Christened the land of a thousand hills, Rwanda is a small landlocked country situated in Central Africa sharing borders with DRC, Uganda, Tanzania and Burundi. The country is too often associated with the 1994 genocide that saw about 800,000 people killed within just 4 months, but it has already recovered from the unfortunate event.
Rwanda is fast becoming one of the most popular destinations in East Africa. It is endowed with endless mountains and stunning scenery. The summits of the Virunga volcanoes in the far northwestern Rwanda are so majestic, while the volcanos in the Parc National Des Volcans form a natural frontier with Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. The two regions offer excellent opportunities to observe the few remnants of the critically endangered mountain gorilla. Other popular Rwanda travel destinations include the A’Kagera National Park, the Nyungwe National Park and the region around Lake Kivu.
All of Rwanda’s major tourist attractions are within easy reach from Kigali, the capital and commercial/administrative centre. Kigali is also the main entry point for Rwanda and is served by Kigali International Airport, situated some 12 km from the city centre.
When To Go:
When planning a tour to Rwanda, you should avoid the long rainy season (mid-March to mid-May) as well as the short rainy season (mid-March to mid-May). From mid-October to mid-December, Rwanda experiences short rains and this period is also worth avoiding.
The dry season (mid-May to mid-October) is best for tracking mountain gorillas, although the endless hills are barren, a contrast to the splendid greens of the wet season. The peak season for gorilla tracking is July and August.
Where to Go
Rwanda, the land of a thousand hills is one of the best travel destinations in Africa.
Top Places to Visit in Rwanda
- Akagera National Park: Situated in the east of Rwanda, A’Kagera National Park is home to a wide range of wildlife and more than 500 bird species.
- Volcanoes National Park
- Nyungwe Forest National Park: Nyungwe Forest National Park is on the other hand, the newest national park in Rwanda (established in 2004) and has a notable for the presence of wild chimpanzees, a growing rarity in Africa, and ten other primate species.
Quick Facts about Rwanda:
Time: GMT/UTC +2
Population: 8.7 million
Borders: Tanzania, Uganda, Burundi and Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
Area: 26, 338 sq km
Seasons: Wet (mid-March to mid-May, mid-October to mid-December); dry (mid-May to mid-October, mid-December to mid-March).
Telephone: Country code 250; international access code 00
Visa: Visas are required for all nationals – except citizens of Germany, Canada, USA, UK, Germany and Sweden who are allowed for stays up to three months.Passengers continuing their journey within 24 hours are also allowed providing they have onward or return documentation and not leaving the airport.
Languages: English, French and Kinyarwanda
Currency: Rwanda franc (RFr)