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The trip starts on your arrival at the Kigali International airport from where our representatives will take you to Virunga Lodge. It roughly takes about 3 hours to reach the lodge which is set in a spectacular location overlooking the Virunga volcanoes and shimmering lakes of Ruhondo and Bulera. On reaching the lodge, you will get a small briefing about your safari.
After lunch, around 2 pm, we will depart for our first safari destination - the Volcanoes National Park. The route to the park goes northwards, through the beautiful terraced hillsides that characterise much of Rwanda's landscape. The path gradually reaches the base of the awesome Virunga volcanoes, from where sometimes as many as five peaks are visible. Volcanoes National Park (also known by its french name, Parc National des Volcans) lies in northwestern Rwanda. Gazetted in 1925, it is the first national park to be created in Africa. The park is an ideal destination to spot Mountain Gorillas closely.
Today we set out for Gorilla tracking and experience the thrilling chance to come face to face with them. However this activity is subject to permit availability at the time of your booking. Tracking Gorillas through the light mountain forest on the slopes of the Virungas is a magical experience. If you are lucky you can get to the Gorillas, spend an hour with them, and be back at the base in time for a late lunch! Some Gorilla families, however, are more elusive, and tracking can take a full day, especially when it is wet and muddy.
Visitors today have an option of either going Gorilla tracking again in Volcanoes National Park or visiting the Golden Monkeys. Please ensure that you have already made an extra payment for this trip at the time of booking. A drive to Gisenyi city, is also a great way to explore the small city with three sandy beaches. The place is also known for water sports.
You can also visit Ros Carr's orphanage in the vicinity. Lake Kivu, one of the African Great Lakes, is an interesting place to see. The huge lake, with an area of 2,700 square kilometers, is known to be explosive. A walk to Lake Bulera can also be a rewarding experience. Visitors can also plan to climb the Visoke and Muhavura volcanoes, or trek to Dian Fossey's grave. Those interested to learn about the local people and community should visit the local school and community projects.
In the morning you may either relax or go for a walk around the lodge. You can go to spot the Golden Monkeys in the national park or trek to Dian Fossey's grave.
After lunch, we will proceed towards Uganda. Please note that clocks go forward by one hour as you enter Uganda. After checking into our lodge, Mount Gahinga, if time permits, you may go for a walk around the area. Mount Gahinga offers stunning views of the landscape around as it is nestled in the foothills of the Virunga volcanoes on the border of Uganda, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Today you have the opportunity to go Gorilla tracking again, this time in Mgahinga/Nkuringo. Please ensure that you have already made an extra payment for this trip at the time of booking. There is a lot of action packed for the day that includes climbing up to a volcano, nature walks, or visiting the Golden Monkeys in Mgahinga.
Our destination for the day is Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in southwestern Uganda, which is popular for its population of Colobus Monkeys, Chimpanzees and several birds such as Hornbills and Turacos. Drive to Bwindi is through a scenic route, with the road winding through many hills and valleys, with distant views of the volcanoes and lakes. Time permitting, you may go for a guided nature walk in the thick forest that is rich in birds, butterflies and monkeys. Alternatively, you may go for a short stroll around the lodge and enjoy the natural surroundings.
There is another chance to go Gorilla tracking today. However, please ensure that you have already made an extra payment for this trip at the time of booking. It is quiet an adventure to walk up the steep and densely forested hills before finally coming across the Gorillas camouflaged in the vegetation. It is an inspiring moment for most of the visitors!
The park is home to about 10 primate species that include the common Chimpanzee, L'Hoest's Monkey, Black and White Colobus as well as Red-tailed Monkey among others. Tracking in Bwindi requires stamina and can often take most of the day. Alternatively, one can choose go for a leisurely nature walk or go around the area to closely observe the community life here.
Today is the last day of the trip. We leave for Kigali via Kabale and Katuna. Please remember to reset your watches, as clocks go back one hour on leaving Rwanda and entering Uganda.
Kigali is the capital city of Rwanda and is the hub of political, economic, cultural activities of the country. Time permitting, grab a chance to go for a tour of the Kigali city as well as visits to the market, handicraft shops and a pottery project. The genocide memorial in the city, is also worth a visit. Later you will be transfered to the airport in time for your flight back home.
Please note: Accommodation providers are subject to change without notice. The accommodations listed in this dossier are our preferred suppliers, but sometimes due to availability issues, we are unable to make use of the properties listed in this dossier. If we cannot use an accommodation provider as listed we will substitute another property of similar standards. However, en-suite facilities are not always guaranteed.
Requires a spirit of adventure and some degree of fitness, as the trip might consist of many activities or long journeys. These adventures involve walking, trekking, hiking, cycling, rafting, sea kayaking, or driving for long hours, at times for up to six to eight hours a day at a steady pace. The maximum altitude is 3000m, so it requires you to be reasonably physically fit because you may be travelling in extreme weather conditions. The trips are usually 6 to 12 days in duration.
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