Rwanda, Africa

Mountain Gorillas of Rwanda

Hiking
Experience Africa's mountain gorillas on an adventure through Rwanda

Duration

4 days

Prices from

€4,420

2019

Wed, Jul 31

Sat, Aug 03

€4,420

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Overview

Visit Rwanda, Africa's home to some of the last remaining mountain gorillas and a place where you will be warmly welcomed by smiling locals. Rwanda has bravely risen from a tragic past and stands proudly as a representation of Africa's irrepressible beauty. Be awe-struck by the profound power of ...

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Itinerary

Day 1Kigali
On arrival at Kigali Airport you are met by our local representatives. You must arrive in Kigali before 1pm. If your flight does not arrive before 1pm, you need to arrive one day earlier and book one night's pre-tour accommodation as well as an arrival transfer (both at additional cost). Please make sure you've read the visa information for Rwanda on your pre-departure information before you depart as you're required to apply for your visa before arrival. On arrival visit the Genocide Museum, which was opened in 2004 to mark the 10th anniversary of the Rwandan Genocide. Whilst the genocide occurred as a result of a complex series of factors, it can only be seen as an absolute tragedy to Rwanda and its people. Time spent at the museum is sure to be emotionally moving, but it is an important way to understand the sheer courage and resilience of the people of this beautiful, tiny nation. Afterwards drive through the verdant rolling hills of Rwanda as you head towards the gorillas. Our accommodation is located in the Kinigi region, approximately 17km from Musanze town (formerly Ruhengeri). The lodge is nestled on the scenic lower slopes of Sabinyo Volcano - one of five volcanoes located in the Parc National des Volcans. The small Rwandan town of Ruhengeri is the gateway to Volcanoes National Park, one of the last remaining sanctuaries for the mountain gorilla.
Day 2Ruhengeri/Gorilla Trek
This morning we have a very early start driving to the park headquarters where we are briefed on our gorilla trek by the guides of Parc National des Volcans. This 13,000 hectare national park protects the Rwandan sector of the Virunga Mountains and include a range of six extinct and three active volcanoes that straddle the border with Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Bamboo forest is interspersed with alpine moorland, grassland and marshland. In this park, there are ten different gorilla families This region is one of the last remaining sanctuaries for the mountain gorilla. No more than eight per day can visit any one habituated family and visits are strictly controlled to minimise the possibility of disturbance or transmission of disease to the animals. Tracking gorillas in the dense forest can sometimes be wet, muddy and uncomfortable. The terrain is by no means easy either, so it can be pretty strenuous and often humid, but the sheer thrill in coming across a habituated group of gorillas, dominated by a great male silverback, more than outweighs any difficulty. You need to be prepared and fit enough to walk up to 4 hours - up and down hill, as it may take anything between 40 minutes and four hours to reach our designated gorilla family. The trackers have already set out and located the gorilla family by the time we start our trek, so our actual time of walking can usually be predicted when we set off. We can get very close to the mountain gorillas, who are placid and gentle, and watching their movements is like seeing a mirror image of yourself. Your visit with the gorillas will last one unforgettable hour. As lunch can only be taken upon return to the hotel, it is recommended that you bring a few snacks to keep you going throughout the morning. At the end of the day the comforts of the hotel beckon, along with a chance to reflect on what is sure to be a truly memorable day.
Day 3Optional Trek/Kigali
Today is a day of various trekking options. You may choose to visit another gorilla family or see the rare golden monkey. These options must be pre-booked and confirmed at time of purchase of the main tour, in order to ensure availability. Gorilla trekking permits in particular can be booked out many months in advance. For those who loved the book and/or movie 'Gorilla's in the Mist', the Dian Fossey Trek is a good option. Over the course of the morning you follow in Dian Fossey's footsteps on our way to her grave, as well as the graves belonging to many poached gorillas including famous Digit. You are guided around the area where Old Karisoke Research Station was set up by a park guide. Although very little of the station remains, the setting is incredible and one can imagine the incredible life that Dian Fossey led in these isolated mountains. For a more leisurely but equally unique experience, trekking in search of golden monkeys is highly recommended. In June 2003 the nationals parks department first allowed permits to walk the trails in search of these rare and engaging primates. This walk takes you to the edge of the forest and watching these unique monkeys play and interact is a mesmerising experience. Please note that the roads leading to both of the above treks are not in the best of conditions, so be prepared for rough and bumpy rides! Please note the prices of these optionals are not inclusive of transport costs to and from the activity. We then travel back to Kigali late in the afternoon (approximately 3 hours). Dinner tonight is at your own expense and can be enjoyed at one of the many good nearby restaurants.
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This tour is operated by

Intrepid Travel

Trip title

Mountain Gorillas of Rwanda

Trip code

YGAR

Validity

Validity: 01 Jan 2019 to 31 Dec 2019

Introduction

Visit Rwanda, Africa's home to some of the last remaining mountain gorillas and a place where you will be warmly welcomed by smiling locals. Rwanda has bravely risen from a tragic past and stands proudly as a representation of Africa's irrepressible beauty. Be awe-struck by the profound power of the...
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Style

Comfort

Themes

Short Breaks,Wildlife

Transport

Car

Physical Rating

3

Physical preparation

You'll need to be fit enough to trek to the location of your family of mountain gorillas. This may involve up to 5 hours of walking up and down hills, in hot and humid conditions and through tropical (and at times thick) foliage. There may be mud underfoot which will make the trekking slippery. You'...
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Joining point

Kigali Airport

Joining point instructions

On arrival at Kigali Airport you are met by our local representatives. You must arrive in Kigali before 1pm. If your flight does not arrive before 1pm, you need to arrive one day earlier and book one night's pre-tour accommodation as well as an arrival transfer (both at additional cost). If you hav...
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Finish point

Lemigo Hotel

Finish point description

This straightforward, comfortable hotel is 5kms from Kigali International Airport. Low-key rooms feature Wi-Fi and flat-screen TVs, as well as safes, minifridges, and tea and coffee making facilities. Many rooms have balconies with pool or city views. Room service is available. Dining options inclu...
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Finish point instructions

Private departure transfers are available for pre-booking through Intrepid. Please speak to your booking agent for more information. If you have pre-booked a departure transfer, please ensure you have provided Intrepid with your departure flight details at least 15 days before the departure of your ...
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Important information

1. There is a minimum age of 15 years for the gorilla tracking. 2. An airport arrival transfer is included (if arriving on day one). Please provide your flight details at the time of booking, or at a minimum 15 days prior to travel. Please ensure you arrive into Kigali prior to 1pm on day 1. If you ...
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Group leader

On this trip you'll be accompanied by several different local guides and drivers, who are all specialists in their own area.

Safety

Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas your itin...
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Visas

PASSPORT As a general rule most countries expect that your passport has a minimum of 6 months validity remaining. Please ensure the name on your passport matches the name on your booking and airline tickets. Your passport details are required to complete your booking. Your consultant will contact ...
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Why we love it

Stay in the small Rwandan town of Ruhengeri

Is this trip right for you

Trekking to find the gorillas can be a challenging and long hike. You will spend only one hour with the gorillas. There is an option to pre-purchase another gorilla permit to visit the gorillas on both days 2 & 3. This is one of our Short Breaks and is slightly different to our group tours. There ...
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Health

All travellers need to be in good physical health in order to participate fully on this trip. When selecting your trip please make sure you have read through the itinerary carefully and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please note that if, in the opinion of our group leader or l...
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Food and dietary requirements

Your group leader or representative will endeavour to cater for specific dietary requirements where possible, and vegetarianism and gluten intolerance will be catered for in most instances. There are, however some meals and activities that are fixed in advance and therefore cannot be modified to sui...
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Money matters

When it comes to money matters on the trip, every traveller is a little different. You know your spending habits better than we do, so please budget a sensible amount for things like meals not included, drinks, shopping, optional activities, tipping and laundry. It’s always better to bring a little ...
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What to take

What you need to bring will vary according to the trip style you have chosen, the countries you are visiting and when you are travelling. Generally speaking, we recommend you pack as lightly as possible and make sure that you are able to carry and lift your own luggage, and walk with it for short di...
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A couple of rules

Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on our trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land, but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for Intrepid travellers. Intrepi...
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Feedback

After your travels, we want to hear from you! We rely on your feedback. We read it carefully. Feedback helps us understand what we are doing well and what we could be doing better. It allows us to make improvements for future travellers. http://www.intrepidtravel.com/feedback/

Emergency contact

While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representa...
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Responsible travel

We believe strongly in low impact or rather positive impact tourism. Broadly speaking this means that we try to minimise the negative aspects of tourism on the local cultures and environments that we visit and highlight the positive aspects. Please visit our website for further details and suggestio...
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The Intrepid Foundation

Help us change thousands of lives by creating meaningful work and supporting skills training in communities around the world. The Intrepid Foundation is the not-for-profit for Intrepid Group. We work with local organisations around the world to improve the livelihoods of vulnerable individuals and...
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Accommodation notes

If you require a Sleep Apnea Machine to sleep please ensure that it is battery operated. Lodges and Permanent Tented Camps are often powered by generators which are turned off during the night.

Travel insurance

Travel insurance is compulsory for all our trips. We require that, at a minimum, you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. When trav...
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Your fellow travellers

On this Short Break Adventure the fellow travellers that may join you during activities can come from all corners of the world and likely a range of age groups too. We ask you to be understanding of their various needs and preferences - patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for ...
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Itinerary disclaimer

ITINERARY CHANGES: Our itineraries are updated regularly throughout the year based on customer feedback and to reflect the current situation in each destination. The information included in this Essential Trip Information may therefore differ from when you first booked your trip. It is important tha...
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Accommodation

Hotel (1 night),Lodge (2 nights)
Mountain Gorillas of Rwanda