Many a times people ask about when the best time to visit Rwanda is. This question has been stated as complex since favorable times to visit all depend on the kind of activity and or reason as to why one is visiting Rwanda. It is also determined by the interests the person wishing to visit has like when they would like to travel. One thing we should keep in mind however is that as humans our likings differ and this makes it all the more complex. A number of foreigners that have come forth to ask this question come to this “Land of a thousand hills” for activities like Gorilla tracking but let us consider the seasons and weather climate since it is the best determinant of the question above.
Rwanda being a landlocked nation somewhat contributes dearly on the climatic conditions of the country. The altitudes here are pleasing and its tropical climate sees to it that it receives its fair share of rainfall which in turn helps in the fertility of the land. The temperature in Rwanda is unwavering every year and its capital city –Kigali is at 20-22 degrees throughout the year.
We have heard many refer to Gorilla tracking as a yearly activity but there are certain seasons that are simply not good for tracking these enormous giants because first it will not be as exciting as you hoped it would and second, well there is some difficulty in tracking that comes along with it. For gorilla lovers out there who would love to visit Rwanda, there is a short dry season that runs from the months of Mid December all the way till the beginning of February. The longer dry periods however run from June all the way to September and are pretty good times for you to consider when going on a Gorilla hiking adventure. The benefits that come with these seasons is the ease you will get when hiking to the top and also the low risk of contracting Malaria.
If the seasons above are quite unfavorable to you, worry not. You can still get to trek gorillas in any other time and or season though one simple thing you have to bear in mind is that there is always a cost that has to be paid; trying being fit so that you don’t get to pay the price.
For all the Chimpanzee lovers that are looking to track the Chimps in Rwanda, there are two rainy seasons that are deemed as the best time for this kind of activity. Chimp tracking in Rwanda is done at the Nyungwe Forest National Park and in the months of Mid February to the beginning days of June and also during Mid September all the way through to Mid December are the months with rainfall. In these times the Chimpanzees have no difficulty in finding food because it is in abundance. This also means that you will not have to travel longer distances in search of these primates unlike during the dry seasons where food for them is scarce and hard to find. This means they have to travel far off distances so that they can find what to eat.
Similarly to the gorillas, you can still get to track them in the other dry seasons though you should be prepared, fit and ready to journey miles to find them. All of Rwanda’s dry periods can be characterized with a very light cloud covering the skies which helps in regulating the heat temperatures and rarely lets down a few droplets of rainfall. In the rainy periods however, the downpour of rainfall is intense and heavy not forgetting that it is also quite continual.