One & Only Nyungwe House in Nyungwe forest national park
One & Only Nyungwe House is the only luxury lodge located next to Nyungwe forest national park. The lodge is the perfect place to rest after primate trekking or any other activity in Nyungwe forest national park. Nyungwe forest national park is found in the southwestern part of Rwanda protecting over 500 chimpanzee species, 12 other primates, 85 mammals, 310 bird species, and over 1086 plant species.
One & Only Nyungwe House has a total of 24 rooms surrounded by teak plantations and each does face Nyungwe forest which means that guests receive cool fresh air from the plants. The rooms have a private balcony. The rooms at One & Only Nyungwe House are designed in an architectural way blinding with the landscape and showing the natural beauty of the surrounding area.
One & Only Nyungwe House has a restaurant with good chefs that prepare local and international dishes, a bar with hot and cold drinks, fireplace, swimming pool, fitness centre, wi-fi, spa, laundry, hot and cold showers, mini-bar, room service, and air conditioning. One & Only Nyungwe House can be accessed in a single day from Kigali using road transport or air transport and its open throughout the year.
Activities to do while staying at One & Only Nyungwe House
Chimpanzee trekking: Chimpanzee tracking is one of the activities guests at One & Only Nyungwe House can do and this is possible in Nyungwe forest national park. The guests having a stay at One & Only Nyungwe House will have to book the chimpanzee permits in advance with their tour operators in order to be part of the once in a life time activity. The permits are bought from the Rwanda Development Board and are issued to persons above the age of 15 years.
On the day of chimpanzee trekking, tourists will wake up early in the morning for breakfast and reach the park in time to be part of the briefing activity where rangers are taught about the rules and regulations of the activity. After the briefing, armed ranger guides lead the trekkers into the jungle to search for different animals these chimpanzees and on the way, there are opportunities of meeting different park mammals, primates, birds, water sources, and different plant species. When the trekkers meet the chimpanzees, they are given 1 hour to be around them watching them do daily activities, learn about their habits and take photos.
Birding: Guests staying at One & Only Nyungwe House can have birding activities around the lodge or inside Nyungwe forest national park. The bird-watching activities are guided and are done at a certain fee which is $150 per person per trek. The birding watching activities can be done in the morning or evening hours and the rangers will take you to different birding spots looking for different bird species.
Some of the birds in Nyungwe forest national park include archer’s robin-chat, regal sunbird, dusky crimson wing, red-throated alethe, Rwenzori nightjar, yellow-eyed black flycatcher, shelley’s crimson wing, great blue turaco, stripe-breasted tit, barred long-tailed cuckoo, handsome francolin, white-tailed flycatcher, Rwenzori batis, kungwe apalis, nuemann’s warbler, red-collared babbler, Albertine owlet, and mountain sooty boubou among others.
Canopy walk: One of the things guests staying at One & Only Nyungwe House shouldn’t miss out on is the canopy walk. The canopy walk is done in Nyungwe forest national park so the guests will have to keep going to the Uwinka park offices where they will have a briefing about the activity where they will know about the dos and don’ts of the activity.
The canopy walk activity starts at Uwinka and the participants walk through Igishigishigi trail to the starting point of the canopy. The canopy walk is raised 50 meters above the ground and it takes 2 hours to complete it. During the canopy walk, participants will be able to have an aerial view of Nyungwe forest national park, surrounding places, lakes, rivers, waterfalls, birds, mammals, primates, and different plant species.
Angolan colobus monkey trekking: There are over 13 primates in Nyungwe forest national park and the black and white colobus monkeys are some of those that are habituated in the park and can be trekked at any time of the year. Tourists staying at One & Only Nyungwe House can organize with their local tour operator and they trek these monkeys while on their stay at this lodge.
Trekking the black and white colobus monkeys is like trekking the chimpanzees as the activity starts with the briefing and then the armed ranger guides lead the trekkers into the jungle searching these apes. While searching for the Angolan colobus monkeys, tourists are able to spot other primates such as olive baboons, grey checked mangabeys, crowned monkeys, duikers, buffaloes, birds, waterfalls, and different plant species but on meeting these monkeys trekkers are given 1 hour to watch these primates do daily activities, learn about their habits and take photos.
Nature walks: Guests at One & Only Nyungwe House can have nature walks during their free time where they can explore around the lodge or drive to Nyungwe forest to explore the park on foot. The nature walk activity enables tourists to explore the park on foot using different hiking trails such as Isumo trail, Congo Nile trial, Bigugu trail, Muzimu trail, and Buhoro trail among others. During the nature walk activities, tourists are be to spot different park mammals, primates, birds, waterfalls, and different plant species.
Community visits: While staying at One & Only House, you can inform your tour operator or lodge staff that you want to visit the local community, and they will organize and drive you to the nearby one where you will interact with the local people. The community visits normally take place in the poor communities around the area where you will meet the people, interact with them about they live their day to day life, see them do daily activities such as digging, cattle keeping, visit their art and craft shops, visit schools and in the end get entertained by the local people.
What is the best time to stay at One & Only Nyungwe House?
Tourists can stay at One & Only Nyungwe House at any time of the year but there are months that are better than the rest most especially if you are to do tourism activities in Nyungwe forest national park. The drier months occur from June to September and December to February and during these months, there is little or no rainfall, the trekking trails in the park and around the lodge are dry, and the roads leading to the lodge and the park are impassable.
Tourists most especially budget travelers can visit One & Only Nyungwe House in the rainy seasons of March to May and October to November to enjoy huge discounts on accommodation facilities. However, during these months, there is plenty of rainfall which makes the vegetation in the park and around the lodge tall with unclear views of the park animals, the roads leading to the park and lodge impassable, and the trekking trails muddy and slippery.