Nyungwe is celebrated for its rich variety of flora and fauna. There are at least 200 tree species found in the forest, along with hundreds of different flowering plants, including wild begonia, more than 100 species of orchid, and sensational giant lobelias.
Of the large mammals, primates are the most visible, with 13 recorded species. Of particular interest are the Angola colobus - delightfully acrobatic arboreal monkeys which move in troops of several hundred - and an estimated 500 chimpanzees. Other primates one might encounter are blue monkey, silver monkey, velvet monkey, olive baboon, grey-cheeked mangabey and red-tailed monkey.
Nyungwe is also home to more than 275 bird species, making in the region's most important birding site. They include the spectacular Rwenzori turaco, the secretive red-chested alethe, and several iridescent sunbirds. Equally remarkable are the perpetually honking giant hornbills that crash through the forest canopy, and the stunning great blue turaco, an outlandishly blue, red and green bird.
*Visitors must travel with a guide in national parks.
All visitors are requested to complete the entrance procedures at the park office.
*Guides speak English and French. People joining tours individually are asked to note this.
Nearby places of interest
Gisakura Tea Factory
This factory is set among the hills of the Gisakura Tea Plantation bordering the national park, and gives visitors the opportunity to see the tea manufacturing process.
- Wear long trousers and shirts and trekking shoes for treks. And don't forget your binoculars.
- Primates and birds are sometimes found atop tall trees or in places that are difficult to approach. People who want to take photographs are recommended to have a lens of over 400 mm.
- A two-day stay is recommended for people who want to observe chimpanzees or other primates. In addition to guest houses conveniently located on main roads where visitors can stay comfortably near the Park, day trips can be made from Butare and the town of Cyangugu.