TANZANIA: BURIGI-CHATO National Park is one of the latest gazetted as a National Park, combining three former game reserves into one unit that is now 4,707 square kilometres making it the fourth largest national park in Tanzania.
Stretching from Lake Victoria in the East to the Rwandan boundary in the West, Burigi-Chato is an enormous piece of wild country encompassing fresh water lakes, long hills, rocky crags along escarpments, deeply set valleys lined with forest, open plains, swamps, rivers, flood plains and hundreds of square kilometres of medium and tall grass wooded savanna – mostly combretum and Terminalia known as Miombo.
The National Park is situated close to the border of lake Victoria ,boarder of Rwanda and is surrounded by the wondrous waters of the kagera River and Lake Burigi One of the special features about the wild life of this park is that one of the largest antelopes of the world the statuesque Cape eland is found here Burigi – Chato National Park the typical grasslands of the African Savannah.
Burigi-Chato National Park also involves the other ecosystems of Rwanda Akagera National Park and Uganda’s Kikati game reserve, rangeland are to the north of the Katungo River and the lake Mburo National park.
This National Park is set among the pictorial beauty of the lakes and the riverside which is a delight for the eyes of any tourist. The National Park has a wide collection of wildlife and some of them are elephant, buffaloes, antelopes, lions, leopards, zebras and giraffes. Some rare species of birds are also found in the Burigi-Chato, Ibanda-Kyerwa and Rumanyika-Karagwe National Park and some of them are fish eagles, papyrus ganolek, and bizarre shoebill stork. It also extends to the eastern side towards the Kimisi, Ibanda-Kyerwa and RumanyikaKaragwe National Park Tanzania. So just book a trip to this amazing national park .
Climate and seasons
This part of East Africa has two rainfall peaks, November – December and another in March / April, with dry weather from June to September. Temperatures are pleasant with cool nights and warm days.
How to get there The nearest local town is Chato which has an International Airport, and private charters are possible to an airstrip near the Nkonje Ranger Post beside Lake Burigi, or to the Birahamulo airstrip. Accessibility by road to the park is also possible as the park is connected to close towns including Chato and Karagwe
Best time to visit the Park
The best time to visit is the Park is on June – September.
A key attraction in this National Park are the lakes with Lake Burigi being the third largest lake in the country. It is a long lake with a number of islands, inlets and bays along its length, some of which are swampy and are home for the rare Sitatunga antelope, and possibly also the even rarer shoe billed stork.
The park offers a number of tourist exaction activities, this goes from game viewing, boat excursion, sport fishing, camping, bird watching and Nature walking safaris.
Stretching from Lake Victoria in the East to the Rwandan boundary in the West Burigi Chato is an enormous piece of the wild country encompassing freshwater lakes, long hills, rocky crags along escarpments, deeply set valleys lined with forest, open plains, swamps, rivers, flood plains and hundreds of square kilometers of medium and tall grass wooded savanna – mostly Combretum and Terminalia known as Miombo.
A key attraction in this National Park is the lakes with Lake Burigi being the 3rd largest lake in the country. It is a long lake with a number of islands, inlets, and bays along its length, some of which are swampy and are home to the rare sitatunga antelope, and possibly also the even rarer shoebill stork.
All the lakes lie along winding valleys lined with trees and occasional palms. They are tranquil and beautiful and provide wonderful opportunities for boating and waterborne game viewing, as well as sites for camps and small lodges.
There is an atmosphere here of untouched remote wilderness, and that a lifetime of exploring would not reveal all its corners and treasures. Climate and Seasons This part of East Africa has two rainfall peaks. One in November / December and another in March – April, with dry weather from June to September. Temperatures are pleasant with cool nights and warm days.
From June to October conditions are dry and wildlife will be increasingly concentrated around the lakes and the many freshwater springs found throughout the Park. The green season starts in October with the first rains, but the hilly terrain and stony soils make access possible to most areas, and wildlife spreads out through green wooded valleys and numerous small plains.
Zanthoxylum usambarense, Gardenia ternifolia, Faidherbia albida, Harrisonia abyssinica, Anona senegalensis, and Pappea capensis are six other rare plant species found at the Burigi-Chato National Park that have the potential to be used in the pharmaceutical industry.