Travel reviews by N&J from West Sussex
Total number of trips
Lodges stayed in
Rwanda Trip September 2022
Rwanda between 2 Sep 2022 and 19 Sep 2022
The ground agents for Expert Africa were excellent and we were very fortunate with our guide Omar, who was so integral in making the trip work. We are aware that he was certainly part of the reason why things were such a success and you do need to be happy to travel long distances as a group for this type of trip, but it does reward you with seeing a lot of Rwanda and getting a good feel for the country.
The accommodation, standard of wildlife guides and experiences and the additional activities such as canoeing, kayaking, a guided hike in Gisenyi and birding in Nyungwe all exceeded our expectations.
The Gorilla treks were both unique experiences. The Chimpanzee sighting in Nyungwe was certainly closer and better than we had expected and Nyungwe itself has lots to offer in the way of other Monkeys and birding. We also found it to be a beautiful forest. We were either very lucky with the wildlife and birdlife in Akagera or the experience the park provides is now much closer to that of a typical Tanzanian or Kenyan Safari than is advertised - currently, it feels, you are also likely to experience the wildlife far more privately than in other countries.
Suggestions to help us improve our trips or our service:
We struggle to think of anything!"
Arranged By Jessica Plumb
Heaven Boutique Hotel
"An excellent choice for staying in Kigali"
Kigali Tour and Genocide Memorial Visit
"Kigali Tour and Genocide Memorial Visit review"
4 Sep 2022 • All-day excursion
The genocide Memorial visit itself is a difficult, but rewarding experience.
It is certainly something which enables you to put into context a lot of how Rwanda is today as you travel around the country
"This is an outstanding place to stay"
We were lucky to watch Blue Monkeys and Blue Turacos from our balcony, enjoyed a birdwalk one afternoon with Gadi, the resident Birding Guide, along with enjoying the spectacular pool area and the wonderful meals.
The staff were all friendly and keen to share all the place has to offer."
King’s Palace & Museum Visit
"King’s Palace & Museum Visit review"
5 Sep 2022 • All-day excursion
The standard of the guides at both the Palace and the Museum were excellent and they were clearly enthused by their work.
Chimpanzee Trekking in Nyungwe Forest
"Chimpanzee Trekking in Nyungwe Forest review"
6 Sep 2022 • All-day excursion
We did have quite a drive initially to get to the trail head (about an hour), but the visit itself was well organised - although a challenge hiking at pace in the steep and muddy terrain.
We would definitely recommend a porter - it is hard to balance to take photos on steep slopes with a day-pack on and the Chimpanzees don't stay still for long and were mainly in the trees!
We were lucky enough to spend forty minutes or so with the group.
"Paradise Malahide review"
The food was very good - including a mix of local authentic stews and curries - along with more than adequate pizzas. Sitting in the bird-filled garden overlooking the lake for breakfast was magical.
We also booked kayaking on Lake Kivu with Kingfisher Journeys, who house their kayaks at Paradis Malahide - this was a great excursion with knowledgable and professional guides.
We enjoyed it so much we also booked a canoe trip with them on the Mukungwa River, which was a wonderful thing to do after our Golden Monkey Trek."
Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge
"A delightful place to stay "
3 of our group stayed elsewhere and joined us for dinner in the evening - which worked extremely well, with Sabyinyo Silverback being welcoming and thoughtful over what was clearly an unusual request.
Our room was quite stunning and a great base following early morning starts and arduous hiking . The quality of service, which stretched to providing gaitors (and backpacks, gloves, raincoats and boots if needed), snacks for hiking, laundry and boot cleaning - along with evening fires in our room and hot water bottles was exemplary.
It was misty for much of our stay, but when the mist lifted the views were beautiful and the birdlife was abundant.
The standard of food was very high as was the cocktail making!
If you are travelling as a small group or a couple it does seem you have to accept the presence of a large tour group most evenings in the bar and restaurant areas."
Mountain Gorilla View Lodge
"Mountain Gorilla View Lodge review"
The staff were very friendly and helpful. Breakfast and lunch buffets were good. There was a long walk from the main lodge to the rooms."
Gorilla Trekking Safari
"Gorilla Trekking Safari review"
11 Sep 2022 • Morning excursion
The porters were excellent and helpful over such a long and steep climb. Our guide - Emmanuel - was another gem among a number in Rwanda. He kept us upbeat, was good at explaining the terrain and honest about the stinging nettles and the need to go off trail! He was also very informative about the Igashi group and Gorilla etiquette, as well as being good fun.
The hour we spent in hushed awe with the Igashi group in an open clearing on the mountain-side was an amazing time.
(we do wish we had taken more snacks for the trekking there and back - we left the lodge at 6:30 am and arrived back at 6:45pm!)
Golden Monkey Trekking
"Golden Monkey Trekking review"
12 Sep 2022 • Morning excursion
The Golden Monkeys themselves were active as a group and wonderful too watch in a sceninc bamboo grove, which is only a short hike.
Perhaps because of the size of our group, there was less interaction from our guide - although we were able to spend a good hour observing the Monkeys close up.
Gorilla Trekking Safari
"Gorilla Trekking Safari review"
13 Sep 2022 • Morning excursion
A big bonus for us was that we had the same guide - Emmanuel - the trek this time was remarkably different.
We saw the Amahoro group who were in a more-forested region and were far more active in the trees and so the trek provided quite a contrasting experience for us, which worked so well.
We were really happy with our decision to set up a second trek.
"Magashi Camp review"
As a group of 4 we were with the same vehicle and guide for our 4 night stay. Our guide, Luke was a joy from the drive in to the lodge on our first day from the Park Gates to our departure 4 days later. His knowledge and experience, both of the Park, Rwanda and the wildlife and especially birdlife was outstanding. He was thoughtful and engaging for the whole of our trip - which included 3 boat trips on the lake, multiple game drives and 3 night drives.
Highlights included, watching an Impala give birth, Leopard sightings in the day and at night, Hyena, Lions, Elephants, Black and White Rhinos, Roan Antelope, Bushbabys and a variety of colourful birdlife - from Kingfishers to Fish Eagles.
The lodge itself was stunningly situated, with faultless service and friendly helpful staff.
The tented rooms were of a great standard with Hippos ever-present on the lake below our veranda."
Heaven Boutique Hotel
The staff were all friendly and welcoming. The room standards were good. We visited the restaurant for buffet breakfasts - which were varied and extensive, the views from the restaurant over Kigali were a bonus.
We also had dinner on a couple of occasions in the same restaurant and again were impressed by the service and the variety and standard of the food. We did take advantage of the pool, which was nice to have as we stayed at both the start and end of our trip and so had some"downtime".
Overall we felt it was an excellent choice for staying in Kigali and had a nice small hotel feel to it."