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A 4-days safari experience in Nyungwe National Park, located in Rwanda, offers the opportunity to explore one of the most biodiverse and beautiful rainforests in East Africa. Nyungwe National Park is renowned for its lush vegetation, diverse wildlife, and exceptional primate tracking experiences. Nyungwe National Park is one of the oldest rainforests in Africa, is rich in biodiversity, and spectacularly beautiful mountainous region teaming with wildlife, including a small population of chimpanzees as well as 12 other species of primate, including the L’Hoest’s monkey endemic to the Albertine Rift, with 15 trails, some of which are detailed along with various activities visitors can choose to sample the delights of the forest or indulge yourself in one of Africa’s most stunning forests.
Nyungwe National Pack lies in southwest Rwanda, partly abutting the Burundi border. It’s a vast area of mountain rainforest, home to many species of chimpanzees, plus owl-faced and colobus monkeys. The Canopy Walkway, part of the Igishigishigi Trail, is a high-suspension bridge with views over the valley and surrounding forests. A trail runs to the Kamiranzovu Marsh, with its birdlife, orchids, and waterfall. The pack is dominated by a series of mountains, originating in northern Uganda and Congo, running south through the Rwenzori mountains, western Rwanda, and Burundi, to the shores of Lake Tanganyika. Nyungwe forest national park offers scenic views over Lake Kivu and sometimes the Virunga ranges on a clear day. The forest has an extensive network of well-maintained walking and hiking trails to various waterfalls and viewing points. The prime activities in Nyungwe forest are chimp trekking, bird watching, colobus monkey trekking, and the canopy walk.
Nyungwe Forest National Park is home to over 75 different species of mammals with most of these being small and or nocturnal making them difficult for sighting. Chimpanzees are the main attraction in Nyungwe forest with chimp trekking happening daily early morning. The forest is home to troops of 300 colobus monkeys or more roaming in the trees, Chimpanzees, Silver monkeys, Golden monkeys, Owl-faced monkeys/ Hamlyn’s monkeys, Grey-cheeked mangabey, Red-tailed monkeys, Vervet monkeys, Olive baboons, Dent’s Mona Monkey, Blue Monkey, and Angolan Colobus Monkeys.
Activities In Nyungwe Forest National Park
Nyungwe forest is also home to about 300 species of birds with 16 endemics, 27 Albertine rift endemics, and 121 forest species. The birds in the Nyungwe forest are mostly found in the trees, shrubs, or the ground at the edges of the forest next to the tea plantations. Some birds are shy and therefore more easily heard than seen like many forest birds. Among the frequently sighted species are the; Chestnut Owlet, Olive and Elliot’s Woodpeckers, Great Blue and Ruwenzori Turacos, White-headed Wood-hoopoe, Barred Long-tailed Cuckoo, Stripe-breasted Tit, the remarkable Red-collared Babbler, Archer’s Robin-Chat, White-bellied Robin-Chat, Doherty’s Bush-Shrike, Handsome Francolin Mountain Masked, Black-faced, Chapin’s Flycatcher, Purple-breasted and Regal Sun-birds, Chestnut-throated, Collared Apalis, Rwenzori Batis, Neumann’s Short-tailed Warbler, White-tailed Blue-flycatcher and more.
There are two wild chimp communities that are habituated for chimpanzee tourism. One of the groups is in the Cyamudongo section of the Nyungwe forest and the other is around the Uwinka area of the forest. The forest is home to about 400 chimpanzees. While viewing chimpanzees is not guaranteed, you will enjoy learning about these creatures and their natural habitats from your guides. You are expected to be at the briefing area as early as 5.00 am in the morning. This is because chimps are mostly likely to be seen early in the morning and they tend to move about which requires one to be active as you follow after them. However, whether you view the chimps or not, the experience in the forest is rich as you watch other primates, butterflies, several trees, and above all the freshness of the air.
Guided Nature walks and Hiking
Nyungwe forest has a steep landscape and an extensive network of hiking trails making it a perfect destination for hikers. The trails are different in length, ease of hiking, and features; you are therefore advised to ask the ranger guides for advice on which trail to take according to the attractions you are seeking. The trails are through a diverse landscape and represent the most scenic way of exploring the forest. And the forest trails are Congo – the Nile divides Trail, Igishigishigi Trail, Karamba Trail, the Umugote Trail, Umoyove Trail, Uwinka Trail, Irebero Trail, Imbaraga Trail, Bigugu Trail, Isumo Trail, Kamiranzovu Trail, Muzimu Trail, Ngabwe Trail, Ngabwe Trail.
This Is along the Igishigishigi trail. The walkway is accessible as part of a specialized guided tour along the trail. The canopy walk hangs 60 meters above the forest floor between giant trees and towers, which provides a stunning view of the park.
Colobus Monkey Trekking
Nyungwe is home to a large population of colobus monkeys, including the Angolan colobus and the black-and-white colobus. Guided treks are available to observe these fascinating creatures.
Several trails lead to beautiful waterfalls within the park, such as the Kamiranzovu Waterfall Trail. These hikes offer the chance to cool off in pristine natural pools and enjoy the scenery.
Primate Tracking and Night Walk
In addition to chimpanzees and colobus monkeys, Nyungwe is home to other primates like the L’Hoest’s monkey and owl-faced monkey. Tracking these primates is an exciting activity for wildlife enthusiasts. Nyungwe offers night walks for a chance to observe nocturnal creatures such as hushbabies, chameleons, and tree frogs. Night walks provide a different perspective of the forest’s ecosystem.
Complete your experience with the community to engage in the rich Rwandan culture. The communities along the boundaries of this forest have co-existed with it and helped to some extent in its preservation after understanding its importance to Rwanda’s ecosystem. There have been efforts to launch community-based experiences to preserve the culture of Rwanda and offer visitors a rich experience. Once at the village, you can be part of activities such as a dance ceremony, banana beer production, bow-and-target shooting, traditional medicine making, and maize-grinding.
Please Note that this itinerary can be customised, and the actual safari experiences may vary based on your interests and the availability. Nyungwe National Park offers a wide range of activities, including hiking, nature walks, and additional primate tracking experiences.
- 4×4 safari vehicle with fuel and Driver
- Full Load Meal Plan
- Professional English/French speaking Guide
- All park entry fees-Game drives, ranger
- Boat Safari Execution
- All local taxes
- Entry Visa Fees
- All Air Fares
- Meals Where Not Provided
- Alcoholic Drinks
- Porter Fees While trekking/hiking
- Personal Insurance
- Personal Shopping Bills
- Items Of Personal Nature