Sunday, June 6, 2010

Safari Weekend

I went on my first safari over Memorial weekend to Rwanda's Akagera National Park. It took us about 2.5 hours from Kigali and a third of the way was over potholed dirt roads...but the landscape was beautiful.

We checked in at the Akagera Game Lodge, which is a tired-looking hotel that desperately needs renovation in the rooms, but the views redeemed it. The restaurant patio and pool overlooks Lake Ihema and beyond to the Tanzania hills. It was also interesting to have baboons roaming the grounds. They sometimes terrorize guests, so the hotel has guards walking around with sticks to scare them away. Unfortunately, my friend had a run in with one of the largest baboons who ran up and grabbed her bag of coffee grounds, thinking it was food. We were all kinda shocked that it happened so fast.

Here we are at the beginning of the trip, my shirt would turn red-brown by the end from all the dust coming into our Jeep. The park extends over 420 sq. miles of rolling hills, grassy valleys, papyrus marshes and shimmering lakes.

I am in awe of all the animals that we saw during our two day safari. From the Big Five list, only the Cape Buffalo was present in Akagera, but we got to see lots of zebras, antelopes (impalas, bushbucks, topis, oribis), hippos, crocodiles, vervet monkeys, warthogs, and a variety of birds. The crowning moment was when we came across Masai giraffes with a newborn baby giraffe! The full album can be viewed on Picasa.

1 comment:

Judy said...

omg... its like what you see on the Discovery Channel or something... lucky you for getting to see it live in person! The baby giraffe is so cute!