Located a few degrees south of the Equator, Rwanda is one of the world's smallest countries and is in a landlocked position between Uganda, Tanzania, Burundi, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. All of Rwanda is at high elevation, with mountains in the west, savannah in the east, and numerous lakes throughout the country. The Volcanoes National Park is where Rwanda's renowned gorilla safaris take place; attracting thousands of visitors every year.
The country hosts some rare species of animals in addition to the sought after silverback mountain gorillas; unique birds and insects are beautifully abundant in the tropical forest of Nyungwe.
Music and dance, particularly drums and the highly choreographed 'intore' dance, are an integral part of Rwandan culture. Traditional arts and crafts are produced throughout the country, including 'imigongo', a unique cow dung art.
Rwanda is a landlocked, small African country surrounded by Tanzania, Uganda, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
It is one of only two countries offering guests the opportunity to embark on Silverback gorilla tracking safaris with guides. We recommend guests are fit enough to endure the sometimes testing hikes taken to find the gorillas.
Rwanda has a cultural society consisting primarily of people descending from the Hutu tribe. Traditional dress and dancing are elaborate and performances are thoroughly enjoyed.
Volcanoes National Park is home to giant 'dormant' volcano craters that have formed deep dark lakes making for a unique and unusual safari destination.
Famous for its role in the story of Hotel Rwanda, this is a four-star international hotel with 112 rooms, set in large gardens in downtown Kigali. Its position in the city centre means it is a good base from which tourists can explore, and is maintained at a standard preferred by business clientele.
Nyungwe Forest National Park was established in 2004. It is almost 1000 sq km in size and is the prime destination for chimpanzee trekking in Rwanda. Incredible biodiversity, including 13 primate species and almost 300 species of bird makes this an undiscovered wildlife destination.
The Volcanoes National Park displays the amazing volcanoes with their green slopes and the deep, dark lakes within their 'dormant' craters. This Park is home to one of the world's only populations of mountain gorillas.
Nyungwe Forest National Park, Africa's last remaining mountain rainforest habitat, is home to chimpanzees, Ruwenzori colobus and other primates.
The shores of Lake Kivu provide an unexpected tropical beach environment, bustling market places, forgotten colonial buildings and tree-lined streets, all in close proximity to the gorilla safaris in Volcanoes National Park.
Akagera National Park is the largest protected wetland in Central Africa. Bordering Tanzania, it introduces the drier savannas of East Africa. This Park is home to African giants, such as elephant, buffalo, hippo, giraffe, leopard and many antelope species.
Kigali International Airport is the primary airport serving Kigali, the capital of Rwanda. It is the main air gateway for all destinations in the country. The airport is located in the suburb of Kanombe, at the eastern edge of Kigali, approximately 14 kilometres, by road, east of the city of Kigali.
Rwanda is easily accessible from Kenya and Uganda by road, and it has an open border with Tanzania, although this is quite a remote area and is not an easy transport route.
Within Rwanda, it is relatively easy, safe and simple to travel around. Short distances can be travelled either on foot or by bicycle taxis. Motorcycle taxis are also popular, especially in Kigali.
The rolling hills of Rwanda's small surface area incorporate just three National Parks. The Volcanoes National Park displays the amazing volcanoes with their green slopes and the deep, dark lakes within their 'dormant' craters. This Park is home to one of the world's only populations of mountain gorillas, ambling between lush, bamboo-covered slopes. Other attractions include Nyungwe Forest National Park, Africa's last remaining mountain rainforest habitat, which is home to chimpanzees, Ruwenzori colobus and other primates.
Thirdly, Akagera National Park in the east of Rwanda, bordering Tanzania. A complex system of lakes and linking papyrus swamps make up over a third of the park and is the largest protected wetland in central Africa, and it gives way to the drier savannahs of East Africa. This Park is home to African giants, such as elephant, buffalo, hippo, giraffe, leopard and many antelope species.
Rwanda has a temperate tropical highland climate, with lower temperatures than are typical for equatorial countries due to its high elevation. Kigali, the central capital of the country, has a typical daily temperature range between 12 °C (54 °F) and 27 °C (81 °F), with little variation through the year. There are some temperature variations across the country with the mountainous west and north regions generally cooler than the lower-lying eastern sector.
Unusually, there are two rainy seasons in the year; the first running from February to June and the second from September to December. These are separated by two dry seasons: the driest being from June to September, during which there is often no rain at all and a shorter and less severe one from December to February. Rainfall varies geographically, with the west and northwest of the country receiving more precipitation annually than the east and southeast.