Rwanda Safari Lodges
Fondly known as ‘The Land of a Thousand Hills’, the sprawling African country of Rwanda boasts a most phenomenal array of wildlife and awe-inspiring views. In just a few minutes of reading, learn about Journey’s Intent’s favorite Rwandan
When planning a Rwanda safari, one of the most important considerations is selecting accommodation from multiple Rwanda safari lodges, a place for your family to rest their heads after a long day of adventuring.
Fortunately, there exist several excellent Rwanda safari lodges beautifully nestled into the landscape, wherein you will find yourself completely immersed in the tropical forests that many species of animals and flora call home.
The region is most famous for its population of the majestic mountain gorillas, currently consisting of over half the population of the species in the world.
In just 10 minutes of reading, this article will advise you on some of our favorite Rwanda safari lodges that would potentially accommodate you during your Rwanda safari.
The Retreat by Heaven
When beginning one’s Rwanda safari, it is most likely that adventurers will arrive via the Kigale Airstrip. The 5 star American owned Retreat by Heaven is found amongst the tree-lined border of Kigale City Center and in close travelling proximity to the airport.
The Retreat is held in high esteem in the Rwanda safari lodges community.
Named as one of the top new hotels worldwide in 2019 by The New York Times, the retreat boasts 11 luxury rooms. Travelers can choose between a Deluxe King Room, Superior King Suite or a Luxury Pool Villa.
Unique and innovative, it has become Kigale’s first environmentally friendly resort, and one of the first Rwanda safari lodges to do so, in so far as it includes features such as:
• Solar electricity
• Organic toilets and facilities
• Outdoor showers
• Locally sourced hand-crafted furniture supplied by a Tanzanian sustainable teak farm
Some other attractive additions include:
• Private terraces for your convenience
• Yoga and meditation room for your peace of mind
• Massive heated swimming pool utilising salt water
• Diving rocks
• Open-air fitness center
At The Retreat by Heaven, there are 3 room options from which to choose.
1. Deluxe King Room
This luxurious 40m2 room features the following:
• Plasma TV with premium channel selection
• Furnished Patio
• Separate sitting space
• Refrigerator, mini-bar
• 24 hour room service
• Private bathroom with rainfall showerhead and organic toiletries
• Air conditioning
• Daily housekeeping
• Safe, desk, phone
• Free Wi-Fi
2. Superior King Suite
This lavish 60m2 includes features such as:
• 1 king bed
• 3 rooms
• Front balcony and private back deck (furnished)
• Separate sitting space
• Free WIFI
• 24-hour room service
• Plasma TV with premium channel selection
• Refrigerator, mini bar
• Private bathroom with indoor and outdoor rainfall showers, organic amenities
• 1 bathtub
• Safe, desk, phone
• Air conditioning and housekeeping daily
3. Luxury Pool Villa
July 2020 marks the opening of 8 brand new luxury villas at the resort, each featuring an additional:
• Private saltwater heated plunge pool
• Bedrooms with full living areas
120m2 of private indoor and outdoor living space
These Luxury Pool Villas will be a dream come true for travelling families or groups, or simply a couple looking for some privacy and solitude. Travelers will be able to experience luxurious accommodation while still being immersed in the Rwandan landscape.
This restaurant offers travelers a fine dining experience specializing in combining culinary customs found worldwide with traditional Rwandan ingredients. The restaurant pays tribute to the amazing quality of cuisine found in Rwanda safari lodges.
The newly established luxury restaurant combines cuisines from countries including Mauritius, Italy, Morocco and combines them into one beautifully congruous offering.
Immersed in rock gardens and indigenous flora, Fusion is located beside the resort’s beautiful pool.
Travelers are continuously impressed with innovative flavors and fine-dining hospitality and service which is a necessary requirement in choosing from the list of Rwanda safari lodges.
The Retreat’s prime positioning allows travelers ample opportunity to get out and explore the culturally rich city of Kigale.
In relation to many other Rwanda safari lodges, The Retreat is a trailblazer for the tourist industry.
The resort offers 10 guided and non-guided tours for more independent adventurers, allowing travelers to explore a wide variety of locations and gain insight into the city’s great culture significance and history.
Explore Kigale: Curated Tour
The popular curated tour is a balance between Rwandan arts, culture and history.
• Tour a local market
• Explore an old neighborhood of Kigale
• Visit a milk bar
• Experience Rwandan coffee
• Revel in traditional drumming and dancing
The tour will conclude with a visit to the Genocide Memorial, which commemorates the mass genocide of the Tutsi, Twa and Hutu people during the Rwandan Civil War of 1994.
Nature in Kigale Tour
This guided tour focuses on the magical flora and fauna that the Rwandan region has to offer. This tour is a valuable addition to the bucket list of a nature enthusiast.
Travelers will take an easy hike up Mt. Kigale, one of the many ‘Thousand Hills’ of Kigale through the luscious forested hills typical of the dense forest region.
Travelers will experience wondrous views of birdlife and indigenous plants, as well as a picnic at the peak of the hill.
Extra activities include:
• Horseback riding
• Bocce ball
Coffee Master Class
Calling all coffee lovers! This trip to a local Rwandan coffee farm will include:
• A brief introduction to the history of coffee
• Harvest cherries in the farm
• Taste multiple Rwandan coffee blends
• Create your own custom blend!
Rural Life Experience
This experience allows travelers a glimpse into the vibrant and phenomenal rural life of Rwanda, bursting with culture and tradition.
Adventurers will have the opportunity to become a member of a weaving cooperative for the day as well as take part in the daily routine of rural inhabitants including:
• Household chores
• Agricultural duties
• A local meal with your host family
• Join the artisan cooperative for an afternoon spent weaving
Taking part in this experience, sharing laughs with the ladies while weaving, or simply cutting grass for the farm animals will truly immerse you in the rural culture of Rwanda. This culture focuses on family relationships and the contribution of every able member to achieve their goals.
Some other popular activities include:
• Big 5 adventure
• Star gazing
One of our favourite Rwanda safari lodges
The Retreat by Heaven’s excellent service, welcoming hospitality as well as their luxury facilities marks the resort as one of our favourite selections – wherein we are confident that travelers will gain a most magnificent and memorable experience.
Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge in Volcanoes National Park
Adventurers seeking a fully immersive experience in the Rwandan forests need look no further than this precious gem among Rwandan safari lodges.
Located merely minutes away from the headquarters of Volcanoes National Park (Parc National des Volcans), the lodge is privy to extraordinary views of the phenomenal and daunting range of volcanos and the magical African tree lines.
The Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge is one of the main Rwandan safari lodges used as a base from which adventurers hike and track the rare and majestic Mountain Gorilla, a species carefully protected in the park due to their endangered status.
Many consider the experience of gorilla tracking as a must-do for any keen adventurer and avid animal lover – wherein travelers are afforded an hour long interactive experience with these gentle giants.
Gorillas share over 98% of their DNA structure with humans, and for this reason we see many striking similarities with our furry relatives. Like us, they are each endowed with a unique fingerprint as well as:
• The ability to learn basic sign language
• Maintain intricate social and familial structures and relationships amongst one another
• Make over 20 different noises, particularly while enjoying a meal they find especially delicious
Standing at 4 to 6 feet tall, gorillas are renowned for their powerful physiques and impressive physical abilities.
No need to fear, gorillas are herbivores and are not aggressive in nature. Seasoned guides will ensure your safety and advise you on precautionary measures before and during your trek.
Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge maintains 6 double cottages, 2 suites and one family suite. The buildings are set in stone boasting intricate Rwandese terracotta style tile roofs.
This example of one of the finest Rwandan Safari Lodges provides adventurers with 3 options regarding their accommodation. Careful details have been cared for in order to ensure a comfortable and high quality stay while still maintaining the lodge’s nature immersed and far removed style.
The Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge boasts 6 cottages of stone and terracotta tile roofs. The charming cottages include :
• Sitting areas
• Lavish en-suite bathrooms
• Space heaters
• Verandah leading onto the lush gardens
2. Family Cottages
There are few greater joys than seeing a child’s face light up in awe of nature. The Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge encourages young adventurers to partake in all of the exciting offered activities.
The one family cottage ensures the ultimate comfort of your family. Its features include:
• Large sitting space
• En-suite bathroom (bath and shower) x2
• Dressing room
• Twin room
• Interconnecting deck with gorgeous views
The Sabyinyo Silverback lodge boasts 2 luxurious and spacious suites. These lavish cottage suites enjoy :
• Very large sitting area
• 2 verandahs
• Ensuite bathroom with shower and a bath
• Log fireplaces (set every night)
• Space heaters
There are over 11 types of guided tours and rich activities provided by the lodge for your enjoyment as well as your family’s entertainment.
Escorted Bird Watching Walks
This guided walk is a must do for any nature and animal enthusiast as well as curious travelers.
Because Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge owns property that extends over 17 acres – it has become a haven for various indigenous birds that wish to remain removed from excessive human activity.
This area boasts over 40 species of birds, and staff lodge members fluent in English possess a steady knowledge of the birdlife surrounding the lodge.
If you are a seasoned birder and require an even more professional and informative guided tour, the lodge will organize the service of a resident ornithologist who is well versed in the knowledge of the local bird life. This can be arranged by reception for a small fee.
Be sure to remember your binoculars to truly experience the intricate and magical detail of these winged beauties.
Trip to Buhanga Sacred Forest
This small forest boasts an astounding ecological ecological importance as well as a majestic beauty.
The site is special in the way that the forest shift to different dimensions based on the season, the time of the day as well as weather conditions of the region.
The forest is populated by a large array of butterfly and bird populations, easily viewed during a magical walk under the cover of tall otherworldly trees.
The forest walkway features a network of intricately cut lava stone trails that spread through the area and lead to multiple platforms used for observation. These platforms allow travelers a different perspective of the true beauty the Sacred Forest has to offer.
Booking the previous day at Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge is essential, as booked permits are necessary in order to explore the protected forest and interact with its winged inhabitants.
Some other exciting activities encouraged by the Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge include:
• Escorted mountain bike riding
• Golden monkey trekking
• Trip to Dian Fossey Research Camp and Grave
• Trip to the Buhanga Sacred Forest
• Trip to Twin Lakes
• Tour of the Iby’iwacu cultural village
For a poignant, educated and fully immersive African adventure, The Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge ranks high on our list of Rwanda safari lodges.