WHY SELF DRIVE IN RWANDA FOR A GORILLA SAFARI
Self-drive tours have become popular in most parts of Africa, Rwanda inclusive. But is it safe to go for a self-drive tour in Rwanda? Well, the truth is Rwanda is safe and secure for solo travelers to have a successful self-drive safari holiday.
Self-drive tours provide exceptional alternative to discover Rwanda differently. It is adventurous way of penetrating into hidden sides of Rwanda something you can’t get while on public means of transportation.
Want to enjoy your safari holiday in Rwanda? Worry not much, you can opt for Rwanda Self Drive car hire with us to explore and discover the land of thousand hills like an expert. Whether you are visiting Uganda or Rwanda, we are your number one priority for car hire services. Our fleet of cars consists of affordable sturdy safari vehicles that will guarantee you ultimate comfort and relaxation during your holiday trip. We have stunning and off-road runners such as the 4X4 Safari Land Cruiser, 4X4 Safari Van, the Rav 4, Extended Land cruisers, all well set to enable you enjoy lasting memories on yourself drive safari in Rwanda or Uganda.
All in all, Visit and Tour Rwanda is dedicated to settle your wandering needs for a reliable Rwanda car hire agency on visit Rwanda or Uganda for a trip holiday.
Tips to enjoy a self-drive tour in Rwanda
While the majority prefer guided safaris, a self-drive in Rwanda is such amazing experience a fact that it gets you out of the usual. If you are an adventure enthusiast then a self-drive is the best option given that it involves travelling to new places and you get the opportunity to explore different areas on your own. With a self-drive safari in Rwanda, you become the manager of your trip!
It is more flexible and it allows you to enjoy total privacy that any visitor may wish to have something that you won’t get while on a guided safari. Given its flexibility, visitors can make stopovers at their own pace and in areas of their interest, unlike guided tours. To have the most enjoyable self-drive tour, some rules and regulations must be observed and we have listed some of the significant things that must be into consideration while on self-drive in East Africa.
A Valid Driver’s License
A valid international driving permit should be a must to have otherwise if you do not have any, higher chances are that you will end in jail and we don’t need you to incur costs because of fines and you have a boring vacation.
Don’t drink and drive
Driving is exciting and, in most cases, people want to combine the two and yet this is disastrous and this kind of behavior is prohibited in Rwanda just like in any destination. This behavior may make you get caught up a fact that you will find traffic officers and in case they find your blood alcohol level has exceeded 0.08%, you won’t miss being fined or even jailed for at least 24 hours. For the meantime, you won’t die when you drive without alcohol. Deceasing from this behavior will help you have the most enjoyable vacation in Rwanda.
Keep Your Right
Driving in Rwanda and Burundi requires you always keep your right. This may seem new to some of you but you have to adjust for a meantime. Self-Driving in Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania, on the other hand, requires you always to keep left.
Always put on your seat belt
It is not a crime for you to put on a belt for the meantime as you drive neither is it a punishment. And make sure that your colleagues are also on their seat belt. Life is very precious!
Obey Road Signs
Observe all traffic signposts along the road as you drive as each of them carries a meaning and will protect you from any mess on road. Be observant and spare time to read through them.
Obey Traffic Officers
In case you are stopped by a traffic officer on road, make sure that you stop and let him or her conduct some check up on the vehicle, documents or your luggage and you will continue with your safari as this is legal. Failure to do so may cause a bit of suspicion or disrespect which mighty be translated like you are illegally driving in the country.
Put on Helmets when using Motorcycles
For those of you, who may wish to board a motorcycle, don’t forget to put on a helmet and the motorcyclist must do so as well.
Planning a Gorilla Tour: Do it Yourself Guide
Are you dreaming of a visit to Rwanda for a safari holiday? This blog post will guide on the tips to planning a gorilla tour to Rwanda so you don’t really have to rely on a tour agency. Many visitors fluke in for gorilla trekking adventures in Rwanda and Uganda.
You want to know why? It is simply because an encounter with the mountain gorilla is truly a magical lifetime experience.
Regardless of how you plan to make your safari, whether as an individual or a group. Planning a gorilla tour by yourself will give you the most exceptional safari experience ever.
However, doing it yourself sometimes is as it may dictate and require to do a continuous follow-up with the park authorities.
You will need to do all the necessary work like checking the availability of gorilla permits and tour dates, which may not the case when you use a tour operator.
Similarly, despite the fact that tour companies make it easy to plan your gorilla tour, it is quite expensive in the long run. These companies often add up their commissions, making your trip look enormously expensive especially for budget travelers.
Therefore, think wisely before choosing whether to contact a tour operator or to do the planning for a gorilla tour by yourself. Consider a piece of useful advice from the following useful tips:
Make an Inquiry about the availability of Gorilla Permits & Book in Advance
It is very important that when planning a gorilla tour by yourself, you need to be updated about the availability of gorilla permits. The information about the availability of Gorilla Permits can always be accessed from the Uganda wildlife authority (UWA) in Uganda and the Rwanda development board for the basic gorilla permit information in Rwanda.
When you discover that the permits are available, then go ahead and book through any of these bodies and then pay for the deposit in advance.
To avoid last-minute hassles especially in the high season of the gorilla tours, it is advisable to make your booking/reservation at least 6 months before the trekking date. This is due to the amplified demand for these permits and for the purposes of timely allocation of the gorilla families among trekkers.
Make Reservations for your lodge/camp/hotel for the gorilla tour
Gorilla Safari Lodges After knowing which permits available and the location of the gorilla families, then you will need to book for your safari accommodation for the days you will spend during the trek.
To better enjoy the adventure, book the lodge that is nearer to the gorilla trekking starting point so as to ease the movement from the hotel/lodge to the starting point.
Just like with gorilla permits, hotel/lodge booking requires payment of the deposit for the reservation purposes. However, even after booking and payment of the deposit, you need to keep in contact with these lodges for the updates and any changes.
Organize your transportation Means
Having booked for the permit and the lodge, you have to get the means of transport. Many Safari Car Hire companies and agencies are available to book with for the airport pick-ups and transfers.
With Visit and Tour Rwanda car hire services, you can hire a car with any car hire company for all the days you will be on a trip. There are also public means of transport, the buses, Matatus, boda-bodas that can take you to the final destination.
What to pack for your gorilla tour
You have to be well prepared for the gorilla trek since it is a forest adventure. The weather in the forests where mountain gorillas live is very unpredictable weather, slippery grounds and much undergrowth with thorny bushes.
You must, therefore, pack hiking boots, long-sleeved shirts, and panties, a sun hat, hand gloves, and raincoats. These help in case of unpredictable weather changes.
Since photographing is the only activity allowed while with the gorillas, you should not forget a non-flash light camera.
Tipping while on your Gorilla Tour
This is not compulsory to undertake though deemed very helpful and rewarding to the locals, only if you can. You can choose to tip the guide and other service providers or any other service provided, especially in the hotels and lodges. Tipping on a safari is taken as a form of appreciation and motivation to the community.
Research more about Rwanda and ideal destinations to visit
Yes, self-drive tours can be exciting but you ought to carryout adequate research on different destinations before you consider visiting on solo trip. Rwanda like other destinations has some areas prohibited for self-drive safaris. But majority of them are safe and you can embark on your solo trip.
Rwanda has enjoyed peace and security for very long time. This makes it one of the safest destinations in Africa for self-drive tours, guided tours not only for gorilla safaris or chimpanzee tours. Its capital city Kigali is also ranked not only the cleanest but also one of the safest cities in Africa which you can explore on self-drive tour or Kigali city tour.
Security begins with you
While on solo/guided tour in any destination, safety and security always start with you the traveler. But most significantly, safety starts right from Kigali Airport once you have landed and you can witness it as you go through thorough check-up-upon arrival or during departure. The process isn’t meant to discomfort you but it is all intended to ensure your safety and that of other travelers so that you all have successful holiday in Rwanda the land of a thousand hills.
Meet your driver guide waiting for you upon arrival
After the long check-up process, now you can get a warm welcome from your driver guide who also doubles as your tour leader/safari guide. This is if you hired a car and driver guide. He or she will brief you on what you need to expect on Rwanda safari.
Understand the road signage
Finally, you have embarked on your self-drive trip but there is something important to take note of and that is traffic rules/road signage. Drive defensively but at minimum speed. Observe road signage to avoid being caught up by traffic officers, have valid driving documents, never drink and drive, never drive at night, protect your valuables and others.