About Rwanda 

Known as the land of a thousand hills, Rwanda is a land of great natural beauty and a superb ecotourism destination. Most people come here to see the silverback mountain gorillas made famous by the film Gorillas in the Mist.

When you’re not tracking animals, partying in Kigali, watching Intore dancers in Virunga or trekking to volcanoes, enjoy just hanging out with the warm and friendly Rwandans themselves.



Rwanda boasts a rich and diverse culture which spans centuries. Very few external influences have managed to infiltrate the culture, which is admirable considering the prolonged period of Belgian rule to which the country was subjected.

As with most East African cultures, clothing in Rwanda is a representation of culture, family and in more rural communities, ranking. Female dresses worn in traditional communities are called mushanana, which are generally made from wonderfully ornate, hand-woven materials.


Best time to go

The best time to visit Rwanda depends entirely on the activities travelers intend to engage in. The dry season provides the perfect conditions for wildlife safaris as the animals will be drawn to waterholes more frequently and thus in plain sight.

The heat is also perfect for gorilla trekking as the trails are drier and easier to navigate, and more gorillas will be visible. The rainy seasons are, however, the best time to observe chimpanzees in their natural environment as most areas are green and lush.


How many days do I need in Rwanda?

Travelling around Rwanda for one week is enough to see most of the highlights of the country. If you have more time, this is only better and you can travel around at a slower pace. Along the way, you will encounter many tea estates and cute local villages. You can visit places such as Kigali, Nyungwe Forest National Park, Lac Kivu (Kibuye of Gisenyi), Volcanoes National Park, Mount Kabuye, and the Akagera National Park


Things to do in Rwanda

When it comes to things to do in Rwanda, nearly every tourist has one activity at the top of their itinerary: gorilla trekking. Nature lovers can go on a safari in Akagera National Park and get a bird's-eye view of Nyungwe Forest from a canopy walk. To get to know a bit of Rwanda´s culture, check out the fascinating exhibits on traditional customs and beliefs at Rwanda's Ethnographic MuseumDon't miss the royal cows (and the singers who croon to them) at the King's Palace Museum.


Getting around Rwanda

Rwanda has a well-surfaced road network linking the major towns, and the most convenient way to travel the country is by car. Smaller roads are frequently unsurfaced with varying conditions, especially during the rainy season. Tour operators can arrange a vehicle with a driver, or a number of agencies rent out cars and 4x4s. Taxis operate in the larger towns. Travel insurance may not cover motorbike taxis, which are also common. There are no rail services and the most popular form of public transport is shared minibuses. In Kigali, buses operate a smart card system called Tap&Go.


Health & Safety

Rwanda is quite a safe country and the usual tourism-related crimes of muggings and pickpocketing are not prolific. All travellers must have a PCR COVID-19 Clearance Certificate issued by a recognised facility within 48 hours from the date of departure, in line with WHO guidelines. 

A yellow fever and Malaria vaccination certificate is required from those travellers coming from areas of risk. Furthermore, you should take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance to cover you while you are away.

Interesting places to visit in Rwanda

Hike with Primates in Nyungwe Forest

One of the oldest rainforests in Africa, Nyungwe is rich in biodiversity and spectacularly beautiful. The mountainous region is teaming with wildlife, including a small population of chimpanzees as well as 12 other species of primate, including the L’Hoest’s monkey endemic to the Albertine Rift.

Primate tracking tops most visitor’s list, but it’s worth lingering a little longer for those with time to relax and take in the primal atmosphere.

Climb Mount Bisoke

Yup, another hike – and this one is pretty spectacular (if also hard work!). Located on the border between Rwanda and the DRC, Mount Bisoke volcano stands a proud 3711 metres tall and makes for a heart-pumping gorilla trek add-on whilst staying at Bisate Lodge.

Motivation comes in the shape of your own park ranger guide, who is likely to be a native of the Volcanoes National Park, so you’ll be in knowledgeable hands.

Kayak (or chill!) on Lake Kivu

Something slightly different on our “what to do in Rwanda” list, Lake Kivu Serena Hotel is the perfect location for some downtime following an unforgettable gorilla trek. The main draw, apart from tropical gardens and a sparkling pool, is Lake Kivu itself.

One of Africa’s Great Lakes, this aqaumarine expanse of water on the Rwanda/Congo border is ideal for swimming, boating, kayaking – or simply chilling

Trek to see Golden Monkeys in Volcanoes

The famous mountain gorillas may be the star attraction, but it is worth setting time aside while staying at Mountain Gorilla View Lodge to meet their cohabitants, the rare golden monkeys.

Habituated to human contact, this lustrously coloured primate is endemic to the area and lives in groups of up to 30 individuals in the bamboo forest.

Visit Local Villages

Visit communities such as the Iby’iwacu cultural village, where you can discover the traditional house of a local king and watch an authentic medicine man prepare herbal mixtures.

Alternatively, let a Sacola guide take you on a Nyange Community Walk to observe a local banana beer brewer, mat weaver and iron smith, and be invited into a local home to watch how traditional Rwandese food is prepared (and yes, you get to taste it, too!)

Visit the Genocide Memorial in Kigali

Reflect on the country’s past and marvel at its current progress in the tranquil gardens, before heading back to the Kigali Serena Hotel, the perfect stopover en route to the gorillas, or home.

It may not be an easy outing, but if you’re trying to put Rwanda’s history into perspective, the genocide memorial in Kigali is a must. The excellent exhibition explains how, within 100 days in 1994, an estimated one million Tutsis were systematically killed by the Interahamwe army.

Combine a Gorilla Trek with a Kenya Safari

We know, we know, this shouldn’t really be on a list of what to do in Rwanda, but, if you’re on the continent already, you might as well combine gorilla trekking with a Big Five Safari, right? Picture yourself in the most famous wildlife reserve in the world, the dreamy Masai Mara.

Then, take in the wide-open spaces of Amboseli and the views of snowy-peaked Kilimanjaro in the distance, before a short stop in Kigali and a thrilling gorilla trek in the misty mountains of Volcanoes National Park.

Discover Kigali

Rwanda was recently voted the world's ninth-safest country and Africa's safest country by the World Economic Forum. It's got one of the lowest crime rates of any African city – in Kigali, locals and tourists can happily stroll along the park-lined boulevards long after the sun has sunk beneath the distant hills.

Heading further afield? The long-distance buses which depart from the coach station in the city centre are cheap, safe and reliable. The capital of Rwanda should be on your radar in 2021 and beyond.

Responsible Tourism

Join us in supporting small independent businesses. Join us in staying at locally owned lodgings, shopping at locally owned businesses and in eating out at locally owned restaurants.

By traveling differently, you will be changing tourism for better!