Nyungwe is the second national park in Rwanda to fall under our management. The park is the largest remaining tract of forest in Rwanda and is nestled in the southwest of the country, bordering Burundi.
Nyungwe is one of the oldest rainforests in Africa, covering 1,019 km2 of dense Afromontane forests, bamboo-covered slopes, grasslands and wetlands. The park feeds two of the world’s largest rivers, the Congo and the Nile, and provides 70% of the country’s freshwater. The ecosystem services provided by Nyungwe is estimated at US$4.8 billion by a recent study conducted by the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS). The park is also a regional biodiversity hotspot, supporting 1,068 recorded plant species, 322 bird species, 75 known mammal species and 13 different primate species. However, Nyungwe’s unique shape and topography has exposed it to a variety of threats including poaching, illegal mining, and encroachment from agriculture which have together endangered the integrity of its flora and fauna.
The Rwanda Development Board (RDB), entered into a long-term management agreement with African Parks to manage Nyungwe October 2020. Together, we will work closely with the local communities, implement an effective law enforcement strategy, and restore and protect wildlife to ensure the long-term ecological, social and economic sustainability of the park. Its spectacular mountainous topography and unique biodiversity make this park globally unique, and give it enormous potential with sufficient investment to emerge as one of the continent’s most extraordinary tourism destinations. With adequate conservation and the optimisation of tourism and other sustainable revenue-generating activities, Nyungwe will support healthy terrestrial ecosystems to benefit people long into the future.
There is high potential for the sustainable development of tourism to benefit local communities. Nyungwe is part of a national three-park route that would see visitors travel among Akagera, Nyungwe, and Volcanoes, position Rwanda as having one of the most spectacular wildlife experiences on the planet.
African Parks signed a joint management agreement with the Rwanda Development Board (RDB) for Nyungwe National Park in October 2020.
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