Day 6 (29 June)
Day 6 involved a 12 hour drive from Kampala to Kabale near the Uganda-Rwanda border. We crossed the equator at 8-9am ish and stopped at a café for homemade muffins, tea (with real milk rather than powdered) and a photo opportunity. I also saw the biggest wasp ever writhing around on the floor on my way back from the loo – gross!
Day 7 (30 June)
We were up early to cross the Rwandan border and by lunch time we arrived in the capital Kigali to visit the Genocide Memorial museum. It was harrowing to say the least, though we all appreciated learning about the history of Rwanda. Despite the horrific events of 1994, Rwanda has to be the most beautiful place I’ve ever been. As we drove to the capital, everyone came out of their houses or stopped working to smile and wave at us against a backdrop of lush green hills and tea plantations. I spent the whole morning watching the scenery and waving to the Rwandans.
Day 8 (1 July)
Finally, one of the trip’s activities I’d been most looking forward to – gorilla trekking! It was another early start but we were greeted on the outskirts of the Parc National des Volcans by traditional dancers and local tea. We then split into two groups and set off to find the gorillas. Although we were on a “medium” length trek, which was supposed to take 2 hours but only took 40 minutes because we found the gorillas super quick. We had to hurriedly hide our bags (because gorillas associate them with poachers) and dig out our cameras. It was pretty scary to start with but we got to get really close to the gorillas. They were treading on our toes and one pulled on my trousers.
We got back really early so we went into town for lunch. My cook group were in the other trekking group so didn’t get back until late so those of us who were back pitched in to help out with dinner.