Akagera national park derives its name from a combination of labyrinth swamps and lakes that follow the Akagera River. The savanna and aquatic park was gazetted in 1936 and is now approximately 90,000 hectares though was originally much larger. Quite a large number of refugees have been resettled in the areas around Akagera thus encroaching on the national park.
Akagera is the only Rwandan park that inhabits big game. Resident wildlife in the park include: antelope species like: Sitatunga, Impala, oribi, bush buck, cape eland and tsessebe. Other wildlife includes hippos on Lake Ihema, buffaloes, zebra, giraffe, hyena, elephants, leopard and lion. Resident primates are: the olive baboon, vervet monkey, and bush baby. Rare but resident sightings include mongooses, genet, black-masked civet, several cats, side-striped jackal, warthog and the bush pig. Reptiles include: crocodile, water monitor and the rock agama.
Akagera’s savannah and aquatic habitats support over 525 avian species. Forest birds include: the crested barbet, Ross’s Turaco, Arnot’s chat and Souza’s shrike. Savannah birds that can be identified here include: the little bee-eater, Heuglin’s robin-chat, black-headed Gonolek, brown parrot, lilac-breasted roller, grey hornbill, bare-faced go-away bird. Resident raptors include: bateleur eagle, brown snake eagles, White-backed and Ruppell’s griffon vultures, and hooded vultures. Aquatic species include: goliath heron, black-capped night heron and reed-dwelling purple heron, pelicans, crowned crane, open-bill stork, marabou stork, kingfishers, shorebirds and fish eagles. Restricted papyrus swamp species include: papyrus Gonolek, white-winged warbler, Caruther’s cistocal, and the shoebill.
Accommodation In Akagera
Ruzizi tented Lodge is built on the shores of Lake Ihema. There are only 7 tents, allowing a maximum of 14 guests. Each tent has its own en-suite bathroom with hot and cold running water. The Lodge is entirely powered by solar energy.
Akagera Game Lodge has fantastic views over Lake Ihema, with a large swimming pool. The lodge is well decorated with a charming African flair, each studio contains two beds writing desk, chair and satellite TV. There is a shoebill Restaurant, the elephant Bar and Lounge, a tennis court, a conference room, and business facilities.