Bwindi & Lake Bunyonyi weekend getaway offer (Kigali)
Hello good folks,
Hope all is going on well in Kigali and the land of a thousand hills!!
Here we go again. A chance to getaway into the fascinating adventure of Bwindi impenetrable National Park and the breathtaking serpentine Lake Bunyonyi. Most of us know that Bwindi is known for the enthralling mountain gorillas but there is more to that than meets the eye and we are about to find out. Dates – 28th to 29th July, Protected content .
Day 1: Bwindi Impenetrable National Park – Rushaga Sector – South Bwindi
Bwindi impenetrable forest is a typical tropical rain forest with an annual mean temperature range of a minimum of 7–15°C to a maximum of 20–27°C. Pick up from Rwanda Development Board Tourist Centre or Ubumwe Grand Hotel at 8:30 am and start our journey crossing to Uganda, drive through Kabale town and arrive at Bwindi. Relax and take in the breathtaking surroundings.
Have lunch and after lunch embark on a community/village walk. The village walk will take you past swamps which lead you to a small homestead. Have a chance to meet with the local people and learn about their day to day life including how they feed, farm, rear animals, travel as well as enjoy a meal with them.
Participate in craft activities such as basket weaving and many more. Enjoy a culture encounter as you sit with the residents to listen to their songs and culture dance the ‘ki kiga’ dynamic dance. You will enjoy the energetic performance and you are welcome to take part. Dinner & overnight at Wagtail Eco Camp.
Day 2: Waterfall hike & Lake Bunyonyi canoe trek & Island hop
Breakfast and then we embark on the waterfall hike in the South Bwindi Forest where we shall combine nature, local history and culture with some breathtaking views. For the very fit you could hike the Kara Ridge trail where you could take in the panoramic views of Bwindi Impenetrable forest, you will also get to learn the culture of the original forest people, the Batwa pygmies.
We shall return to the lodge and prepare to drive to Lake Bunyonyi.
Lake Bunyonyi is a young lake at 1,950m/6,400ft, formed 10,000 years ago when the river was dammed by a lava flow and the valley drowned. Bunyonyi is one of the safest lakes in Africa, it has no hippos or crocodiles and no bilharzias thus safe for a swim.
We shall embark on a dug-out canoe ride with lunch en route as we island hop We shall visit the former Leper colony at Bwama. Here in Protected content , Dr Leonard Sharp, an English missionary, founded a leprosy hospital on Lake Bunyonyi's Bwama Island and built a school and church while his family settled on Njuyeera Island. By Protected content had 1,000 residents. Treatment involved painful weekly injections of hydnocarpus oil. At its peak, about 47,000 injections were given annually until anti-leprosy drugs were introduced in the Protected content .
The hospital's structures subsequently became a boarding secondary school while the island also hosts a health centre ran by Slovenian medical students.
Later visit the Punishment Island of Akampene. A traditional way of punishing unmarried pregnant women at Lake Bunyonyi was to abandon them on a tiny island called Akampene ("Punishment"). They would either starve to death or drown trying to swim to the mainland; swimming skills were rare. However, they were often saved by poor men or slaves who could not afford the regular bride price and did not mind the stigma. The practice was abandoned in the Protected content , likely due to the influence of missionaries on Bwama and Njuyeera.
We shall also visit Sharp’s Island at Njuyeera. Njuyeera Island was the lake home of Dr Leonard Sharp Protected content . The island's name (“white cottage”) originates from the house his family built. Njuyeera eventually had a tennis court, boat house, guest cottage, windmill and gardens with lemon and guava trees, canna and flame lilies. This idyllic setting could give a misleading sense of the general living conditions before World War II; Leonard and his wife Esther lost their first son to dysentery when he was 18 months old.
Lastly we shall visit the Upside Down Island. Here legend has it that, a group of twenty men were brewing sorghum beer on the island when an old lady passing through asked for a sip. They rudely refused her, told her to “Get lost!”. She asked for someone to take her to the mainland to which they agreed as they wanted to get rid of her. When a young man delivered her to the mainland and was starting to return, the island turned upside down drowning all the brewers... The only survivor was a chicken that flew away!
This is why the island is now called Bucuranuka, "Upside Down".
We shall later return to the mainland and begin our trip back to Kigali with subsequent end of the tour.
Price: USD$190 per person sharing
Vehicle & Driver/Tour Leader, accommodation & breakfast, all activities in the program, bottled water.
Expenses of a personal nature e.g. tips, laundry, drinks and beverages, tips, poterage and gratuities, visa fees or items not on the program.