Things to do in akagera national park
things to do in akagera national park: Akagera national park is a very extraordinary national park habiting the big five animals that is lion, elephant, rhino, buffalo and leopard. Akagera national park is situated in north east region of Rwanda overlooking the scenic plains of Tanzania, the park stretches over an area of 1122 square kilometers. Akagera national park is the only national park in Rwanda with open savanna vegetation, the park is made up of broad leaved forests and small rolling hills.
Akagera national park is a tourism haven offering many interesting activities to keep the tourist entertained and excited throughout their safari stay in Akagera national park. These activities include
Game drives are one of the most amazing safari activities offered in akagera national park, game drives in the park are offered in three shifts that is morning, afternoon and night game drive. Game drives in the park are led by a professional game guide taking you through the spectacular landscape of the park which is covered by open savannah vegetation, while on a game drive in the park many animals are spotted such as elephants, buffaloes, antelopes, hyenas, zebras, giraffes, bohor reed buck, Oribi, common duiker, klipspringer, semi aquatic Sitatunga antelopes and many more. On a game drive you not only enjoy the view of animals you also get to enjoy the scenic view of the park, the best game drives in participate in while on your safari in Akagera national park is morning game drive and night game drive. Morning game drive gives an opportunity to spot many wildlife species like lions, leopards as they graze in the park, the reason to why you get to spot many animals is because they are not scattered yet because of the sunshine. Night game drive offers you an opportunity to spot nocturnal animals like leopards, as they are looking for prey to feed on and also bush babies.
Akagera national park is a very famous and an important birding site in Rwanda the land of a thousand hills, akagera national park is a perfect spot for bird lovers as it is a habitant to land, water and forest bird species. Bird watching combined with game drive and while doing so you get to encounter many bird species, among the bird species you encounter in the park include two extremely endangered bird species such as shoe bill and papyrus gonolek. Other animal species which are spotted in the park include weavers, egrets, Kingfishers, jacanas, ibises, Hadada ibis, Augur buzzard, hammerkop, fan tailed widowbird, grey-backed fiscals, pied cow, long crested eagle, cattle Egret, black headed and Vieillot’s black weavers, carruther’s cisticola and many more. The perfect spots to view a reasonable number of bird species is Lake Ihema where you get to see many birds in the swampy side of the lake and its shores, also in the savannah grassland of the park.
Forest/ nature walks
Forest/ nature walks in akagera national park are a refreshing safari activity, nature walks takes place in the savannah grass and the small forested area of the park. While on the nature/ forest walks you are led by a professional tour guide, you get to enjoy the beautiful scenic landscape of the park and also encounter a variety of animals such as bush pigs, catlike genet, black masked civet, warthogs, black trailered mongoose and many more as they graze and stroll in the savannah grassland. In forested park of park you get to sport a number of primates such as olive baboons, rare blue monkeys, vervet monkeys and wide eyed bush babies. As you stroll through the short savannah vegetation of the park you get to spot many colorful bird species such as shoe bill and papyrus gonolek. Other animal species which are spotted in the park include weavers, egrets, Kingfishers, jacanas, ibises, Hadada ibis, Augur buzzard, hammerkop, fan tailed widowbird, grey-backed fiscals, pied cow, long crested eagle, cattle Egret, black headed and Vieillot’s black weavers, carruther’s cisticola and many more.
Sport fishing is a thrilling activity offered in akagera national park, this exciting activity takes place on the shores of Lake Shakani where you get to fish various fish species including tilapia. To make this activity more amazing you get involved in fishing tournament where you compete in who catches the biggest and many fish. After fishing tournament you cook and roast your fish in the evening during a bon fire. While on sport fishing you get to enjoy beautiful blue scenery of the lake, see hippopotamuses and birds on the shores of the lake.
There is no better way of enjoying of the aquatic life of akagera national park than getting involved in an exciting boat trip on Lake Ihema, the clear blue waters of Lake Ihema will make your expedition on the lake more amazing as you sport aquatic water animals. Lake Ihema is known for harboring the largest population of hippopotamus and crocodiles in the region and the animals are seen while on a boat trip, hippopotamus, crocodiles, warthogs, antelopes, hyenas, zebras, giraffes, bohor reed buck, Oribi come to the shores of the lake to drink water and for a swim to cool off from the scotching heat of the sun.
Akagera national park offers Ariel tours which gives you an opportunity to tour the park and its attractions from the sky, while in a helicopter up in the skies you get to view savannah vegetation cover in the park, series of swamp fringed lakes and animals grazing in the park.
The best time to visit akagera national park
Like other national parks in Rwanda, akagera national park is visited throughout the year but the best time to visit the park is during dry season periods. The park experiences two seasons that is dry season in the periods of June- September and mid-December to mid-February and wet season in the periods of late February to May and October to mid-December. The essence of visiting in dry season is that the routes in the park are less muddy making them very navigable, also the grass in the park is short making wildlife viewing easer.
Where to stay while in akagera national park
When you go on a safari in the park, accommodation can be got from the following accommodation facilities which offer comfortable bed facilities, food and services. These facilities include akagera game lodge, Ruzizi tented lodge, the karenga bush camp, akagera resort and country club, Akagera rhino lodge and many more.
How to access akagera national park
Akagera national park is situated in eastern region of Rwanda that is 102.3 kilometers from Kigali town which a 3 hours’ drive, the park is accessed using northern and southern gate. The north gate is currently used as for only exit.