Nyungwe forest National Park lies within the Albertine Rift Eco-region, is acclaimed for its biodiversity and for being one of the most endemic species rich areas in all of Africa. It is one of Africa’s Most important Conservation sites. The Park conservation sites. The Park covers 1020 km 2 and within this area boosts a diverse Ecosystem from rainforest, bamboo, grassland swamps and bog habitats. It protects one of the region’s largest and oldest remaining patches of montane rain-forest and is home to 300 species of birds. Located south of Lake Kivu on the south western slopes of the highland region that forms the great divide between the congo and Nile drainage systems. Mount Bugungu is the highest mountain in the Park reaching an altitude of 2950 m and is said to be the most remote source of the Nile.
The Park receives more than 2000 mm of precipitation annually and provides water to some of the 70 % of the country, infrastructure and facilities as well as tours and trails are being developed to favour tourism in this part of Rwanda that is most certainly worth visiting.
ATTRACTIONS IN NYUNGWE FOREST NATIONAL PARK
Nyungwe forest national park is described to among the important Bird areas and rated by the Birdlife International in acknowledgement of the bird count.
Nyungwe forest features over 310 species of birds of which 27 of these are restricted in range to the Albertine rift. Among other birds thriving in nyungwe forest include:Rwenzori Turaco, Grauer’s Rush Warbler, Red-throated Alethe, purple-breasted and Blue-headed, kungwe Apalis, Black and white casqued hornbill, Ruwenzori Apalis, Alehe poliophrys, Batis diops, Ruwenzori Batis, stripe–breasted tit parus fasciiventer, camprimulgus and many others.
Nyungwe forest National Park rising to 3000 m in elevation above sea level feature diverse eco-systems that in turn supports diverse flora. While on safari in Rwanda, a traveler can visit the park to explore the 13 primate species which include the chimpanzees some of which are habituated, black and white colobus monkeys with the largest grouping in Africa with a count of over 400 individuals, silver monkey, Angolan colobus, L’Hoest’s monkey, Dent’s Mona monkey, Hamlyn’s monkey, red tailed monkey vervet monkey and olive baboon.
Colobus monkey trekking is another attraction undertaken in the park. It shelters the largest grouping of colobus monkeys in the whole of Africa with a count of 400 numbers. It also commences in the morning from the park headquarters and tends to last 2-5 hours involving one full hour of direct viewing, it is such magical experience to come across a forest covered with colobus monkeys with their black and white colours. The sight of young ones which possesses only white fur when they are still young is impressive to encounter. The body coloring of the black and white is attained after three months of age. Colobus monkey tracking permit costs $70.
Nyungwe forest National park features the best canopy walk in the whole of East Africa and the third of its statue on the continent of Africa. Built in the month of October 2010, the Nyungwe forest canopy walkway stretches over 200 feet from the ground and 90 m in length. The forest canopy allows the travelers on Rwanda safari gain a vintage point from which they can explore the beauty of this ancient forest.
The walk represents impressive sight of primates, birds butterflies thriving in the raised forest branches. At some point, the walk way transverses a deep valley presenting a frightening and yet an adventurous moment that creates lifetime memories. The canopy walk commences at Uwinka Visitor Centre and costs $60 per person running for around 2 hours.
The nyungwe forest National park can be explored on foot and a range of trails have been set up to enable Rwanda safari undertakers take up this experience.
CONGO NILE DIVIDE TRAIL
The Congo Nile divide trail separates the water catchment areas of River Congo and the Nile river. The trail extends to 227 km and takes a number of days to hike and complete on foot. One explores the bamboo forests along with open fields. For the Rwanda safari undertakes who are interested in undertaking multi day hiking, the camping grounds are present but travelers need to carry along their camping equipment. There are also canteens along the trail that sells foodstuffs.
Igishigishigi Trail stretches to a distance of 2.1 km and presents magical views of the canopy walkway and beautiful wild flowers. This trail can be incorporated with the longer Umugove and imbaraga trails.
Karamba trail is averagely easy to trek and passes close the initial gold mine, market and the army camp. The trail features impressive bird watching views and features beautiful fern trees along the way.
Umugote trail offers magical views of different ridges, the lush flowers, the rainforest and magical views of the kibira national park in Burundi on a clear day. The trail also offers impressive views for birds and primates.
Umuyove trail also referred to as mahogany Trail stretches through the nyungwe forest tallest trails featuring a good scent of their leaves. The trail passes along the waterfall with magical views, this trail features other diverting trails that are used by trekkers in chimpanzee trekking encounter.
Uwinka trail is considered to be difficult but offers the Rwanda safari undertaker an opportunity to explore the magical ravines in the company of an early morning bird song.
Irebebo trail enables the Rwanda safari undertaker loop around the 2 highest peaks of Nyungwe presenting impressive views of lake kivu.
Imbarag atrial presents one an opportunity to explore 4 waterfalls offering beautiful sceneries. These falls are within 10 km range presenting magical refreshing experiences
Bigugu mountain is noted to be the highest in the park and thus involves an active hike with the views of lake kivu on a clear day not forgetting the hills and islands of DR Congo
Isumo trail enables one to explore the large tea fields, rainforest gorges that are steep and the largest waterfall in the entire nyungwe forest.
Kamiranzovu trail transverses a large swamp featuring a waterfall, the trail offers a diverse eco-system encounter suitable for environmental lovers.
This offers two paths that connect to hill top where the Rwanda undertakers can do the camping or undertake a picnic experience.
This trail features a magical spot for chimpanzee trekking and the views of banda village where the children voices are heard rising on the mountain side.