Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Rwanda Part I - Getting There

On Thursday morning we took off with our driver Abu on a familiar route: departing from Kalisizo and driving north to the Masaka-Mbarrara road and then west to Kabale (the town near the infamous Lake Bunyonyi).  Once in Kabale we had lunch at The Little Ritz in Africa and then continued west toward the Rwandan border crossing at Kisoro.

Here we are at a vista point overlooking the western tip of Lake Bunyoni.  We thought we were high up at this point ... little did we know we'd be going over some serious mountains where a highway widening project was in full effect.

The aforementioned highway widening project in the mountains above Kisoro.  It was very interesting driving on an unpaved surface with tractors reaching across the road and clearing massive amounts of earth every now and then.

View from Uganda of the Virunga mountain range in Rwanda and the DRC.  Mt. Muhabura is the tallest mountain in the distance.  The day after our arrival I climbed Mt. Bisoke.

After arriving in Kisoro we had some trouble finding the actual border crossing and some children took the opportunity to come say hi.

After six hours in the car and 208 miles, we made it to the border, presented our passports, and walked on into Rwanda.  It was the easiest border crossing I'd ever experienced since it wasn't crowded and Americans don't need visas to enter Rwanda.  Also, I had never crossed a border on foot before - pretty nice.  We soon met up with our tour guide, Gerald, who drove 20 km to the town of Ruhengeri where we would stay for two nights.  The next day I hiked Bisoke and Elizabeth, Leigh, and Rachel hung out with gorillas!  More on that tomorrow.

Photos by Oh MG.

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