8 Breathtaking Natural Landscapes in Rwanda : Rwanda also referred to as the land of a thousand hills is one of the most breathtaking safari destinations on the African continent and in the world, this gorgeous countries comprises of clean winding roads, peaceful and calm lakes, volcanic landscapes and endless green hills. For travelers interested in nature and photography, here are the 8 breathtaking natural landscapes in Rwanda.
Lake Kivu also known as Lac Kivu in French is one of the great lakes of East Africa and Rwanda’s largest lake spanning almost the whole of the country, Lake Kivu is situated between Congo (Kinshasa) to the west and Rwanda to the East. The lake occupies 1,040 square miles and is 55 miles long (north – south) and 30 miles wide (East – West).
Lake Kivu is also ranked as the 6th largest lake in Africa, the lake has a depth of 722 feet and plunges to a maximum of 1,558 feet. Lake Kivu has a rough, jagged coast and contains a number of islands with Idjwi being the largest island.
Visiting Lake Kivu on a Rwanda safari you will be able to spot local fishermen rowing their way out of small towns in the every evening, singing traditional Rwandese melodies and songs, you will watch several birds including cormorants flying across the coast . There are many Rwanda’s town dotting around Lake Kivu and these include Gisenyi and Kibuye which are the biggest and the most popular towns with both local and international tourists.
Akagera National Park
Akagera national park found in Eastern Rwanda is a beautiful safari destination and the only savannah national park found in Rwanda, Akagera is also the largest protected weland and the last remaining refuge for savannah – adapted species in Rwanda.
Akagera national park is named after Kagera River that flows along Rwanda’s eastern boundary with Tanzania, the river feed into Lake Ihema and other small lakes found in and around the park. the park protects an Africa Savannah landscape of acacia and bush with patches of open grassland, swampy lakes, hills and mountains.
In addition to the breathtaking landscape, Akagera national park is the only place in Rwanda where you can find the big Five (lion, leopards, cape buffaloes, rhinos and elephants), other animals found in the park include several antelopes like bushbucks, Topis, Oribis, water buck, roan antelope, duiker, klipspringer, impala and the cape eland – the world largest antelope. Akagera national park also hosts a huge population of wildlife recorded to be over 500 bird species and these include shoebill, papyrus Gonolek, African Wattled Plover, Giant Kingfisher, Senegal Lapwings, Squacco Herons, African Open bill stock, Grey Crowned Crane, African Darter, Long-toed and Water Thick-knee among others.
Lake Burera is one of one of the most gorgeous places in Rwanda and in the region, the lake is located in northwestern Rwanda at the border with Uganda. Lake Burera is the second largest lake in Rwanda covering an area of 55 square kilometers, the lake borders Uganda’s wetlands on the southern slopes of Mount Muhavura and lies to the north East of its twin Lake Ruhondo in which it empties via Ntaruka stream.
Lake Burera is a picture perfect destination with beautiful hills perfectly blending into crystal-clear water with the Muhabura volcano providing a spectacular lakeside backdrop, 8 Breathtaking Natural Landscapes in Rwanda.
Mount Sabinyo is one of the many volcanoes in Rwanda found in the Virunga Mountain range, Mount Sabinyo’s name is derived from the Kinyarwanda word “Iryinyo” meaning tooth. Mount Sabinyo is the oldest volcano of the Virunga range located north-east of Lake Kivu on of the African Great Lakes and west of Lake Bunyonyi on Uganda.
Mount Sabinyo stands at 12,037 feet and its slopes inhabit the endangered mountain gorillas and other animals such as elephants, cape bufaaloes and various forest antelopes.
Mount Sabinyo marks the intersection of the borders of the Democratic Republic of Congo and from the summit of the volcano you get to enjoy views of the 3 countries.
Mount Kigali is an eye catching feature in Rwanda , this feature is more of a hill than a mountain with piles of stones, Mount Kigali is found at the base of the Kigali International airport in Kigali City in the Nyamirambo neighborhood and overlooking portions of the city.
Lake Muhazi is a breathtaking long thin shallow lake situated in the east of Rwanda and a short drive from Kigali City, the lake lies in the Eastern province with the western end forming the border between the Northern and Kigali Provinces. The lake side of Lake Muhazi is a treat as there several restaurants and bars dotted along the shore and offering local brochettes, grilled fish and cold beers.
Volcanoes National Park
Volcanoes national park is one of the most famous safari destinations in Rwanda famed for its breathtaking landscape and being a home to the endangered mountain gorillas,, the park shelters the largest population of mountain gorillas in the Virunga Conservation Area.
Volcanoes national park is situated in the far northwest of Rwanda protecting the steep slopes of Virunga volcano range spanning on a 160 kilometers area, the park has expansive and panoramic views of volcanoes, and the bamboo forests. Volcanoes national park is named after the chain of dormant volcanoes making up the Virunga Massif that is Karisimbi, Bisoke, Sabinyo, Gahinga and Muhabura.
Volcanoes national park hosts a huge population of endangered mountain gorillas with groups which are available for gorilla tracking experience, there also over 200 species of colorful birds and the rare golden monkeys.
Nyungwe National Park
Nyungwe national park is arguably one of the best preserved montane rainforest in central Africa, Nyungwe Forest is located in Southwestern Rwanda on the border with Burundi where it is contiguous with the Kibira national park to the south, Lake Kivu and Demcoratic Republic of the Congo.
Nyungwe national park also known as Nyungwe Forest is a home to a large population of chimpanzees and other primates such as Ruwenzori colobus, L’Hoest’s monkets, silver monkeu, golden monkey, red-tailed monkey, vervet monkey, olive baboon among others.
Nyungwe national park has a canopy walk suspension bridge above the thick forests of Nyungwe, during the canopy walk you get to enjoy scenic views of the thick forest and take excellent pictures.