Wildlife in Akagera National Park
Akagera Park prides in having a variety of habitats that support a great profusion of wild animals including 12 species of Antelopes. Some of these include; the tiny oribi, the handsome chestnut-coated impala, the Eland which is the largest in the world, and the topi among others. The various wildlife in Akagera can best be seen during game drives or boat trip on a Rwanda Safari.
The park offers game drives early in the morning as well as in that afternoon . These drives will offer you an opportunity, to see the various wildlife in Akagera’s natural habitats. Led by a guide, you will set out for a drive along the various park tracks in a Safari vehicle. The animals you will see on Rwanda Safari include: some spotted hyenas, elephants, Burchall’s zebras, various antelopes, buffaloes and giraffes, lions and the sitatunga are also present in the park however these are rarely seen.
In addition, you may opt to enjoy a self-drive wildlife experience in the park. You can obtain park guides from the headquarters of the park. These will lead you the places with plenty of wild animals that you would otherwise have missed.
Rwanda Safari Game-Drive Guiding System
There is a 2-tier guiding system within the park that includes, guides employed by the park as well as some community free-lance guides. Therefore visitors have the option of choosing between the two. Option 1; a guide employed by the park with a guiding experience between 2 and 12years . These have received comprehensive training in interpretive guiding as well as first aid during the previous 24 months.
Option2; is a Community Free-lance guide, who are generally fast learners and are zealous. These too have done an in-house training as well as assessment programme. All of these guides offer a genuine experience as well as support Akagera National Park’s success. Opting for free-lance guide helps strengthen the existing relationship between the park’s management and the neighboring local communities. This encourages economic development consequently allowing members of the communities around the park to profit from tourism development within Akagera.
The other and best way to see wildlife in the Akagera National park is on boat trips. The thrilling boat trips on the lakes reward you with animals such as giant hippos and crocodiles in the shallow waters. The Boat trips offer you a closer view of the water loving animals. Occasionally you may see some buffaloes and a few antelopes on the shores which come to drink water.
There are also plenty of water birds you will be able to see during these boat trips. So always remember to carry your camera as you set out for these thrilling trips.
What to Pack for your Wildlife Safari in Rwanda
Although your travel agent may plan you’re safari, one of the most challenging things that most travelers face is deciding on what they should pack for their African Rwanda Safari, which clothes to pack, and how many, which shoes to pack as well as which gadgets to bring.
A Safari Hat; preferably Wide-Brimmed
Wide-brimmed Safari Hats these are very good since they help protect your face from the tropical sun as you explore the Akagera park as you search for the different wild animals.
Comfortable Safari Clothing:
Please leave behind any form of military clothing but rather pack clothes that are light-weight and comfortable. The most important thing to know when packing regardless of where you are going, the clothes you pack should be very comfortable so as to enjoy whatever your traveling to do.
Shorts and t-shirts or ok for game drives, however if you are going hiking, trekking or even gorilla tracking, we recommend that you wear long sleeved shirts plus trousers for protection against biting insects and scratches from the thorny vegetation.
Neutral Colors Safari clothing:
As you plan to explore this park on your safari, we advise that you pack preferably neutral colored clothes and leave behind all bright colored clothes since these normally attract tsetse flies and other insects.
We advise that you avoid white colors since the trails are dusty; jeans are very great since they don’t show so much dust.
Strong hiking boots
These are very useful especially when you will take a walk or do some hiking in the pack. The trails at times slippery especially in the rainy season; these boots will offer great support to your ankles.
This is very useful especially as you set out on the early morning game drives when it’s chilly and very cold. Remember Rwanda is generally a hilly country so the temperatures drop very low especially in the early morning and in the late evening. You can always slip your sweater into your back pack as the sun comes out later in the day.
We advise that you always wear cotton underwear during your Rwanda Safari since it is very comfortable and breathable. Although lodges offer laundry services we advice that your hand wash your underwear or pack enough of them and carry them back home where they will be washed.
Insect Repellent: fortunately, insect repellents come in different forms so we recommend that you pack one for you safari in Rwanda.
Backpack preferably waterproof:
This is very useful on your safari in Rwanda; you will be able to keep you small items in there such as camera, water bottle, rain jacket. We best recommend that you get a waterproof day pack to prevent your items from getting wet.
These are a must bring when packing for your Safari in Rwanda. Remember the country enjoys the tropical climate so as you explore the park during your game drive, these will be handy especially after the sun has come out.