Discover Rwanda

Wake up to a golden glow in the sky, mountains unveiling their mists, the air sweet and cool as it brushes your cheeks. Walk through a primeval forest bathed in green, thrill to the sight of that rarest of beasts, the mountain gorilla, look into the eyes and look into yourself. You’re here, you can go on a safari in Rwanda and you¹ve discovered a new African dawn. Discover a new place, a new adventure, new friends and unimaginable beauty.

Fast Facts

Capital: Kigali

Official Languages: Kinyarwanda, French, English

Government Republic: – President Paul Kagame
– Prime Minister Bernard Makuza

Area: – Total 26,338 km

Population: – July 2010 estimate 10,746,311

GDP (PPP): 2009 estimate – Total $11.260 billion

– Per capita $1,148

GDP (nominal): 2009 estimate – Total $5.246 billion

– Per capita $535

Currency: Rwandan franc (RWF)

International Dialling Code: +250

Main Exports: Coffee, tea, hides, tin ore

Tourism in Rwanda

Flying into Kigali’s international airport is the easiest way to get to Rwanda. Rwanda’s International Airport, Kigali International Airport (KGL), is small but efficient and is only 10 minutes from the city centre. Airlines flying here include: SN Brussels, Kenya Airways, Ethiopian Airlines, Air Burundi and Rwandair Express.

A valid passport and a tourist visa are required for many nationalities. Tourist visas are available at Rwandan embassies and consulates worldwide.

Wildlife and National Parks
Rwanda’s remaining diversity of large wild animals is restricted to its protected areas.

The eastern Akagera National Park is home to typical savannah species: elephant, antelope, giraffe, zebra, hippo and buffalo, as well as rare sightings of lion and leopard.
The two forest parks, Nyungwe Forest National Park and Volcanoes National Park, are home to Central African forest specialists. There are up to 13 species of primate at Volcanoes National Park – which is a pristine mountain rainforest boasting arguably the best mountain gorilla trekking in the world.

Nyungwe Forest National Park on the other hand is home to chimpanzees and huge troops of colobus monkeys – as well as elusive forest birds of every shape and size. Other forest inhabitants include golden cat, forest hog and many small antelope species.

Mountain Gorillas
A gorilla visit can entail anything from a one to four-hour trek through the forest, led by experienced trackers. The enchanting treks weave through overhanging vines, moss-covered Hagenia trees and giant Lobelias that thrive in the tropical climate.
It is possible to see golden monkeys, buffalo, bush duiker and a wide variety of birds.

The highlight of the trek is arguable the greatest wildlife experience on earth – to spend an hour with the gentle giant gorillas as they go about their daily life of feeding, playing, sleeping, and raising their young.
This magical experience kept worldrenowned conservationist Dian Fossey living in this same forest in Rwanda for 18 years, to protect these magnificent animals.

Main attractions

• Tracking Mountain Gorillas – Rwanda’s tourist economy is centred on tracking mountain gorillas in the Parc National Volcans (PNV). The trip can be extended to include seeing the golden monkeys and the trek to Dian Fossey’s grave and research site.
Kigali – Highlights include the Genocide Memorial Centre, the fruit market, lunch at the Hotel Mille Collines (of Hotel Rwanda fame) and a ride on a motorbike taxi through town.
• Butare – Rwanda’s pleasant University Town is home to the excellent National Museum.
• Akagera National Park – View elephants, hippos and crocodiles in this beautiful and recently rehabilitated national park.
• Nyungwe National Park – Home to 13 species of primate, this huge Montane forest in the south is where visitors can view chimps, colobus monkeys, as well as a variety of birds.