Gambela National Park, Ethiopia
On the river bank of Baro, is a dramatic wildlife park called Gambela national park. This park is not only the incredible wildlife but also houses strange Ethiopian history. It is written that this former Imperialist colony park was the only part of Ethiopia that was ever governed by foreign rulers such as the Italian in 1902 and the British in the later years (until 1940)
The river Baro was then home of a port that was used to ship Ethiopian coffee and other goods during the heavy rainy season that opened the river banks to stretch as far as River Nile and then to the sea through Khartoum. The port is today one unique tourist sight in the park with weathering equipment and warehouses
Gambella National park however is recorded to be 5,100 km on the rolling hills measuring up to 400m high. Grasslands, extensive swamps and wetlands of the Akobo –Baro river system make the major habitat for wildlife in the park
Wildlife in this Ethiopian Safari park includes buffalo, giraffe, waterbuck, Roan antelope, elephant, zebra, Nile Lechwe, bushbuck, giraffe, Abyssinian reedbuck, buffalo, warthog, lelwel hartebeest, hyena, lion and white eared Kob. A few primates species of the olive baboon, Ethiopian white whiskered vervet monkey and the black and white colobus monkey are also found in the Park
The river system attracts more than150 birds with regular sights like the whale-headed stork, an unusual large-billed, tall bird seen standing in the swamps. The riverbank also host Nile crocodiles and Hippos beside its record breaking Nile Perch measuring to 1,000kgs
This park is located 800km from Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia on the western side of the country in Illubator region. This part of the country is fairly accessible and requires a robust 4WD to cross the rugged hill slopes.
The rains come in April to October for this part of the country while the summer prevails throughout the remaining months. It is recommended that you visit during the dry summer months.