Although our tour guide had given us clear instructions to remain quiet throughout the trek, some notorious noisemakers in the group would not refrain from shouting. Despite being told repeatedly that monkeys and their cousins hate noise pollution, my travel companions were too excited to keep their voices low.
This group of young and hyper Kigali dwellers barely followed instructions. As if that wasn’t enough to test our guide’s patience, the youngsters could not keep time even though they moved faster than the older tourists we found in the forest.
We walked on a steep slope towards the interior of the forest. The farther we moved, the denser the forest grew. Benches are placed a couple of kilometers apart for those who need to pause and take a breather before proceeding to their destinations. Nothing beats taking a seat in the middle of the forest without Wi-Fi and other distractions.
We spent more time in the forest than we were supposed to. The photogenic group needed long photo shoot sessions our itinerary planer hadn’t accounted for. Being behind schedule did not prevent my new friends from causing more delays while whining over poor internet connection or lack thereof.
Hiking back to the starting point was a physically challenging drill. If you are planning to explore Nyungwe, you better start using those running shoes gathering dust on your rack.
There are different trails leading to different attractions while enabling hikers to bond with nature. Through Isumo trail, hikers can visit the stunning Isumo Falls. Bigugu trail leads to the highest hill in the park. From there, visitors can see Lake Kivu as well as parts of Burundi and DR Congo. The Congo Nile Divide trail will lead your steps to the watershed separating the drainage basins of Congo and Nile rivers.
There are many more trails with varying degrees of difficulty and length. They all have one thing in common: They reward their hikers handsomely.