Nyungwe National Park
Nyungwe National Park is situated in Rwanda which is an ancient forest that has existed for hundreds of thousands of years and is one of the Africa’s oldest .It is one of the Africa’s largest protected mountain rain forest with over 1000square kilometers.Nyungwe is the largest protected area within the Albertine rift valley which is one of the Great Lakes in Africa and the fifteenth largest in the world
Nyungwe is Rwanda’s primary water catchments, sheltering more than two-thirds of all of its waters and it receives more than 2000 mm a year of rain. Rain that falls on the east side feeds the Nile and on the west runs to the Congo and thus mountain range of the Congo Nile runs north to south through Rwanda
It is a home to many species especially primates and birds. With about 310 bird species,26 of which are endemic. It consists of 3000 meters above sea level with mountain Bigugu the highest point in the park. Nyungwe is also home to one of Africa’s greatest concentrations of chimpanzees and a sometimes noisy, acrobatic combination of other primates such as Ruwenzori colobus and Lhotse’s monkeys. A variety of hiking and walking trails criss-cross the Park leading to a canopy walk, primate tracking adventures, the southernmost source of the Nile and ecotourism attractions. The park includes a colorful array of orchids, butterflies, moths and other insects. The forest has a growing network of walking and hiking trails and a number of camping .Cultural tourism activities are being developed near the edge of the Park.
Activities in and around Nyungwe National Park
Nyungwe National Park is a top ecotourism destination with a growing network of hiking trails that offer visitors opportunities for the world class bird watching, chimpanzee tracking, monkey watching, and orchid ogling. The Park also offers the only Canopy Walk in East Africa
The park offers 13 hiking trails, some with tongue-twisting names. Try pronouncing “Igishigishigi” which means tree fern. The trail begins near the Uwinka Reception Centre. The trails range from easy to difficult and from 1.7 kilometers to 10.6 kilometers in length.
World Class Bird Watching
Nyungwe is home to at least 310 bird species, 26 of which are endemic to the Albertine Rift Valley. It is one of the best bird watching destinations in Africa. Some of the common birds include the Great Blue Turaco, the Crowned Hornbill and the Blue-Headed Sunbird.
Thirteen species of primates are known to inhabit Nyungwe Forest, including chimpanzees, owl-faced guenons and Angolan black and white colobus monkeys.
Nyungwe is home to 154 species of orchids, eight of which are endemic to Rwanda. The Park hosts 68% of the orchid flora of Rwanda. It is one of the world’s greatest concentrations of orchids.