10 Days Heart of Rwanda
Destinations visited: Kigali, Nyungwe Forest, L. Kivu and Volcanoes National Park
For that once-in-a-lifetime vacation with a difference, look no further than spending 10 days experiencing the most thrilling Adventures of Rwanda.
Day to Day Itinerary:
- Day 1: Arrival in Kigali.
- Day 2: Kigali City Tour
- Day 3: To Nyungwe Forest
- Day 4: Chimpanzee Trekking
- Day 5: Forest Canopy & Water Fall hike
- Day 6: To Lake Kivu
- Day 7: Lake Kivu Activities
- Day 8: Travel to Volcanoes National Park + Afternoon cultural interaction.
- Day 9: Gorilla trekking
- Day 10: Departure
10 Days Heart of Rwanda
Day 1: Touchdown in Kigali
After landing at the international airport in Kigali, you will transfer by car into the city centre for check in at the award-winning Kigali Serena Hotel. The hotel is a popular attraction in Kigali and boasts some of the city’s best restaurants as well as a lavish spa – two much-needed luxuries after a long-haul flight. Spend the remainder of your day relaxing, dining or strolling through the hotel’s manicured grounds.
Day 2: Kigali City tour and the Genocide Memorial Centres
After breakfast you will embark on a City Tour of Kigali plus visit some of the genocide memorial centers.
The history of Rwanda dates back centuries, Kigali has been a part of it for 100 years. Founded in 1907 as a German settlement, Kigali did not become the capital until Rwanda’s independence in 1962 when it replaced the colonial seat of power in Butare.
Visit the Kandt museum, see old Kigali and the craft centers then visit the genocide memorial site. The Genocide Memorial and Education Centre, opened in 2004. It’s a dignified tribute to the victims, including a poignant Children’s Memorial, and a detailed description of the darkest hour in Rwanda’s recent history. Learn about Rwanda’s history from pre-colonial times to the 1994 genocide; learn about other genocides in the world and how this country has dealt with that past. Tour more and see the new developments in Rwanda; the recovery has been incredible, a testament to humankind’s resilience.
The Bugesera district was one of the area’s most devastated by the genocide. From a population of 62,000, only 2,000 survived. At the Nyamata Catholic Church, 10.000 people were killed in and around the grounds between over 5 days.
Day 3: Travel to Nyungwe Forest
Today, you will set off towards the famous Nyungwe Forest, one of the largest rain forests in East and Central Africa. The forest is abundant with flora and fauna including 13 primate species from colobus monkeys, mangabeys, blue monkeys and, of course, our cousins the chimpanzees.
Nyungwe Forest is also a famous location for birders. With about 310 recorded bird species, 26 of which are endemic, this is one of the most important – and still little known – bird-watching destinations in Africa. Nyungwe forest lodge boats of a lavish spa – two much-needed luxuries after a long day on the road. Spend the remainder of your day relaxing, dining or strolling through the hotel’s manicured tea grounds. Approximately 6 hours by road.
Day 4: Chimpanzee Tracking
Early morning start, proceed to the chimp tracking trail in either the Cyamudongo or Uwinka sections. The total population between the two groups is a healthy 80 individuals. This exciting up-close encounter with human’s closest relative you will not soon forget.
After the chimp tracking you can relax at the lodge or choose an optional activity that you can discuss with your guide.
Day 5: Forest Canopy and Waterfall Hike
Today you’ll go for a canopy walk. This walk takes place above a deep gorge cutting across the massive forest. Lasting about 2 hours, the walk takes you through some beautiful foliage and animal habitats and you’ll have the chance to spot blue monkeys and unique birds that dwell in the upper levels of the forest canopy.
In the afternoon, a waterfall hike is in your program. This trail begins from Gisakura Guesthouse and takes between 3 and 6 hours round trip, depending upon how frequently you stop to sightsee and whether you choose to drive or walk from the guesthouse. The first part of the trail is basically following the road to the vehicle park and before delving into the forest. You will have to cross various streams before making a steep descent to the base of the small, refreshing waterfall. Monkeys are frequently seen along the way and the steep slopes provide excellent views into the canopy.
Day 6: To Lake Kivu
After breakfast, you’ll travel through a beautiful country-side, along the scenic Lake Kivu Eastern coast winding through valleys and small villages to the northern town of Gisenyi just next to the border with DR Congo.
On arrival at your hotel situated at the shores of the beautiful L. Kivu with its own private beach and panoramic restaurant, indoor and beachside bars, a luxury swimming pool, and complete gym and health centre – feel free to refresh relax by the beach or indulge in an evening visit to the local market, to have an interaction in the day-to-day life of the local people. Approximately 5 hours by road.
Day 7: Relaxing at Lake Kivu
Rwanda’s western side is bounded by Lake Kivu, one of a string of huge freshwater lakes which lie along Africa’s Great Rift Valley. Dominating the border between Rwanda and the DRC (Democratic Republic of Congo); Lake Kivu is Rwanda’s largest lake, and the sixth largest lake in Africa.
Today you’ll enjoy serenity on the white sandy shores of Lake Kivu, surrounded by extensive tropical gardens and tasteful meals. You can optionally indulge in Lake fishing, swimming, boating or just relax ay the beach with a book in hand.
Day 8: To the Virunga Volcanoes
After breakfast, transfer North East by road through picturesque farming villages and terraced hills to the Volcanoes Virunga Lodge set at the foot of the majestic Virunga Volcanoes. The rest of the day is your own to explore the property, visit the grave of famous gorilla conservationist Dian Fossey, or simply marvel at the spectacular volcano, lake and forest vistas from the tranquil gardens, or to engage in a cultural excursion in Iby’iwacu village. Approximately 1½ hours by road.
Day 9: Trekking ‘Gorillas in the Mist’
In the early morning you will transfer to the Kinigi district for a full-day trek in the Volcanoes National Park in search of rare mountain gorillas. The park protects roughly 300 of these endangered primates, and the family groups that you will be tracking are habituated (or accustomed) to human presence. In the wet, muddy and humid conditions it can be challenging work as you journey north through the dense vegetation and climb to the base of the Virunga Volcanoes where the groups are found. On successfully tracking them down, however, you are generously rewarded with a once-in-a-lifetime sighting of these gentle creatures interacting, playing, eating, grooming and going about their daily lives in their natural habitat.
The time taken to track the gorillas can take as little as half an hour to as much as 8 hours! Once the gorillas have been located, you will be allowed a maximum of one hour with them. Coming face-to-face with a mountain gorilla is a truly humbling and emotional experience. This is a fantastic and privileged opportunity to get up close and personal with Rwanda’s own ‘Gorillas in the Mist’.
Day 10: Farewell to Rwanda
Bid farewell to the Virunga Volcanoes and depart from the lodge to Kigali on a road transfer or on an optional 30minutes private helicopter charter. Approximately 2.5 Hours by Road
Later catch your departure flight back home.
This marks the end of what we hope will be an adventurous trip- Thank you very much!!
Sun Africa Expeditions Terms & Conditions
PLEASE be reminded that the luggage allowance on our inbound schedule flights is strictly 15KGS PER PERSON and that SOFT BAGS are highly recommended, if not essential. In light aircraft the baggage area and weight allowance is limited. Hard Samsonite type suitcases do not fit into the cargo compartment easily, if at all. Due to limited space available for storage in safari vehicles, we strongly recommend use soft duffle bags rather than hard suitcases.
A binding contract will come into existence once Sun Africa Expeditions and yourself agree on the itinerary and quote provided for the same. The booking will then be considered confirmed when an invoice is issued. Your contract for the services chosen will be direct with the relevant supplier(s). Your supplier contact will be governed by the laws of the country in which the supplier is located and will be subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the Courts of that country.
Reservations, Payment and Deposits
When Sun Africa Expeditions has accepted your booking, the date of the confirmation invoice activates the terms and conditions of the contract. Confirmation of services is subject to payment of a non-refundable deposit of 15% of the total invoiced amount. The balance is to be paid not later than 30 days prior to commencement of the services. When bookings are made within 30 days prior to the departure date, full payment is required immediately on written confirmation.
All bookings are subject to availability at the time of booking and cannot be guaranteed except for scheduled departures.
Prices are quoted in US dollars. All prices are subject to change without prior notice. Should prices or costs from suppliers increase due to inflation, currency depreciation and fuel surcharges, then Sun Africa Expeditions will not have any other option than to pass on the same to you. All suppliers reserve the right to increase prices at any time of the year when costs increase outside the control of the supplier. Please note that when the clients’ itinerary overlaps two seasons, the price will be prorated over the two seasons.
Rates include but are not limited to the following services specified in the itinerary. Accommodation with meals, tours, transport, driver/guide, park entrance fees, hotel taxes and service charges.
Rates exclude (Unless otherwise specified), Medical Air Rescue services, Porter-age, domestic Air Charters, Visa fees, beverages, laundry, telephone calls, scheduled flights, gratuities and all expenses of personal nature.
NB: Flying doctor services are Optional at USD 25 per pax (Subject to change and vendor terms & conditions).
Child rate: – is only applicable to one or two children under 12 years sharing a room with 2 adults. In the case of 02 children sharing a room with parents, the two children will share a bed, as most hotels/lodges cannot accommodate a fourth bed. 01 child sharing a room with 01 adult will be charged full adult rate.
Single Room Policy
Single rooms are available at supplementary cost but the suppliers do not guarantee singles. Single rooms are scarce and cannot be guaranteed even if paid for at twin sole use rate. Where this occurs an appropriate refund will be made by the supplier to the client. Suppliers will only allow a maximum of 3 single rooms per group at a single room rate except for high end luxury camps where single rooms are limited to only 02 singles.
Should you wish to cancel your confirmed booking, you must advise the company in writing.
Reservations that are cancelled, reduced in length of stay or reduced in numbers (hereinafter collectively called a CANCELLATION) are subject to Cancellation and No Show fees if cancelled within 30 days of the arrival date:
55 days to 41 days prior to arrival: 25%
40 days to 22 days prior to arrival: 35%
21 days to 15 days prior to arrival: 50%
14 days to 07 days prior to arrival: 65%
06 days to 03 days prior to arrival: 80%
Within 48 hours and after commencement of holiday: 100%. Once the holiday has commenced no refund will be made. The figures expressed are percentage of the total tour price.
Cancellation: Although it rarely happens, and Sun Africa Expeditions will do their utmost to avoid doing so. Sun Africa Expeditions must reserve the right to cancel tours and other arrangements. Where your holiday is cancelled (other than due to your default in payment) due to unavoidable circumstances beyond our control e.g. Natural disaster or over booking, Sun Africa Expeditions will offer you the choice of purchasing an alternative holiday.
The expression “force majeure” means any event which the supplier(s) in question could not have foreseen or avoided even with all due care. Such events may include war or threat of war, riots, civil strife, industrial dispute, terrorist activity, natural or nuclear disaster, fire, adverse weather conditions, government action and all similar circumstances outside the suppliers’ control. In these circumstances the suppliers shall not be liable to pay any compensation or otherwise be responsible for any expenses or losses you incur where supplier is forced as a result to cancel, delay, curtail or change your holiday arrangements in any way or where the performance or prompt performance of the supplier’s contractual obligations is prevented or affected. Complaints
In the unlikely event that a tour member has a dispute whilst on safari this must immediately be brought to the attention (and put on record) of the local representative, Hotel, Lodge or Camp management. It is likely that the tour member’s complaint will be satisfactorily resolved there and then. If, however, this is not the case and the tour member wishes to pursue the matter on their return from safari, it is essential the complaint be communicated in writing to Sun Africa Expeditions within 21 days of the end of tour quoting tour reference, destination and departure date.
Responsibility of Sun Africa Expeditions
Sun Africa Expeditions acts only as the Agent for the suppliers and shall not in any event be liable for any negligence, breach of contract or acts of omission on the part of suppliers, their employees or any other Agent, it shall be the responsibility of all customers including (without limitations) Tour members, Tour Operators and Travel Agents, to read and familiarize themselves with the terms and conditions of suppliers. Sun Africa Expeditions liability for its own negligence or breach of contract shall be limited to the Tour price.
Safari Minibuses, Cars, Land Cruisers and coaches will be provided according to the route and number of participants. Sun Africa Expeditions reserves the right to employ services of sub-contractors. Multi-lingual driver guides are provided on request. For flying packages, clients will share vehicles with other guests booked at the hotel. For exclusive use, please check with Sun Africa Expeditions for supplements, which will be subject to availability.
The hazards of travelling in Africa may inevitably rise to some risks and dangers. It is therefore a condition of booking that all tour members must have sufficient and appropriate travel insurance for the duration of their tour. Such insurance (which is not supplied by Sun Africa Expeditions) should fully cover all personal requirements including death, personal injury, medical expenses, and repatriation in the event of accident or illness, cancellation or curtailment of the tour members’ personal property.
Any special requests (e.g. for single rooms or particular diet) must be notified in writing when the booking is made. Whilst the supplier will endeavour to meet such requests they cannot be guaranteed and any failure to comply will not be a breach of contract.
Sun Africa Expeditions services include flight re-confirmation and airport assistance within Africa if clients are provided all services by Sun Africa Expeditions. In cases whereby Sun Africa Expeditions is providing part of the services and the clients have other arrangements of their own, then Sun Africa Expeditions will only reconfirm where forwarding address or contacts are provided.
Demand for safaris can be high and may lead to shortage of lodge/hotel accommodation. All bookings will be confirmed, but no occasions changes may be necessary. Hotels/Lodges/camps, here specifically named are given as an indication of the category and rooms may be reserved at similar lodges/ hotels/camps. We undertake to advise you of any changes known to us prior to departure, but the possibility of change without notice, must be acceptable when booking. Where ever possible we book rooms with private baths showers throughout on the basis of two persons sharing a double room. Single rooms are available at supplementary cost but neither single rooms nor rooms with private bath/shower can be guaranteed.
Safari minibuses cars, four wheel drive vehicles or coaches will be provided according to the route and number of participants. The right is reserved to employ the services of subcontractors. Multi-lingual chauffer/guides are provided. Occasional mechanical problems, changes of lodge or adverse road conditions may in turn lead to a change of routing or game viewing without prior notice being given. We reserve the right to offer substitutes of equal value or to cancel the operation of any tour. In practice, very few itineraries are affected but a little flexibility on your part will ensure the tour is unique and rewarding.
Website and Brochure Description
Descriptions of accommodation facilities and services in our brochures are shown in good faith, it is however possible that certain facilities or services may be unavailable or limited due to maintenance , adverse weather, local conditions, seasonal restrictions etc.
Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this website/e-brochure at the time of printing, regrettably errors do occasionally occur. You must therefore check all details of your holiday booking with your travel agent or supplier at the time of presentation.
The company cannot therefore accept responsibility for any information not contained in this brochure, being confirmed verbally by its staff or representatives unless subsequently reconfirmed in writing by the company.