DISCOVER RWANDA-The land of 1000 Hills
The East African country sits southwest of Uganda in the Western Arm of the East African Rift Valley. It is a small land locked country but fast growing despite the scars of 1194 Genocide. Since then, Rwandan people and the government have tried to have the dark past behind and the country is steadily growing and is one of the modern and luxury destinations in the region.
The rolling hills and mountains filled with bountiful and rich biodiversity make Rwanda an astonishing destination. Visitors can uncover their own adventure together with those who live with in and around its vibrant culture.
At night, Kigali city looks everything of what it is becoming, the Kimironko market in the city is full of fresh and organic fruits, the people the culture, the history and all this can be explored mixed together with the Flora and Fauna.
Travellers who take time to explore Nyungwe Forest, Akagera and Volcanoes National park are assured of finest hiking trails and will have their senses rewarded. Navigating through the forests with friendly rangers and guides listening to the bird Chirps, sounds of primates and glimpse on different plant, flowers, insects and of course gazing at Chimpanzees or mountain gorillas is something you will love.
Some of the reasons for you to discover Rwanda include:
From Volcanoes National park in the north for an encounter with the mountain gorillas, 13 primate species that include Chimpanzees in Nyungwe national park to the rolling hills that surround the savannas of Akagera national park that house the big savanna game like the Elephants, lions, leopards, Rhino’s and other game. This make Rwanda home to fascinating creatures. You can have feel of the forest and the open savanna on a single trip to all the national parks in the country.
The corridor between Nyungwe and Kigali city hosts a number of historical and cultural sites that include:
The Kings Palace Museum south of Kigali city which home to the Queen Mother. It contains a host of the king’s own possessions including furniture and ornaments. The first buildings make up the colonial style palaces built for King Mutara III Rudahigwa in 1932 and was his residence until his death in 1959. The walls of the palace chart the history of Rwanda and its Kings through the centuries.
Alongside the colonial palace is a reconstructed traditional palace in the style of that Rwandan Kings used until the 20th century. The beautifully crafted construction offers a detailed insight into the daily life of Rwanda’s monarchy and is made of entirely traditional and local materials. Two further huts have been built to show how two important rituals of royal mile- Milk and Beer were prepared, stored and shared.
In the paddock at the rear is a herd of traditional long horned cattle known as “Inyambo”. This royal breed of cows formed an integral part of Rwandan culture and are treated as sacred. Today these cows are still sung to and groomed but never milked or eaten.
Opposite the colonial type palace, is a second palace set on a hillside (Rwesero Palace art museum) designed more in line with the wishes of the King. The palace was constructed in 1957-1959. It host an array of traditional and contemporary Rwandan paintings and structures, with many being post genocide. Sadly, the king never took up residence here as he died shortly before it was completed.
The Rwanda national museum is in Huye south of Kigali about an hour drive. The hugely informative and entertaining museum has several rooms showing exhibits from Rwandan history and culture, representing the country and its people through ancient times.
A full scale replica of traditional huts, original tools, decorations, implements and modes of transport are displayed in the museum. There are also costumes and equipment used by the famous “intore” dancers. The museum’s reception has a lounge with traditional handcraft where you can grab a souvenir.
Rwanda has got some of the upswing lodgings across the country that offer outstanding serenity and luxury. The One & Only Gorilla Nest and Nyungwe house, Singita Kwitonda Lodge are surrounded by luscious rainforests and perfect bases from which to encounter the primates at each of the parks. The offer open air spas and massage and beautiful views of the parks.