Successful road trips in Rwanda are taking the lead and they are replacing the guided safaris in the country. Traveling around Rwanda with your own means of transport is the only way to experience Rwanda’s en-route attractions to the fullest. Rwanda is a destination which is packed with exciting and beautiful things to see and do, many of which are away from the usual routes.
Having a car to travel around Rwanda does not only give you the freedom to see various sites but as you can pack up and leave your lodge or accommodation to where you want to go, no schedules! Even though having a vehicle is an amazing way to see the country, there are things to consider in order to have successful road trips in Rwanda.
In other countries, driving at night is okay, but not in Rwanda, due to the fact that you’re in the foreign country, you shouldn’t risk driving at night because most drivers in Rwanda don’t respect traffic laws at night and most high ways do not have street signs and lights.
The main reason is to make sure you arrive at your lodge or destination before the sun has set for safety reasons. In order to enjoy or have a successful road trip, choose the suitable accommodation and keep their contacts. Search for suitable and good accommodation facilities near travel destinations and the travel operator you choose can help you because they are knowledgeable enough to help you choose suitable accommodation that suite your budget. They can even give you all the relevant information about attractions en-route and also in national parks.
A number of roads in Rwanda have street signs so don’t neglect them and drive under the stipulated driving speed, over speeding in Rwanda is an offense and punished. The speed limit on major highways is 80-100 km/hr. while in trading centers it can range between 30-40km/hr. and in national parks is 40-50km/hr. it is also advisable that you switch on lights when driving on dusty roads and when it is raining. And in national parks of Uganda, off-track driving is not allowed.
There are very many reasons to have a good map, but due to Rwanda’s nature of having many scenic drives, so not only will the map stop you from getting lost but they typically list various routes you can take to get to your destination. We suggest always opting for the scenic routes listed on the map as those drives are stunning. Having a cell phone is just plain smart. Use it to reserve hotel rooms, to call someone if you need help, or if you’re lost. And you can buy a local SIM card when you get to the country.
When starting your journey every morning, first check the vehicle and ensure that everything is in good condition such as the indicators, breaks, headlights, oil level, tire pressure for all the 4 wheels and spear tire and many others.
Although it’s great to drive along the highway with the windows down and the breeze blowing on your face, make sure to roll the windows up when you reach a town. If you’re sitting in the car parked in a parking lot with your windows down, you’ll be an easy target for someone to reach in and steal your belongings. Enjoy the breeze outside of the cities but turn on the air conditioning and roll up the windows when you reach the town.