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Rwanda Attractions and Travel Destinations

by Vishal Kumar

Rwanda is a mountainous area which lies in the central part of Africa and is divided by the Rift Valley. There is an extensive mountain range extending from the north…

Rwanda is a mountainous area which lies in the central part of Africa and is divided by the Rift Valley. There is an extensive mountain range extending from the north to south. There are many attractions in Rwanda which are spread throughout the country. Rwanda attractions mainly include national parks, museums, falls and lakes. Kigali, the capital does not have many tourist attraction spots.

The most interesting Rwandan attraction is the A’Kagera National Park which is located on the eastern part of the country. The national park comprises of a variety of wildlife animals and is the home of more than 500 kinds of birds. It comprises of Lake Mungesera and the Rusumo Falls.

The Parc des Volcans is one of the last sanctuaries where one can find the mountain gorilla. This region also has two active volcanoes. Lake Kivu is another popular Rwandan attraction which provides the opportunity for a variety of water sports and excursions on the lake. The Rugege Forest has some rare species of wildlife animals.

The surrounding city of Butare also a host of Rwandan attractions and one can find some interrsting craft shops, a botanical garden and museums. Beaches also form an essential part of Rwandan attraction. Tourists can visit an extensive range of beaches in Rwanda and have lots of fun.

Rwanda Lakes

Rwanda is situated in the region of Great Lakes and has many beautiful and serene lakes bordering it. Tourists from all over the world come to have a view of these serene Rwanda lakes. There are five volcanic lakes which lie on the border of Congo and Rwanda and have their own attractions. The major Rwandan lakes include Lake Kivu, Lake Ruhondo, Lake Mugesera, Lake Burera, Lake Muhazi and Lake Ihema.

Lake Kivu is the biggest of the numerous freshwater bodies that are there in Rwanda. It is an outstanding beautiful inland body of water which is enclosed by vertical, green terraced hills along the border of Congo. There are three resort towns namely, Gisenyi, Cyangugu and Kibuye which are located close to Lake Kivu.

Lake Burera and Lake Ruhondo are the two most neglected lakes of Rwanda. These lakes are surrounded by steep hills and large waterfalls with a backdrop of the Virunga volcanic mountains. These twin lakes are great spots to be visited after watching the gorillas in the Rwandan mountains.

The lakes in Rwanda offer ample scope for water gliding, swimming, canoeing and water-skiing.

Nyungwe Forest National Park

Nyungwe Forest National Park is located in the scenic country of Rwanda and was officially recognized as a national park in the year 2004. Nyungwe Forest National Park is situated at a distance of 225 km from the capital city of Kigali, 50 km from the southwestern coastal town of Cyangugu and 90 km from Butare.
Nyungwe Forest National Park is located at an altitude of 1600 to 2950 meters and the area experiences an average rainfall of 1800 to 2500 mm every year. Nyungwe Forest National Park is the biggest mountain rain forest which is still present in the continent of Africa. Some important things to visit in the Nyungwe Forest National Park include:

  • Mount Bigugu : The mount Bigugu is situated at a height of 2952 meters.
  • Kamiranzou : The Kamiranzou marsh extends over an area of 13 square kilometers.
  • Lobelias and orchids : More than 1100 species of giant lobelias and orchids are found here.

Nyungwe Forest National Park is a home to a wide variety of wildlife and some of them are striped jackals, marsh mongoose, African civet, serval cat, golden cat, red tailed monkey and Olive Baboons. Nyungwe Forest National Park is also a favorable place for over 275 kinds of bird species and some of them are Blue headed and regal sunbirds, the red throated alethe and the Ruwenzori Turaco.

Some of the activities where the tourists can participate in the Nyungwe Forest National Park are photography, mount climbing at Mount Bigugu, primate watching and bird viewing.

Rwanda National Parks

Rwanda National Parks are the popular tourist attractions for all those who travel to the exotic country of Rwanda. Rwanda National Parks hold a variety of wildlife which ranges from impalas, deer, zebras, gorillas, elephants, buffaloes and giraffes. Rwanda National Parks are also famous for its birds and some of them are the bizarre shoebill stork, the papyrus ganolek and the fish eagles.

Some of the famous Rwanda National Parks are the Akagera National Park, the Nyungwe National Park and the Volcanoes National Park.

Rwanda National Parks enhance the beauty of its wildlife and also attract the tourists in general. Rwanda National Parks help to protect the wildlife and all the species of birds and animals that sometimes become extinct or are hard to trace.

The government of Rwanda takes all the initiatives to prevent the heritage of the national parks.

Akagera National Park

Akagera National Park is one of the famous national parks in the country of Rwanda. Akagera National Park is situated close to the border of Tanzania and is surrounded by the wondrous waters of the Akagera River. Akagera National Park houses the typical grasslands of the African Savannah.

Akagera National Park is set among the pictorial beauty of the lakes and the riverside which is a delight for the eyes of any tourist. Akagera National Park has a wide collection of wildlife and some of them are elephant, buffaloes, antelopes, lions, leopards, zebras, giraffes, chimpanzees, gorillas and chimpanzees.

Some rare species of birds are also found in the Akagera National Park and some of them are fish eagles, papyrus ganolek, and bizarre shoebill stork. One of the special features about the wild life of Akagera National Park is that one of the largest antelopes of the world the statuesque Cape eland is found here.

The Akagera National Park covers an enormous area of 2, 500 square kilometers and was founded back in the year 1934. Akagera National Park has only one place where accommodation can be provided to the tourists and it is the Akagera Game Lodge.

Akagera National Park also involves the other ecosystems of Uganda’s Kikati game reserve, rangeland ares to the north of the Katungo River and the lake Mburo National park. It also extends to the eastern side towards the Ibanda and Rumanyika game reserves of Tanzania and also to the Biharamulo and Burigi game reserves in the south.

Lake Kivu

Rwanda is a place which boasts of a varied natural beauty and wildlife. Rwanda is located in the region of the Great Lakes and has five lakes surrounding the entire region. Lake Kivu is the largest freshwater lake of the Rwandan region. Lake Kivu is also one of the Great Lakes in the entire African continent.

Lake Kivu is an extremely beautiful lake which is enclosed on all sides by huge vertically steep, green terraced hills and the lake lies along the Congolese border. Lake Kivu flows into the Ruzizi River, which further flows southwards into the Lake Tanganyika. The lake covers a total area of 2700 square kilometers and falls from a height of 1460 meters above sea level.

Idjwi, the world’s eight-largest inland island is located on Lake Kivu. Bukavu, Kalehe, Sake, Goma and Kabare in Congo and Kibuye, Cyangugu and Gisenyi cities of Rwanda are established on the shores of Lake Kivu.

Lake Kivu is one of those exploding lakes which are affected by fierce lake overturns. Periodic volcanic activity is quite common in the Lake Kivu. As a result, harmful chemicals from these volcanoes constantly get mixed with the lake water and there is a constant threat to aquatic life. Lake Kivu has been reported to contain a huge amount of methane gas which is being extracted gradually.

The three resort towns, Gisenyi, Cyangugu and Kibuye are located close to Lake Kivu. These resorts are connected to the lake with the help of a roller-coaster road which runs through luxuriant plantain field and small patches of the rainforest. The journey from Lake Kivu to any of the three resorts is one of the most astonishing journeys in the entire African continent.

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