11 Days Birding in Rwanda

Birding in Rwanda 11 days 10 nights

Highlights

Derek Schuurman describes Rwanda's Prime Birding Sites. Rwanda has recorded about 650 species of bird. These include many of the sought-after Albertine Rift Endemic and some West Africa forest specials which reach their eastern most limits in Rwanda. There is also a select band of localized rarities which, currently, may be seen only in Rwanda.

Itinerary

Birds of Eastern AfricaDay 1: Arrival at Kigali Airport
After arriving at the airport you will immediately start Bird watching after a short briefing. Birds of Rwanda are among the welcoming biodiversity. Then you will be transferred to the lodge or hotel. You will also be sighting Bird along the road. Full board at Mille Collines Hotel

Day 2 Travel to Akagera National Park
You will have a whole day birding in this open savannah. We shall stay at Akagera Hotel this hotel has one of the best panoramic views known in East Africa overlooking the River Akagera meanders.

AKAGERA NATIONAL PARK. This park is Rwanda’s hot Birding spot in the savannah relatively open grassland and Papyrus swamps, In eastern Rwanda, The acacia savanna supports many broadly distributed African birds such as Bennett's Woodpecker, headed Black Chat, White-Black-collared Barbet, Tabora Cisticola and Miombo Wren-warbler. Akagera is probably the best site in which to look for the very rare Ring-necked Francolin. The highly localized acacia specialist Red-faced Barbet can be sought around the Akagera Game Lodge grounds, as can the rare Souza's shrike. Also worth looking for are Barefaced Go-away Bird, Brown Parrot, White-winged Black Tit and Sooty Chat. One of Africa's most sought-after birds, the enormous and bizarre Shoebill, may be present in the Papyrus swamp habitat. Other Papyrus swamp specialists include; the Swamp Flycatcher, Caruthers’s Cisticola, the elusive White-winged Warbler, and the stunning Papyrus Gonolek. At the water's edge, look for the localized Brown-chested Lapwing and the attractive, widely distributed Long-toed Lapwing. Full board Akagera Hotel this hotel.

Birding in RwandaDay 3:Akagera National Park
After breakfast, enjoy Bird watching in the whole day in the park. You will have a picnic lunch and later return to the lodge. AKAGERA NATIONAL PARK in eastern Rwanda, the park is dominated by savanna, relatively open grassland and Papyrus swamps. The acacia savanna supports many broadly distributed African birds such as Bennett's Woodpecker, headed Black Chat, White-Black-collared Barbet, Tabora Cisticola and Miombo Wren-warbler. Akagera is probably the best site in which to look for the very rare Ring-necked Francolin. The highly localised acacia specialist Red-faced Barbet can be sought around the Akagera Game Lodge grounds, as can the rare Souza's shrike. Also worth looking for are Barefaced Go-away Bird, Brown Parrot, White-winged Black Tit and Sooty Chat. One of Africa's most sought-after birds, the enormous and bizarre Shoebill, may be present in the Papyrus swamp habitat. Other Papyrus swamp specialists include; the Swamp Flycatcher, Carruther's Cisticola, the elusive White-winged Warbler, and the stunning Papyrus Gonolek. At the water's edge, look for the localised Brown-chested Lapwing and the attractive, widely distributed Long-toed Lapwing. Full board Akagera hotel.

Day 4: Birding to Nyungwe National Park
NYUNGWE FOREST RESERVE This is Rwanda’s birding haven. Preferably known for its 13 species of resident Primate, this beautiful and ancient tropical evergreen forest is arguably the country's most exciting hotspot for birders. A winding tarmac road bisects Nyungwe Forest is and the terrain includes many steep slopes. Birders can seek most of the resident Albertine Rift Endemics along the road including; the remarkable, 'painted' Rwenzori Turaco, Handsome Francolin, Mountain Black Boubou, Ruwenzori Batis, Yellow-eyed Black Flycatcher, Archer's Robin-chat, the rare Grauer's Rush Warbler, Red-faced Woodland Warbler, Neumann's Warbler, the near-endemic Kungwe Apalis the attractive Mountain Masked Apalis, and a cluster of colorful Sunbirds including Ruwenzori Double-collared, Purple-throated, Blue-headed and the stunning Regal Sunbird. Stripe-breasted Tit and Strange Weaver can also be seen. Nyungwe Forest is now the only site in which the sought-after Red-collared Mountain Babbler can safely be sought. Stay at Gisakura Guest House for 3 nights. Full board

Monkeys of the ForestDay 5: Nyungwe National Park: Chimp tracking and bird watching
We shall wake up very early in the morning and prepare for Chimp tracking and seeing several varieties of smaller primates in the morning, and there after continue exploring the avifauna of the montane Forest later in the afternoon. The Forest inhabits humankind’s closest living relative, the chimpanzee, as well as the handsome L’Hoest’s monkey and hundred-strong troops of the delightfully acrobatic Angola colobus.

Day 6: Nyungwe National Park
All-day BirdingWe shall start early on this day and have another try through the extensive network of well-maintained walking trails leading through the forest to various waterfalls and viewing points. Return to the Guesthouse for overnight stay.

HamerkopDay 8: Transfer to Ruhengeri
We will drive through The bustling market town of Ruhengeri which has a memorable setting at the base of the Virunga. On the outskirts of town, the natural bridge at Musanze - a solidified lava flow - is a fascinating relic of the volcanic activity that shaped this PARC NATIONAL DES VOLCANS Situated in the far northwest of Rwanda, A Celebrated resident for Mountain Gorillas! Its two troops of recently habituated Golden Monkeys appreciated and not forgetting some 180-bird species in this park. Well placed in the Virunga volcano chain, the terrain consists mainly of steep volcanic slopes. Below 2,500m, much of the Afro-montane forest has been cleared for agriculture. . Higher up, there is moorland, marsh and grassland with Giant Lobelias a prominent feature in places. Midst 2,500m and 3,500m, the habitat mainly consists of dense bamboo stands and Hagenia woods. Resident birds with many of the Albertine Rift Endemics, such as the Handsome Francolin, the highly sought-after and spectacular, 'painted' Rwenzori Turaco; Archer's Robin-chat and both Dusky and Shelley's Crimson wings. Full board at Gorilla Nest Hotel.

Gorillas in the ForestDay 9: Parc National des Vulcan’s; Gorilla tracking and birding
This morning after an early breakfast, visit the most thrilling experience in Rwanda, gorilla tracking and later in the day, we shall follow an exhilarating trek through the cultivated foothills of the Virunga for stirring views in all directions. You will be immersed in the mysterious intimacy of the rainforest, which is alive with the calls of colorful birds and chattering of the rare golden monkeys, and littered with fresh spoor of the mountains’ elusive populations of Buffalo and Elephant. Through gaps in the forest canopy, the magnificent peaks are glimpsed, easily accessible and among the highest in Africa, beckoning an ascent.

Day 10: Parc national des Vulcan’s
After Breakfast, resume enjoy your last day of birding in Rwanda as you drive back to Kigali in the evening for the overnight stay. Full board at Mille Collines Hotel.

Day 11 End of Safari / Departure
After breakfast you will depart for Kigali were you will take your on wards flight home

Costs:-

Please request for the safari cost by filling in your details after clicking on the Reservations Button below. The price depends on season of travel, class of accommodation and the size of the group. Children are offered Special Rates based on their ages.

Includes:
- Park entrance fee
- Full board accommodation on safari
- Service of an English speaking driver guide
- Transport 4*4 with pop up roof for game viewing
- Driver allowances and park fees for vehicle and driver
- Game drives as per the Itinerary
- Government taxes

Excludes:
- Extras at the lodges i.e. drinks, telephone, laundry etc.
- International flight
- Departure tax
- Tips to porters and drivers