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Getting to Rwanda

One of only three countries in which the mountain gorilla can be found

Rwanda safari guide

Companies: 681 operators
Tour packages: 359 tours
Parks: 3 parks
Currency exchange
Capital: Kigali
Population: 11 million
Total area:26,338 km² (10,169 miles²)
Languages: English, French
Airports: Kigali (KGL)

Recommended vaccinations


MMR

Voltage and plug type

Type C (220V)

Type J (220V)


About Rwanda

Located in eastern/central Africa, Rwanda is the ninth smallest country in Africa and is located only a few degrees below the equator. Tiny Rwanda has suffered a difficult past and tourism is now slowly and steadily growing since the end of horrific genocide in 1993. Rwanda consists of many hills and mountains and the lowest point in the country is at 950m or 3117ft. Five of Rwanda’s mountains are volcanoes, which provide stunning backdrops to the lush, green hills and vegetation. Its climate is classified as a temperate tropical highland and has two rainy seasons roughly between the months of March and May and again between the months of October and November. Rwanda is home to Nyungwe Forest, which is home to thirteen species of monkeys. In fact, over 25% of Africa’s monkey species are found in this one park.

Volcanoes National Park, also called Parc des Volcans, is part of the Virunga (Birunga) Conservation area and is the highlight for many visitors. This park is home to over half the world’s population of mountain gorillas. Rwanda’s verdant, stunning backdrops and lush vegetation also make for excellent photo opportunities and many safari visitors select Rwanda for its photogenic scenery. Rwanda also offers a range of lodging options from very high end luxury lodges to more basic accommodation.

The gorillas are endangered and highly susceptible to human illnesses. To help protect and preserve the mammals, the number of daily tourists allowed within close range of the animals is severely restricted and day passes are steeply priced. The journey to reach the habitat of the mountain gorilla includes hiking through steep terrain which is often quite wet and slippery. It also required walking through very dense foliage, including large amounts of stinging nettles. Visitors are advised to dress appropriately and ensure all limbs are well-protected. A safari in Rwanda is very different to a safari in neighboring Kenya or Tanzania, as one is required to be in good enough shape to walk for at least four hours to where the animals are located. It is for this reason that Rwanda is recommended for those who are physically able to handle the trekking conditions of the parks and who are free from any contagious illnesses. Those who meet the aforementioned requirements will be rewarded with an intimate safari experience.

Akagera National Park lies at the northeast corner of Rwanda, 110 kilometers (68 miles) from the capital, Kigali. The park is named after the Akagera River, the most remote source of the Nile, which flows at… read more

Nyungwe Forest National Park is located in the southwest of Rwanda, 55 kilometers (34 miles) from the town Cyangugu, and 90 kilometers (55 miles) from Huye. It covers a vast area of approximately 970 km²… read more

Situated in the northwest corner of Rwanda, Volcanoes National Park, or Parc National des Volcans, is one of three parks that encompass the Virunga Mountains. The other two parks to include this chain of nin… read more

Flying to Rwanda

There are currently no direct flights from any North American city to Kigali. All require at least one stop, with most major cities, including New York, Toronto, Sao Paolo and Montreal only requiring one stop.

Direct flights are available from Amsterdam and Brussels. There are also direct flights on Turkish Airlines, from Istanbul, and from Dubai on Rwanda Air. There are no direct flights from Doha, Qatar.

Flights from major cities in Asia, such as Hong Kong and Singapore, also require one stop. Flights from Sydney, Australia presently require two stops.

Getting to Rwanda from within Africa

Kigali is easily accessible from most major cities, with Nairobi, Dar es Salaam, Johannesburg, Entebbe and Windhoek all having direct flights. Other cities will require one change, most likely in Johannesburg or Nairobi.

Driving to Rwanda

Many safari tours combine trips to the neighboring countries of Kenya and Uganda. Border crossing between either of these countries are normally quite painless, especially now with the single East Africa tourist visa. It is also possible to drive to Rwanda from Tanzania, but a separate tourist visa will be needed for Tanzania. 

The following airlines travel to Rwanda


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The flag carrier and largest airline of Canada. Air Canada is Canada's largest full-service airline and the largest provider of scheduled passenger services in the Canadian market, the Canada-U.S. transborder market and in the international market to and from Canada. Together with its Air Canada Express regional partners, Air Canada serves close to 35 million passengers annually and provides direct passenger service to more than 175 destinations on five continents. Air Canada is a founding member of Star Alliance™, the world's most comprehensive air transportation network. Visit website

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Brussels Airlines, member of Lufthansa Group and a Star Alliance member, is the Belgian airline that offers the widest choice of flights to and from the capital of Europe, Brussels Airport. The company has more than 3,500 employees and 49 aircraft operating some 300 flights daily, connecting the Capital of Europe to over 90 European and African destinations, as well as two destinations in the USA (New York JFK and Washington D.C.). In addition to its 19 long haul destinations in Africa and the US, Brussels Airlines and its intercontinental partners also offer long-haul codeshare flights to the United Arab Emirates, China, Thailand, India, North America and Canada. We want to be the most personal airline, bringing people together and making travel a pleasure. Visit website

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At Classic Jet Charters We own our aircraft and are an FAA certified aircraft charter operator. We also have one of the largest selections of local private jets and charter aircraft from the most valued private jet carriers with the most FAA operators nationwide. Classic Jet Charters strives to provide multiple private aircraft options for each of your charter flights with the highest levels of safety, convenience and competitive pricing. At the local level and nationwide Classic Jet Charters guarantees charter aircraft availability at a great price. Because we own our aircraft and have a network of preferred aircraft charter vendors nationwide we are available to quote any flight at the lowest price. Visit website

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Coastal Aviation is an airline operating out of Dar es Salaam - charter flights. Coastal Aviation flying to some 100 strips located in some of the most isolated pockets of the East African Region. The scheduled Coastal network also connects visitors to Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda with the world-famous Serengeti, links the emerging tourism destinations of Mozambique with the Southern Tanzania parks of Selous and Ruaha, and unites the tropical island paradises of Pemba, Zanzibar, Mafia and Fanjove Private Iaslandwith the National Parks and towns of the mainland. Our state of the art fleet is composed of 20 aircraft and has been expertly-adapted to the African safari environment, without compromise to safety and comfort. Visit website

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Major American airline, with its headquarters Atlanta, Georgia. What started as a humble, little aerial crop dusting operation called Huff Daland Dusters in 1924 has now grown into one of the world’s largest global airlines, helping more than 160 million travelers get to the places they want to go to each year. Delta flies to more than 350 destinations on 6 continents, serving more than 160 million passengers each year. It's an important job, that's why we have 70,000 dedicated employees who are up to the task every day, on every flight. Visit website

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Based in Kampala, operates scheduled and charter services across eastern and central Africa. Eagle Air is a Private Ltd Company specialising in the provision of Charter and Schedule Air services both within Uganda and around the East & Central Africa Region. Eagle Air was incorporated as an air operator in June 1994. Visit website

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The flag carrier airline of Egypt, based at Cairo. EGYPTAIR is one of the world’s pioneer airlines. Established in May of 1932, it became the seventh carrier in the world. Mission Create value for our customers, employees, owners & stakeholders. Vision Deliver competitive customer service with true Egyptian spirit. Visit website

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The flag carrier of Kenya. Kenya Airways was established in February 1977 following the breakup of the East African Community and subsequent disbanding of the jointly-owned East African Airways. KQ now flies to over 60 destinations around the world with over 40 being in Africa. The network expands to many more destinations with partnerships from Codeshare partners. Our Vision is to consistently be a Safe & Profitable Airline that Guarantees World Class Service. Visit website

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KLM

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The flag carrier airline of the Netherlands. KLM Royal Dutch Airlines was founded on 7 October, 1919 to serve the Netherlands and its colonies. KLM is today the oldest airline still operating under its original name. KLM has been part of the AIR FRANCE KLM group since the merger in 2004. KLM is the core of the KLM Group, which further includes the wholly-owned subsidiaries KLM Cityhopper, transavia.com and Martinair. Visit website

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The state-owned flag carrier of Qatar. In a relatively short time, Qatar Airways has grown to more than 140 destinations worldwide, offering unmatched levels of service excellence that have helped excel the award-winning carrier to become best in the world. Voted Airline of the Year 2011 and in 2012 in the prestigious Skytrax industry audit, Qatar Airways has won the confidence of the travelling public. In this highly competitive environment, Qatar Airways has achieved much with our phenomenal route expansion averaging 30% growth year to year and flying one of the most modern fleet of 134 aircraft in the skies today. Our global network currently spans key business and leisure destinations across Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific, North America and South America, with scheduled flights operating to and from our hub in Doha, capital of the State of Qatar. Visit website

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The Moroccan national carrier founded in 1957. Royal Air Maroc has been awarded the prize of “Best Regional Airline for Africa” by Skytrax. The evaluation is the result of an online, airline satisfaction survey in which more than 18 million customers in more than 160 countries took part between August 2013 and May 2014. The campaign plans to use the existing destinations from Casablanca to North America, Europe and Africa as well as new lines. Visit website

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RwandAir is the flag carrier airline of Rwanda. We serve most East African Community capital cities as well as Johannesburg and Dubai with daily flights. Recently, we introduced Flights to Lagos in Nigeria, Accra in Ghana, Juba in South Sudan and intend to expand to Doula in Cameroon. Our Current destinations include Nairobi, Entebbe, Mombasa, Bujumbura, Dar es Salaam, Kilimanjaro, Nyungwe Forest National Park, Johannesburg, Brazzaville, Dubai, Lagos, Accra and Juba. We have codeshare agreements with SN Brussels on the Kigali-Brussels Sector and Ethiopian Airlines on the Kigali-Addis Ababa Sector. Visit website

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National airline of South Africa. At South African Airways we are the proud national airline of South Africa. We offer great value flights to and from South Africa as well as within our beautiful country. We are committed to the highest standards in everything we do and aim to deliver a world-class experience on every flight. Plan and book your flights with us and experience why we are one of the leading airlines in Africa. Visit website

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The national flag carrier airline of Turkey. Turkish Airlines, one of the most preferred leading European air carrier with global network coverage thanks to its strict compliance with flight safety, reliability, product line, service quality and competitiveness while maintaining its identity as the flag carrier of Turkey. Visit website

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373 Destinations (airports served) 233 Domestic destinations (airports served) 140 International destinations (airports served) 60 Countries Served 5,055 Daily Departures 138 Million passengers in 2014 Visit website

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We are a Rwandan based aviation company specializing in helicopter solutions,pilot training among other services tailored to your every need. We offer aerial excursions within Rwanda and her neighbors in the East Africa community. Our top destinations are Akagera, Nyungwe, Volcanoes National Park and Bisate Lodge. Visit website

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Rwanda map
Parks and game reserves
Articles on Rwanda

Most safaris postponed to 2021

When: Aug. 31, 2020
By: YAS

COVID-19 and safaris

When: April 22, 2020
By: YAS

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