About Nyungwe Forest Park
Nyungwe Forest National Park is blessed with lots of nature and wildlife experiences for you to look out for and emerge yourself in. The forest offers a number of activities like hiking or biking the beautiful terrain, tracking the famous chimpanzees, experiencing the canopy walk, witnessing beautiful birds and relaxing by waterfalls. Sounds and sights all together make a one-of-a-kind wildlife experience. While moving or exploring through the forest, tourists will have a look at the lush green mountains and experience the cooling mist in a landscape. This scenery is unforgettable!!
2004 is when Nyungwe Forest National Park was established, it seats on an area that is close to 970 km2 of the rain forest, swamps, bogs, grassland, and bamboo. Cyangugu is the nearest town to the forest with a distance of 54 km to the west of the national park. Mount Bigugu is located within the borders of the forest.
Where is Nyungwe Forest Park Located?
TO DO AND SEE IN NYUNGWE FOREST NATIONAL PARK
Nyungwe forest national park is a perfect holiday spot for nature lovers and adventurers. You cannot possibly run out of things to do when you visit this park.
Nyungwe forest has a huge population of chimpanzees. And many tourists or travelers who visit the park always go on a chimpanzee tracking adventure. Unlike gorilla trekking that is done in seasons, chimpanzee tracking is not done in seasons. It is done all year round.
The chimpanzees are not habituated like the gorillas and therefore one is not guaranteed a sighting spot for the chimpanzees. But the tourists will be able to see the chimpanzees because they are very common and always moving around the forest. The chimps are not settled and orderly like the habituated gorillas are, which makes it an exciting tracking experience. With the help and assistance of the guides, you will, of course, find the chimpanzees in this forest.
Chimpanzee trekking also requires chimpanzee permits which are issued by the Rwanda Development Board, you can contact them, or have your tour operator contact them for you.
Nyungwe forest national park is home to over 285 bird species. 27 of these bird species are endemic to the Albertine Rift valley. There are lots of colorful and interesting birds to see, the most notable or common ones being the Blue turaco, Kungwe Apalis Apalis argentea Ruwenzori Nightjar Caprimulgus ruwenzorii, Archer’s Robin-chat Cossypha archeri, Ruwenzori Apalis Apalis ruwenzorii, Stripe-breasted Tit Parus fasciiventer, , Dusky Crimson Wing Cryptospiza jacksoni, Shelley’s Crimsonwing Cryptospiza shelleyi , Ruwenzori Batis Batis diops, Handsome Francolin Francolinus nobilis and Neumann’s Warbler Hemitesia neumanni are some of the birds that you might see in the park.
Nyungwe Canopy Walk
The canopy walk in Nyungwe forest is the only one of its kind in Africa. The canopy is built at an impressive 50m above the forest. The Nyungwe canopy walk is not for the weak faint-hearted. Travelers that are afraid of heights might want to get rid of the phobia before they travel. Such a splendid sight should be seen by everyone.
Forest Hiking Trails in Nyungwe
Nyungwe Forest National Park has over 130 kilometers of hiking routes which allows visitors to explore its interior and its fascinating habitats. Walking in Nyungwe is exciting and alittle bit relaxing, with trails lasting from one to eight hours. The Igishigishigi Trail is one of the shortest hikes yet includes East Africa’s highest canopy walk but gives spectacular views across Nyungwe Forest, while the 6-hour Bigugu Trail leads you to the highest mountain in the Park at 2950m.
Community & Culture
The Rwandan people in the Nyungwe forest have a very rich and interesting culture. Discover Rwandan food and be entertained by cultural performers in song and dance, learn more about the history of the area and the country, and enjoy the interaction with the locals. There are centers you can visit such as the Banda Community Village, Kitabi cultural village, and entertainment groups such as the friends of Nyungwe and the Cyamundongo cultural troupe, which bring the culture of the Rwandese people to live in different ways.
There is much more to see and enjoy in Nyungwe Forest National Park. Simply set a date and plan your Nyungwe forest safari.
How to Reach Nyungwe National Park
Nyungwe Forest National Park is a 4-5 hour drive from Kigali. There are some attractions along the journey like Nyanza King’s Palace and the National Museum should you wish to break the journey. Transport to and from the park can easily be arranged with the Visit And Tour Rwanda.
ACCOMMODATION IN NYUNGWE NATIONAL PARK
So you have decided to go on safari to Rwanda, and on your agenda is a visit to Nyungwe forest. Question is where do you stay for the night, or if your spending more than one day, then for the duration of your safari.
There are a number of accommodation options; lodges, hotels, guest houses, and camps. Some of these include:
Nyungwe Forest Lodge
Nyungwe Forest Lodge is a sister hotel to the Mantis Group of Boutique Hotels. The lodge is situated in a tea plantation on the edge of the forest and is built to blend in with the surrounding environment. All of the rooms give you a view of the forest, the accommodation is configured to different sizes to fit different budget from 15x double luxury rooms (King bed), 7x twin luxury rooms and 2x suites (2 bedrooms, 1 with a king sized bed and the 2nd with twin beds).
Gisakura Guest House
Gisakura Guest House is located in outside the Nyungwe National Park about 2km close to the Gisakura Tea Estate precisely on the road from Park to Ruzizi former Cyangugu.
This Guest House offers you a chance to see Chimpanzees, Different trails, Canopy walkway, Bird species of Central African Highlands, More than 120 orchid species, various tree species, Colobus troop living on the Gisakura Tea Estate and Vervet monkeys occasionally pass through the grounds.
Nyungwe Top View Hill Hotel
Nyungwe Top View Hill Hotel is situated on top of one of the hills of the Nyungwe forest area; the largest single forest block in East Africa and it is the biggest water reservoir for Rwanda.
You will be able to participate in a number of activities around the park. So look forward to activities like tracking chimpanzees, seeing he Ruwenzori Colobus monkey, birdwatching, forest walk, and going on the Nyungwe canopy walk.
The hotel provides a driver to take you to any place around the park and the various places you might want to visit.
If you are traveling to Rwanda for a safari tour in Nyungwe, the best thing to do is to consult your tour operator on what place of accommodation would best suit your needs.