Delve into the pre-historic aura of Nyungwe Forest National Park, one of the few places in the world where you can look into the wonders and secrets of a forest, whilst barely disrupting the natural flow of life within it. Located in Southwestern Rwanda, it is the largest Afro-montane forest in East and Central Africa and one of the most ancient, dating back to before the last Ice Age.
With the only Forest Canopy walkway in East Africa, Nyungwe gives a unique ‘eye-to-eye’ experience with the vast array of primates and birds in the upper reaches of the canopy. Spot a whole host of primates from chimpanzees to Mangabeys to the handsome Black and White Angolan colobus monkeys as you tour this age-old land, while golden cats, bush pigs and the black fronted duiker are also found here.
Dedicated bird-watchers may never wish to leave with almost 300 bird species to be discovered, the highlight being the Blue Turaco, a coloured bird with a curved bill and a truly unforgettable call.
Enveloped in a myriad of wild orchids, trees and ferns, Nyungwe is also a botanist’s paradise. Explore this maze of greenery and walking trails to discover streams, waterfalls and mountain summits boasting superb panoramas.
When to go
The long dry season of June to mid-September is generally the best time to visit.
What to do
- Chimp trekking
- Colobus trekking
- Forest canopy walk
- Extensive hiking trails
Itineraries including Nyungwe National Park
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Accommodation in Nyungwe National Park
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One&Only Nyungwe HouseLow and wide amid the leaves of its very own tea plantation surrounded by ancient rainforest, Nyungwe House’s modern architecture is a wonderful contrast to its verdant setting. There are 22 rooms and suites split between six wooden villas, with vast windows and private decks opening up into the forest. There are open fireplaces in each and every room and suite, with interiors and artwork inspired by the nature and traditions of Rwanda. The main lodge building is home to lounge areas, bar and dining space where you can enjoy sun-rise breakfast (or, for late risers, all day à la carte brunches in your room) and mouth-watering, organic, garden-to-plate menus at dinner, with lunches usually enjoyed while out exploring. Nyungwe Forest, an ancient place of majestic mahoganies, giant ferns and delicate orchids, is renowned for its wide diversity of animal species and the lodge has a variety of treks available for those wishing to see chimpanzees, white colobus, grey-cheeked, golden and rare Mangabey monkeys. You can also take to the heights of the nearby canopy walk, ride mountain bikes, take a day trip to the waters of Lake Kivu or immerse yourself in the local culture on a range of tailored experiences that will give you an insight into crafts, cuisine and more.