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Gondwana Ecotours

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Hike through the mist-covered bamboo rainforest with endangered mountain gorillas on this 9-day adventure. You will also explore a jungle with over one hundred golden monkeys, boat on one of the Great African lakes, Lake Kivu, and learn about the country's history and culture. You can savor local coffee, sip banana wine, and learn to cook Rwandan food so you can enjoy the cuisine even when you have returned home.

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ACTIVITY LEVEL
Medium
OPERATOR

Gondwana Ecotours

Itinerary

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Your guides will meet you at the airport and take you to your lodging in Kigali, three kilometres away. Four-star Lemigo Hotel is located in an urban oasis within the city centre. It's a perfect place to recover from your travels before heading off to see the gorillas. It has wifi, fitness centre and comfortable amenities.
After breakfast, we explore Kigali's neighbourhoods. We make a stop at the local market to pick up ingredients, before we head to the local NGO Aspire Rwanda. The organisation helps vulnerable women, teaching them about agriculture, health and business so they can earn a living. The NGO also has cooking classes, which will be our activity for the day. A local woman will meet us and teach us how to cook a delicious local meal with the ingredients that we bought. Later, we drive through rolling green hills with coffee plantations and farmland on our way to Le Bambou Gorilla Lodge, at the base of Rwanda's famous Volcanoes National Park. The lodge has comfortable beds, a relaxing lounge area with wifi, and a fireplace in your room for chilly evenings. The lodge was built using environmentally friendly local materials such as bamboo and works closely with the local community to ensure they directly benefit from tourism in the area.
After breakfast, rangers will take us through the beautiful jungle with over one hundred chatting, eating, and playing golden monkeys. Later, you can either unwind at the lodge or learn about Rwanda's ancient past at the cultural center where you can try shooting with bow and arrow, pound grain and dance.
Today, we will come face-to-face with the incredible mountain gorillas. The guides will lead us across farmland, along stony walls and over the threshold into the bamboo forest in Virunga. We will move through the jungle and follow the gorillas at their pace in their own habitat.
Today, you can either go on a guided hike to Dian Fossey's grave or up Mt. Bisoke to the crater lake within, which is a more challenging route. If you don't want to hike, you have the option to track mountain gorillas again if you give advanced notice and pay for the second permit. In the evening, you can listen to a Rwandan story-teller before our last dinner at the lodge.
Today we explore Gisenyi, a small town on the shore of one of Africa's great lakes, Lake Kivu. By the lake, we also learn more about coffee, which is one of Rwanda’s most important exports. Just seven kilometers from downtown Gisenyi is also Paradis Malahide lodge where we will spend the night. The beautiful space provides the perfect escape with its ideal climate, perfect amount of sunshine, relaxing lake and rolling green hills.
Today we wake up on the quiet Lake Kivu. After breakfast, you can take a boat to visit the small islands, explore markets in town with your guide or relax by the lake. After lunch, we go back to Lemino Hotel in Kigali.
On our final day in Kigali, we will visit the genocide memorial and a beautiful craft market. After lunch, we go to an up-and-coming art collective with some of the best coffee in the country. The local artists make wild, colourful pieces and offer dance and community-themed events. We'll have dinner at the restaurant Heaven before we return to Lemino Hotel.
We have breakfast together before a shuttle will take you to the airport.
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