How to Get to Nyungwe Forest National Park

How to Get to Nyungwe Forest National Park : Southwest of Rwanda, between Lake Kivu and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, with Burundi’s border to the south, is where you’ll find the Nyungwe Forest National Park. It is close to Cyangugu town and is around 225 kilometers and six hours’ worth of driving from Kigali.

From Kigali, you can either fly or drive to the park. However, it would be extremely difficult and time-consuming to walk there. Every traveler who plans to go on a Rwanda wildlife safari and visit Nyungwe Forest National Park in particular should be aware of how to get to the national park.

Getting There

There are three ways to get to the Nyungwe Forest National Park: via land, air, or sea. All of these have highly developed transit networks that are year-round, safe, and affordable.

Getting to Nyungwe National Park by Road.

The most common means of transportation used by most tourists to the area is driving to Nyungwe National Park. The cheapest and most adventurous way to reach the national park is by car because it allows visitors to see more of the surrounding area, admire Rwanda’s rolling hills as they pass by them, and stop at a number of sites along the way, including the King’s palace in Nyanza, the national museum in Butare, and the Gikongoro genocide memorial center, which provides information about Rwanda’s history and allows visitors to pick up a few new facts.

Travelers coming by car with a tour guide for a Rwanda chimp tour planned by a tour operator are free to stop as often as they like, with the driver-guide carefully driving past noteworthy features and stopping at specific beautiful locations. From Kigali, the national park is about a six-hour drive away.

Driving south from Kigali, travelers pass through a number of towns, including Huye, which is only 32 kilometers distant and is accessible by a fairly smooth road with a few hairpin turns that require extra caution from drivers. Visitors who choose to drive themselves to Nyungwe Forest National Park may find these directions helpful. Drive from Kigali to Muhanga in the south-west, then to Nyanza in the south, and finally to Huye town. Drive to Nyamagabe, which is close to the park’s entrance, from Huye town in the west.

Another alternative for getting to the park is by bus, albeit some buses will drive through it without really bringing you inside. Take a bus from Kigali’s Nyabugogo bus station to Rusizi, then get off at the Uwinka visitor’s center at Nyungwe Forest National Park to reach the park by bus.

Passengers who travel by bus must spend a large amount of time on the road, frequently up to 8 hours. Therefore, it is essential to plan in advance. It is advised that tourists get to the bus station as early as possible and board the first bus out. Ritco Express, which travels from Kigali to Karongi and then on to Rusizi; Alpha Express, which travels from Kigali to Nyungwe and then on to Rusizi; and Omega Express, which travels from Kigali to Nyungwe and then on to Rusizi, are a few of the public transportation providers that make the trip from Kigali to Rusizi. People who are already familiar with Rwanda can take advantage of this option because these public transportation companies charge a high fee.

Getting to Nyungwe Forest National Park by Air

The quickest and most expensive way to reach the park is by flying to Nyungwe. From Kigali to Kamembe International Airport, numerous airlines offer chartered flights. At least nine domestic flights are made by RwandAir per week between Kigali International Airport and Rusizi’s Kamembe Airport.

The distance from Kamembe International Airport to the One & Only Nyungwe Forest Lodge, which offers helicopter 9XR.9C pickups, is roughly 32 kilometers. If you stay at another resort, Kamembe International Airport will be only a short drive away.

A helicopter transports tourists traveling with Akagera Aviation from Kigali to Nyungwe Forest National Park. The Gisakura tea plantation fields are just one example of the breathtaking scenery you can see while on this helicopter ride.

Getting to Nyungwe Forest National Park by Water

 A terrific and thrilling method to enter the Nyungwe Forest National Park in Rwanda is by boat. From Rubavu or Karongi-Kamembe, tourists travel by boat across Lake Kivu to Nyungwe. This lake Kivu boat trip is a fantastic opportunity to meet new people. It can take six to eight hours to complete this.

Nyungwe Forest National Park in Rwanda is not difficult to reach, and you shouldn’t imagine or think it is. You’ll avoid a lot of hassle if you plan your vacation to Nyungwe Forest National Park in advance. The best and most straightforward strategy, however, is to let a tour operator handle all of the necessary planning on your behalf. The majority of the time, a tour operator will offer transportation while on the safari if you book a vacation package with them. To start planning your trip to the Nyungwe forest national park, get in touch with a dependable travel operator.


Chimpanzee Trekking in Nyungwe Forest National Park.

After Kibale Forest National Park, Nyungwe Forest National Park has Africa’s second-highest chimpanzee population. To look for these giant apes, walk around the park’s many trails. You will get the chance to witness chimpanzees swinging from trees and moms holding their young while on your journey.

You must be at the trekking location early in the morning to receive instruction on what to do and what not to do while in the bush with the chimpanzees because the trekking starts at 5 a.m. You must first receive a chimpanzee permission in order to hike with the primates in Nyungwe Forest National Park. This permit can be obtained via the Rwanda Development Board or through your dependable tour operator.

Nyungwe Forest National Park bird watching.

Among the 29 Albertine Rift Valley bird species that can be found in Nyungwe Forest National Park are the Great Blue Turaco, Red-Breasted Sparrow Hawk, White Headed Wood Hoopoe, Re-Throated Alethe, Paradise Flycatcher, Rwenzori Turaco, Red-Faced Woodland Warbler, Purple Breasted and Blue-Headed Sunbird, and Rockefeller. Since this is a forest, it may be challenging to find birds on your own. As a result, an experienced guide will accompany you as you walk through the forest in search of different bird species.

Nyungwe Forest National Park’s Canopy Walk.

With a land area of 1015 square kilometers, Nyungwe Forest is the largest remaining section of Tropical Afro-Montane rainforest in East Africa. The Canopy Walk in Nyungwe Forest, a three-hour adventure on a 200-meter-long route perched 50 meters above the forest canopy, is one of the fantastic experiences you shouldn’t miss out on when visiting this park. A spectacular experience of the Nyungwe forest can be had by looking down from the tops of the trees. You will also have the chance to see a variety of birds and many monkeys swinging in the trees.

How to Get to Nyungwe Forest National Park
Canopy walk in Nyungwe Forest National Park

Colobus Monkey Trekking in Nyungwe Forest National Park.

The Nyungwe Forest National Park is home to 13 different species of primates, with monkeys making up the majority of them. The Rwenzori Colobus monkey resides in this forest. Additionally, Blue-Monkeys, L’hoest Monkeys, Owl-Faced Monkeys, and Mona Monkeys will be present.

When is the best time to go Chimpanzee Trekking in Nyungwe Forest National Park

Every year, between June, July, and August, the fig trees in Rwanda’s Nyungwe Forest National Park bear fruits that chimpanzees frequently eat, making it easy to locate them. This is the optimum season for chimpanzee trekking. Because there are only two groups available for chimpanzee trekking, each of which can accommodate eight people, you must make reservations at least three to four months in advance.

Where to Stay in Nyungwe Forest National Park?

Among the lodging options at Nyungwe Forest National Park are Nyungwe Forest Lodge, Nyungwe House, Nyungwe Top View Hill Hotel, Gisakura Visitor Center, and Nziza Eco Lodge. To book a reservation, please get in touch with us here.

What should you bring on your tour to the Nyungwe Forest National Park to see chimpanzees?

It is also advised that you wear a long-sleeved cotton shirt and lightweight long pants to protect yourself from the undergrowth, stinging nettles, and biting ants because the route goes through a forest where you may encounter insects and stinging trees. Packing List for Nyungwe National Park Chimpanzee Trekking ;


Long-sleeved shirts and pants in neutral or dark hues; avoid wearing bright colors.

An extra set of batteries for your camera.

Good camera lenses,

A water bottle, and wet wipes.

socks and comfortable

waterproof hiking boots.

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