Situated in the very heart of the continent, Rwanda straddles the steamy rainforests of Central Africa and the more open woodland savanna terrain of East Africa. With its thrilling rolling mountainous landscapes, this tiny nation is often referred to as “The Land of a Thousand Hills”, and more recently through the work of Dian Fossey with the rare mountain gorillas, it has also become known as the Land of “Gorillas in the Mist”.

These idyllic images were shattered for a brief moment in 1994 and 1995 with the horrors of the genocide, but the country has long since settled its political differences by forging a lasting sense of national, rather than ethnic, identity. The memorials to this tragic event have become a sobering component on the itineraries of most visitors.

While gorilla trekking in the Virunga Mountains remains the country’s traditional tourism highlight, the montane forests of Nyungwe, the savannah plains of Akagera and the waters of Lake Kivu are additional attractions.