available.

Highlights of 10 Days Rwanda Safari

  • Kigali Genocide Memorial & city tour
  • Big 5 game drives in Akagera National Park
  • Boat cruise on Lake Ihema in Akagera
  • Visit Butare National Museum
  • Chimpanzee trekking in Nyungwe Forest National Park
  • Nyungwe Forest Canopy Walkway
  • Mega troop of 400 colobus monkeys in Nyungwe
  • Mountain gorilla and golden monkey trekking in Volcanoes National Park
  • Canoe the Mukungwa River
  • IbyÔÇÖiwacu Cultural Village tour
  • Great photographic opportunities

Details of 10 Days Rwanda Safari

Day 1: Arrive in Kigali

Our company representative will meet you on arrival at Kigali International Airport (KGL). After a brief welcome and introduction briefing you will be transferred to your booked accommodation in Kigali city to check-in. After settling in you will be taken to the Kigali Genocide Memorial, where tributes to the victims offer a place to pay your respects. Here, you will get a better understanding of how far this country has come. And if time permits, you will take a city tour including visits to food and Caplaki curio markets. You will then return to your hotel for a wonderful dinner and sleep.

Accommodation:

Luxury: Serena Hotel Kigali/Radisson blue/The Retreat

Midrange: Hotel Chezlando/Quiet Haven Hotel

Meal Plan: Dinner

Day 2: Drive to Akagera National Park

10 Days Uganda safari

After a delightful breakfast, your tour driver guide will drive you to Akagera National Park – a relaxed 2.5-hour journey of 109 kilometers. On the way, you may stop at roadside curio and art markets to find Imigongo crafts and to taste excellent Rwandan coffee. Your arrival at Akagera National Park will be in good time for lunch and an afternoon activity.

The 1,122 square kilometers Akagera is on the eastern edge of Rwanda, where the sinuous bends of the Akagera River mark the boundary with Tanzania. The park safeguards Central AfricaÔÇÖs largest protected wetland, consisting of a complex system of lakes linked by papyrus-lined swamps.

Away from the marshes, the jagged lines of animal pathways weave across vast plains and sweeping highlands like a network of veins, a testament to Akagera National ParkÔÇÖs status as a refuge for savannah-adapted wildlife. Akagera is a Big 5 safari destination.

Accommodation: R

Luxury: Ruzizi Tented Lodge/Magashi Camp

Midrange: Akagera Game Lodge

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 3: Full day in Akagera

Have an early breakfast today and depart on a morning game drive to find the park’s Big 5 animals (lions, leopards, elephants, buffalo, and rhino) and other wildlife species. You will return to your lodge in late afternoon for scrumptious lunch, followed by a siesta.

In the mid-afternoon, you will enjoy a relaxing boat cruise on Lake Ihema, a hippo territory. Thousands of these huge animals make their home in the lake. You also spot some of the 490 bird species that call the park home. As the sunset, you will have an evening game drive back to your lodge.

Accommodation:

Luxury: Ruzizi Tented Lodge/Magashi Camp

Midrange: Akagera Game Lodge

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 4: Another full day in Akagera

10 Days Uganda Safari

After another delightful early breakfast, you will head out into the park for another exciting day of exploration and wildlife sightings. This time you will take a packed lunch, to allow the time to explore the wildlife-rich Kilala plain in the northern area of Akagera National Park.

Be on the lookout for lions, leopards, rhinos, elephants, buffalos, zebras, warthogs, baboons, giraffes, topi and more. Have your camera at the ready but remember to stop and take in the moment too. You will return to the lodge via the many game drive tracks, for fireside drinks and dinner looking over magnificent Lake Ihema.

Accommodation:

Luxury: Ruzizi Tented Lodge/Magashi Camp

Midrange: Akagera Game Lodge

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 5: Drive to Kigali

After a relaxed breakfast today, your guide will pick you from the lodge for the 2.5-hour drive back to Kigali city. You may stop on enroute at roadside curio and art markets to find Imigongo crafts and to taste delicious Rwandan coffee. You will arrive in Kigali in time for lunch at the restaurant and a possible city tour before checking in again at your accommodation for a comfortable night.

Accommodation:

Luxury: Serena Hotel Kigali/Radisson blue/The Retreat

Midrange: Hotel Chezlando/Quiet Haven Hotel

Meal Plan:  Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 6: Visit Nyungwe National Park

10 Days Uganda safari

Enjoy a leisurely breakfast and embark on scenic 224 km (6 ┬¢ hours) drive from Kigali to Nyungwe Forest National Park. Watch the city streets fade into winding roads and mountain views as your driver takes you south to the Cultural Corridor. It was from here that kings once ruled. Tour the reconstruction of a traditional kingÔÇÖs palace ÔÇô the thatch homes from which all decisions were made ÔÇô in Nyanza. Meet the royal cows on site and the herder who sings to them.

Then, wander the halls of the simple, modern home of the countryÔÇÖs last king. Continue your drive south to the detailed National Museum in Butare, which offers a superb display of ethnographic objects such as traditional ceramics and basketry and explanations of daily rural life in Rwanda. The museum remained surprisingly untouched during the civil war in 1994.

After lunch en route, you will arrive in good time for relaxation and dinner at your accommodation, which lies close to the national park boundary.

Nyungwe National Park is one of the oldest rainforests in Africa and is filled with rare primates, reptiles, orchids and exotic birds. The park covers 1,019 square kilometers of forested mountains, rambling streams, sun-starved valleys, and extensive swamps. Part of the Albertine Rift and ranging in altitude from 1,600-3,000 meters, this high-altitude montane forest towers above Lake Kivu and comprises the watershed between the Congo and Nile Rivers.

Accommodation:

Luxury:  One&Only Nyungwe House/Nyungwe Forest Lodge

Midrange: Nyungwe Top View Hill Hotel

Budget: Gisakura Guesthouse

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 7: Chimpanzee trekking and the Canopy Walkway

10 Days Rwanda Safari

Nyungwe is one of the few places in the world where you see wild chimpanzees. Have an early morning breakfast and make your way to the forest in the dark with a local park ranger who knows the forestÔÇÖs deepest secrets.  Follow him to the home of the chimps. Watch the animals wake, stretch, and start their day in the forest. Snap your photos while you can.

Upon reaching the chimps you will be able to see them playing and interacting in their natural habitat ÔÇö an incredible sight. After your chimp trek, you will return to the lodge for lunch, as you prepare for the most spectacular views of Afromontane forest anywhere.

Nyungwe Forest’s 160 meter long Forest Canopy Walkway hangs 70 meters above the forest – making for excellent photographic moments and canopy-level views of birds and monkeys. After this exhilarating adventure, you will return to your lodge for dinner and a well-earned sleep.

Accommodation:

Luxury:  One&Only Nyungwe House/Nyungwe Forest Lodge

Midrange: Nyungwe Top View Hill Hotel

Budget: Gisakura Guesthouse

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 8: More primate encounters, then drive to Volcanoes National Park

After an early morning wakeup, you will drive to the Nyungwe National Park visitor centre at Uwinka to embark on a walk to find the local mega-troop of over 400 Rwenzori pied colobus monkeys.

After this exciting activity, you will head back to your lodge for a delicious breakfast and to check out. Your guide will then pick you up for the 245 kilometer (5-6-hour) drive to Volcanoes National Park.

Volcanoes National Park is famous as one of AfricaÔÇÖs leading mountain gorilla trekking destinations. This parkÔÇÖs breathtaking scenery includes five major (non-active) volcanoes, tropical, bamboo and montane forests, Afroalpine shrubland, thicket, and grassland with marshes and small lakes interspersed.

Situated in the north-western corner of Rwanda on the borders with Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo, this 160 square kilometer park is home to a third of the worldÔÇÖs population of mountain gorillas and several troops of rare golden monkeys. You will arrive in time for lunch. Spend the afternoon relaxing before dinner and overnight at your lodge.

Accommodation:

Luxury:  Mountain Gorilla View Lodge/Bisate Lodge/Virunga Lodge

Midrange: Da Vinci Gorilla Lodge/La Palme Hotel

Budget: Muhabura Hotel

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 9: Mountain gorilla trekking & IbyÔÇÖiwacu Cultural Village Tour

10 Days Uganda Safari

Enjoy hearty breakfast early in the morning and drive national park offices for your gorilla trekking adventure.

Learn more about gorilla trekking here. Your time with mountain gorillas is limited to one hour once you find them, so make the most of what is one of the most breathtaking wildlife experiences on earth! After your mountain gorilla trek, you will return to your lodge for lunch and an afternoon of leisure. In the evening, you will also visit the IbyÔÇÖiwacu Cultural Village, a replica village of what traditional life was like back in the day for many Rwandans.

You will have an opportunity to mingle with the local community and spectate or participate in many activities such as hunting skills, traditional dance and music.

Accommodation:

Luxury:  Mountain Gorilla View Lodge/Bisate Lodge/Virunga Lodge

Midrange: Da Vinci Gorilla Lodge/La Palme Hotel

Budget: Muhabura Hotel

Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 10: Golden monkey trekking, drive to Kigali

Have an early breakfast at the lodge and return to Volcanoes National Park, this time to trek for golden monkeys. Golden monkeys are an endangered primate species found only in the Virunga Mountains range, which covers the Rwanda, Uganda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Entering dense stands of bamboo interspersed with open glades; you will make your way deep into golden monkey territory where you will have one hour of up-close time with these fascinating and beautiful monkeys.

After encountering the golden monkey, you will return to the lodge for an early lunch. You will then check out and embark on a drive back to Kigali. En route, you will stop at Mukungwa River for a spot of canoeing. This activity of about 2-3 hours includes a few modest rapids and gliding through rural countryside of Rwanda. Your arrival at Kigali International Airport (KGL) will be timed for your departure flight. Safe Travels!

End of 10 Days Rwanda Safari

10 Days Rwanda Safari – Inclusions

  • Transportation in 4×4 safari van or landcruiser
  • English-speaking driver/guides
  • Accommodation and meals as stated in the programme
  • Rwanda gorilla trekking permit
  • Rwanda golden monkeys tracking permit
  • Pied Colobus and other primates trek
  • Chimpanzee trekking permit
  • The canopy walkway
  • IbyÔÇÖiwacu Cultural Village tour
  • Butare Museum and lunch in the town
  • All park guide fees, park fees, and government taxes
  • Mineral water while in safari vehicle

10 Days Rwanda Safari – Exclusions

  • International flights
  • Excess weight fees
  • Visas
  • Travel and medical insurance
  • Other activities not mentioned in the program
  • Driver/guide or local escort gratuities
  • All drinks (beers, sodas and water from the hotels)
  • Telephone bill
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Laundry
  • Porters
  • Gratuities

You can send your enquiry via the form below.

10 Days Rwanda Safari: Big 5, Chimps, Gorillas & More!