July 16, 2024

Rwanda – the home of the mountain gorillas

Our journey on two 200cc Motomias on ‘Crossing Africa’ from Cape to Cairo took a turn westwards through to Rwanda so that we could go and visit the famous mountain gorillas in their natural habitat – one of the few places in the world where they still roam freely. Rwanda is an extremely interesting country with a complex and sad history revolving around the tragic genocide in 1994. They have put in massive strides to heal these wounds and it was one of the most developed countries in Africa that we have visited during our trip. Though it was expensive to travel here, the visit to the Genocide Memorial Centre and trekking the mountain gorillas remain one of the key experiences during our trip.

Here is the route we took through Rwanda:

Rwanda GPS Track

To read all of our blog posts during our time in Rwanda please click here.

Here are some of our highlights and lowlights in Rwanda:

Tania’s highlight: Trekking gorillas in their natural environment and spending an hour with them here was definitely the highlight of this trip. Nothing could prepare me for that first glance and coming face to face with these wonderful creatures. Skyping with my mother from SA and dad from China in Kigali was also wonderful. I was again amazed at how technology has changed our lives.

My favourite photo from Rwanda:

Gorillas 3
Tania’s lowlight: Spending two days out of action right before we trekked gorillas due to a stomach bug. It was also in Kigali that we found out that one of our friends from home had passed away due to an accident. We were so saddened by the news and it felt unfair that we were here living the good life and doing what we love, while someone else was taken away. In a way this gave us perspective on the trip again and made us realise that every day counts.

Francois’ highlight: The cheese burger in Muzanze and getting permits for the Gorillas in very short notice. Meeting George and Alice, Guy and Louise and the Aussie-mom-of-four was also a treat.

Francois’ favourite photo – we had a bath in our room! Jippey!

Eating in the tub

Francois’ lowlight: The prices, everything is expensive (as in South Africa). Shocking myself in the shower at the One Love Club and the rain not stopping. But the worst was worrying about Tania as we trekked the Gorillas as she had a bad stomach bug and really wanted to see the Gorillas. I was afraid she’s going to miss the opportunity.

Rwanda Trip Stats:
Distance: 379 km
Time: 6 days, 0 hours, 24 minutes, 9 seconds
Highest point, lowest point, max speed & fuel consumption (Francois & Tania): You will unfortunately have to wait for the Crossing Africa book to come out for this (Along with other detailed information e.g. the accommodation and food budgets)

The GPS profile stats:

Rwanda GPS Profile