Cycling tours in Rwanda offer a fascinating adventure that every traveller should not miss! While Rwanda is famous for the mountain gorillas in the Volcanoes National Park, cycling is just as exciting and memorable adventure.
The land of a thousand hills stretch over numerous hills and valleys, with roads winding crazily around and across the contours which make Rwanda the best destination for cycling. The routes cyclists take entails riding through verdant countryside with very impressive backdrops, great areas of natural beauty and other places that cannot be reached by car.
Cycling routes start from Kigali, the capital city of Rwanda, then head out into the forested chain of volcanoes – stretching from the Democratic Republic of Congo to Uganda – followed by sweeping serenely across the northwest of the country.
The top routes for cycling in Rwanda include Kigali city, Kigali hills and views, and the Congo Nile trail:
Congo Nile trail
This cycle route starts from Gisenyi and heads to Kibuye, ascending along the divide that separates the Nile and the Congo River. Officially started in 2009, the Congo Nile trail is a twisted networks of trails and roads running from Gisenyi, north of Lake Kivu, 227 kilometres south to the town of Cyangugu. The trail sweeps 140 miles along the shorelines of Lake Kivu curving by spectacular bays and headlands.
This kind of cycling involves rising and dropping abruptly to the lake via dirt roads, lakesides, single tracks and a redirected track in the forested Nyungwe Forest National Park. The scenery is made up of unending rolling hills and inestimable towns and villages. This gives cyclists a glimpse of Rwandan rural life which is rarely, or not at all, experienced by city dwellers.
For birders, there is a diversity of birds to be seen, including black-headed herons, white-breasted cormorants and white tailed blue flycatcher,among others. For the adventurous type, cyclists can ride through the narrow footpaths that snake along the hills and villages instead of using the wider main roads.
Kigali city ride
The entails riding throughout Kigali city’s gentle hills to various tourism sites. The visited sites include Kigali Genocide Memorial Center, Kigali’s trading district, the Kigali Convention Center, historical Kiyovu, and the Caplaki craft market where you’ll find a variety of charming souvenirs made from wood, banana leaf, fabric and pottery.
Kigali hills and views
This is another alternative – though quite challenging – ride where travellers pass through the hills across the outskirts of Kigali city. This ride provides astonishing views of the entire city and a taste of country life. More still, there is a lake and an area of woodland and scrub in the valley above the golf course and between the ridges of Nyarutarama and Kacyiru just near the city centre.
Congo Nile trail and coffee plantations
This ride takes you along the eastern side of Lake Kivu from Rubavu across tiny rural settlements and coffee plantations into the lovely lakeside town up to Karongi (formerly Kibuye).
As you can see, cycling is a phenomenal experience that every traveller to Rwanda should take part in.