Lake Kivu

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Rwanda is situated in the region of Great Lakes and has many beautiful and serene lakes bordering it.

Tourists from all over the world come to have a view of these serene Rwanda lakes. There are five volcanic lakes which lie on the border of Congo and Rwanda and have their own attractions. The major Rwandan lakes include Lake Kivu, Lake Ruhondo, Lake Mugesera, Lake Burera, Lake Muhazi and Lake Ihema.

Lake Kivu is the biggest of the numerous freshwater bodies that are there in Rwanda. It is an outstanding beautiful inland body of water which is enclosed by vertical, green terraced hills along the border of Congo. Set amid the dramatic mountains and sceneries of the rift valley and the volcanic Virungas to the north, the irregular shores of Lake Kivu form numerous inlets and peninsulas and myriad forest-fringed waterfalls. The lake is a 2650 square kilometre freshwater expanse and the largest of all the lakes that fill the valleys of Rwanda. There are three resort towns namely Gisenyi, Cyangugu and Kibuye on lake Kivu. The best beach is in Gisenyi with Serena luxury hotel right on the beach. In Kibuye however, being at Bethanie guesthouse overlooking kivu waves hitting the nearby island is a wonderful feeling.


The beautiful lake is enclosed by the steep terraced hills that are characteristic of rural Rwanda and sitting on its shores are the three lakeside towns of Cyangugu, Kibuye and Gisenyi,the perfect tourist tansit points between the Chimpanzee tracking destination of Nyungwe Forest National Park in the south, and gorilla tracking in Parc National des Volcans in the north.

Discovering these three colourful lakeside resort towns, pursuing the various water sports they have to offer, and boating to the numerous islands on the lake are just some of the activities available in the area.

The towns are connected by a wide roller-coaster road that tumbles through lush plantain fields and relic patches of misty rainforest to offer sweeping views over the shimmering lake. A charter boat service on the lake connecting the three towns is also available.

Birdlife around the lakes is fantastic including large numbers of pelicans, crowned cranes, malachite kingfishers and much more.


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