This landlocked country in Central Africa is called 'Land of a Thousand Hills'. There are also beautiful lakes in Rwanda. Water covers 1,390 sq km of the country; the largest lakes include Bulera, Ihema, Kivu, Mugesera and Muhazi,
The economy is based mostly on subsistence agriculture. Coffee and tea are the major crops for export. People in Rwanda grow coffee beans, tea, bananas, corn, potatoes, sweet potatoes and cassava.
As broad-leafed crops, banana plants play a vital role in combating soil erosion, because the leaves help to stop the soil being washed away by rain.
Rwanda is one of only two countries in the world where you can visit the endangered mountain gorillas (Uganda being the other). You'll find them in the forests of the Virunga Mountains, where they are living among volcanoes. The American zoologist Dian Fossey told the story of Rwanda’s endangered mountain gorillas in her book Gorillas in the Mist. In 1988 this was turned into a film, with Sigourney Weaver playing Dian.
The Akagera National Park has large numbers of buffalos, zebras, impalas, baboons, warthogs, lions and hippos. A rare animal is the giant pangolin, an anteater.
The official languages of Rwanda are Kinyarwanda, French, and English.
Traditional arts and crafts are produced throughout the country. One such traditional art form is 'imigiongo', consisting of cow dung. The dung is dried on boards. Then, it is painted, usually in black, white and red, with spiral motives and geometric designs. You'll see it on walls, pottery and canvas.
Rwanda joined the Commonwealth in 2009.
It made its Commonwealth Games debut at the Delhi 2010 Commonwealth Games, taking part in Athletics, Boxing, Road Cycling and Swimming. For the first time, the Queen's Baton Relay will pass through Rwanda, on its journey to the Opening Ceremony of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.