A landlocked East African country, Rwanda boasts smouldering volcanoes, lush green mountains, ancient rainforests and an abundance of wildlife, as well as rich and diverse vegetation. One of only three countries in the world to have the rare mountain gorilla, it is one of only two countries in which they can be viewed safely (the other is it's northerly neighbour Uganda). Despite its turbulent history in recent years, Rwanda has seen a recent economic and environmental resurgence. With a host of national parks to choose from, as well as many interesting historical sites and museums where visitors can learn more about its devastating yet fascinating history, Rwanda is now a vibrant tourist destination.
Akagera National Park is named after the Akagera river which flows along its eastern boundary. Historical events have taken their toll on this park, causing devastating harm to the environment, however, in recent years Akagera has been uplifted and is today once again seen as one of the most scenic savanna reserves in Africa. Akagera is also the largest protected wetland in Africa, containing lakes lined with forests, papyrus swamps, savannah plains and sprawling highlands. Here visitors can expect incredible bird watching and free roaming zebra, as well as sightings of leopard, hyena, jackal and lion.
Volcanoes National Park lies along the Virunga Mountain range, which is made up of eight ancient volcanoes shared by Rwanda, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. The most famous park in Rwanda, Volcanoes Park lies just two hours out of Rwanda’s capital, Kigali, making it a central and easily accessible destination. Gorilla tracking safaris are by far the most popular activity in this area, but also highly recommended is an exciting hike to view the Musanze caves, a visit to the famous Dian Fossey tomb, or a safari to see the golden monkeys. For the brave and adventurous, climbing one of the volcanoes is seen as one of the most exhilarating and unique experiences of any African safari trip.
Located in the South West corner of Rwanda, Nyungwe National Park is a richly biodiverse mountain rainforest area. This beautiful park is believed to be one of the oldest rainforests in Africa, apparently remaining green even through the Ice Age. The park is home to the chimpanzee, as well as 12 other species of primates. Nyungwe National Park also contains over 300 bird species and 75 mammal species. Here, visitors may enjoy scenic hiking or biking safaris, canopy walks, chimpanzee tracking and relaxing by a tranquil waterfall, to name just a few interesting activities.