Discover Remarkable Rwanda

Posted by Crooked Compass

Rwanda’s stunning scenery and warm, friendly people offer unique experiences in one of the most remarkable countries in the world. Known as the land of a thousand hills, Rwanda is blessed with extraordinary biodiversity and some of the world's most incredible wildlife living throughout its volcanoes, montane rainforest and sweeping plains.

Remarkable Rwanda || Photo Credit: Rachel Strohm

The name "Rwanda" is derived from the Rwanda-Rundi word rwanda meaning "domain" or literally an "area occupied by a swarm". The official name of the country was "Rwandese Republic" until May 2003, when the adoption of a new national constitution changed it to its current name of "Republic of Rwanda".

Remarkable Rwanda || Photo Credit: Derek Keats

Modern human settlement of what is now Rwanda dates from around 8000 BC. But it is the modern history and events of Rwanda from the 90's that have shaped the Rwanda we see today. In 1990 a rebel group composed of nearly 500,000 Tutsi refugees, invaded northern Rwanda from their base in Uganda, initiating the Rwandan Civil War. The group condemned the Hutu-dominated government for failing to democratize and confront the problems facing these refugees. Neither side was able to gain a decisive advantage in the war, but by 1992 it had weakened President Habyarimana's authority. Mass demonstrations forced him into a coalition with the domestic opposition and eventually to sign the 1993 Arusha Accords.

The cease-fire ended on 6 April 1994 when Habyarimana's plane was shot down near Kigali Airport, killing him. The shooting down of the plane served as the catalyst for the Rwandan genocide, which began within a few hours. Over the course of approximately 100 days, around 800,000 Tutsi and politically moderate Hutu were killed in well-planned attacks on the orders of the interim government. The infrastructure and economy of the country had suffered greatly during the genocide and there are still visible signs today of the aftermath of this mass slaughter today. 

Rwandan Genocide Memorial || Photo Credit: Configmanager (Flickr)

Two decades after the 1994 genocide, the great untold story of Rwanda's rise is how women rebuilt the nation. Most of those killed in the genocide were men and because many male perpetrators fled to neighboring nations, 70 percent of Rwanda’s post-genocide population was female. Faced with ensuring their families’ very survival, women stepped up. Mothers took in orphaned children and organised support groups for widows. Women moved from cleaning buildings to reconstructing them. They farmed and started businesses. Throughout the country, they created stability in the aftermath of unspeakable violence.

Remarkable Rwanda || Photo Credit: Robert Schrader

Today, Rwanda is acknowledged by many as one of the most stable nations in Africa and remarkably corruption-free. In only ten years, life expectancy has risen from 48 to 58 years. Deaths of children under five have been cut in half. A compulsory education program has put boys and girls in primary and secondary schools in equal numbers. Women can now own and inherit property and are active leaders in all sectors of the nation, including business. National mandates and programs are reducing violence, including violence against women. Foreign aid has contributed to the recovery process, but Rwandans themselves have shaped the policy to heal a nation and the local people are the true success story of this remarkable nation.

Remarkable Rwanda || Photo Credit: Robert Schrader

Our Remarkable Rwanda women's only small group tour is one of our most inspiring and memorable tours, not just for its incredibly unique wildlife experiences but because of the opportunity to experience first hand Rwanda's story from ruin to being one of the world’s safest countries and most progressive leaders in East Africa.

Remarkable Rwanda || Photo Credit: Ciat

Learn in-depth more about how women at the forefront of this incredible re-emergence as well as experience the history, resilience, skill and community building, which are essentially the ingredients for what has created the success story of rebuilding Remarkable Rwanda.

Remarkable Rwanda || Photo Credit: Dein Arson

On this tour you will also see the rare and magnificent Mountain Gorillas including a behind the scenes interaction with Dian Fossey's Gorilla Doctors. Encounter other primates, safari animals and stunning vistas, as we get you in touch with the daily lives of Rwandans with immersive authentic experiences taking you into their daily lives, micro entrepreneurial businesses, skills and rich culture both ancient and recent to show you the heart of this inspiring country and their incredible story in the land of a thousand hills.

Remarkable Rwanda || Photo Credit: Mark Jordahl

Make this experience yours, let us help you secure your spot on this amazing adventure of a lifetime - Remarkable Rwanda. Contact us today!