Remarkable Rwanda & Gorillas of Uganda

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Remarkable Rwanda & Gorillas of Uganda

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Description

Rwanda is oft-missed destination that every human should visit. Not only will you learn about the devastating events that took place here, you’ll also witness a beautiful country that’s continuously striving to move forward. Combine this with an unforgettable adventure searching for the mountain gorillas of Uganda and you’ve got a trip that can sometimes be physically and emotionally challenging, but will be talked about for the rest of your life.

Trip Name
Remarkable Rwanda & Gorillas of Uganda
Last Updated
2019-07-25
Days
9
Capacity
12
Highlights
  • With gorilla permits included in the price of the trip, seek out the rare mountain gorilla on a trek through Uganda's steamy forests and spend an unforgettable hour in their presence.
  • Learn about Rwanda's devastating history with visits to different genocide museums and churches of significance
  • Visit Mikozi Village and become acquainted with the Ugandan countryside. Visit the local markets, speak with a traditional Ugandan healer and enjoy a drink or two at the local bar
  • Spend two nights in beautiful Gisenyi at a resort on the north shore of Lake Kivu. Here, spend free time hiking, taking a boat cruise, touring the town or simply walking the lakeside.
  • Enjoy a cycling tour around the Twin Lakes on the outskirts of Ruhengeri, passing through small towns and villages where you will have extended time interacting with the local community.

Itinerary

Occasionally our itineraries are updated during the year to incorporate improvements stemming from past travellers' comments and our own research. The information given in this itinerary may be slightly different to that in the brochure. It's very important that you print and review a final copy of your Trip Notes a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans. For the latest updated Trip Notes please visit our website: www.intrepidtravel.com Please note that while we operate successful trips in this region throughout the year, some changes may occur in our itineraries due to inclement weather and common seasonal changes to timetables and transport routes. This can happen with little notice so please be prepared for modifications to the route. OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES: A selection of optional activities that have been popular with past travellers are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only for some of what might be available. Prices are approximate, are for entrance only, and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability. It may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination, so some pre-planning for what you are most interested in is advised. When it's recommended that travellers pre-book these activities, look for a note in the Special Information section of the day-to-day itinerary. For most, they can either be organised independently on the day, or let your leader know you are interested and they can assist. Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. Although it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Medium and high risk activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with organising these activities. Activities that contravene our Responsible Travel policies are also not listed. Please remember that the decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk. ROAD CONDITIONS AND INFRASTRUCTURE IN AFRICA: Roads in Africa are often in very poor condition, which makes it hard on our vehicles. Our vehicles are serviced regularly and are generally in good condition, but breakdowns can and do happen. Sometimes the going on this trip is quite tough, the distances covered fairly large and some of the roads and tracks are not exactly smooth or free from dust, but the rewards are exceptional. The travelling times indicated in our Essential Trip Information is just a rough guide and is dependent on various factors that may be outside our control, such as road conditions, weather and time spent at borders. DRIVE TIMES: The travel times listed in the day to day itinerary are a guide only. Please be aware that delays may occur and please be patient - it's all part of the experience afterall! Additionally, the travel times do not include time spent on game drives as these can vary with each departure.

Day 1 - Kigali
Welcome to Kigali, the capital of Rwanda since it gained independence in 1962. Most associate Rwanda with the the horrific genocide that took place in 1994, but this is a country that has been striving to rebuild its economy for years and offers so much to the Intrepid traveller. And though the past won't, and shouldn't, be forgotten, the future of Rwanda's tourism is looking bright thanks to its welcoming people, an abundance of lakes and the beautiful Virunga Mountains. Your adventure begins by meeting your fellow travellers at 6 pm, who you can join for an optional dinner this evening.
Day 2 - Kigali
After breakfast you'll visit the Kigali Genocide Memorial Centre, which was opened in 2004 to mark the 10th commemoration of the genocide against the Tutsi people. It serves as both a museum, detailing the history and consequences of Rwanda's genocide, and a place for people to grieve for lost friends and family. From here you'll continue to Nyamirambo, a predominantly Muslim neighbourhood that is known for keeping the party going when the rest of Kigali heads to bed. Enjoy a local lunch and a city tour including a trip to the craft market.
Day 3 - Gisenyi
Take an early breakfast at your hotel before proceeding to Ntarama Church, approximately 30 km outside of Kigali. Today presents some confronting reminders of the country's past, and this church is now a chilling memorial to the 5000 people slaughtered inside during the 1994 genocide. Inside, shelves of skulls and piles of bone can be seen as well as the clothes of victims hanging from the walls and rafters. Afterwards, the group will travel to the Nyamata Genocide Memorial Centre, a former church where some 50,000 people were murdered. This site pays particular attention to the atrocities suffered by women during the genocide.  Head to the city of Huye (Butare), the former home of the National University of Rwanda which is now part of the University of Rwanda. Huye is considered the a university town and Rwanda's intellectual and academic centre, and here you'll have lunch. Continue to the Murambi Museum, the location of one of the most horrific mass killings during the genocide, in which up to 45,000 Tutsi were killed over a several days. The group will then head to Gisenyi, a town on the shore of Lake Kivu, where you'll spend dinner and the evening at a waterfront resort after an emotional day.
Day 4 - Gisenyi
Enjoy a free day in Gisenyi on Lake Kivu's northern edge. Kivu is one of of Africa's Great Lakes – Rwanda's largest and Africa's sixth-largest – and is a natural border between the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Rwanda. Your leader can help you plan how to spend the day: perhaps take a boat cruise around the lake and visit some of the small islands, or maybe take a trip to Napoleon Island to go hiking and encounter birds and its large colony of fruit bats. Alternatively, spend the day getting to know Gisenyi and the colonial-era mansions and bars that sit by the lake.
Day 5 - Kisoro
Enjoy breakfast by Lake Kivu then transfer across the border to Kisoro, a Ugandan town on the shore of Lake Mutanda. Kisoro, located near the Virguna Mountains, is the jumping-off point for several national parks and, of course, those in search of the country's mountain gorillas. In the afternoon you'll head to Mikozi Village to become acquainted with the Ugandan countryside. Visit the local markets, speak with a traditional Ugandan healer and enjoy a drink or two at the local bar before returning to Kisoro.
Day 6 - Kisoro (Gorilla Trek)
Join a local guide and trackers as you climb through the rugged, mountainous terrain of Bwindi National Park in search of mountain gorillas. A quick lock of eyes with these creatures is a truly primal moment and visits are strictly controlled to minimise disturbance. Make no mistake, tracking gorillas is no walk in the park – it's called Bwinidi Impenetrable National Park for a reason. It can be wet, muddy, strenuous and uncomfortable, but the indescribable elation at coming across a group of gorillas is worth the effort. Spend a mesmerising hour with the gorillas as they eat, sleep, groom and play as the male silverback watches over them, then return to the lodge for dinner and to reflect on this incredible experience.
Day 7 - Ruhengeri
Transfer this morning back to Rwanda and the town of Ruhengeri, still buzzing from your gorilla encounter. Settle into your hotel on arrival then take a cycling tour to Rwanda's twin lakes of Burera and Ruhondo. This area is characterised by steep green hills and magnificent views of the mountains surrounding the lakes. Pedal through the stunning countryside, stopping in small towns and villages to spend some time interacting with the local community.
Day 8 - Ruhengeri
Today is free for you to choose from several optional activities after breakfast at the lodge. Perhaps you'd like to pursue your passion for primates and join a park ranger tracking golden monkeys in Volcanoes National Park. These monkeys are much quicker than gorillas and you'll see them swinging from branch to branch and scampering up trees. Alternatively, take a hike focused on the work of Dian Fossey, the groundbreaking gorilla researcher. It's an incredible experience, both physically and emotionally, and you'll trek through the jungle to her grave and the house in which she was mysteriously murdered in 1985. She's buried next to her favourite gorilla – Digit – as well as number of other mountain gorillas killed by pochers. In the evening, enjoy an optional farewell dinner with the rest of your group as this incredible adventure ends tomorrow.
Day 9 - Kigali
Enjoy breakfast at the hotel then take local bus back to Kigali. Once the bus arives on the outskirts of Kigali a private transfer will drop you back at the hotel. Here the trip comes to end and there are no other activities planned.

Trip Dates

StartEndPrice FromRoom Type
21-09-201929-09-2019AUD $ 4,463-
12-10-201920-10-2019AUD $ 4,955-
21-12-201929-12-2019AUD $ 4,910-
18-01-202026-01-2020AUD $ 4,750-
14-05-202022-05-2020AUD $ 4,750-
11-06-202019-06-2020AUD $ 4,750-
25-06-202003-07-2020AUD $ 4,750-
23-07-202031-07-2020AUD $ 4,795-
20-08-202028-08-2020AUD $ 4,750-
03-09-202011-09-2020AUD $ 4,750-
17-09-202025-09-2020AUD $ 4,750-
15-10-202023-10-2020AUD $ 4,750-
10-12-202018-12-2020AUD $ 4,750-

Accommodation

Hotel (8 nights)

Transport

4WD vehicles,bicycle,local bus

Map