7 Days Rwanda Gorillas & Maasai Mara Safari – Explore East Africa on this 10-day safari packed with wildlife, gorilla trekking, magnificent scenery and remote, luxurious lodges. Visitors have the opportunity to experience two of the most incredible wildlife spectacles on earth during this East African safari in Rwanda and Kenya. You will track to meet endangered mountain gorillas in Volcanoes National Park plus an awesome array of game in the Mara reserve, and most likely the great wildebeest migration.
Day 1: Arrival at Kigali International airport
Pick up from Kanombe Airport in Kigali by our representative and transferred to your overnight hotel. Check in, refresh with a snack and cold shower; in case there is time, get to tour some popular sites in Kigali, including the Gisozi Genocide memorial site, Caplaki Craft Market, presidential palace museum and some modern shopping malls within Kigali City.
Day 2: To PNV (Volcanoes National park). Visit the Musanze caves
Your driver guide will be at the hotel for early pick up from the Kigali International Airport and begin the transfer towards Volcanoes National Park in Musanze.
Along the way, engage in a short visit to Musanze caves. These historic caves are situated in Ruhengeri, Rwanda’s Northern Province, about 1 – 2 hours’ drive from Kigali and only 25 km from the Ugandan border. They are located close to Musanze town featuring spectacular green vegetation which makes it one of the beautiful spots for photography near Volcanoes National Park.
Within the cave, there are thousands of bats that call this place home. While on this exploration, there are site guides who take visitors through the caves explaining about their geological formation and history right from the time of formation.
Day 3: Gorillas & culture
Commence the day with breakfast at the lodge by 6:30am, and depart to the park headquarters at 7:00am (depending on the location of the lodge); while at the park headquarters, attend a briefing session regarding dos and don’ts and allocation of a gorilla family to be visited by a group of only 8 people. During briefing by head ranger, you will be treated to a vibrant traditional dance of the Banyarwanda people and a warm cup of coffee will be served.
Once a gorilla family has been allocated to you, begin the trek together with a porter (available for hire at the park headquarters). With trackers and guides, the trek goes along slippery trails, steep, rocky slopes and misty jungles, in search of the allocated gorilla group with the guidance of a ranger.
Once you meet a well habituated gorilla group, one hour will be given to allow you spend with them following their movements, learning about them and later return to the starting point. There is another opportunity for you to immerse in a cultural experience at Iby’Iwacu village in Kinigi, close to Volcanoes National Park. While at this cultural Center, visitors can watch local drummers and dancers perform their native music, storytelling and cultural dances.
Additionally, the entertainers put on costumes and recreate a traditional wedding ceremony for their guests, a very interesting and rewarding drama to observe. Before night fall, return to your place of accommodation for refreshment and relaxation.
Day 4: Transfer to Kigali. Fly to Kenya (Nairobi or Maasai Mara NP)
Return to Kigali today after some successful sightseeing moments. At leisure, drive through the romantic hills of Northern Rwanda and arrive in Kigali just on time for lunch. Take a delicious lunch buffet, and depending on your flight time, you will be transferred directly to Kanombe airport and catch a connecting flight to Nairobi. Land either at Wilson airport or Jommo Kenyatta international airport and be transferred to your overnight hotel in Nairobi by our Kenyan safari guide.
Day 5: Nairobi – Maasai Mara NP
This day’s safari will take you to the jewel of Kenya’s wildlife parks, the classic Masai Mara Game Reserve, which is Kenya’s and Africa’s premier national park and on every visitor’s list of the “Must see” destinations. Filled with life and countless species of animals and birds, Masai Mara crowns the climax of every safari tour in Kenya.
The park’s undulating savannah grasslands and acacia have for many times been filmed in a movie “Out Of Africa” being the most famous. Masai Mara reserve shelters Africa’s “Big Five” mammals (Elephant, Buffalo, Lion, Leopard and Rhino) and more than 450 bird species. Dinner and Overnight stay will be at a luxurious lodge overlooking endless Masai plains.
Day 6: Mara Full day safari
Indulge in both morning and afternoon game drives on this day, from the comfortable base of your lodge, explore the reserve’s interestingly high concentration of game. Maasai Mara game reserve is Kenya’s exceptional wildlife sanctuary. Including but not limited to more than 450 bird species, amazing migrant birds, mammals, and the great wildebeest migration that happens in months of July, August and September.
The historic Maasai tribesmen dwell within the dispersal area of the game reserve ready to usher you into their fine pre-historic way of life and vibrant traditional performances.
Day 7: Mara – Nairobi
Breakfast at your lodge in Mara Reserve and depart to Nairobi city thereafter. A stop over at one of the Nairobi shopping malls for snack or short lunch break as well as last minute shopping. If time permits, you may visit the Giraffe center after lunch. This Giraffe sanctuary is Africa’s pride of international celebrity. Since its establishment in 1974, by Jock and Betty Leslie-Melville, following the rescue of a baby giraffe called Daisy from a heavily-poached area in western Kenya, this place has become a household name among wildlife lovers and conservationists from all walks of life.
In the evening head for Farewell Dinner at the popular Carnivore Restaurant considered to be “Africa’s most prominent eating place” selling all kinds of meat buffet. Since the ban of game meat in 2004, this place is now home to the “Simba Saloon” which is a popular night club and hang out spot for many people. Depending on the flight time, you will then be transferred to the airport for your onward flight.
End of 7 Days Rwanda Gorillas & Maasai Mara Safari.
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