6 Days Rwanda Primate Tour: A Journey Through the Heart of Africa

Rwanda Primate Tour – Recently, Rwanda has emerged as a top favored destination for gorilla trekking, making the Rwanda Gorilla Tour a must-experience for wildlife enthusiasts. Some travelers visit this beautiful and naturally gifted country for just a day or two, primarily to encounter the gorillas before flying home. While this brief visit already contributes significantly to conservation efforts, there is immense joy and value in extending the adventure to explore the country’s other primates.

This WILD INTENSE tour not only focuses on the majestic gorillas but also covers Rwanda’s thousand-hilled landscape, renowned for its diverse primate populations. By the time we reach Volcanoes National Park, the final destination of our trip, participants will have embarked on a scenic journey that ranks highly among the most picturesque on the African continent. Each step of this tour is designed to deepen your appreciation of Rwanda’s unique wildlife and landscapes, enhancing the overall experience of your Rwanda Gorilla Tour.

Day 1 Rwanda Primate Tour: Arrival for Tour 

Rwanda Primate Tour
Mantled Guereza

Upon arrival in Rwanda, we consider an overnight stay in Kigali, accommodating the uncertainty of flight schedules. If flights arrive early enough, we plan to visit several of the country’s historical sites, enhancing the cultural dimension of your Rwanda Gorilla Tour. A key site on our itinerary is the Kigali Genocide Memorial, a profound and moving tribute to the victims of the genocide against the Tutsi. This visit not only offers insights into the tragic events that shaped modern Rwanda but also sets a contemplative tone for the deep connections we aim to foster with the country’s heritage and natural beauty throughout the tour.

This initial experience in Kigali serves as an introduction to the resilience and beauty of Rwanda, preparing you for the deeper explorations of its wildlife and pristine landscapes that are to come. The first day is thus designed to be flexible and accommodating, ensuring that regardless of when you arrive, your Rwanda Gorilla Tour begins with meaningful engagements right from the start.

Day 2 Rwanda Primate Tour: Transfer to Nyungwe Forest National Park 

After breakfast, we embark on a journey to Nyungwe Forest National Park, a pivotal location for our Rwanda Gorilla Tour. Along the way, we will make stops at significant historical sites including the Murambi Rwanda Genocide Memorial Museum and the Rwanda National Museum. These visits provide a deep dive into Rwanda’s poignant history and rich cultural heritage, setting a reflective backdrop as we transition into the country’s lush natural landscapes.

Nyungwe Forest, located in southwest Rwanda between Lake Kivu and the Burundi border, is a primeval rainforest that offers a stark contrast to our earlier urban and historical explorations. The forest is bisected north-south by a high ridge that forms part of the distant Congo–Nile watershed, creating a unique ecological split that affects everything from pedology to biodiversity. This diverse environment is not only home to numerous primate species, including chimpanzees and colobus monkeys, but also a vast array of other wildlife and plant species, making it an essential component of the Rwanda Gorilla Tour. The complex ecosystem of Nyungwe provides an excellent example of environmental conservation and biodiversity, enhancing our appreciation of Rwanda’s commitment to preserving its natural heritage.

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Blue Monkey

Day 3 Rwanda Primate Tour: Chimpanzee Tracking and Primate Walk Tour – Safari Rwanda

On this exhilarating morning of our Rwanda Gorilla Tour, we set out into the heart of Nyungwe Forest, following the arrangements made the previous day, to track the common chimpanzee. Nyungwe is one of the few places worldwide where humans can closely encounter their primate relatives in a natural setting. The experience of meeting chimpanzees in their natural habitat is unparalleled and serves as a highlight of our primate-focused safari.

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Common Chimpanzee

After returning to our accommodation, we will dedicate the remainder of the day to seeking out the other twelve species of primates that inhabit this biodiverse forest. Our exploration includes the search for the Angola pied colobus, which requires ample time and patience to locate. Other primate species we hope to encounter include L’Hoest’s monkey, owl-faced monkey, blue monkey, red-tailed monkey, grey-cheeked mangabey, mantled guereza, and the widespread olive baboon. These primate sightings enhance our comprehensive understanding of Nyungwe’s ecological diversity.

In addition to primates, Nyungwe Forest is home to an array of other mammals. Our search will extend to the giant forest squirrel, Rwenzori sun squirrel, Boehm’s bush squirrel, giant forest hog, black-fronted duiker, and yellow-backed duiker. Predatory species such as the leopard, golden cat, and large-spotted genet also roam these woods, and there are opportunities to spot the elusive Congo clawless otter in the forest’s streams. This extensive wildlife exploration underscores the rich biodiversity of Nyungwe Forest, making it a pivotal day in our Rwanda Gorilla Tour, filled with discovery and awe at every turn.

Day 4 Rwanda Primate Tour: Wildlife Tour to Volcanoes National Park

Today’s segment of our Rwanda Gorilla Tour begins with a nourishing breakfast before we transfer to the breathtaking Volcanoes National Park, the revered home of the endangered Mountain Gorillas.

Nestled in northwest Rwanda, this park forms a transboundary conservation area that is contiguous with Mgahinga Gorilla National Park in Uganda and Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. This region is a critical habitat for the Eastern Gorilla and serves as a vital sanctuary for their protection and conservation.

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Eastern (Mountain) Gorilla

Volcanoes National Park is not only renowned for its gorilla population but also as the historical base for the pioneering American naturalist, Dian Fossey. She arrived in 1967 and established the Karisoke Research Centre between Mount Karisimbi and Mount Visoke. Dedicating her life to the park and the gorillas, Fossey is widely credited with saving the Mountain Gorillas from the brink of extinction by highlighting their plight to the global community. Tragically, she was murdered in 1985 by unknown assailants, a crime often attributed to the poachers against whom she fought relentlessly. Fossey’s legacy lives on through the ongoing conservation efforts in the park and her life story, which was immortalized in the film “Gorillas in the Mist,” based on her autobiography. Visitors to the park can pay their respects at her grave, located near the research center and amidst the gorillas she loved.

This day promises an enriching experience as we explore the natural beauty and historical significance of Volcanoes National Park. The encounters with the Mountain Gorillas are profoundly moving and represent a highlight of the Rwanda Gorilla Tour, offering an unparalleled opportunity to connect with these majestic creatures in their natural habitat.

Day 5 Rwanda Primate Tour: Gorilla Trekking at Volcanoes National Park

Today marks a pivotal moment in our Rwanda Gorilla Tour with the main activity being Mountain Gorilla Tracking in Volcanoes National Park. Mountain gorillas represent the largest living primates on earth and are among the world’s most endangered apes. With an estimated population of just over one thousand remaining in the wild and none in captivity, these majestic creatures are a critical focus of conservation efforts. The Eastern Gorilla, which we will be tracking, was only discovered by scientists in 1902 and is humanity’s next closest living relative after the two chimpanzee species, sharing 97% of our DNA.

After an exhilarating day of tracking these magnificent creatures, and if energy levels permit, we offer an optional leisurely walk to a nearby village. This activity is perfect for those who are keen to engage more deeply with the local culture and learn about the lives of the people in the regions we visit. It provides a wonderful opportunity to understand the community’s way of life and their relationship with the natural environment that supports the gorillas. This deeper interaction adds another layer to your Rwanda Gorilla Tour, enriching your understanding of Rwanda’s conservation and community integration efforts.

Day 6 Rwanda Primate Tour: Track Golden Monkeys and Transfer to Kigali for Departure

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L’Hoests’s Monkey

As we conclude our six-day Rwanda Gorilla Tour, we make one final visit to the park to track a special species of primates: the Golden Monkeys. This visit represents an opportunity to encounter another Albertine Rift endemic primate, rounding out our comprehensive exploration of Rwanda’s unique primate species. As we track these vibrant and lesser-known primates, we gather lasting memories from our remarkable journey through Rwanda’s diverse habitats and primate populations.

Following our morning tracking experience, we will head back to Kigali to prepare for departures. WILD INTENSE has arranged for a day room in Kigali where you can refresh and change before your flight. For those wishing to extend their stay and explore more of Kigali or simply relax before traveling, we are happy to secure additional overnight accommodations on your behalf. Please note that any overnight expenses are not included in the default tour cost and must be requested separately. This flexibility allows you to customize the final part of your tour to suit your personal travel plans, ensuring that your Rwanda Gorilla Tour ends as comfortably and conveniently as possible.

Book Your Adventure Today

Join us on this WILD INTENSE adventure through Rwanda’s primate habitats. From gorilla trekking to tracking chimpanzees and golden monkeys, this tour offers an in-depth look at some of Africa’s most iconic wildlife. Secure your spot on this once-in-a-lifetime journey and carry home memories that will last forever.

Gorilla Trackers Group Photo
WILD INTENSE Gorilla Trackers Group Photo

 

  • Transport in a 4WD Toyota Land Cruiser 
  • All vehicle fuel for the tour
  • One Eastern Gorilla Trekking Permit per person
  • One Chimpanzee Trekking Permit Per Person
  • English speaking Ugandan driver/guide
  • Accommodation and three meals a day (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner) through the tour. Or as agreed at booking 
  • Park Entrance/Conservation fees according to the program
  • All activities described in the itinerary
  • International air fares and entry visa
  • Meals that are not part of your accommodation
  • A porter during the gorilla trekking (Optional Community support staff who carries your day pack)
  • Personal (medical/travel) insurance
  • Government tax or park fees increase
  • Tips and gratuities to rangers, driver/guide, porter, hotel staff, etc
  • All expenses of personal nature (e.g. drinks, laundry, optional activities, souvenirs etc.)

 

CONTACT US

Email:info@wildintense.com

Call: +256 782 475961