Nyungwe Forest National Park is located in the southwest corner of Rwanda, at the border of Burundi to the south, and Lake Kivu and the Democratic Republic of Congo to the West. It is a vast untouched tropical rainforest and it’s the largest remaining montane forest in Africa. The park is visited by primate lovers every year such as chimpanzees, colobus and mangabey monkeys and the rare birds.
The middle of Nyungwe Forest National park is with no doubt very attractive with high dense canopy, tall mahoganies, ebonies and giant tree ferns tower above you. You will witness the presence of many colourful butterflies and birds flying freely from one tree/leaf to another.
Wildlife in Nyungwe Forest.
Nyungwe forest national park is generally a wide park covering over 1020 sq.km and a home to the habituated chimpanzees and 12 other primate species including a 400-strong troop of habituated Ruwenzori Black and White Colobus. It also harbors over 310 different bird species, hundreds of butterflies and orchids and over 75 different species of mammals like buffaloes and elephants.
Activities in Nyungwe Forest National Park.
Primate safaris in Nyungwe forest.
The park is an ideal destination for primate lovers with 13 different primates. The most popular activity is chimpanzee trekking which starts very early in the morning. 8 persons per group are allowed to trek a particular habituated chimp members and one hour is given to observe them. You see chimps sitting in the trees playing, eating and entertaining though they love hiding in the thick bushes. This activity costs 90 US dollars but its an unforgettable experience.
Trekking grey-cheeked mangabey and Rwenzori Colobus monkeys is also in Nyungwe Forest while the I’Hoest’s monkeys are seen on the road sides as you drive past.
Bird watching In Nyungwe Forest National park.
The birds in Nyungwe Forest is endowed with over 310 species including the Giant Hornbills, Great Blue turacos and Red-breasted sparrowhawks among other species of which 27 are endemic to this section of the Albertine Rift Valley.
Forest Hiking trails in Nyungwe.
Visitors are able to hike in the montane forest through the 130km hiking routes which takes about one to eight hours. The Igishigishigi Trail is one of the shortest and it includes East Africa’s Highest canopy with spectacular view across Nyungwe forest while the 6 hour Bugugu trail leads to the highest mountain in the park at 2950m.
How to get here.
Nyungwe forest national park is situated In south western Rwanda near Cyangugu town about 225km and a 4-5 hour drive from Kigali. One can take a bus Nyabugogo Bus park in Kigali and get off Uwinka Center.
You can also hire a comfortable car at about 30,000-40,000 RWF per day to avoid the hustle of travelling the difficult stretches such as stretch between Uwinka Center and Gisakura.