The places you will visit include: Nyungwe Forest National Park for chimp trekking, Lake Kivu for relaxation, Kahuzi-Biega in the Democratic Republic of the Congo for western low land gorillas, hiking to the Nyiragongo volcano, trekking mountain gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in Uganda, exploring the city of Kigali, and much more. The journey begins in Kigali, Rwanda, and concludes in Entebbe, Uganda.
DAY 1 Your PlaPick-Up And Transfer To The Lodgen
When you arrive in Rwanda, the beautiful land of a thousand hills, our professional guide will greet you and brief you on all of the activities you will be undertaking during this 11-day exploration, as well as explain the various treasures hidden in the various places you will visit.
DAY 2 Transfer To Nyungwe Forest National Park
After an early morning breakfast, commence your tour with a six-hour drive to Nyungwe Forest national park, one of the largest forest reserves in Africa. This forest teems with flora and fauna including 13 unique primate species from Colobus monkeys, mangabeys, blue monkeys and, chimpanzees- the most sought after of all primates.
With over 310 recorded bird species and 26 endemics to the area, Nyungwe Forest is appropriate for any birding enthusiast. On arrival, you will check-in to your lodge for dinner and overnight stay.
DAY 3 Primate Tracking In Nyungwe Forest National Park
After an early breakfast, proceed to the chimp tracking trail briefing in either the Cyamudongo or Uwinka sections, where park rangers will explain what is expected of you during the trekking exercise. Be escorted into the jungle in search of the apes who will be relaxing in the paradise of Nyungwe forest.
Though the trek is somewhat exhausting, the entire experience is worthwhile; it can last up to 6 hours depending on the chimps’ speed, fitness level, and movement. The encounter, on the other hand, improves as you are given one hour to observe and study these rare primates.
After lunch, take a break before heading out to the forest.
DAY 4 Transfer To Bukavu Region (Kahuzi Biega National Park) In D.R. Congo
Upon finishing your delicious breakfast, embark on a journey to Kahuzi-Biega National park for an encounter with the only surviving lowland gorillas in the Democratic Republic of Congo. You will drive through the scenic route of Rwanda while viewing the rolling Hills, Congo-Nile Drive and amazing shores of Lake Kivu. The journey lasts for about 4-5 hours.
In case you arrive early, you can be driven around Bukavu – a big city in eastern D.R. Congo as you spot some of the old colonial architecture in the city. Enjoy the mountain views of Kahuzi and Biega volcanoes right from the balcony of your hotel.
DAY 5 Kahuzi-Biega National Park: Tracking The Lowland Gorillas
After an early breakfast, proceed to the Kahuzi-Biega park ranger station for a pre-trekking briefing before heading to the jungle in search of one of the last remaining groups of western lowland gorillas in the prestigious destination of Kahuzi-Biega national Park, which hosts an estimated 250 individuals with only about 80 habituated for daily trekking.
These eastern lowland gorillas are one of the world’s largest gorilla species. So, when you have one hour to study the true behaviors of these primates, you will encounter gorillas at close range during your tracking. In addition to the gorillas, there are several other bird species endemic to the eastern region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Use your remaining free time to take photos and eat.
DAY 6 Proceed To Nyiragongo Volcano In D.R. Congo
Following an early morning breakfast, you will go on a simple excursion around the neighboring villages, learning how the locals go about their daily lives and enjoying some traditional dances performed by community members. Return to your lodge for lunch to relax and prepare for the next day’s adventure. Enjoy the cool breeze while spending the evening at the lodge.
DAY 7 Mount. Nyiragongo Hike
Wake up to a hearty breakfast before heading to the Kibati patrol post at the foot of the Nyiragongo volcano. Starting at 10 a.m., your 5- to 6-hour hike begins. Your hike to the top of the crater will have been made possible with the assistance of hiking boots, a camera, and supporting sticks. The Nyiragongo volcano is one of the most active volcanoes in the world, with the largest lava lake.
Your night will be spent on top of the volcano in one of the crater rim shelters. The night on Nyiragongo is always filled with laughter and fun as you watch the sea of lava, which provides opportunities for spectacular photography.
DAY 8 Nyiragongo Descent And Cross To Lake Bunyonyi In Uganda
Before you descend in the morning, enjoy a delicious breakfast with breathtaking views of the crater. When you arrive at the patrol post, join the driver guide who will take you to the DRC-Uganda border at Bunagana. Lunch will be served in Kisoro before continuing to Lake Bunyonyi in Kabale; Bunyonyi is an iconic lake with 29 islands, vibrant Bakiga and Batwa communities, and spectacular scenery.
With its numerous bird species and a very welcoming atmosphere, this is a destination that never ceases to entertain all visitors. Dinner and an overnight stay at a lakeside resort.
DAY 9 Your Plan Explore Lake Bunyonyi And Proceed To Ruhija – Bwindi Impenetrable Forest
After breakfast, board a traditional dugout canoe to explore the interior of Lake Bunyonyi, a birders’ paradise and Africa’s renowned Switzerland. This destination is surrounded by 29 islands, each with its own rich history, biodiversity, and vibrant community. The local guide will accompany you in a canoe as you visit different islands, explaining some of the secrets you should know about some of them. Return to the lodge for lunch, check out, and continue your journey to Ruhija, the eastern sector of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park.
DAY 10 Gorilla Trekking And Cultural Encounter
After breakfast, proceed to the park office headquarters for a vital briefing before trekking the gorillas through the dense, impenetrable forest. At 7:30 a.m., the park’s head ranger will go over important guidelines to follow while trekking the gentle giants. Despite the difficulty, this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. You will enter the forest with a support stick, binoculars, cameras, and trekking boots, accompanied by guides, rangers, and porters who will lead you to your designated gorilla family.
The trekking exercise may last between 1-7 hours depending on the trekkers’ speed, fitness level, and movement of the gorilla group, and once found, one hour will be given to you to closely observe and enjoy the presence of these shy and kind apes; watching them go about their daily activities and capturing some photos for memories.
Take your packed lunch/snacks and return to the lodge from the jungles. Relax before heading out in the afternoon for an encounter with Batwa pygmies on the outskirts of Bwindi forest. The Batwa are one of the world’s oldest human races, with true authentic African culture and a history of wandering and gathering.
DAY 11 Bwindi National Park – Kampala/Entebbe International Airport & Departure
After breakfast, start your long but interesting return journey to Entebbe International Airport for you flight back home. On the way, you will have a stopover at the equator for lunch and photography moment. Then afterwards, proceed to the airport.