Akagera national park is located in the north-eastern region of Rwanda is named after the Akagera River that flows along its eastern boundary and feeds into labyrinth of lakes of which the largest is lake Ihema. Founded in 1934, with an area of 2,500km sq, it’s the last largest protected wetland in central Africa and the last remaining refuge for savannah adapter animals and plants in Rwanda.
Akagera NP is a home to a Big5 (lions, Rhinoceros) leopards, servals, hyenas, jackals and giraffes, large herds of buffaloes, zebras, and several antelope’s species.
Elephants congregate around the lakes that are inhabited by more than 800hippos as well as Africa’s largest freshwater predator, the Nile crocodile.
Akagera is an important birding area with nearly 500species, of which 99 are not found in any other Rwandan national park.
Things to do in Akagera National Park
The game drive here are like opening a present and each game drive holds a full new surprise as nature reveals its treasures in form of wonders that are so scenic, the wildlife like buffalos, antelopes including; the elands, topis, Maasai girafffes, monkeys, savannah birds, civets, leopards, the hyenas, as well as the serval cats.
If you are looking for a variation on the usual safari experience, a boat trip on Lake Ihema will not disappoint. Drift along the forest-fringed lake edge, past huddles of hippo and basking crocodiles. For the serious birder a boat trip is a must.
The boat trip will give you a chance to have a good view of more game which includes elephants, buffalos, and these will gather at the banks in order to drink water. You will also get an opportunity to see more loving birds like the shoebill stork, fish eagles, kingfishers, papyrus Gonolex, the herons, and many more.
Lake Shakani is the site of sports fishing in the park; spend relaxing day fishing off the lake shore and then cook your catch over an open fire at the campsite.
This national park is so good for birding and has over 480 species that are attracted by its diverse habitant. The savannah birds as well as the raptors are so predominant and many endemic species like the red faced barbet that is often seen. The short boat tours are also available on the akagera’s lakes and these will give you an opportunity of getting close to the many water birds that include; the marabou stork, the African fish eagle, the open billed stork, herons, cormorants, as well as the egrets. In case you are lucky, you can view the shoebill stork. This park is also a good spot for bird watching herds with over 525 species plus large number of the migrant birds. There is also the elusive shoebill stork that can be spotted. This park is also a great spot for the endangered and the exquisite papyrus Ganolex.
Where to stay
Campsites in Akagera National park.
There are three campsites that offer basic facilities for the overnight stays with in the park. Muyumbu and Shakani cams are located in the south direction of the park. Muyumbu is located on the ridge that overlooks the lakes in Tanzania with in a distance and has got a spectacular backdrop for the rising sun. Shakani also offers a lakeshore camping adventure experience along with mumbling hippos and the variety of bird life.
The Mutumba campsite is located in the northern and its rich in game rich with high rolling grassland hills. The tents available for hiring at the reception and the firewood is provided on site and the visitors are also asked to bring their own camping supplies and the equipment’s. The park has got flat savannah grassland that makes the place so perfect for camping.
There are 2 lodges in Akagera, RUSIZI tented lodge and Akagera Game lodge for luxury and middle range clients respectively
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