Climate & Weather Throughout The Year in Rwanda
During the daytime, the temperatures rise to 22◦C. Many visitors choose Rwanda because of its unique chimpanzee and gorilla tracking experiences at Nyungwe National Park and Volcanoes National Park and other activities include exploring Kigali city, Ethnographic Museum, Gorilla Guardians village, King’s palace, Volcanoes National Park, and Kigali Genocide Memorial.
Rwanda is 2◦ South of the equator, with high topography” which gives it the name “The land of a thousand hills”, high altitude with an elevation that makes the tropical highland climate more favorable for the people.
Rwanda is the 3rd greenest place in the world, according to the world travel guide in 2015 with four national parks. Rwanda is one of the landlocked countries found in the East African region, centered by Tanzania in the South-South East, Kenya in the North North East, Burundi in the South, Uganda in the North, and DRC in the West.
The size of the county is about 26,338 kilometers (about 10,169miles). The population of this country is 12.63 million people according to the world bank survey in 2019.
Within the country, different regions experience different temperature variations as seen below.
During day time, temperatures tend to be at 22◦ and 27◦ C
During the night, it goes to 16◦C and 21◦C
Unlike other countries mostly in the African region, the temperatures change to either too cold or too hot.
In the West and North mountainous areas, the temperature is cooler compared to the areas lying in the East.
In the higher mountains, the temperature is at 10◦C to 15◦C.
TEMPERATURE IN KIGALI CAPITAL
In Kigali City, temperatures range from 26◦C to 27◦C making it stable and favorable to visitors who may want to visit Rwanda at any time of the year.
- During the day, the temperature goes to 15◦C and 16◦C.
- During the night, the temperature goes to 59◦F and 61 F.
Therefore, it is advisable for all visitors planning their safaris into Rwanda for either gorilla tracking, chimpanzee tracking, and wildlife viewing at Akagera national park, Volcanoes national park, or Nyungwe national park to always first check on the current weather and expectations in order to select the best time for undertaking their trip.
March-May [the long-wet season]
During this season, the rains fall constantly and heavily. At this time, the country gets covered with more green grasslands [vegetation] with beautiful blue sky for geographical scenes. For visitors planning for bird viewing safaris, this is the right time for booking your safari. The period is better for birding and photographic scenes.
OCTOBER – NOVEMBER [SHORT WET SEASON]
The West and Northwest are receiving more precipitation annually than East and South East, the rainfall is continuous most especially during the night and early morning hours and after the rain, the sun comes out immediately. Sometimes the rains come in the early morning and afternoon accompanied by thunderstorms and showers mostly.
There has been a global change in climate where the area reduced the amount of rainfall received per year and also separated rainfalls in the areas. In some areas, rains get restricted and other areas remain dry completely. In the North East, it rains heavily since the volcanoes are covered by tropical rain forests.
Gorilla tracking is possible during the rainy season; however, the track may be muddy and slippery. During the wet season, the gorillas tend to remain in lower altitudes since it is warmer than in the higher altitudes and the food is more available.
At Nyungwe national park, it is the greatest time for spotting butterfly species and rare orchids. Karisimbi is the highest peak in Rwanda with about 4,507 meters covered with snow.
Tracking and viewing chimpanzees at both Volcanoes national park and Nyungwe forest is done during wet seasons since Chimpanzees prefer lower altitudes.
March-May and October – November
THE WETTEST MONTH
April – the average rainfall is about 160mm.
- Day time, the temperature is at 26◦C
- The average nighttime temperature is at 15◦C.
- June – August, and December – February.
- The average daytime temperature is 27◦C
- The average morning temperature is 16◦C.
- July – average rainfalls are at 16mm
- August and September
- The average daily temperature is 28◦C.
- Sunrises at 05:50 and sunset at 18:00
JUNE – SEPTEMBER [LONG DRY SEASON]
It is during this season that leisure travel kickoffs in Rwanda where the rainfalls get to be very low or not at all. During this beautiful time, gorilla tracking is more at risk than other times. Kindly book your safari a month before your travel date to avoid inconveniences.
DECEMBER – FEBRUARY [SHOT DRY SEASON]
During this season, the rains tend to be very low and last for a short period of time. In the daytime, the average temperature at a maximum is at 25◦C to 27◦C and the nighttime average temperature is at 13 ◦C to 16◦C. However, due to climatic change, little rainfall falls literary at mountains of Volcanoes national park and Nyungwe national park because the temperature is slightly cool. At this time, wildlife viewing is recommended because animals tend to be searching for watering holes making it easier for visitors to spot them.
The time is also easier for gorilla and chimpanzee tracking due to less muddy trails, bugs, and mosquitoes.