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Where to see Aardvark in Rwanda

The aardvark is one of Africa’s most bizarre and enigmatic animals. A shy, nocturnal termite-eater, signs of its presence may be scattered about the bush but sightings remain an elusive prize.

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Quick facts about Aardvark

Scientific name: Orycteropus afer Habitat: Grassland & woodland
IUCN status: Least Concern Adult weight: 60–80kg

The Aardvark is unique. Known variously as ‘anteater’, ‘ant-bear’ and ‘ant-pig’ (the latter being the translation of its Afrikaans name), it is not related to these namesakes but belongs to an ancient order of mammals (Tubulidentata), whose closest living relatives are the diminutive elephant shrews. The confusion is understandable: seen above ground, an aardvark appears assembled from other creatures, with a stocky, pig-like body, an anteater’s snout, a kangaroo’s tail and a rabbit’s long ears.

Entirely nocturnal, it inhabits open country, where it lives in burrows by day and emerges after dark to forage alone for ants and termites, using spade-like claws to break into termite mounds and licking up the occupants with its long, sticky tongue. Females give birth to their single cub underground.


Insects consumed nightly

13 metres

Max. burrow length


Length of tongue

7 months

Gestation period

The top camps for seeing aardvark in Rwanda

Based on 0 reports by our travellers since Jan 2000, visitors at these camps in Rwanda have the best chances of sighting aardvark.

Best chances to see

Good chances to see

Some sightings

No sightings yet

Top 10 camps for aardvark

% of travellers who saw aardvark

Top 10 camps for aardvark

% of travellers who saw aardvark

Where to see aardvarks in Africa

Aardvarks occur in almost all Africa’s parks and reserves, but you’ll need serious luck to see one. Your only realistic chance is on a night drive – ideally in open terrain and during the southern African winter.

Top tips for viewing aardvarks

Aardvarks are widespread but shy. Their presence is often evident from their burrows, and their diggings around termite mounds. Look out, too, for their distinctive three-toed tracks. To stand any chance of seeing the animal itself, you’ll need to take a night drive. If you get lucky, stay quiet: aardvarks have acute smell and hearing and are quick to bolt for their burrows.

Certain locations are renowned for sightings – notably the semi-arid regions of southern Africa, including South Africa’s Karoo and southern Kalahari, Botswana’s Makgadikgadi Pans and Namibia’s Damaraland.

The cooler, dry-season months are most productive. Even if you don’t find an aardvark, keep an eye on their disused burrows, which may house anything from pythons and porcupines to warthogs and wild cats.


Our best Rwanda holidays for aardvark sightings

Based on our travellers' reports, these ideas for Rwanda safaris are likely to give the best aardvark sightings

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Gorillas and Serengeti Safari

11 days • 4 locations

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

US$12,620 - US$14,390 per person

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The Highlights of Africa

17 days • 7 locations

An epic adventure taking in some of Africa’s most incredible sights and wildlife experiences, from Cape Town to the Okavango Delta, Victoria Falls, the Maasai Mara and an encounter with mountain gorillas.

US$14,270 - US$18,130 per person

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Golden Monkey Safari

12 days • 5 locations

Combine four key areas of Rwanda on this excellent-value trip, for a true wildlife and cultural experience. The perfect itinerary for those who want to see all the highlights of Rwanda.

US$9,710 - US$11,270 per person

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Gorillas and Maasai Mara Safari

9 days • 3 locations

This trip combines two of Africa's most unforgettable wildlife experiences – Rwanda's mountain gorillas and Kenya's Maasai Mara.

US$11,260 - US$14,090 per person

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Gorillas and Migration Safari

9 days • 3 locations

This luxury safari combines two iconic wildlife experiences: trekking to see the mountain gorillas in Rwanda, then flying to the northern Serengeti in search of the wildebeest migration and spectacular river crossings.

US$17,070 - US$23,410 per person

View all holidays to Rwanda

More information about aardvark in our other destinations

Click here for detailed information about aardvark in other countries, including the places for sighting aardvark.

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