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Hailed for it’s eco-friendly building design, Ruzizi opened in 2012 with a vision to create a space that merged effortlessly with the landscape. The surrounding environment has been left as undisturbed as possible during construction; you’ll find huge trees grow through the central dining and lounge areas. Much of the furniture is handcrafted by local artisans, the camp is solar-powered and there is a strict water-usage policy that minimizes water waste.
The lodge is just a 30 minute drive from the park entry gate. You’ll arrive into a thatched, central, communal area which comprises of a spacious lounge, indoor dining area and reception. Follow the path toward the lake and you’ll find the property’s best feature – an overwater deck with central firepit. In good weather, meals are served alfresco, on this deck, listening to the hippos grumble and the fire crackle. It’s also a great spot for a sunny morning breakfast, with commanding views across Lake Ihema.
Rooms, like the rest of the lodge, are raised and set back into the luscious undergrowth along the lakeshore. There are nine rooms in total and they are accessed via raised walkways with private terraces that command a view across the lake, framed by towering palms and fruiting fig trees.
Guides are freelance, hired from local communities and trained by African Parks. They facilitate day game drive, night drives and boat safaris around Akagera where, if you keep your eyes peeled, you have the chance to spot the Big Five.
The lodge’s spacious, shaded central living and dining area and the large, open deck which sits suspended over the lake is the charming, beating heart of the camp. If you can pull yourself away from the warm atmosphere here, you’ll follow a winding path along the lake shore to your room with a comfortable bed, enough space for bags and wares and wonderful view of the lake.
Rooms are tented, with stone ensuite bathrooms that have flushing toilets and hot and cold running water. The layout and décor throughout the lodge is simple but charming and facilities provide you with all you need to be entirely comfortable and help you feel right at home from the moment you arrive.
Ruzizi welcomes children six years and older, making it more of adult’s destination and so it’s ideal for couples or solo travellers looking for a little bit of peace and quiet in the bush.
It’s worth noting that Ruzizi doesn’t include activities as part of your stay. The camp hires vehicles and guides for game drive from within the community locally and on demand, so most visitors tend to stay with private guides.
Meals are served alfresco on the lodge’s picturesque deck overlooking the lake. Expect hearty breakfasts, simple but delicious lunches, which can also be prepared to take away for those that wish to be out all day, and dinner is a three-course affair.
At Wayfairer we seek to support camps and lodges that operate in line with our conservation-first values. Not only is Ruzizi built effortlessly in tune with its surroundings but sustainability and the success of Akagera is at the heart of everything they do; from recycled glassware to prioritizing local employment, training and conservation education programs. Best of all, as the property is owned by African Parks, 100% of their profits go to Akagera so you know that your stay at Ruzizi is directly benefitting the people and wildlife of this important, up and coming wildlife conservation area.
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