Rwanda Safari and Holidays Guide

Rwanda Safari Holidays Kigali Kivu Gorilla

Holidays to Rwanda & Safari Travel Advice, Travel Planning Tips and Travel Information

Rwanda is one of the most exciting destinations in Africa. This country has such wonderful aspect in every town, city, and the village. Not only the beautiful offers from the country, but you can also feel welcomed because the natives are kind-hearted. Rwanda is popular for its ecotourism objects. It has abundant national parks and nature conservation which you can visit to spend your quality Rwanda safari and holidays with your family. It is easy to spot the endangered primates when you are trekking. The great apes are the iconic creatures that Rwanda offers.

The rainforest in Rwanda also hosts thirteen primates including chimpanzees, gorilas, and colobus monkeys. It is also a great destination for birds lovers since you will easily witness around 300 species of birds. Rwanda still manages the coastal vibe nearby Lake Kivu. The capital of Rwanda, Kigali, is the very first city you will need to visit since it represents the best of Rwanda. It does come with bars, restaurants, accommodations, shopping centers, and so on. You won’t regret your time visiting Rwanda holiday with your family.

Facts and Figures

Area: 26,338 km2 (10,169 sq mi)
Population: 12,619,982 (2019 est.)
Languages: English, French, Kinyarwanda and Swahili

Religion: 56.9% Roman Catholic, 26 % Protestant, 11.1% Seventh-day Adventist, 4.6% Muslim (mainly Sunni), 1.7% claims no or other religious affiliation, and 0.1% practices traditional indigenous beliefs.
Population density: 445[1]/km2 (1,152.5/sq mi)
Administrative Capital: Kigali.
Kigali has about 1,132,686 (2012 est.)
Currency: Rwandan franc (RWF)
Vehicle registration: RW
International dialing code for Rwanda: ‎+250
Form of government: Unitary dominant-party presidential republic
Largest city: Nairobi
Public Holidays: 1st January: New Year’s Day
2nd January: Day after New Year’s Day
1st February: National Heroes Day
Good Friday
Easter Monday
7th April: Genocide against the Tutsi Memorial Day
1st May: Labor Day
1st July: Independence Day
4th July: Liberation Day
Friday of first week of August: Umuganura Day
15th August: Assumption Day
25th December: Christmas Day
26th December: Boxing Day
EID EL FITR: the date shall be announced each year by Rwanda Moslems Association;
EID AL-ADHA: the date shall be announced each year by Rwanda Moslems Association

Emergency numbers: Police hotlines 999, Emergency Toll-Free Numbers: Fire Department – 111
Emergency – 112
Traffic Accidents – 113
Gender based violence – 3512
Abuse by an officer – 3511

Time zone: UTC+2 (CAT)
• Summer (DST) UTC+2 (none)
Entry requirements: Visa and valid passport
Power: 220-240 volts AC @ 50 Hz
Driving side: left

History and Culture

Rwanda long history started from the 13th century when pastoral Tutsi tribes arrived from the south and took over the areas from Hutu and Twa inhabitants. They established a feudal kingdom with 18 different tribes, which became the Rwandan population.

King Kigeri Rwabuguri established the unified state back in the 19th century. But it only lasted until 1890. The Belgian came in the 1920s and forced the country to divide the population into three distinct groups.

Belgians sided with Tutsi minority to overcome Hutu. The feuds between Hutus and Tutsis continued and led to 100 days of the maleficent war. During the carnage, over a million Tutsis were killed. Meanwhile, a moderate number of Hutus were also murdered.

But now, the Hutus and Tutsis have reconciled. Despites the dark history of the country, Rwanda has become one of the most progressive countries in Africa.

Rwanda is a vibrant country which its citizens consist of different backgrounds and religions. They are Roman Catholic 57%, Protestant 26%, Adventist 11%, Islam 5%, indigenous beliefs 0.1%, none 2%. Despites the differences, people are living in harmony now. The official languages of Rwanda are French, English, Kinyarwanda. Meanwhile, folks often use Kiswahili to trade.

Highlights of Rwanda

Nyungwe Forest National Park

Nyungwe Forest National Park features the Nyungwe Rainforest. It is a breath-taking prehistoric nature lover’s paradise. Offering steep ridges and deep valleys, the mountain rainforests host enormous species of chimpanzees and other dozen primates in the Rwanda safari. There are also over thirty dozens of birds species that you can see and record in the area.

Lake Kivu

Lake Kivu is located within Nyungwe Forest. It offers such soothing and laid-back scape. Experts suggested this as an ideal place to unwind and relax.

Kigali City Break

Kigali, the cleanest city in Africa, is the capital city in Rwanda that you shouldn’t miss. It boasts the paved boulevards, local and international restaurants, stars accomodations, conventions, and so on. It is the heart in the country. It also has the Genocide Memorial Center.

Photo: Courtesy Of Rwandan High Commission U.K.

Volcanoes National Park

Rwanda is also a popular destination because of its Volcanoes National Park. The Virunga Volcanoes offer the sights or rare Mountain Gorillas, as well as fruitful flora and fauna. You can spend an enormous time of your visit to enjoy the sight of Mountain Gorillas. Don’t forget to bring your camera to shoot some of the wonderful photos from Rwanda safari. you can also see the birds and monkeys. If you are an outdoors lover, consider hiking Mount Sabyinyo. It will reward you with such wonderful experiences in tracking some of the bst flora and fauna in Rwanda.

Things to Do in Rwanda / Tourist Attractions

Whether you are planning to go alone, with a travel group, or with your family, you will want to enjoy the best of Rwanda. Save your time and see the recommendations of these Rwanda holidays tourist attractions.

Safari in Rwanda – National Parks

Rwanda has abundant national parks which will spoil your eyes and heart when enjoying the fantastic sightseeing. There are a lot of animals besides the birds, chimpanzees, and gorillas.

Rwanda Beach Holiday – Lake Kivu

Unwind in Lake Kivu and you will be wrapping your journey in Rwanda with the best experiences. The picturesque lake is too good to be missed. Make sure you have ample memory storage to take amazing pictures.

Lake Kivu Activities:

  • Swimming
  • Hiking and biking around Lake Kivu
  • Water trips and cruising
  • A visit to Nyamirundi Island
  • A visit to the Imbabazi orphanage
  • Coffee tours around Lake Kivu
  • Wind surfing and other water sports.

Rwanda Gorilla Trekking

Gorilla Trekking has been the core of Rwanda tourism for decades. There is no such thing like Rwanda safari close encounter experience like this in any other part of the world. Imagine how you feel when you can get inches away from these majestic creatures. It will be a fulfilling Rwanda safari experience to share with your close people.

Rwanda Safari – National Parks

Rwanda has abundant national parks to visit. Here is a quick list:

Nyungwe National Park

It is slated as one of the oldest rainforests in Africa. The nyungwe national park is popular because of its beautiful views and abundant Rwanda safari. Here you can find a dozen beautiful primates species.

Gishwati Mukura National Park

It consists of two forests namely Mukura and Gishwati. The national park hosts chimpanzees, monkeys, birds, and smaller animal species.

Volcanoes National Park

Nearly covered with fantastic rainforest, you won’t want to miss the enormous primates sightseeing.

Akagera National Park

Akagera National Park characteristics are unique from the woodland, savannah, wetland, as well as dozens of lakes.

Cities in Rwanda

Kigali

It is such a gorgeous city with fantastic entertainment and places. People also go there for enjoying its friendly weather. You can also respect the country by seeing the genocide memorials and learn about the dark past of the country. Kigali’s nickname is “The Singapore of Africa”. Well, it does represent the fast developing city in which you can see from its clean city streets, sophisticated technology showcase, the metropolitan aspects, as well as speedy economic growth. Kigali’s skyline, infrastructure, and tourism objects are too great to be missed.

Butare

Huye or Butare is the cultural center of Rwanda. The modern name of the city is Huye. It provides various attractions from the National Museum of Rwanda, cathedral, architecture styles, and so on.

Rwanda Safari & Holidays - The christian church in Huye

CC BY 3.0, Link

Rubavu

The site is near Lake Kivu, precisely along the shores of the lake. It boasts the resorts for both domestic and international visitors. When you stroll around the city, you will find fantastic architectural styles that tell a lot about Rwanda History.

Ngororero

It is a tiny city town that features the breath-taking views of hills and the centers of cultural and historical properties ofRwanda. There are also huge marketplaces which you can visit to find some interesting stuff.

Karongi

It is the western provincial capital of Rwanda. For the beach goers, this city is for you.

Nature

Rwanda has been identified with nature conservation and eco-tourism. It has been an important Rwanda safari destination for nature lovers, adventures, and avid animal lovers. There is always a reason to spend more time in Rwanda. One of them is to explore its wonderful nature.

Rwanda hosts various national parks which each hosts unique specifications and Rwanda safari. Nyungwe Forest National Park, for instance, is popular because of its endangered primate species and colobus monkeys.

Rwanda safari is also abundant. You can see a lot of animals species including buffalo, duiker, and various bird species.

Leisure Activities in Rwanda

Lake Burera Camping

In lake buena areas, you will find a lot of camping spots wherein you do your companions are able to do certain activities like swimming or kayaking.

Congo Nile Trail

Congo Nile Trail is significant to the lake kivu length for 141 miles. This trail offers tons of outdoor activities including bike, hike, kayak, and others.

Mountain Gorillas Trekking

Gorilla trekking is one of the core Rwanda safari activities that you can’t miss in Rwanda. You will see a lot of gorillas when trekking in Volcanoes National Park.

Kayaking

Kayaking is one of the most favorite leisure things to do in Rwanda. Consider visiting Gisenyi for this purpose.

Dining and Drinking

Most folks in Rwanda live by farming. So, you can expect to taste fantastic dishes derived from healthy crops. The most popular crops are potato, maize, and cassava, which are also stapled foods for the Rwandans. Goat is the most popular meat. Besides the local dishes, you can also find some international dishes from European countries, Indian, Greek, Chinese, Italian, as well as middle eastern cuisines.

Speaking of the drink, you can easily find pubs, clubs, and restaurants who sell beers, spirits, and wines. The good thing here is that the beers are produced locally.

Climate in Rwanda

Rwanda is a tropical country. The higher temperature mostly happens in lower land. However, the lower temperatures often happen in the highland. Kigali, the capital of the country has a friendly temperature between 12 °C (54 °F) and 27 °C (81 °F). Basically, Rwanda is an all-year-round destination. You can’t go wrong with it.

Arrival in Rwanda

The Kigali International Airport will be your arrivals.

Rwanda Safari & Holidays Kigali International Airport

Transport in Rwanda: Bus, train, and flights

Bus

The bus public transport has been operating for a while in Kigali. There are over five dozens licensed operators to offer bus transportation in national roads.

 Rwanda Safari Holidays Kigali City Transport inside the City

By Karekeziparfait – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, Link

By plane

The direct international flights happen into Kigali from Brussels. Turkish Airlines comes from Istanbul thrice a week. From Amsterdam, KLM flies to Kigali. Meanwhile, RwandAir flies to London and Brussels thrice a week. From Doha, Qatar Airways has direct flights to Kigali. One of the cheapest ways to Kigali is by Ethiopian Airlines though Addis Ababa.

Rwanda Safari Holidays Kigali Airport

By SteveRwanda SteveRwanda, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

Train

You can travel to Rwanda from Tanzania, as well as back-and-forth. The railway line happens between Isaka, Kigali, and Tanzania.

Rwanda Holidays – Entry Requirements

Active passport is the main term to enter Rwanda. The certificate of vaccination of yellow fever is required when you come back to your country.

Visa on arrival in Rwanda

Rwanda visas are attainable online and on arrival. It costs only $30 for 30 days. There are some countries which are not charged for visas. You’d like to see at your Rwandan embassy official page to know further information.