National parks in Ghana are one of the Ghanaian government’s sources of income. Ghana is a Western country in Africa known for great value for visitors and great meals. There are amazing destinations for tourists to visit in Ghana. One of the places you will want to visit is their national parks.
National Parks in Ghana
There are 7 national parks in Ghana, and they include Kakum National Park, Digya National Park, Mole National Park, and Bia National Park. Others are; Bui National Park, Kyabobo National Park, and Nini Suhien National Park. Each of these parks has its level of tolerance for visitors. Some contain a higher level of wild animals than others.
Kakum National Park
Kakum National Park is one of the most patronized National parks in Ghana for tourists. It was gazetted as a national park in 1992, at 375 sq km. It is located in the coastal environs of the central region of Ghana.
Kakum National Park is unique for many things; among them is the presence of a canopy. It’s one of three places in Africa that features a canopy walk through the trees. The canopy is connected to seven different trees, with a distance of 1,150 ft (350m). The canopy helps you enjoy the beautiful views of birds present in the park.
The park also hosts wildlife like other national parks in Ghana. Among the numerous present in Kakum National Park are; buffalo, dwarf crocodiles, red river hogs, giant hogs, forest elephants, civets, colobus monkeys, Diana monkeys, giant bongo antelope, and yellow-backed duiker among others. It is very rich in butterflies as well. Most especially as new species were discovered in 1993.
In Kakum national park, there are two cafes at the visitor centre serving basic food, snacks and fresh juices. You can also get from around the car park fresh coconuts, “sobolo” –bisap (a purple drink made from water and hibiscus leaves) and bottled water.
Digya National Park
Digya National Park is one of the parks for adventurists in Ghana. It’s the second largest national park in Ghana, at 3,742 km. Also, it’s the oldest protected area in Ghana. It was created as a protected area in 1900 but declared a national park in 1971. Digya National Park is located in the Bono East region and is bordered on the north, south, and east by Lake Volta.
For tourists, this park is good for game viewing, bird watching and adventure trekking. The elephant population in the park is the second largest in Ghana. Among other wildlife include; buffalos, mona monkeys, servals, duiker, leopards, water-bucks, jackals, genets, civets, olive baboons, pata monkeys, green monkeys, crocodiles, galagos, pottos, West African Manatees and bushbucks among other. In addition, the species of birds in Digya National Park is above 230 birds.
Mole National Park
Mole is Ghana’s first and largest protected area, at 4,577 km2, according to the official website of Mole National Park. Some are also of the opinion that it’s the most prestigious area. The park has two major rivers that flow through it; the Lovi River and the Mole River.
There are nearly 100 mammalian species living on the borders of Mole National Park. Lions, leopards, and hyenas are some of the predator species that visitors can hope to see. Other popular wildlife sightings include buffalo, bushbuck, crocodile, duiker, elephant, hartebeest, hippopotamus, oribi, roan, warthog, and the waterbuck.
One of the interesting things you can do in Mole National Parks is walking safaris which give you a chance to explore on foot while trying to witness the splendour of the wildlife the park offers.
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Bia National Park
Bia was created in 1935 and named after the Bia River. It officially became a national park in Ghana in the year 1974. The beauty of vegetation in the park became history due to intensive farming by the locals. However, since 1975, no human activities like farming or logging have taken place. In 1985 the park was named a biosphere reserve and made a UNESCO world heritage site.
The reserves are situated in the transition between the moist evergreen and semi-deciduous tropical forest and cover much of the drainage for the Bia River. Researchers, scientific and ecological studies can be done in the reserves as it creates opportunities for them. Ghana’s major protected forest antelope communities also live in the park. The forest elephant and the bongo which are claimed to be highly threatened can be found there.
In addition, there are 62 species of mammals known to exist in the park including 10 primate species (three species of colobus, the Diana monkey and the chimpanzee, Pan troglodytes, among others), leopard, buffalo, the forest elephant, Loxodanta cyclotis, and the bongo, Tragelaphus euryceros. Also, over 160 species of birds including hawks, eagles, bulbuls, flycatchers, the black-collared lovebird and the threatened white-breasted guinea fowl live in this habitat. Most importantly, the park is the only known home of Agama sylvanus, a newly discovered species of lizard
Bui National Park
Bui National Park, established in 1971, is the third largest wildlife protected area in Ghana at 1821 km2. One section of the river forms part of the Bono region while another section forms part of the Savannah region; West and East sections respectively. Nsawkaw, Wenchi and Techiman are the closest towns to the park
One of the few things tourists can engage themselves in when visiting Bui National Park is bird viewing, mountain hiking and a visit to nearby villages to learn more about African values and culture.
The most famous wildlife in Bui National Park is the hippopotamus. Others include baboons, green monkeys, amphibians, and monitor lizard fruit bats. In addition, there are over 250 birds present.
Kyabobo National Park
Kyabobo National Park is located in the Nkwanta district of the Northern Volta Region. It covers an area of 359.8 km². In the park is Ghana’s second-highest mountain, Mount Dzebobo. This offers visitors an impressive view of Lake Volta. In addition, the park has seven hiking trails and two mountain biking trails.
According to The Forestry Commission of Ghana, Its forests contain the nationally endangered endemic tree Talbotiella gendtii, and the common animals in the park include; Buffalo, Kob, Warthog, Aardvark and Baboon. Threatened species of animals, which with adequate protection may recover, include Lion, Elephant, Bongo, Reedbuck and Hartebeest, which may recolonise the Park from the adjacent Fazao National Park in Togo.
A few of the numerous things you can do in Kyabobo National Park include taking a walk to Kylinga (one of the remote villages in Ghana) on the Togo border, visiting the beautiful 60 m high Laboum, and walking along the Koue River. In addition, you can rent a mountain bike to enjoy yourself around Breast Mountain. The above are just a few things to do in Kyabobo National Park.
Nini Suhien National Park
Nini Suhien National Park was established in 1976. It’s located in Ankasa Resource Reserve. In the park, 300 plant species per hectare are present and 43 mammal species. They include; Bongo, forest elephants and 10 primate species including the endemic Diana Monkey, and the endangered West African Chimpanzee.
Tourist activities include; bird watching, nature walks, and game viewing.