Personalized trips to Rwanda
for independent travelers

How it works
Chat with specialist icon Step 1
Tell us what kind of trip you want
Complete our quick travel quiz
Chat icons Step 2
Chat with a local travel specialist
Work out the details together
Credit card icon Step 3
Securely book your trip
100% satisfaction guaranteed

Travelers love kimkim

- ., traveled to in

Introducing Rwanda

Discover the best of Rwanda.
Rwanda is nicknamed the "Land of a Thousand Hills" for a reason. Its landscape doesn't stop rolling, and the hills are dotted with plunging ravines, waterfalls, and ancient forests. Rwanda is also one of the only places on earth where travelers can trek among 13 species of primates, including the world-famous mountain gorillas and the rare golden monkey.

With a serene and modern capital city and excellent national park infrastructure, the country's tumultuous past can feel worlds away—for travelers interested in learning more about Rwanda's somber history and honoring the victims of genocide, there are many opportunities in Kigali and beyond. 

When is the best time to visit?
Rwanda has a tropical climate, meaning there's a chance of rain no matter what time of year you visit. There are technically "dry" and "wet" seasons—which unsurprisingly align with the high and low seasons for tourism. Rwanda can be visited year round, but the best time for gorilla trekking is during the short dry season from December-February, or the long dry season lasting from June-September. You may need to procure a permit further in advance, but you'll appreciate the mud-free trails. 

Where should you go?
Most travelers fly into Kigali, the pristine capital city. It's worth staying a day or two and taking a guided city tour—there's a lot to take in, from culture at the Inema Art Center to colorful markets and the critically important Kigali Genocide Memorial Museum. From there, you'll be hopping between some of the world's most heralded national parks.

Perhaps the most unique and sought-after activity in Rwanda is trekking among the famed gorillas of the Virunga Mountains in Volcanoes National Park. While there, you can also spot golden monkeys, visit the Diane Fossey Museum, take a mountain biking tour, and more. For chimpanzees, head to Nyungwe Forest National Park, and Akagera for birdwatching. Rubavu, on the shores of Lake Kivu, is an hour away from Volcanoes and makes a good stopover on the way to or from Nyungwe.

How many days do you need?
With 5 days in Rwanda, travelers should prioritize visiting the gorillas. Head straight to Volcanoes National Park for two days of gorilla trekking, and spend the last half of your trip in Nyungwe Forest for a canopy walk and chimpanzee trek. Double that timeframe, and your options double along with it. In ten days, you can start with a game drive and boat cruise in Akagera National Park, continue to Nyungwe and Volcanoes parks for chimpanzee and gorilla tracking, and end in Gisenyi with a Lake Kivu boat cruise. Two weeks is equally easy to fill—add a visit to Buhanga Eco Park, observe golden and colobus monkeys, and enjoy guided city tours in Kigali and Kibuye.

Rwanda Travel Insights

Beautiful Lake Bunyonyi
Map of Wildlife & Culture in Rwanda and Uganda - 10 Days
Wildlife & Culture in Rwanda and Uganda - 10 Days

This adventurous itinerary checks off two of Rwanda and Uganda's top national parks. Trek with gorillas and golden monkeys, see art and historical sites in Kigali and visit a rural village to learn about traditional life. End your journey with a trip to Queen Elizabeth National Park to see Africa's largest game—elephants, hippos, crocodiles, and possibly the elusive African leopard.

Mountain Gorilla in Rwanda
Map of Remarkable Rwanda - 6 Days
Remarkable Rwanda - 6 Days

This exciting itinerary hits Rwanda's top cultural and natural sights. Try your bargaining power at a busy market, shop for local art, and visit the Kigali genocide memorial. Trek in Nyngwe Forest National Park to see reclusive chimpanzees in their natural habitat. End your journey with a visit to Volcanoes National Park to see where renowned naturalist Dian Fossey worked to protect the endangered mountain gorillas.

A gorilla with her baby in Rwanda's mountains
Wildlife & Culture in Rwanda - 14 Days

Start your adventurous trip in Kigali and visit historical museums, browse local art, and see the 1994 Genocide Memorial. Visit Ibyi Iwacu and Gastura villages to learn about traditional life and support local tourism, then trek into the forest to see golden monkeys and rare mountain gorillas. End your journey with a trip to Akagera National Park to see Africa's largest game—elephants, hippos, crocodiles, and the magnificent African lion.

A mountain gorilla with her baby
Rwanda Highlights - 12 Days

This adventurous itinerary checks off Rwanda's top 3 national parks. Start in Kigali and visit historical museums, browse local art, and see the 1994 Genocide Memorial. Visit a rural village to see everyday life, then trek into the forest to see wild chimpanzees and Dian Fossey's gorilla research station. End your journey with a trip to Akagera National Park to see Africa's largest game—elephants, hippos, crocodiles, and the magnificent African lion.

Baby chimpanzee
Rwanda Wildlife Highlights - 5 Days

This exciting itinerary hits Rwanda's cultural and natural highlights. Try your bargaining power at a busy market, see art and historical sites in Kigali, and visit Ibyi Iwacu cultural village to learn about traditional life. End your journey with a trek deep into Nyungwe Forest National Park to see wild chimpanzees in their natural habitat.

Tracking gorillas in Rwanda
Map of Rwandan Gorilla & Monkey Safari - 5 Days
Rwandan Gorilla & Monkey Safari - 5 Days

This 5-day safari trip is an ideal introduction to Rwanda's wildlife, stunning landscapes, and cultures. You'll track gorillas and golden monkeys in Rwanda's forests, visit Volcanoes National Park, paddle along Lake Kivu by kayak, and explore the happening capital city of Kigali.  

Rwanda Travel Maps

Get the lay of land, and understand distances between the places you want to visit
Map Wildlife & Culture in Rwanda and Uganda - 10 Days
Wildlife & Culture in Rwanda and Uganda - 10 Days
View article
Map Remarkable Rwanda - 6 Days
Remarkable Rwanda - 6 Days
View article
Map Rwandan Gorilla & Monkey Safari - 5 Days
Rwandan Gorilla & Monkey Safari - 5 Days
View article

Meet our Local Travel Specialists

Experienced travel agents with a passion for Rwanda
Travel specialist Agnes Mirembe
active 18 mins ago

Agnes Mirembe

I am passionate about tourism and conservation in my country Uganda and East Africa as a whole. I made sure i travel to most of the tourism attractions so as to sell them well to the people from...

read more...
Travel specialist Stephanie Louw
active 8 hours ago

Stephanie Louw

I am an adventurous traveler with an insatiable wanderlust, wholeheartedly embracing every journey with boundless curiosity. My thirst for exploration takes me to diverse cultures and landscapes....

read more...
Travel specialist Melvin Mapetla
active 5 hours ago

Melvin Mapetla

I believe in the transformative power of travel, seeing it as a journey that unveils a world of unforgettable moments. In my role as General Manager at Truly Swahili, we focus on creating...

read more...

Why travelers love kimkim

Custom trips for independent travelers who are too busy to plan

Customize your trip with the help of a local travel specialist

Kimkim has handpicked the world’s top local travel specialists so you will have peace of mind and an unforgettable trip that meets your exact requirements.

Authentic travel experiences

Kimkim’s local specialists ensure that you will have the best experience based on up-to-date local insights. On top of that, the vast majority of your money will go straight to support and grow local economies.

Secure & easy booking

Once you are happy with the trip, you can easily book via kimkim’s secure payment platform.

Local support during your trip

You can always reach your local specialist with a quick message or call in case you hit a snag during your trip, or simply want some great local recommendations.

100% satisfaction guarantee
Kimkim offers a 100% satisfaction guarantee. If you are not fully satisfied with us, we’ll work with you to make it right.
kimkim trips are 100% climate neutral
A portion of every kimkim trip goes toward the removal of carbon from the atmosphere. Learn more
BBB A+ rated

Kimkim is accredited by the Better Business Bureau with an A+ rating.

Seller of Travel Registration number: CST #2136279-40.
Registration as a seller of travel does not constitute approval by the State of California.

Trip Reviews for Rwanda

The latest reviews by travelers who booked their trip on kimkim

WONDERFUL 10 day trip to Rwanda!!! Highly Recommend KimKim.
Rwanda | Jun 28 - Jul 7, 2024

Ben
Ben R.
Morrisville, NC | Reviewed on Jul 12, 2024
WONDERFUL 10 day trip to Rwanda!!! Agnes at Kim Kim did a great job in putting together an exciting itinerary. Throughout our 10 days , we had an incredible driver/guide, Peter. There were four of us in a very comfortable van. My wife and I have visited 72 countries. Peter was the best driver/guide that we’ve ever had. We spent time touring Kigali. Drove to Akagera National Park for a boat ride observing crocodiles and tropical birds. We had a full day safari…seeing the “Great 5”,... Read more

WONDERFUL 10 day trip to Rwanda!!! Agnes at Kim Kim did a great job in putting together an exciting itinerary. Throughout our 10 days , we had an incredible driver/guide, Peter. There were four of us in a very comfortable van.

My wife and I have visited 72 countries. Peter was the best driver/guide that we’ve ever had. We spent time touring Kigali. Drove to Akagera National Park for a boat ride observing crocodiles and tropical birds. We had a full day safari…seeing the “Great 5”, including a “behind the scenes” tour of animal tracking and poaching prevention efforts.

The absolute highlight was the trek in Volcanoes National Park to see the gorillas! A moderately challenging 90 minute climb (I’m 76 yrs old) before we arrived at a family of gorillas! Beyond our expectations!!! We spent an hour observing adolescent and adult gorillas, sometimes getting as close as 10-12 feet. Very helpful trackers and porters to carry your backpack, if you would like ($10 a porter)

On another day, we visited Nyungwe to see the chimpanzees. Another unforgettable experience. The canopy walk, about 20 stories above the rainforest, was a nice added experience.

Peter was professional, fun to be with, and very flexible. He gladly fit in all of our shopping and side trips. He made our Rwanda adventure very, very special.

This is the second time I’ve used KimKim. I highly recommend them.

Hotel Review
Akagera Game lodge

Very comfortable. Wonderful and accommodating staff!

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Very hrlpful
Cleanliness & Comfort
Activity Review
Volcanoes National Park Gorilla Trek
Volcanoes National Park Gorilla Trek
Volcanoes National Park

Moderately challenging climb (90 minutes) to see this particular family of gorillas. The length of the trek depends on the location of the gorillas. Absolutely exceeded my expectations. Close viewing of adolescents, adults, and a silverback, outstanding guides and trackers. For $10 you can get a helpful porter to carry your backpack and to hold your and help you trek, if you would like this assistance.

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Four of us in a very comfortable van. Water and some snacks included.
Local specialist: Agnes Mirembe

Agnes was very helpful in setting up our trip...
Rwanda | Nov 19 - Nov 25, 2023

Fuad
Fuad A.
Los Altos, CA | Reviewed on Nov 28, 2023
Agnes was very helpful in setting up our trip. When I initiated the trip, I did not know much about Rwanda, all I knew is that my daughter will be working (public health) there for few months and I wanted to take advantage of her being there to visit. I asked for recommendation. Agnes was helpful in that regards. She made proposals, I checked then and did my own research to decide. Our travel plans were fluid, because there were many factors impacting our flights.
With patience, she...
Read more

Agnes was very helpful in setting up our trip.

When I initiated the trip, I did not know much about Rwanda, all I knew is that my daughter will be working (public health) there for few months and I wanted to take advantage of her being there to visit. I asked for recommendation. Agnes was helpful in that regards. She made proposals, I checked then and did my own research to decide. Our travel plans were fluid, because there were many factors impacting our flights.
With patience, she supported our requests and adjusted the plans to match our schedule.

Hotel Reviews
EMERAUDE KIVU RESORT

Very nice location, not as nice as Davinci lodge. The room is very small, it does not fit two independent beds. We had to rent another room.

Authenticity & Character
It is a charming location and decorations.
Location
Excellent location near the lake, the views are incredible.
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Overall very good, but they need to pay attention to maintenance
Da Vinci Gorilla Lodge
Musanze

We loved that lodge. The staff was attentive and kind and the lodge is incredibly nice, spacious, the room was humongous surrounded by lush vegetation. The gardens around the building were very nice, and very well maintained. We stayed in this lodge for three nights. The first night were on our own, no other guests. Their loss, our gain. We were treated by the staff very well. They were attentive to our needs. they have dining area down stairs and upstairs, they have sitting area downstairs and upstairs. Wherever we chose to sit in the evening, they immediately brought a movable "stove" to warm the area. The second night, we were joined by others, the staff was as attentive as the previous night. The evening, the local singers/dancers came to the lodge to give a performance. Everyone had good time. They invited us to join in their dancing. Last day we stayed there, we had to wake up very early (before 4:30) they prepared early breakfast for us, and bagged lunch. We went on a long, tough hike. the trail was muddy, it rained the whole day, when we arrived back to the lodge, We did not want to enter because we were so dirty. They insisted and helped, brought a staff help clean our feed and clothes. We had to do our laundry as we were leaving very early next morning. By far the experience in this lodge was the best we had.

Authenticity & Character
They deserve every praise we give them.
Location
Very close to the volcano national park, and to town.
Staff
Very kind and attentive. They best support and service in our entire trip.
Cleanliness & Comfort
Nice main area, nice room and nice ground.
Onomo hotel Kigali

It is clear that this hotel is catering for high end customers and expats. Overall it was good. But the rooms were extremely small. We tried to stay in one room with two bed, for me and my daughter. It was too cramped. We switched to two rooms. The food is OK but not great. The facilities are not maintain well. They advertise they have a gym, When I went there, only one machine worked, they others were hazards, an accident waiting to happen. They do not provide towels in the gym or the pool, you have to request, they bring it on demand, with a bit of delay. I switched three rooms, each one of them had maintenance issues. Squeaky and wobbly bathroom doors. Leaking faucets. In the last room, the sink plug with sink in and could not be taken out. I had to request technician to come fixed twice. The view from the dining area are superb, the pool area is nice as well. The hotel had a gate and cares need to check in before they enter. It give the feeling of safety.

Authenticity & Character
There is African Rwandan character but they are try ng too hard to be like the west.
Location
Easy to reach from the airport
Staff
Nice and kind
Cleanliness & Comfort
Activity Reviews
Chimpanzee tracking in Nyungwe national park
Chimpanzee tracking in Nyungwe national park
Nyungwe

With patience, we were rewarded with a great experience. We watched several Chimpanzees from a close distance. The Park guide warned us before the trekking started that sometimes, it takes time for them to locate the chimps. and that we may need to move from place to place. She was in constant communication with the trackers (Apparently, there are 35 of them who work in the part and help locate the chimps, before the tourist come) nd qt time we had to just stay still auntil she get the signal. There was one/two false alarms. Finally, we reached a place where there three chimps, but they were at the treetop, we could see them but not clearly. As we started going back, she got a signal that some chimps are at a certain location, she dispatched one of the porter/trackers on a short cut. The rest went slower on the main path. The tracker, was very fast, almost sprinting up the hill, causing us to huff and puff and profusely sweat. but we were reward with chimps, climbing down an high tree, stopping to eat, Hanging around for a while as if posing for out cameras. Very nice.

Quality of Experience
patience by the guide and tourist and expertise by the trackers.
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Peter was great
Transport
and his car was great
Bird watching in Nyungwe forest
Nyungwe

The guide, Oscar, from the forest service was great and knowledgeable. Our own guide, Peter, joined us in this walk and birdwatching, he was helpful and knowledgeable as well. It was a great experience. He, as should be, was patient. At the beginning of the walk, we heard several birds, but not always saw them. then we turned the corner and were rewarded by money birds, several times. Also, the walk was at the edge of the forest on a small dirt road adjacent to the tea plantations. with farmers collecting the tea leaves. which was a bonus. I do bird watching on a weekly basis, this experience was exceptional.

Quality of Experience
Oscar (park guide) and Peter (our guide) were great.
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Peter was great
Transport
and his car was great as well.
Nyungwe Forest Canopy Walk
Nyungwe Forest Canopy Walk
Nyungwe

We came to the forest on the designated day, but we decided not to take the walk that day and deferred it to the drive back home. It was raining and we wanted to enjoy the walk. We agreed with our guide, Peter, that we will need to pay the entrance fee again. When we came the next day, the weather was nice. The walk itself is VERY short, nothing special about the hanging bridges for anyone who visit a forest. The bridges are very short compared to the 2km long hike. The park guide, the one who works for the forest, was annoying, he started hinting that in order to answer any question he needs 20USD. not once but multiple times. The guides and porter should know that this is a bad way to get any tip.

Quality of Experience
not taking it. or recommend to the forest to take out the bridges altogether
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Our driver was great
Transport
same regarding the car/driver
Drive to Nyungwe Forest
Drive to Nyungwe Forest
Rwanda

It was just a long drive from the north to the south. Our driver and guide was great in answer our questions and entertaining us during the drive, but the drive itself was nothing special.

Quality of Experience
nothing special in the drive
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
long drive
Hiking Mt. Bisoke
Volcanoes National Park

This hike was an experience for the ages. We are experienced hikers and have been on big mountains and in very difficult conditions. As we started the hike, rain started falling down. When we entered the forest, around 8:00Am, it ws pouring, the trails filled up with water. When we were asked at the beginning of the hike if we needed a porter, we, my daughter and I said, naively, we will take one, as we had only one backpack. Our guide asked as many porters to come with us as guests. This was a very wise decision. soon all of the guests discovered that, the porters' support is essential. They are young, strong and knowledgeable with the terrain and vegetation. The rain was relentless, the dirt turned into slicky mud, water was rushing down the trail. our porters and guides, were great at finding paths side stepping the most difficult parts. When we reached the top, we were grateful that we had the guides and the porters, but it was foggy and windy and because we were soaked in water from the rain and from the stepping in the rushing water, we took the mandatory picture and heading down. The fog prevented us from seeing the crater lake. Going down was even more difficult than going up. Again the porters were great at helping, supporting and steering us to the safest paths, All the guests said at the end that this experience will stay with us the rest of our lives.

Quality of Experience
Because of the rain, it was an exception experience.
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Peter was always great.
Transport
Same
Cultural Village Visit
Cultural Village Visit
Volcanoes National Park

This visit was very informative and nice. We do appreciate that us visiting such place may help give people some employment and income and prevent them from reverting to poaching in the forest. But I cannot prevent the feeling that the whole thing is staged.

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Peter was great
Transport
. . . . . he was always there for us.
Golden Monkey Trekking Experience
Golden Monkey Trekking Experience
Volcanoes National Park

Overall, this experience was great. We started as all the trip to the Rwandan National Parks by going to the Headquarter, after a short briefing, we were driven to the starting point, we met the guide and porters. From there a short hike through nice farming field. we arrived to the edge of the forest. The monkeys rushed out to greet us, or to steal potatoes. All we needed to do was to stand and watch the monkeys. After some time on the edge of the forest, our guides recommended that we cross the short bridge to the forest. Monkeys there were thriving, many of them going about their business, some played, some stood around as if posing for our cameras. We saw at lease two mothers with tiny babies, the guide mentioned one of them was one week old. This was definitely one of the highlights of our trip.

Quality of Experience
We were surrounded by monkeys, eating, playing and coming so close to us.
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Our driver/guide was great through out the trip.
Transport
Everything was on time.
Kigali City Tour
Kigali City Tour
Kigali

Was very nice, We loved the trip to the market, As we liked the stop at the question coffee shop and the gallery. We were supposed to visit the Genocide museum, but an unknown VIP occupied the museum and we could not enter that day. Peter P, our driver and guide was incredible throughout the trip. He was helpful, knowledgeable and patient with all our questions. We loved him dearly.

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Peter was great, I wish there are 6 stars
Transport
The car was good through out the trip.
Local specialist: Agnes Mirembe
Agnes
Agnes Mirembe
Local specialist in Uganda | Replied on Nov 29, 2023

Thank you so much for the review and the in-depth insight about the lodges.

A fantastic trip to Rwanda!
Rwanda | Aug 10 - Aug 17, 2022

V
Vamsi D.
Westbury, NY | Reviewed on Aug 24, 2022
Our trip was amazing and we are very grateful for all the hard work that went into planning it! We were able to see all the sites that we wanted to and Francis, our tour guide, was spectacular throughout the trip. He was very friendly, knowledgeable, and resourceful in making sure that the trip went smoothly—even when we encountered car troubles. The trip went very well, and I have no major complaints. The only recommendation I would have for future people taking this trip is that they be... Read more

Our trip was amazing and we are very grateful for all the hard work that went into planning it! We were able to see all the sites that we wanted to and Francis, our tour guide, was spectacular throughout the trip. He was very friendly, knowledgeable, and resourceful in making sure that the trip went smoothly—even when we encountered car troubles. The trip went very well, and I have no major complaints.

The only recommendation I would have for future people taking this trip is that they be given a safari car instead of a regular Toyota 4x4 since many of the roads we drove on require a safari car. Thank you very much for all your help planning a great trip!

Local specialist: Vivian Kironde