Rwanda is among the small countries on the planet with a land area of 26,338-kilometer squares. This small country is very endowed naturally with a number of unique landscapes and wildlife attractions that are evenly distributed all over the country. A large percentage of the landscape is covered by gently sloping hills and its because of this it was named the country of a thousand hills (le pays des Milles Collines). These are covered by dense rain forests and plantations of tea and coffee and thus offer great scenic views. Most of these are viewed on the way to the major national parks the country has.
Rwanda has four major national parks that are homes to the major wildlife species the country has. They mainly include volcanoes national park which is most famous for the highly endangered ape species – the mountain gorillas and other unique wildlife species like the golden monkeys plus a number of bird species, Nyungwe forest national park located in the south western part of the country a home of the largest chimpanzee population in the country, other primates like the l’hoest monkeys, vervet monkeys, colobus monkeys, butterflies, as well as a number of reptiles and amphibians, Gishwati Mukura forest national park also located in the western part a habitant for a number of vegetation species, primates and some mammals and lastly Akagera national park located in the eastern part of the country. Akagera national park is different from the other three national parks as it’s the only savanna national park in Rwanda and home to a number of savanna wildlife species that include the lions, waterbucks, giraffes and elephants among others.
All the above-mentioned ecosystems offer high-class wildlife experiences to tourist on safaris or tours most of whom revisit the country over and over again. Mere words are hard to use while explaining the experience one gets while viewing the green landscapes and the wild animals in the national parks in Rwanda and the good news is that most of the safaris in Rwanda are very affordable.
Mountain gorilla trekking permits are sold at only $750 inclusive of park entry fees, full time guiding services, the real mountain gorilla trekking and the time spent with the gorillas, and a certificate of participation. Chimpanzee tracking permits are sold at only $90 inclusive of the park entrance fees, services of the guide while the famous canopy walk along the over 50 meters high canopy walk way is at only $70. Wild life safaris in Akagera can be enjoyed at $35 including park entrances and only $40 for game drives along lake Ihema with sightings of wild animals like hippos, crocodiles.
Important to note is that about 5% of the money collected from the tourists is directed to local community development to boost the social and economic wellbeing of the people. The money is used to build schools, medical centers and roads in the major communities that surround the national parks.
Rwanda is very blessed in a way that its weather and climate does not prevent tourist activities from taking place. The country can therefore be visited at any time of the year however those who would love to get real remarkable experiences especially for mountain gorilla trekking can visit volcanoes national park during the dry seasons while those interested in easily tracking the chimpanzees of Nyungwe forest can visit the national park during the wet season.
Being in Rwanda gives people a lot of hope in conservation and the possibility of a green world. Rwanda is today listed in the greenest tourism destinations and the country is a better choice for nature friendly tourists (Eco tourists). All those who have not yet decided to visit the country please do and discover how this beautiful country is very magnified by her great landscapes and wildlife species.