Akagera National Park Rwanda – Tourist Activities
Akagera National Park is positioned in the north east of Rwanda overlooking the plains of Tanzania. It extends over a geographical spread of 1122 km2 and under a public private partnership arrangement of African Parks and Rwanda Development Board since 2010. Read More about akagera national park rwanda
Tourist Attractions in Akagera National Park Rwanda
Akagera National Park Rwanda has a many of Tourist Attractions. Read More about the tourist attractions in Akagera National Park
Wildlife, The Akagera National Park carried out two (2) subsequent aerial censuses in 2010 and 2013 respectively and the later indicated an increasing number of wildlife in the park. The Akagera National Park is a habitat to counts of large plain dwelling game species and other species that are limited to papyrus wetlands.
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The swamp dwelling species include the Sitatunga (Tragelaphus spekei) and the highly sought after shoebill (Balaeniceps rex). The wild game that tend to dwel in the plains include; savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana), topi (Damaliscus lunatus topi), buffalo (Syncerus caffer), zebra (Equus quagga boehmi), roan antelope (Hippotragus equinus), defassa waterbuck (Kobus ellipsiprymnus defassa) and the eland (Taurotragus oryx). The range of other species of antelopes that exist in Akagera National Park include; duiker (Sylvicapra grimmia), bohor reedbuck (Redunca redunca), oribi (Ourebia ourebi), klipspringer (Oreotragus oreotragus), impala (Aepyceros melampus) and bushbuck (Tragelaphus scriptus).
The Akagera Natinal Park is also a home to large predators including the lions which have been re-introduced, hyena (Crocuta crocuta). Smaller predators include the side-striped jackal (Canis adustus), mongoose species, serval (Leptailurus serval) and viverrid species.
Birds, Akagera National Park is a habitat to 500 species of birds including the elusive and Vulnerable Shoebill stork that inhabit the papyrus along with beautiful papyrus gonolek (Laniarius mufumbiri) along with other water birds. The park inhabits forty four (44) species of raptor, Balaeniceps rex along with Palearctic migrants where the Falco naumanni, Glareola nordmanni and Gallinago media were recorded. The Akagera National Park forms the northern limit of the Zambezian biome species which include; Myrmecocichla arnotti, Cisticola angusticauda and Lanius souzae. Additionally, the park has one (1) species of Guinea – Congo Forests biome along with seven (7) Species of Afro-tropical Highlands biome.
Water bodies, The Akagera National Park has many swamp fringed lakes and the Akagera River which support a wide range of aquatic dwelling animals and present the largest protected wetland system in the central of Africa. The lakes include Lake Ihema which is the second largest in Rwanda, Lake Shakani, Lake Rwnyakizinga, Lake Gishanju and Lake Mihindi. The water bodies contain Hippopotamus and Nile crocodile and a range of fish. The Akagera River traversers the eastern boundary of the park before flowing to Uganda through Tanzania to empty in Lake Victoria forming one of the sources of the Nile River.
Overview about Akagera National Park Rwanda
The park is named after the River Akagera which is one of the sources of the Nile River which is the longest in the world. The River feeds in the chain of lakes that mark the floor of the Akagera plains including Lake Ihema which is the second largest in the whole of Rwanda.
The impressive undulating hills of acacia and Brachystegia Woodland that is intercepted by scattered grassland and the swamp fringed lakes creating a remarkable scenic views. The Akagera National Park is noted to be the largest national park in Rwanda and most of all, the only savannah park thus acting as a congregation for all savannah dwelling species. As Rwanda is known as the land of a thousand hills, the Akagera has also had a share of this. The park shelters the Mutumba Hills that tower to 2,000m above sea level offering the impressive sights of the river, lakes and swamps below.
Gazetted in the year in 1934, the Akagera National Park has passed through the thick and thin. The park was reduced in size to accommodate the Rwandan nationals that returned after the civil war. As a result, about 2,500km2 of land was degazetted to make Akagera stand at its current size.
The Akagera National Park boasts of remarkable bio-diversity levels which could be as a result of the varied vegetation zones. The extended freshwater systems coupled with papyrus swamps present one of the biggest protected wetland in the Central of Africa. A range of species have been introduced to Akagera National Park including the Masaai Giraffe that was secured from Kenya in the year 1986 and the current population of these Giraffes stands at 60.
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A count of five (5) black female Rhinos and two (2) male were introduced to the park in the year 1958 and 1959. However, due to wide scale poaching in 1980s, the species faced extinction though their numbers had increased to 50 in the 1970s. The elephants formerly existed in the park but faced extinction around 1961. The elephants were then trans-located from Bugesera as the population in the area there was increasing steadily thus taking over the elephant habitat. However, by that time, the knowledge of elephant translocation was still limited and as a result counts of 26 young elephants were trans-located while the mature ones had to be eliminated. At the moment, there are ninety (90) estimated to be thriving in Akagera National Park. Towards the end of June 2015, a count of seven (7) lions was re-introduced to the park following fifteen (15) years of disappearance. It was a donation from South Africa.
Your Safari Route to Akagera National Park Rwanda | How to Get to Akagera National Park Rwanda
- Getting to Akagera National Park from Kigali is 2 ½ hours to cover 135km distance.
- Getting to Akagera National Park from Kibungo / Rwamagana takes 1 hour drive.
- The entrance-gate is 500 meters from Akagera Game Lodge, linked by dirt road connection ranging for over 27 kilometers from the major surface road at kabarondo approximately 15 km north side of Kibungo.
- During the rainy season, the 4×4 vehicles need to be considered
- The traveller on Rwanda safari can also use the public means to connect to the park. Minibus taxis travel from Kigali to Kayonza and Kibungo regularly. You disembark at the junction and use a private taxi or a motorbike to connect to the park. Read More about How to get there
Transport Means to Your Safari Destinations
Accommodations, Safari Lodges, Safari Hotels in Akagera National Park Rwanda
Every tourist loves to travel but scared of whether they will have the comfort they left back home. For a gorilla safari Rwanda, accommodation can be accessed from areas within Rwanda national park which is the only mountain gorilla national park in Rwanda.Read More about Accommodations, Safari lodges & Safari hotels in Akagera National Park
Ruzizi Tented Lodge is a luxury tented accommodation facility in Akagera National Park. It offers accommodation in a range of twenty (20) beds that are connected by walkways. The lodge is the first of its kind in Rwanda. The lodge overlooks the shores of Lake Ihema which is the second largest lake in Rwanda. The lodge construction started in Jan 2012 and by November the same year, it was complete.
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It was constructed by Akagera Management Company using the local workmanship and where possible, used local materials. The Ruzizi Tented Camp is designed to blend with the surrounding environment. It features solar power.
Ruzizi Tented Camp has nine (9) tents which can up to twenty (20) clients. Every tent features an en suite bathroom that has cold and hot running water, dressing area, either 3/4 twin beds or comfortable queen beds, a front side patio and each tent is accessed by wooden board walks that lead to and from the main reception area.
Ruzizi Tented Camp has a family tent that can accommodate up to four (4) people and a tree top tent. It also has a thatched central reception area along with a dinning and lounge bar. There is an extensive deck that has a fire place under a large fig tree with the view of Lake Ihema.
The Akagera Game Lodge is located within the park close to its southern entrance. It is perched on a ridge that overlooks Ihema Lake and impressive surroundings that feature protected woodland, open savannah, lakes and deep valley. The Akagera Game Lodge offers another up class accommodation in the Akagera National Park. It features a swimming pool, conference center and a tennis court. Accommodation is offered in standard rooms, deluxe, family and Junior Suite. The lodge features over 60 bed rooms.
The Shakani Campsite is located on the shores of Lake Shakani offering impressive views of the lake, birds and Hippos.
Mutamba campsite; The Mutamba Campsite is perched on a vantage point offering close vies of wildlife gatherings especially the herds of eland and the Roan antelope.
Muyumba campsite; The Muyumba Campsite is positioned on a ridge with views of Lake Shakani and Lake Ihema and the Tanzania Plains. The Muyumba Campsite is close to the Kiyonza park entrance than any other camp.
The campsites have ordinary pit latrines and washrooms. The guests are required to carry with them water and firewood is provided. The tents can be hired at the park reception.
Tourist Activities in Akagera National Park Rwanda
The different tourist activities that are carried in Akagera National Park Rwanda. Read more about the Tourist Activities in Akagera National Park Rwanda
Boat trips, The Akagera National Park presents impressive boat cruise on Lake Ihema which is the second largest in Rwanda after Lake Kivu. The recreational boat cruise encounters are organized during day or at the sunset with possible views of the Hippos and the Nile crocodiles not forgetting the bird species. The boat cruise is organized by the Akagera Game Lodge in partnership with Rwanda Development Board.
Sport Fishing, The Akagera National Park presents an ideal sport fishing encounter on Lake Shakani. The lake is south of the park and gives you an opportunity to undertake the sport fishing adventure.
Game drives, Akagera National Park presents the ideal game viewing encounter in the whole of Rwanda. Being the only savannah park in the country, the park is a rich habitat for savannah dwelling animals and therefore undertaking game drives in the park is very reading in terms in wildlife viewing. There are options of taking the park guide or a free-lance community guide and the two feature detailed destination knowledge of the park.
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The game drives gives you chances of exploring a range of wild game including, the swamp dwelling Sitatunga (Tragelaphus spekei), savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana), topi (Damaliscus lunatus topi), buffalo (Syncerus caffer), zebra (Equus quagga boehmi), roan antelope (Hippotragus equinus), defassa waterbuck (Kobus ellipsiprymnus defassa), the eland (Taurotragus oryx), duiker (Sylvicapra grimmia), bohor reedbuck (Redunca redunca), oribi (Ourebia ourebi), klipspringer (Oreotragus oreotragus), impala (Aepyceros melampus) and bushbuck (Tragelaphus scriptus). It also offers opportunity to encounter Primate Species like olive baboons (Papio anubis) and vervet monkeys (Chlorocebus pygerythus) and the blue monkey (Cercopithecus mitis) though it is rare. The activity also offers possibilities of encountering large predators including the lions which have been re-introduced, hyena (Crocuta crocuta). Smaller predators include the side-striped jackal (Canis adustus), mongoose species, serval (Leptailurus serval) and viverrid species.
Night Game Drives, Akagera National Park offers an opportunity to encounter the nocturnal dwelling species including; Bushbabies or Galagos (Otolemur crassicaudatus and Galago moholi).
Birding, Akagera National Park with over 500 bird species presents an ideal birding encounter. The birders have opportunity of exploring the varied park landscapes ranging from the waterfowl concentrations to savannah dwelling species. The notable Species that can be encountered include the near threatened listed papyrus gonolek (Laniarius mufumbiri) limited to the papyrus swamp range, the localized red faced barbet (Lybius bidentatus) and the remarkable swamp flycatcher (Muscicapa boehmi).
Helicopter Adventures / Aerial tours, Akagera National Park presents aerial tours of the park exploring the Akagera landscapes from above. The views of the Akagera plains viewed from above with series of swamp fringed lakes and open savannah as it stretches to the Tanzanian plains. You view the wild game grazing in the parks savannah. It offers the scenic views of the parka and beyond.
Rwanda Safari Trips
The world traveller would wish to know the travel requirement before considering visiting Uganda and Rwanda. The travel information gives you an insight into the requirements of the basic aspects like Passport, Visa requirements and exemption and the health conditions. Understanding these requirements help one to act accordingly so as to avoid disappointments at the time of arrival.The travel information also features the travel to Uganda and Rwanda. The travellers are given the opportunity to know the flights that operate from their respective originating areas connecting to Uganda and Rwanda. The domestic flights and provision for charter flights is also provided for the sake of flying travelers on safari in Uganda or Rwanda safari.
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3Days Rwanda Wildlife Safari to Akagera National Park. is a perfect short wildlife encounter in the rolling savannah plains of the eastern Rwanda where Akagera National Park is situated overlooking the Tanzanian Plains.
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