My first safari in Mole national park
March 2016, from 24th to 28th
Mole National Park is the widest range of wildlife and the only place in Ghana where you can have the best wildlife experience elephants.
The park is located in northwest Ghana on grassland savanna and covers an area of 4972 km².
This was the first national park to be established in Ghana as a wildlife refuge in 1958.
In 1971 the small human population of the area was relocated and the lands were designated a national park.
The park is an important study area for scientists as a study about the resident population of 800 elephants
The park’s entrance (20 GHC, 5 €) is reached through the nearby town of Larabanga where there is the oldest mosque built with mud and reeds.
There are also poachers who tend to live within 50 km of the boundaries of the park.
Our stay in Mole hotel
It was around 39 ° during the day in Mole so even hotter than in Accra.
The Mole Park Lodge where we stayed has an endless view to the horizon which overlook an artificial lake.
You will generally see herds of elephants grazing and bathing in the early morning or in the evening a couple hours before the sun sets.
The room price for 2 with fan is 140GHc ( 30€) And lunch around 40 GHC ( 10€ ).
We have also seen colorful lizards which fled our footsteps as we walked to our room.
Few minutes after our arrival, a baboon came unour swimming pool to have a look (and maybe see if there was something left on a table to eat!)
It started strong!!
Our first safari tour in our jeep
Because of the lack of predators, safaris can be done of foot – a unique experience that is quite different from the vehicle safaris
in southern and eastern Africa.
To actually walk so close to elephants is an exhilarating experience you will not ever forget!
We choose to go on a driving safari first late in afternoon , with an armed ranger during 3 hours : we drove small and we discovered antelopes bouncing away from us in the savannah.
There were two types of antelope – the larger, impressively solid waterbuck, and the petite, Bambi-like kob.
Then we walked around the lake, seeing more birds, “Pumbaa”, crocodiles…
And many baboons and monkeys
The second day we drove the whole day to cover a much wider area of the park with its 93 mammal species.
The day started stong with the elephant !!
The Lovi and Mole Rivers are ephemeral rivers flowing through the park, leaving behind only drinking holes during the long dry season.
Buffalos can be seen also here :
The park is considered a primary African preserve for antelope species including kob.
Sightings of hyenas, lions and leopards are unusual, but these carnivores were once more common in the park.
Robert our ranger guide saw a lion one last year crossing the road inside the park.
Among the 344 listed bird species are the martial eagle, the white-headed and palm-nut vultures, saddle-billed storks, herons, egrets, theAbyssinian roller, the violet turaco, various shrikes and the red-throated bee-eater.
The third day, I got up at 6.30 am and I discover in front of my room “Pumbaa” , the warthogs, like in disney moovie, which are actually quite lovely animals!
A minute later, a huge elephant was coming to me!!!
After we left at 8 am to go to the Hippo sanctuary at 3 hours drive from the park entrance. Quite long but it worth it!!
We took a canoe and after 15 mn we already met hippo in the dark Volta river which has a side on Burkina Faso.
It was a ” school” of hippo which leans a family. They were 7!! Just amazing !!
At the end of the day we met next to the hotel a big baboon who was looking for food in our garbage !!
On the road between Mole and Tamale airport
Some shanty village with hot tin roofs, others collections of cylindrical mud-brick houses with pointed roofs made of thatched straw.
Moving north from south the dominant religion changes from Christianity to Islam.
We started to see many modest but pretty concrete mosques – pastel colors and curved archways, crescents and moons carved up their minarets.
In the late afternoon we saw groups of men in robes and taqiyahs congregating in the shade of trees to pray.
The women’s’ fashion also changed from the bold prints and vibrant colours of kente cloth to sequined headscarves.
Everywhere goats, cows and sheep roamed, apparently freely.
We also met children taking water to put in in their buckets
At the end of our journey, we arrived to Tamale to take our plane ( 45 mn flight)