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FROM US$11,690-US$12,690

Gorillas and Serengeti Safari

Combine three iconic experiences – mountain gorillas in Rwanda, and the Serengeti plains and awe-inspiring Ngorongoro Crater in Tanzania.

Gorillas and Serengeti Safari: Day-by-day

More detailed information of what each day entails, and the various places you’ll stay on the Gorillas and Serengeti Safari. Everything we do is completely tailor-made so while this is an idea which works well, we’ll always design an itinerary just for you.


Day 1

Starts: Kigali International Airport

Day 1

Road transfer from Kigali Airport

Having cleared customs at the airport, you'll be met by your private guide for the short transfer to the Hotel des Mille Collines, in the heart of the Rwandan capital.

Hotel des Mille Collines
Day 1

Hotel des Mille Collines

1 night
Bed & BreakfastKigali, Rwanda

Film-star status is just one of several reasons to stay at the Hotel des Mille Collines. For a city-centre international hotel, that’s quite a claim, but this is the hotel that starred in the film Hotel Rwanda, set during the 1994 genocide.

Hotel des Mille Collines

Film-star status is just one of several reasons to stay at the Hotel des Mille Collines. For a city-centre international hotel, that’s quite a claim, but this is the hotel that starred in the film Hotel Rwanda, set during the 1994 genocide.

Movie credentials aside, the hotel’s central location is also key for a visit to the Kigali Genocide Memorial, while – with the capital at the hub of the country’s tourism network – it’s a good stopping off point before, during or at the end of a trip.

Beautiful gardens add to the hotel’s appeal, surrounding a large swimming pool where sunloungers are the perfect spot to indulge in a drink or snack from the thatched pool bar.

Indulgence comes in the form of rungus too: traditional wooden clubs used in the small spa to soothe away the aches of a long journey.

Dine alfresco on the terrace, or seek out the more classy restaurant, with panoramic views over the twinkling lights of Kigali. Then, for a touch of panache, head for the cocktail bar, where live jazz is served up at weekends.

"Staff was very friendly and helpful "

Ms fromRedondo Beach

Arrived 19 Aug 2022, 1 night

If the hotel’s 112 rooms are on the bland side, they are spacious and comfortable, but for real style head to the foyer, overlooking the gardens, where colourful artwork brings life to the whole. See our full report on Hotel des Mille Collines

84%
65 reviews of Hotel des Mille Collines by travellers since August 2007

Activities

Cultural excursion

Day 2

Kigali to Volcanoes NP by private 4WD

It’s typically a leisurely three-hour drive from Kigali to the Volcanoes National Park, but with your own vehicle and private guide you can opt to linger in the capital, or to stop en route, perhaps for lunch or to visit a roadside shop; chat to your guide about the options. The journey takes you north-west on winding roads through small villages and rolling farmland to Mountain Gorilla View Lodge, in the foothills of the Virunga Mountains.

Kigali Tour and Genocide Memorial Visit
Day 2

Kigali Tour and Genocide Memorial Visit

You'll be driven around Kigali to see the highlights of the city, with a main stop at the Genocide Memorial and museum. This will give you a fascinating, though sobering, insight into Rwanda's modern history. It is remarkable to learn just how far Rwanda has come in such a short period of time and it certainly adds a deeper understanding about the Rwandan people. Read all about Kigali Tour & Genocide Memorial Visit

Mountain Gorilla View Lodge
Days 2-6

Mountain Gorilla View

4 nights
Full BoardVolcanoes National Park, Rwanda

Nestled beneath towering volcanoes, and perfectly placed for gorilla trekking, Mountain Gorilla View Lodge is aptly named. Stop Press - Sept 2022: We’ve suspended any visits to Mountain Gorilla View for our travellers whilst we re-evaluate if it is still maintaining the standards that we expect for our travellers.

Mountain Gorilla View Lodge

Nestled beneath towering volcanoes, and perfectly placed for gorilla trekking, Mountain Gorilla View Lodge is aptly named. Stop Press - Sept 2022: We’ve suspended any visits to Mountain Gorilla View for our travellers whilst we re-evaluate if it is still maintaining the standards that we expect for our travellers.

Combined with the setting, the relaxed, friendly vibe of the hotel and the mid-range price tag make it seriously appealing.

First up are the sizeable grounds on the slopes of the extinct Mount Sabyinyo, the trees alive with birds and monkeys, and views at almost every turn.

Dotted around the site, 40 large, rather rustic cottages constructed of stone and thatch offer plenty of privacy. Comfortable yet simply furnished, if rather old-fashioned, they have plain plastered walls, a sleeping area raised slightly above the lounge, and a colourful bathroom.

To offset the chill of mountain evenings, there’s a fireplace in each room and in the main area, whose burnt-red walls, patterned rugs and zebra-print sofas afford a somewhat eclectic charm.

Setting aside, the hotel’s entire raison d’être is its proximity to Rwanda’s habituated mountain gorilla families. Just a 15-minute drive brings you to the start of the trek in Volcanoes National Park, while seeking out golden monkeys, hiking or even canoeing are also on the agenda.

"The staff was exceptional. "

Ms fromRedondo Beach

Arrived 20 Aug 2022, 4 nights

Then, come the evening, settle down on the lawn to watch traditional Intore dancing before drinks around the firepit and a homely dinner to round off the day. See our full report on Mountain Gorilla View Lodge

87%
106 reviews of Mountain Gorilla View by travellers since August 2007

Activities

Birdwatching

Canoeing

Cultural excursion

Helicopter

Primate trekking

Golden Monkey Trekking
Day 3

Golden Monkey Trekking

Spend a morning trekking to find the golden monkeys in the Volcanoes National Park. These endangered monkeys are endemic to the Albertine Rift area and are characterised by their golden-orange fur. You’ll be able to enjoy an hour watching them jump through the bamboo and hunker down to chew bamboo leaves, curiously watching you, as you watch them.
Your driver-guide from Kigali will operate your transfers to the park headquarters and introduce you to your trekking group and parks guide. Read all about Golden Monkey Trekking

Gorilla Trekking Safari
Day 4

Gorilla Trekking Safari

Gorilla trekking in Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park is a magical experience, transcending any other wildlife encounter we know. Meeting a gorilla family in their forest home, led by a dominant male silverback and a cluster of females and young, is a natural adventure that fully repays the cost in unforgettable memories and images.
Your driver-guide from Kigali will operate your transfers to the park headquarters and introduce you to your trekking group and parks guide. Read all about Gorilla Trekking

Gorilla Trekking Safari
Day 5

Gorilla Trekking Safari

Gorilla trekking in Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park is a magical experience, transcending any other wildlife encounter we know. Meeting a gorilla family in their forest home, led by a dominant male silverback and a cluster of females and young, is a natural adventure that fully repays the cost in unforgettable memories and images.
Your driver-guide from Kigali will operate your transfers to the park headquarters and introduce you to your trekking group and parks guide. Read all about Gorilla Trekking

Day 6

Volcanoes NP to Kigali by private vehicle

There's usually time for a relaxed breakfast before leaving Mountain Gorilla View Lodge mid-morning, but you have the flexibility to set the pace, so do talk to your guide about any stops you'd like to make during the journey. As you travel back towards the capital, there's also the opportunity to stop for lunch before arriving at the Hotel des Mille Collines, in the heart of the city

Hotel des Mille Collines
Day 6

Hotel des Mille Collines

1 night
Bed & BreakfastKigali, Rwanda

Film-star status is just one of several reasons to stay at the Hotel des Mille Collines. For a city-centre international hotel, that’s quite a claim, but this is the hotel that starred in the film Hotel Rwanda, set during the 1994 genocide.

Hotel des Mille Collines

Film-star status is just one of several reasons to stay at the Hotel des Mille Collines. For a city-centre international hotel, that’s quite a claim, but this is the hotel that starred in the film Hotel Rwanda, set during the 1994 genocide.

Movie credentials aside, the hotel’s central location is also key for a visit to the Kigali Genocide Memorial, while – with the capital at the hub of the country’s tourism network – it’s a good stopping off point before, during or at the end of a trip.

Beautiful gardens add to the hotel’s appeal, surrounding a large swimming pool where sunloungers are the perfect spot to indulge in a drink or snack from the thatched pool bar.

Indulgence comes in the form of rungus too: traditional wooden clubs used in the small spa to soothe away the aches of a long journey.

Dine alfresco on the terrace, or seek out the more classy restaurant, with panoramic views over the twinkling lights of Kigali. Then, for a touch of panache, head for the cocktail bar, where live jazz is served up at weekends.

"Staff was very friendly and helpful "

Ms fromRedondo Beach

Arrived 19 Aug 2022, 1 night

If the hotel’s 112 rooms are on the bland side, they are spacious and comfortable, but for real style head to the foyer, overlooking the gardens, where colourful artwork brings life to the whole. See our full report on Hotel des Mille Collines

84%
65 reviews of Hotel des Mille Collines by travellers since August 2007

Activities

Cultural excursion

Day 7

Kigali to the Serengeti by air & 4WD

Today you'll be collected from your hotel mid-morning in time for your light-aircraft flight from Kigali to the Serengeti, touching down en route for border controls and perhaps for other passengers to board or alight. A guide from Nomad Serengeti will be waiting for you at the airstrip ready for the game drive to camp, usually arriving late afternoon.

Nomad Serengeti Safari Camp
Days 7-10

Nomad Serengeti Camp

3 nights
Full BoardSerengeti Migration Area, Tanzania

Nomad Serengeti Safari Camp is a classic tented mobile camp for up to 14 guests. The camp changes location several times a year, broadly following the wildebeest migration around Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park, when hundreds of thousands of animals move through the ecosystem.

Nomad Serengeti Safari Camp

Nomad Serengeti Safari Camp is a classic tented mobile camp for up to 14 guests. The camp changes location several times a year, broadly following the wildebeest migration around Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park, when hundreds of thousands of animals move through the ecosystem.

"Nomad Serengeti Safari Camp was our favorite stay."

Marilyn & DuanefromCA

Arrived 5 Aug 2019, 3 nights

Nomad Serengeti Safari Camp is a traditional bushcamp, with relatively luxurious comforts and high standards of food and service. There is a lovely balance here between immersing yourself in the wilderness, feeling truly part of the bush, and enjoying a level of luxury that is normally the preserve of a much more upmarket camp. If you want an authentic experience of bush living, while also getting close to the migration action, this would be a great choice. See our full report on Nomad Serengeti Safari Camp

97%
47 reviews of Nomad Serengeti Camp by travellers since August 2007

Activities

4WD Safari

Birdwatching

Hot air ballooning

Day 10

Serengeti to the Ngorongoro by 4WD & light aircraft

Enjoy a final game drive in the Serengeti before boarding your light aircraft at Seronera Airstrip. The flight, which may stop en route, takes you over the Ngorongoro Highlands to Lake Manyara, landing after about 40 minutes. Here, a driver will be waiting to take you to Plantation Lodge.

Plantation Lodge
Days 10-12

Plantation Lodge

2 nights
Full BoardNgorongoro Crater, Tanzania

The privately run Plantation Lodge, first opened in 1998, lies between Ngorongoro Conservation Area and Lake Manyara National Park, a short distance from the bustling Tanzanian market town of Karatu. Set in three hectares (seven acres) of beautifully maintained gardens, it is staffed entirely by local residents. The lodge is mainly used by visitors travelling with their own guide and vehicle, as a base for visits to the Ngorongoro Crater and sometimes to Lake Manyara National Park.

Plantation Lodge

The privately run Plantation Lodge, first opened in 1998, lies between Ngorongoro Conservation Area and Lake Manyara National Park, a short distance from the bustling Tanzanian market town of Karatu. Set in three hectares (seven acres) of beautifully maintained gardens, it is staffed entirely by local residents. The lodge is mainly used by visitors travelling with their own guide and vehicle, as a base for visits to the Ngorongoro Crater and sometimes to Lake Manyara National Park.

"great to return to after a long day"

Mr AfromSwitzerland

Arrived 13 Feb 2020, 2 nights

We have always been impressed by the attention to detail and personal care at Plantation Lodge. It is comparatively affordable compared to many of the lodges on the rim of the crater and we feel it offers excellent value for money. Conveniently located, it makes a lovely, tranquil base from which to explore both the Ngorongoro and Lake Manyara areas. See our full report on Plantation Lodge

93%
39 reviews of Plantation Lodge by travellers since August 2007

Activities

4WD Safari

Birdwatching

Cultural excursion

Guided walking safari

Mountain biking

Day 12

Ngorongoro to Kilimanjaro by private 4WD

As you leave Plantation Lodge on the last day of your private safari, passing through Maasai farmlands; ask your guide if you'd like to buy souvenirs from a market or perhaps to wander around a village on the way. You'll then continue through the bustling streets of Arusha – or even stop if you like! – before arriving at Kilimanjaro Airport.

Day 12

Ends: Kilimanjaro International Airport

You'll arrive at Kilimanjaro in time to catch your onward flight.

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Experiences you can add to this trip.

Optional extra day-trips and excursions possible whilst staying at lodges on this trip. These are usually best arranged in advance so talk to us.


Mto Wa Mbu Village Walk

Mto Wa Mbu Village Walk

Two to three hours

Discover the intricacies of day-to-day life in the large Tanzanian village of Mto Wa Mbu with a knowledgeable local guide. This is not a village set up for tourists; Mto Wa Mbu is a real community and offers a chance to see a side of the country that many visitors pass by.

More about Village Walk
90% (2 reviews)
King’s Palace & Museum Visit

King’s Palace & Museum Visit

Half day

If your trip in Rwanda incorporates travelling south from Kigali, a visit to the King’s Palace and Museum gives an interesting insight into Rwanda’s cultural history and monarchy. It's also ideally placed to break up the long journey to Nyungwe Forest.

More about King’s Palace
91% (7 reviews)
Balloon Safari over the Serengeti

Balloon Safari over the Serengeti

Three hours - approx. one hour flight

As the sun rises over the Serengeti National Park in Northern Tanzania, climb aboard for an extraordinary adventure. For an hour you’ll float in a hot air balloon over beautiful savannah and woodland and a diversity of plains wildlife.

More about Balloon Safari
100% (12 reviews)
Empakaai Crater Hike

Empakaai Crater Hike

Half day, two - three hour walk

Spend a half day hiking through the Empakaai Crater, in the Highlands area of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area (NCA), led by an experienced guide and accompanied by a ranger.

More about Empakaai Crater Hike
100% (1 reviews)
Olmoti Crater walk

Olmoti Crater walk

Half day - two to three hour walk

Follow an ancient Maasai cattle trail on this private hike up the Olmoti Crater, led by an experienced guide and accompanied by an armed ranger. The crater may not compete in size with the neighbouring Ngorongoro Crater, but the birding is good, the mountain views wonderful, and the array of ferns is a botanist’s dream.

More about Olmoti Crater walk
90% (2 reviews)
Safari in Ngorongoro Crater

Safari in Ngorongoro Crater

Typically a full day

To drive into the Ngorongoro Crater is to immerse yourself in a renowned wildlife park. Prides of lion and clans of hyena patrol amongst herds of zebra, wildebeest and Thomson’s gazelle, whilst flocks of crowned cranes keep out the way of jackals. Come for elephants with big tusks, too. And then there are the rhino…

More about Ngorongoro Crater safari
94% (53 reviews)
Lake Manyara Safari

Lake Manyara Safari

Half-day or full-day

Set against the spectacular backdrop of the Rift Valley escarpment, Lake Manyara National Park makes a great safari destination. Here, along with elephant herds and plains game, you’ll find jungle-like forests that are home to blue monkeys, a soda lake tinged pink by flamingos and some of Tanzania’s best birding.

More about Lake Manyara Safari
87% (40 reviews)
Crater Rim Walk

Crater Rim Walk

Half day - two hour walk

For some fantastic views, and the chance to see flora and fauna up close, take a walk along the rim of the magnificent Ngorongoro Crater. Led by an experienced safari guide and accompanied by an armed ranger, you will be able to take in the scale and beauty of the landscape from a different perspective.

More about Crater Rim Walk
Canoeing in Rwanda

Canoeing in Rwanda

Half day - approx. 3 hours on the water

This half-day adventure takes place through lush farmland, on the meandering Mukungwa River near Musanze town. Discovering Rwanda’s countryside in a canoe is great fun: the launch spot is just half an hour from Volcanoes National Park and you'll be guided along the shallow waterway by an expert local canoeist. Your driver-guide from Kigali will operate your transfers and introduce you to your canoe group and guide.

More about Canoeing
98% (8 reviews)
Olduvai Gorge visit

Olduvai Gorge visit

One - two hours

See for yourself the renowned archaeological site of Olduvai (or Oldupai) Gorge, which lies en route between the Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti National Park. Famed for the discoveries of early hominin remains as well as the Laetoli Footprints, the site offers beautiful views, an engaging museum and potentially the opportunity to visit an active dig.

More about Olduvai Gorge visit
94% (10 reviews)
Lake Manyara Treetop Walkway

Lake Manyara Treetop Walkway

Usually one hour

Experience the forest of Lake Manyara National Park from a whole new perspective – high up in the trees. The first suspended walkway in Tanzania, it stretches underneath the canopy for 370m between the mahogany and fig trees, giving intrepid visitors a unique view of the surrounding flora and fauna.

More about Manyara Treetop Walk
70% (2 reviews)
Mount Bisoke Trek

Mount Bisoke Trek

Full day

For something a little different, set out on a one-day hike to the summit of Mt Bisoke in the Volcanoes National Park, home to Rwanda’s famous mountain gorillas. Discover the beautiful scenery of the Virunga Mountains, spot birds and wildlife, and enjoy spectacular views from the crater lake.

More about Mount Bisoke Trek
95% (4 reviews)
Mount Karisimbi Trek - 2 day trek

Mount Karisimbi Trek - 2 day trek

Two days - overnight on Mt Karisimbi

Set out on a two-day hike to the summit of Mount Karisimbi, which at over 4,507m is one of the highest in Africa. This is a challenge for the adventurous! With a local guide, you’ll traverse bamboo forests and rugged terrain, then camp on the slopes of this dormant volcano before enjoying sunrise from the summit.

More about Mount Karisimbi Trek
100% (1 reviews)
Trek to Dian Fossey’s Grave

Trek to Dian Fossey’s Grave

Half day, usually five hours

Dian Fossey is best known for her research and conservation work with the mountain gorillas in Rwanda. She dedicated her life to researching and protecting these ‘gentle giants’ from harm, however she was tragically found murdered at her research camp in 1985. Today visitors can join a local guide to trek through the tropical forest to visit her grave, and learn about the impact of her work.

More about Dian Fossey Trek
100% (1 reviews)

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