Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge, Rwanda
Watched over by the natural drama of the Virunga Mountains in Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park, Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge (part of the Governors’ Camp Collection) is nestled within a spectacular location. The main draw for anyone coming here is to trek to see the resident mountain gorillas, but Sabyinyo is more than just a handy base for retreating to after a weary day hiking through the thick jungle. It’s like staying in a ‘home from home’, such is the cosiness of its individual cottages and their stylish-yet-familiar interiors. The main building adds to the homely atmosphere, with a games room, library and lounge area – complete with fireplace. Even though Sabyinyo is run by Governors, it’s actually Rwanda’s first community-owned lodge. Owned by local trust SACOLA, it works tirelessly to help support and educate local communities, as well protect the iconic mountain gorillas you’ve come to see.
Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge
You can choose between suites or cottages at Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge, all of which are housed in stone buildings and topped with Rwandan terracotta tiles. Each one features a large living area, dressing room, chic Venetian plaster bathrooms and big fireplace. They’re stylishly furnished as well and if it wasn’t for the epic scenery you can see out of every window, you’d find it hard to leave your snug retreat. Wide, wooden verandas mean you and sit outside and watch the wildlife for hours, keeping a keen eye out for the many species of bird which flit between the trees. The family suite has an extra bedroom – perfect for a group of friends or a family looking for their own gorilla adventure. Each morning, your butler will bring local coffee and biscuits to your door, and help you with any trekking gear you might need. When you return from your time with the gorillas, they’ll be ready and waiting to clean your clothes and boots.
A hearty range of meals are the focus of menus at Sabyinyo’s restaurant, where you can enjoy breakfast, lunch and dinner. If it’s warm, you can sit out on the veranda for dinner with a view but in the colder months, the restaurant’s crackling log fire delivers a cosy atmosphere.
Seeing mountain gorillas in their natural habitat of Volcanoes National Park’s lush mountainous jungles is one of the most memorable travel moments you’ll ever have. Sabyinyo is only a short drive to the national park’s headquarters, where the guided gorilla treks leave from, so it’s in a great location from which to spend time with the primates. The trek itself can be fairly tough, especially if it’s wet and muddy (it is a rainforest, after all) and you have to venture deep to find a troop of gorillas. There’s also dedicated hikes to see the park’s other spectacular primate – the golden monkey. Even though they don’t get as much of the limelight as the gorillas, they’re still well worth seeing in our opinion. The lodge also leads a number of other walks – both intrepid and short hikes. You can circle the Ngezi’s crater lake or, if you fancy more of a challenge, venture further to Dian Fossey’s research camp and grave. For something a little bit different, you can spy the lava flows at Ruhengeri or visit a number of the local villages in the area. There’s lots to do besides just gorilla trekking in Volcanoes National Park!
Even though there’s no dedicated spa at Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge, there is a team of masseurs reading to soothe your aching limbs after a long day spent with the gorillas or exploring the national park. An impressive range of treatments means you’ll feel revitalized and refreshing for the following day’s adventure!
Where is Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge?
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