Best time to visit Akagera National Park

Best time to visit Akagera

Best time to visit Akagera national park

Best time to visit Akagera national park is the favorable time of the year when tourists can best explore and view the different attractions and engage in a variety of activities during their visits to this national park.

Akagera national park is located in the eastern part of Rwanda close to the border of Rwanda and Tanzania. The best time to visit Akagera national park is during the months of July to September as well as in January which is the dry season of the year.

Other seasons experienced in Akagera national park include the wet season which occurs during the months of March, April and December. The rainy season, however, does not favor game viewing and other activities within the national park due to the road conditions.

Different tourists visit the Akagera national park to experience wildlife viewing and engage in game drives around the national park as they enjoy the beautiful scenery of the rolling hills, open grasslands, woodlands, rivers, lakes, and swamps as they watch the wildlife species grazing and roaming in the national park.

Activities that tourists engage in during their visits to Akagera national park include game drives, boat rides, guided nature walks, birding, and fishing.

  • Game drives take place at different times of day as tourists search for the famous big five animals which are lions, leopards, buffalos, rhinos and elephants as well as other wildlife species within the national park. These game drives take place during the day as well as during the night time. The difference between the times for the game drives is that wildlife species can easily be spotted during morning game drives since they are more active at this time of day compared to the evening game drives. During a night game drives provide a unique game viewing experience as tourists explore the national park in search of the different nocturnal wildlife species in Akagera national park such as leopards, lions, civets, hyenas, bush babies, serval cats among others. Tourists can also enjoy the beautiful scenery within the Akagera national park during the game drives in the open savannah plains.
  • Boat rides are another activity that takes place within Akagera national park along Lake Ihema which is the second biggest lake in Rwanda. This boat riding experience gives tourists the chance to see aquatic animals such as crocodiles and hippos as well as water birds. The boat rides also take place at different times of day on Lake Ihema such as at 7:30 am, 9:00 am, 3:00 pm and 4:30 pm. Visitors to this national park can also go for non-scheduled boat rides on private boats.
  • Guided nature walks also take place in Akagera national park gives tourists a close interaction while exploring the savannah plains and different attractions within the national park such as wildlife species and the plant species.
  • Birding involves tourists searching for the different birding species within Akagera national park such as the rare shoebill stork, papyrus gonolek, different kinds of water birds and many other birds.
  • Fishing is another activity which is carried out in Akagera national park on Lake Shakani which has a variety of fish species such as tilapia, catfish. Tourists can also relax along the lake shores after their fishing adventures.

Attractions which can be viewed by tourists visiting Akagera national park include the following; 

  • Wildlife species that can be seen by tourists visiting Akagera national park include elephants, buffalos, zebras, leopards, hyenas, lions, antelopes, hippos, crocodiles, oribis, impalas, bushbucks, reedbucks, elands among others. 
  • Primate species such as olive baboons, vervet monkeys, bush babies, blue monkeys can also be seen in Akagera national park. A variety of bird species can also be seen in this national park at different birding spots and they include water birds, papyrus gonolek, crested barbet, black-headed gonolek, shoebill stork, egrets, grey crowned cranes, herons, jacanas, kingfishers among others.  
  • River Kagera which the national park is named after runs through the Akagera national park. This river has a variety of fish species and during the Rwandan genocide which involved killings of thousands of Rwandan people, corpses were also dumped along the river shores.
  • Lake Ihema is located in the southern part of the Akagera national park. many aquatic species can be seen such as hippos, crocodiles, fish as well as a variety of bird species can also be seen in this lake. This lake is also surrounded by seasonal papyrus and wetlands which act as habitat for wildlife species.
Best time to visit Akagera
Best time to visit Akagera

How to get to Akagera national park

Akagera national park can be accessed by tourists using both road and air means as seen below;

Tourists using road means to access Akagera national park can be driven from Kigali via Rwamanga town and then proceed to the national park while enjoying beautiful views around them.

By air or flight, tourists can access Akagera national park through flights organized by the Akagera aviation which organizes domestic and charter flights for tourists to other national parks around Rwanda. 

Choose the best time of the year to experience amazing wildlife viewing opportunities and see different attractions in Akagera national park.