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  • Day6

    Mongoose and markets

    July 5, 2017 in Rwanda ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    This morning we had a game drive before breakfast, to try and see some of the nocturnal animals as they return home. Coffee was served at 5.15am and we were off in the dark at 5.30am.

    We spotted hyena in the distance and were pleasantly surprised when they headed towards us to check us out. The plains were teeming this morning with all sorts of antelope, buffalo, zebra and bird life (for the twitchers, the highlight this morning was a lilac breasted roller). The unexpected find was a family of mongoose we watched darting around the grass.

    We arrived back at camp at 9.00am for breakfast, then left the park by the northern gate for the trip back to Kigali. There is no road diect to Kigali from the northern end of the park, so we drove back to Kayonza, dropped off our National Park guide Herman, and continued on to Kigali for lunch (buffet at an Italian restaurant)

    We checked in at the hotel, had an hour to have a shower, and was ready to go to the markets for our first shopping opportunity (Oliver first had to meet Justifiee, a friend of the hotel receptionist, who is sewing up a dress and skirt for her from a local fabric).

    The market area of town was very busy, mostly with locals as there are are relatively few tourists around. All the shops sell the same range of products aimed at tourists, and bartering isn't done with much vigour - they will generally only take 1000 francs (approx $1.60) off the starting price - so the negotiations are over quickly. Our tour leader Aloys took us to a number of different shops and each shopping centre had metal detectors and bag searches at the entrance, which took a little longer the more everyone bought!

    Tea tonight was a banquet at Republic, including chilli coconut fish, goat stew, fried plantain, garlic potatoes and ginger rice.

    Some of the ladies wanted to return to the market to buy some more fabric, so one vehicle went back into the centre of town. The streets were still busy, but unfortunately most if the shops were closed, so no purchases were made.

    Back to the hotel at 10.30pm.

    Stayed: Heaven Boutique Hotel Chalet
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