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“Luxurious, beautiful, peaceful surrounds...and the best bed I've ever encountered on the African continent”

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Nyungwe Forest Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Luxurious, beautiful, peaceful surrounds...and the best bed I've ever encountered on the African continent”
Reviewed 28 June 2013

I'm currently sitting on the best bed of all time, wondering why I have to leave this magical place tomorrow.

This place is a splurge, but you get so much more than you pay for. When you arrive, you are greeted with hot towels and drinks (ours was a passionfruit and lime "caipirhina," though there was no booze, sadly). This sets the tone for the extremely high caliber service that you will receive throughout your stay.

The decor is elegant/modern with local flair, incorporating the ubiquitous baskets you see everywhere in Rwanda.

The accommodations are individual casitas, and they all face the Nyungwe forest. Only the monkeys and birds will see you wandering around your tranquil retreat naked, if you so choose. TV with cable channels in English and French, though I haven't been inclined to turn it on, as it somehow spoils the tranquility. Climate here is very moderate, and since it's at quite an altitude (2000+ meters), bugs are really not an issue. No mosquito nets - hooray!! There's also ceiling fans and air cond, as well as wood burning stove for the cool nights during the rainy season. You will NOT be uncomfortable here.

Food is included with the rate, and you are always given a choice of 2 starters, 3-4 entrees, and 2 desserts. The food was always good, never amazing, but perfectly pleasant. On our first night, they surprised us with an entire cake, after we had already eaten our 3 courses, because I mentioned at some point in the reservation process that we were celebrating our 4th wedding anniversary. Husband and I were both so pleasantly surprised, and the other guests were pleased too, as they got to share our cake :)

The reception also helps facilitate visits in the forest, and makes recommendations, which is helpful.

Overall, we had an incredible 3-night stay here, and even though it is seriously a pain to get here (5ish hour drive through curvy mountainous terrain to get here from Kigali), I am already planning our next stay.

Room Tip: They have a full menu of spa services - get a massage it is so worth it!!
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  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank AmyMCLA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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263 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
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  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (47)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Seattle
Level Contributor
72 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 June 2013

This lodge is nestled in rolling tea plants. Very tastefully planned and decorated. The rooms are large, and comfortable. Large bathroom with all the amenities. Nice balconies with monkeys in the forest to keep you company. Although some of the other reviewers didn't like the food, we thought it was wonderful. The service was impeccable, servers very nice. We were immediately greeted with a drink, which was welcome after our long drive. They offer a tea service every evening that provides an education on how tea is grown and cultivated. Our gal was very sweet and knowledgable. The staff was very helpful, providing early breakfast for us as we went chimp trekking. Our guide had advised us to bring our luggage to the lobby prior to going chimp trekking, but on our return, the staff allowed us to return to our room (even though it had been cleaned already) and take showers, get cleaned up. Then we had a wonderful lunch prior to our departure. We only stayed one night, but I could have stayed longer. It's a very peaceful setting.

  • Stayed May 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank lfthorn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nyakarambi, Rwanda
Level Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 June 2013

I knew what to expect as far as the service, the location and the quality of the rooms were concerned but I had low expectations of the restaurant judging from other reviews and word of mouth reports. However, as my friend and I sat at our first meal we immediately wondered how people could have been disappointed. The food was beautifully presented and tasted absolutely delicious - certainly worth a five star rating anywhere in our opinion. We mentioned the quality of the food as we checked out at which point the chef himself appeared to hear our compliments, telling us how happy he was with our judgement as he only started there two weeks earlier! Well, that explains the discrepancy between earlier reviews and the wonderful eating experiences we enjoyed three times a day - plus the five o'clock tea time treats!! I really hope I can manage to spend more time at Nyungwe Forest Lodge at some point in the future, having never before experienced such high quality service in such beautiful surroundings both inside and outside the Lodge.

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank JohnP-VSO
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kampala, Uganda
Level Contributor
382 reviews
193 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 264 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 June 2013

When the lodge came into sight, at the end of an hour's transfer from the Kamembe airport in Rusizi / Cyangugu, my memories of the first visit came rushing back. The early evening had turned chilly already and the hot towels were a welcome gesture to wipe the sweat and dust of the travel off. I asked to have a cup of tea instead of a glass of chilled juice and yes, of course that was immediately arranged.
By the time the pre- printed check in form was handed to me, signed and returned, it had turned dark outside but staff was at hand to walk me to my cottage room and my bags were delivered at the same time.
The superbly appointed bathroom, offering a large tub and a shower cabin, stocked with a range of top of the range cosmetic products, shampoos and shower gels, again surprised me with a heated towel rack, most welcome considering the falling temperatures outside. Isn't there anything better than stepping out of the shower and having a warm towel at hand?
I still think that the furnishings would fit better into a city hotel and hope that when the first major refurbishment comes due, a more indigenous line of fabrics can be introduced, as the modern style, in my humble view, clashes with the setting and the ambience of the cabins.
The bedding quality remains top quality, pillows and duvet, and the internet connection was fast and accessible without much ado.
The food and service have matured too and if I had one issue, pasta should be served immediately when ready and not wait under the salamander until everyone else in the party I travelled with had finished their starters ... It was a night of a full moon when I stayed at the Nyungwe Forest Lodge this time and the tea plantations were illuminated in the silver light of the moon, with the dark outline of Nyungwe Forest surrounding the lodge's cottages.
There are now several hikes along well prepared trails available into Nyungwe Forest National Park and guides from the nearby Gisakura park sub headquarters will take visitors for chimpanzee tracking, to see the Colobus monkey colonies, other primates, birds, trees, shrubs and orchids galore of course. For visitors flying into Kamembe, the lodge, at a cost, arranges transport which can also be hired to drive to the canopy walk jump off point.
Overall once again a great visit, but again, too short. Three nights at the least are needed, four would be better even, to more fully explore the forest before returning to the lodge and enjoying pool and Spa, food and hospitality. Until we meet again!

Room Tip: All rooms face the forest and have their own balcony but those who can afford it, should opt for one...
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  • Stayed May 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Safariafficionado
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
90 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 May 2013

This is a beautiful developing area of Rwanda. The Nyungwe National Park has a canopy walk, chimp tracking possibilities and beautiful hikes around waterfalls. This hotel is just steps away from the entrance to the amazing waterfall hike. It is actually on a tea plantation, and tea is promoted here. It's such a healthy and natural place to be, and it's hard to tear yourself away from a deck where you are "taking tea!"
Each guest has their own cabin, and each cabin has a back entrance with a deck that opens out to the rainforest, so monkey sightings are possible right from your room. The food service is pretty terrific, and there is a spa and pool there if nature isn't offering you enough respite.

Room Tip: It's a long walk to some of the cabins from the reception area, so request a close one if that p...
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  • Stayed May 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank BeaBC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Level Contributor
14 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 May 2013 via mobile

Not only is this hotel spectacular it's an amazing bargain. I don't know how long they can afford this kind of pricing. I didn't want to leave. The food was a tad boring bit you could certainly order up your own custom meal to solve that. I recommend meeting the chef to spell out what you like or don't like to give him time to prepare it for you.

  • Stayed May 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank PercyLipinski
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviewed 2 May 2013

This was our top end experience, we ve saved money to stay here and it was the best decision. The place is amazing, lots of wildlife that you can see from the balcony of your room. Setting is unbelievable - on the tea plantation overlooking Nyngwe forest. Food is really good although probably not up to 5 star standards. Staff friendly, service bit slow but overall experience suppresses all expectations.

  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Peter F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Nyungwe Forest Lodge

Property: Nyungwe Forest Lodge
Address: Nyungwe Forest, Gafunzo 00250, Rwanda
Region: Rwanda > Western Province > Gafunzo
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Speciality Lodging in Gafunzo
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Nyungwe Forest Lodge 4.5*
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The lodge is the only five star establishment within the Nyungwe National Park area. It lies in a tea plantation on the edge of the Nyungwe closed canopy rain forest and comprises of 20 luxurious rooms and two Presidential Suites – with 2bedrooms – luxurious suites, one with a Jacuzzi, each equipped with private decks with views overlooking the vast forest terrain. Lodge facilities include an outdoor heated swimming pool, a boma for outdoor dining and sundowners, a restaurant with private terrace, a tea lounge and bar, a relaxation retreat with two treatment rooms, plus a fitness centre with treadmill, cycle and weights. The lodge also offers the latest in Wi-Fi technology with exclusive conferences facilities accommodating up to 18 delegates. Furthermore, the main lodge is wheelchair friendly with relevant facilities. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Nyungwe Forest Hotel Kigali

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