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Pakistani working for the Rwanda Developpment Board, impressed by the Rwanda Tourisim Sector

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25/07/2013

 

A Pakistani living in Rwanda and working for the Rwanda Developpment Board, tells us in an article that he is impressed, by the growth of the tourism industry in Rwanda.

He recommends to these compatriots to come in Rwanda.

 

Imaduddin Ahmed (Twitter : https://twitter.com/ImadAhmed. His Blog : http://imadahmed.wordpress.com/

 

Mountain gorillas in the Volcanoes National Park


On the brink of extinction in the 1980s, mountain gorillas now number close to 900 in the Virunga range spread across Rwanda, Uganda and the DRC. The largest family, the Susa, are descendants of the gorillas which Dian Fossey, of Gorillas in the Mist fame, studied. They live in Rwanda.

I haven't yet contracted bilarzia

I was lucky enough to see the family with just two schoolmates and two park rangers, paying a visit, as we did, in the rainy season in early May. The rangers count 37, including an alpha male and beta male each with four partners, and a third mature male, who was caught cheating with one of the alpha male's partners; he had a wound to show for his indiscretion. The adulteress, meanwhile, joined another band. The group includes two sets of (very cute) baby twins.

My friends will attest that the experience was well worth the USD 750 permit for non-residents. It took us two hours to first reach the Susa family, and another hour of trekking through forest alongside the at-times chest-beating cousins. Our rangers did a stellar job at pacifying the hairy ones with soft growls, and in landing us in an open patch, where, by the time the Susa had become accustomed to us, we were all but family. Gorilla after gorilla passed us by at arm's length from every direction - from the pacified silverback males, to the barely-foot-high baby-twins clinging on or toddling behind their mothers. 

A two-day hike up Mt Karisimbi

It started out as a lark. Five lads decided on a Tuesday night that we'd hike-up the inactive volcano on the weekend. (USD 400 per permit for non-residents.) You don't have to be a committed mountaineer to conquer the 2 km hike up to the 4,507 m peak. Come prepared with waterproof, non-cotton clothes. You must be fit. Two young European men didn't manage to summit.


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  The author on a moto
The author on a moto
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We were grouped with 11 others hailing from the USA and Europe. They looked better equipped than us, but, having boxed for a year, I wanted to see what my training was good for. I set myself the challenge of peaking first.

We began our march in rainfall through majestic Avatar-like forests at 9am. We reached base camp and set up our tents at 5pm. The night was filled with hearty-songs, instant noodle-soup heated on the campfire and banter with the soldiers accompanying us to ostensibly protect us from wild animals (and not wild people from across the border). Our hike resumed at dawn.

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Giraffes at Akagera

Giraffes at Akagera

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Mountain gorillas now number close to 900 in the Virunga range

90 minutes from the peak, and I had lost the lead as I watched with consternation my fellow-travellers ascend effortlessly the increasingly steep terrain covered with trees and secondary vegetation that wouldn't have been misplaced in a William Shatner episode of Star Trek. But my porter and my ego fueled me on to continue placing one foot in front of the other. With the last 100m to the summit in sight, I pushed myself Mo Farah-style to accelerate and close the lead of 20m that the leaders had on me. I passed everyone, when the previous leader started racing. I scrambled with my final reserves of strength up the barren rocks. The former leader (an American) and I summitted Rwanda's highest peak together. The Europeans followed. I celebrated to myself, humming the Pakistani national anthem. Was I the first to do so? (Whether it was the view or the race at that altitude that took my breath away, I'll let you decide upon inspection of these photos.)


-Full Article :  See more at: http://www.thefridaytimes.com/beta3/tft/article.php?issue=20130705&page=22#sthash.xUbb29sL.dpuf



25/07/2013
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