Akagera National Park was established in 1934, most importantly the aim was to protect wildlife and rich Savannah vegetation comprising of acacia and bush, named after Kagera River which flows beside eastern Rwanda boundary, feeding into Lake Ihema. The National Park covers an area of 2500 km2, the largest protected wetland in Central Africa. It’s only two hours driver from Kigali the capital of Rwanda.
After re-introduction of Lion’s and eastern black Rhinos in 2017, Akagera has now become Rwanda big five’s destination although spotting Buffaloes are frequent but unfortunately the forest Elephants are rare to find and Leopard are mostly spotted during night drive. There are other wildlife species which includes; Masai giraffes, burchell’s zebra, impala, bush bucks, Defassa waterbuck, topi and not forgetting the rare sitatunga antelope.
Activities done within and around Akagera National Park
Boat cruise on Lake lhema
Lake lhema offers the best scenic viewing while on a boat ride, sightseeing Tanzania plains and aquatic wildlife such as crocodiles and hippopotamus with the water birds like; rare shoebill stork, African fish eagle and kingfisher to mention but a few.
Night and day game drives
Big cat families which includes; civets, lions and most importantly the african leopard are spotted during night drive while on their hunt for prey, beside that Akagera harbors other wildlife which like; Klipspringer , cape buffalos, zebras, masai giraffes, forest Elephants, bush duikers, Oribis, impalas and bush babies spotted day game drives.
Bird watching in Akagera National Park
Besides that of Nyungwe forest, Akagera offers an excellent birding and bird watching site ground in Rwanda with a total record of over 480 species, excluding the unrecorded 100 bird species. Most likely spotted birds includes; swamp flycatcher, grey backed fiscal, grey crowned crane, African fish eagles, black headed hero, kingfisher and rare shoebill stork.