Nyungwe Forest National Park is located in the Rusizi district of the southwestern region of Rwanda. To get to the park from Kigali town, it takes approximately 4-5 hours of driving. This national park is considered to be one of the oldest national parks in Africa. Nyungwe Forest National Park is home to over 12 species of primates, with the chimpanzee being the most famous primate found here. Apart from chimpanzees, the park also boasts a diverse array of wildlife including over 300 bird species, 16 of which are endemic to the area, and 75 mammal species.
If you wish to trek chimpanzees in Nyungwe National Park, you will need to obtain a chimpanzee trekking permit. Trek Africa Expeditions can assist you in organizing and securing this permit in advance from the Rwanda Development Board. This permit will allow you to participate in a chimpanzee trek on the day it is issued. The experience of chimpanzee trekking in Nyungwe National Park is highly sought after due to the rich biodiversity and scenic views offered by the park.
To trek and observe the chimpanzees in Nyungwe Forest National Park, interested individuals must obtain a chimpanzee tracking permit. The cost of the permit varies based on residency and citizenship status. Non-residents are charged $90, residents are charged $60, foreign citizens are charged 500 Rwanda Francs, and East Africa Citizens are charged $10. Rwanda citizen students pay Rwf2,500, while East Africa Community (EAC) students are charged $5 per day. Foreign resident students pay $30 per day. In addition to the chimpanzee permit, visitors to Nyungwe National Park must pay a park entrance fee of $40 per person per day, regardless of residency or citizenship status.
Trek Africa Expeditions offers a variety of all-inclusive chimpanzee tours to Nyungwe National Park, including budget, mid-range, and luxury tours. The budget tour includes budget accommodation, while the mid-range tour features mid-range accommodation, and the luxury tour offers stays at luxurious properties. All tours include transportation in a 4×4 safari vehicle and start and end in Kigali.
The all-inclusive chimpanzee tours to Nyungwe National Park vary in length and price. The 2-day budget tour costs USD1190 for two people, USD1170 for three people, USD1150 for four people, and USD1010 for over five people. The 3-day budget tour costs USD1160 for two people, USD1140 for three people, USD1120 for four people, and USD1100 for over five people.
When visiting Nyungwe National Park for chimpanzee trekking, there are a few accommodation options available. For those on a budget, options include Nyungwe House, Nyungwe Nzizia Eco Lodge, and Katabi Eco Centre, all of which cost USD100 per person per night. Mid-range options include Gisakura Guest House at USD200 per person per night. For a luxury option, there is Nyungwe Top View Hotel, which costs USD250 per person per night.
However, it is important to note that there are only a few lodge options within Nyungwe National Park, and many travelers choose to stay in Cyangugu town, which is a 45-minute drive from the park.
To get to Nyungwe National Park from Kigali, road transportation is the most common mode of transport. Public transport by bus costs approximately USD20 per person per seat from Kigali to Nyungwe National Park, but this can take up to 8 hours. Private car hire is a more comfortable and convenient option, with a cost of about 30,000-40,000RWF per day.
For a faster means of transport, travelers can fly to Kamembe airport, which is only 32km away from Nyungwe National Park. RwandAir offers domestic flights, with a minimum of 9 flights a week from Kigali to Kamembe International airport. Flying is a convenient option for those who want to save time and avoid the longer bus rides.
Nature walks in Nyungwe National Park offer tourists an opportunity to experience the park’s diverse flora and fauna, including primates, tree species, and mammals, that are not typically observed during chimpanzee treks. This activity is ideal for families with young children who are unable to participate in the more rigorous chimpanzee trekking. The park offers various guided walks, and the fees for non-residents are $40 per person per day. Resident foreigners are charged $30 per person per day, while Rwanda residents pay between Rwf 3,000 and 4,000 for entrance fees per person per day for a guided nature walk. East Africa Community (EAC) nationals pay $5 per person per day, EAC non-foreigner residents pay $30 per person per day, and resident foreigners pay $20 per person per day. Students who are Rwandan citizens are charged Rwf 1,500 per person per day, while foreign resident students pay $20 per person per day.
Nyungwe Forest National Park is a prime destination for bird watchers due to its unique ecosystem that combines tropical rainforests, grasslands, and wetlands. Home to over 300 species of birds, the park offers the opportunity to spot several endemic species. Some of the notable bird species that you can expect to see on your birding tour include the Green-breasted Pitta, Red-chested Owlet, Scaly-breasted, Pale-breasted, and Brown Illadopsis, Red-caped and Blue-shouldered Robin-chat, Fire-crested and Brown-chested Alethe, Forest Robin, Buff-spotted, Brown-eared, and Yellow-crested Woodpecker, Red-winged Francolin, Black-billed Turaco, White-naped and Afep Pigeon, Red-tailed Ant-thrush, Rufous Flycatcher-Thrush, Yellow-whiskered, Cabanis’s, Yellow-throated, Red-tailed and Little Greenbul, Red-tailed Bristlebill, Yellow-spotted, Hairy-breasted, and Yellow-billed Barbet, among others. A birding tour is a must-do activity for bird lovers visiting Nyungwe National Park.
Nyungwe Forest National Park offers one of the most exciting canopy walks in Africa, providing breathtaking views of the forest and various primate wildlife. During the walk, you will be suspended high above the forest floor and can spot various bird species and monkeys. The cost to do the canopy walk varies depending on your status and nationality. Foreign visitors are charged $60 per person, while foreign residents are charged $50 per person. Local Rwanda residents pay 5000 Rwf per person. East Africa Community Nationals pay $10 per person, and East Africa Community Foreign Residents pay $50 per person. For students, Rwandan citizens pay Rwf5, 000 per person, East Africa Community students pay $5 per student, while students who are foreign residents pay $25 per person. Don’t miss out on this thrilling experience during your visit to Nyungwe Forest National Park.
Trek Africa Expeditions offers Chimpanzee safaris to Nyungwe National Park and other national parks and exciting tourist sites all over Rwanda. Whether you’re interested in wildlife or culture, we can create a customized itinerary for you. Simply send us an email and we’ll plan your perfect safari.
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