The Congo Nile Trail

Rwanda has a hiking and bike track called the Congo Nile track. You can finish the course by bike, kayak, or on foot. The Congo Nile Trail winds through the tropical Kivu Belt Region on the shores of Lake Kivu, following a network of interconnected single lanes, dirt roads, and hiking trails. Hikers on the Congo Nile Trail pass by some of Africa’s last surviving tropical rainforests, enormous coffee farms, and undiscovered beaches as it winds around the picturesque shores of Lake Kivu. There are many undiscovered experiences along this trail, many of them are offered by locals. The Congo Nile track in Rwanda is one of the most famous and excellent hiking routes in Africa, and it’s open to anyone seeking an authentic, safe, and off-the-beaten-path hiking or bicycling adventure. You may take on the track by foot, bicycle, or kayak. This trail was launched in 2011 by the Rwanda government and this made Rwanda a developed country in tourism. It is known that before, the Congo Nile trail was not so much known and only people knew the mountain gorilla trekking in Rwanda which was a popular activity in the volcanoes national park that attracted most tourists for trekking. When we talk about the Congo Nile trail, we mean a trail that passes through lake Kivu starting from the northern shores in the Gisenyi and ending in the southern shores of Rusizi district. The trail is both a cycling and a hiking adventure that takes place along the shores of lake Kivu and through the great nyungwe forest national park .it does not necessarily mean Congo as country, lake Kivu boarders Rwanda to the east and the democratic republic of Congo to the west. The Congo Nile trail is just 227 km to reach rusizi district. The trail was named after a landmark that separates the Congo and the Nile rivers. Since the day this trail was launched, it became arguably the best biking trail in east Africa. It gives you the best experience offer because you can get a chance to challenge your hiking and the cycling abilities as you appreciate the beautiful scenery of lake Kivu ,the several birds species along the trail including the white tailed blue flycatchers , the white breasted cormorants experiencing the rural communities in Rwanda , witness the different plantations ,along the trail that include coffee ,the banana plantations , the unique life style of the people in the small communities and the activities like fetching firewood and playing rural games . This trail is the best way to experience the natural beauty, the surroundings in the environment and the clean air around. It is too quick that it makes the tourists experience and see whatever they want without any disturbance , however it is not friendly to the first time learners because along the way , you will have a bumpy journey all through the trail because of the difficult terrains of the trail therefore you need to have some biking experience before you take the ride .This trail is quite a long route of single trails leading to several villages ,it follows a combination of rocky , track routes that wind up in various hills in the middle of Gisenyi and kamembe .

The language spoken while in the Congo Nile trail in Rwanda.

The Common used language there is English but some use French as well. Rwandans often speak French since it was previously the language taught to students but later in 2008, the government changed the language of schools to English therefore the younger educated people typically speak English. Note, most clients in the Congo Nile trail speak Kinyarwanda.

Culture and religion.

Many Rwandans are Christians evenly splited between the catholic and the protestants. However, the culture is not overly conservative as far as the African countries go but certainly more conservative than most western countries. concerning the culture, the female tourists can certainly wear pants though most local women wear skirts. the tight-fitting pants or shirts above the knees might be seen as a strange or disrespectful especially in rural areas.


The Rwandan franc is used as currency for most things, though some tour operators take payments in USD especially for a larger amount. The credit cards and ATMS are not widely used especially in smaller towns therefore you will want to have plenty of cash like us dollars and euros which can easily be changed to Rwandan francs at the forex bureaus.


Transportation can be the biggest risk most travelers take in many African countries. Rwanda has a well-deserved reputation as a safe country with very low crime rates. more on that it is always smart therefore there is no worry wen staying in this place.

Accommodation or where to stay on the Congo Nile trail.

The Congo Nile trail has lodges of all quality spaced out at reasonable points along the route .for example there are guest houses, campsites , lodges which are well renovated and have ensuite , they serve you will full board and half board accommodation .They also have bedrooms which have free Wi-Fi , a kettle inside which is electric , a bar filled with all types of drinks that make the tourists more happier ,and not forgetting the balcony where the tourists go for resting after the walk through the trail .The rooms with ensuite ranged from 10000 RF and the guest houses 40 dollars . Here are some of the accommodations facilities along the Congo Nile trail.

Home saint jean.

This accommodation is built close to lake kivu and hidden behind a church in kibuye .It has ensuite bedrooms which are single , double ,family rooms and standard rooms .These rooms are well equipped with what any tourist would want from a lodge , for example they have showers and toilets inside ,the rooms have free Wi-Fi , a bar which is well equipped with all types of drinks , an electric kettle , hot and warm water , a fridge , air conditioner ,then wat to eat both full board and half board depending on what you paid for.

Inzu lodge.

This is one of the best lodges found along Congo Nile trail .It is located in Gisenyi overlooking lake kivu .It has rooms which are ensuite , the rooms are self-contained with showers inside and toilets , the lodge has a bar well equipped with all types of drinks , a restaurant , wireless internet ,and a souvenir shop and a balcony where the tourists rest after the hiking .more so on that , inze lodge has a campsite where a tourist can set up his or tent and set for him fire at night for protection, warmth and also request for a traditional music dance and drama .

Kinunu guest house.

This guest house markets its self as an Eco lodge and a best lodge close to lake kivu .This lodge has rooms which are ensuite with showers and toilets inside .The lodge has a bar well equipped with all types of drinks , a restaurant , wireless internet and a shop where clients buy things to use .it also has a balcony where tourists rest after hiking and biking .Kinunu guest house has a campsite where the clients set their tents at night to spend a night with the help of fire it at night to protect the tourists from coldness and from the wild animals .

Peace guest house.

The guest house is located in kamembe. The guest house has beautiful gardens overlooking lake kivu , it also has hotel staff who are very friendly It is so welcoming with rooms which look nice and they are ensuite ,they have a bath room and shower rooms inside which gives comfort to the tourists once they stay there .The rooms of peace guest house have free Wi-Fi , a bar well equipped with all types of drinks , restaurant where food is prepared and served to the tourists , remember the meals are both full board and half board depending on the order of the tourists and the money paid .Peace guest house has a campsite where the tourists are allowed to set their tents and sleep , the tent should be standing up right to avoid rain from entering .

Kibogora guest house.

This is a luxury guest house along the Congo Nile trail .The tourists who book here are very lucky because this guest house is known for its services being of a higher quality .It has rooms which are ensuite with bathrooms and shower rooms inside .Each of the rooms has free Wi-Fi , reception ,an electric kettle ,a bar which is well filled with all types of drinks ,a restaurant which serves meals to the tourists both full board and half board depending on what the tourists have paid for and what he or she prefers .

Moriah hill hotel.

This hotel is another executive accommodation overlooking lake kivu .The hotel has better services which it provides to its tourists ,it has rooms which are ensuite with bathrooms inside and the shower rooms inside them .all the rooms have a balcony offering magnificent views of lake kivu and its natural surroundings .This lodge has free Wi-Fi , reception , a bar filled with all types of the drinks that any tourist may want ,an electric kettle and a restaurant that serves all types of meals both full board and half board .

Cormoran lodge.

This lodge is found on the shores of lake kivu .it gives a great view to the tourists seeing the amazing nyiragongo volcanoes in Congo. The lodge gives full services and facilities to the guests such as meals which are full board and half board depending on the payments made by the clients and what they prefer. This lodge has rooms which are ensuite with showered and bathrooms inside, they also have free Wi-Fi, a bar which is filled with all types of drinks that any tourist may need not forgetting the balcony which gives better views and relaxation after the hiking.

Lake kivu serenea hotel.

This is a luxury hotel along the shores of lake kivu. It is a lodge that gives great services and facilities to the guests or tourists who may have come to spend their nights there. The lodge has rooms which are ensuite, they have showers and bathrooms inside which make the tourists to feel good during their stay. the rooms have hot water, warm they also have an electric kettle and not forgetting a bar which is well equipped with all the types of drinks that any tourist or guest may need. There are beautiful gardens and campsite which allows the tourists to set up their tents and have a rest there with the help of the fire lit by the rangers to provide protection against the coldness and the wild animals.

Paradis malahide in Gisenyi.

This is a luxury hotel which is found along the shores of lake kivu. This lodge has rooms which are ensuite with bathrooms and showers inside, the rooms have hot and warm water. The lodge has free Wi-Fi, a bar which is well equipped with all types of drinks that any tourist may need to take during his relaxation. They also have a balcony where they relax from and watch the volcanoes and the surroundings. More on that, the tourist can pitch a tent on the ground and sleep if he or she does not want to sleep in the rooms, fire is lit at night with the help of the rangers to give you protection and warmth at the same time, you are also given access to shared bathrooms’ showers and common areas. each tent is charged 5000 RF per night everywhere except in Kinunu, which was 10000 RF.

What to pack for the Congo Nile trail?

While taking the Congo Nile trail remember to carry the ravel gear for Africa, these will serve you well on the Congo Nile trail. If you plan to camp a tent and sleeping pad are essential and make sure the tent can stand up to a staff rainstorm. Remember to carry a sleeping bag to save weight, instead combine a silk sleeping bag liner and a metallic emergency bivy with warm clothes for slightly cool nights. As you travel remember not to carry any polythen bag because you know it very well that Rwanda banned all the paper bags for their safety of general cleanliness.

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