Akagera National Park (Wildlife Safaris Rwanda)

Akagera National Park is a great destination for wildlife safaris in Rwanda and day tours. Located two and half hours from Kigali, rent a 4×4 car for this amazing wildlife destination. Safaris in Akagera are mostly guided (where you can pick up a guide at the park gate) so that you don’t waste your precious time looking for the animals. Safaris start from the southern part bisecting through the part to the north and these are more rewarding as you will spot most of the wildlife.

For the Big game in Rwanda, Akagera National Park is the best to go. It lies in the northeastern part of Rwanda along Rwanda’s border with Tanzania. Thanks to African Parks, an organization that partnered with Rwanda Development Board to manage this Park since 2010. Its name was derived from the Akagera River that streams along its eastern boundary emptying into Lake Ihema.

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Akagera is one of the most scenic reserves in Africa, this is brought by its rich biodiversity that consists of papyrus swamps, savannah plains, rolling highlands forest-fringed lakes and Wildlife species. Additionally, Akagera National Park forms the largest protected Wetland in East Africa.

Other species in the Park include Buffaloes, Elephants, Zebras, Waterbucks, elands, roan antelopes and topi. Akagera National Park also houses the side-striped jackal, lion, hyenas, and the leopards.

Wildlife Game Drives.

Akagera is renowned for its wide range of Wildlife species such as Wild animals, Primates, reptiles and different bird species. The best way to take in the best views of these animals is by Game driving. Therefore all visitors to the Park embark on a Safari vehicle with a pop-up roof and drive around for panoramic views of the animals, wilderness and sun rise/set.

Animals to expect while game driving include antelopes (like elands, topis, hyenas, and more), buffaloes, big cats like civets, leopards and more. While game driving, travellers are not allowed to move out of the vehicle, and some animals like big cats are dangerous to human life.

A night game drive reveals a lot of nocturnal animal species. This night game drive is more rewarding since chances are high that you will spot predators that are rarely seen during the day like serval cats, civets, lions and more.

Bird Watching.

Akagera is one of the best spots for incredible bird-watching Safaris in Rwanda. It is home to about 520 species of birds including those that are rarely seen in any other part of Africa. Birders are fascinated by the sights of numerous birds ranging from savannah to forest bird species. These include migratory and endemic bird species. Adding to the rare Papyrus gonolek that is common in the Papyrus swamps, other species to see are flycatchers, shoebill storks, and red-faced barbets to name but a few.

Fishing in Lake Shakani

Other than Game driving, you can explore the Park in an exceptional way by partaking in fishing excursions on Lake Shakani. While fishing you can see lots of hippos wallowing and hear the sounds of water birds. It is not only about fish encounters but also an added chance to see more Wild animals that stroll along the banks in need of water. The protocol of fishing here is catch and release, but in case you are interested in tasting these species, you can be allowed to cook one.

Boat Cruise on Lake Ihema

This incredible experience lets you get relieved of stress. It’s definitely one of the reasons for a trip to Africa. While in Rwanda, you can do this experience in Akagera National Park. All excursions are offered on Lake Ihema, a spot known for the largest concentration of hippos in East Africa. Aside from Hippos and Crocodiles, you are most likely to behold a number of water bird species in addition to lakeside wild animals like elephants.

Accommodation.

There are few accommodation facilities in the Park, therefore it’s advised that you book in advance for any trip to Akagera. Lodges in the Park are only two, and these include the Akagera game lodge and Ruzizi Tented Camp.