Rwanda Summary

Trip Start Jun 08, 2005
Trip End Aug 18, 2005

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Flag of Rwanda  ,
Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Distance travelled so far - 6245km (equivalent of New York to Frankfurt)
In Rwanda (plus Uganda) - 1230km

We actually spent 8 whole days in Rwanda/Uganda.
We spent, on average, 1.6 nights and 1 day in each place.
We travelled an average of 154km per day, all on public transport.

Rwanda Summary
Can't say much about Uganda, since we arrived late at night and left early the next morning. What we did see out the bus window looked nice and lush. With hindsight we probably would have skipped Kenya and spent the week in Uganda instead.
Rwanda has been good - a little expensive, but not bad at all. The food has been great, excellent up in Ruhengeri, and the accommodation, whilst a little pricey, has been comfortable. It was nice to have a bath in Kigali.

As I mentioned, Rwanda has recovered magnificently from the genocide 10 years ago. The memorials are sobering places, but it's worth going, just to show your support and to understand it better.

The people are friendly and helpful. In terms of travel, it's a great country since it's so small. Getting from one side to the other does not take a mammoth journey. It meant we could spend the morning in one place and leave for another place and still get there by the end of the day. Or leave early and have the afternoon to explore. None of those silly o'clock starts like in Ethiopia.

Rwanda is heavily populated and agriculture is everywhere. It's hilly - as the name suggests - and the patchwork of terraces and fields make the countryside colourful in shades of green and yellow. But it's not natural beauty, which is a shame. Obviously the Volcanoes National Park has some stunning montane forest, and the gorillas... I don't need to tell you how amazing seeing them is. Go. Run, don't walk!

Lake Kivu is pretty and I believe a trip over the border into the DRC is worth it, if you can cope with the $50 visa for half a day. I was ill there so my time wasn't so memorable, but it is a nice place to relax.

Kigali itself is a nice little capital. The hills make it appear smaller than it is, and though it makes walking around a bit of an effort, moto rides are fun.

I can't recall any notable toilet escapades. With the shorter journeys there is just no need to stop in the middle of nowhere and use horrific bathrooms.

Useful Kinarwanda

Hello - muraho
How are you? - amakuru?
Fine - amakuru/ meza
Thank you - murakoze
Yes - yego
No - oya
Bye - murabeho

How much? - angahe?
Where? - hehe?
Toilet - umusarane

Rwandan Wildlife

Ankole cow (huge horns) - everywhere especially north
Mountain gorilla - Volcanoes National Park
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