The eastern region of Democratic Republic of Congo is the appropriate destination for gorilla journeys/tours in Congo. The eastern parts of DR Congo reside the country’s only two gorilla trekking national parks; Virunga national park and Kahuzi-Biega national park, which protect the critically endangered mountain gorillas and eastern lowland gorillas respectively.
However, gorilla trekking safaris had been suspended in Congo (in May 2018) due to the kidnapping of five gorilla trekkers and killing of two park rangers in Virunga national park but the government of Congo has worked restlessly to cure the insecurity in that region and thus the Parks are expected to resume the gorilla safaris towards the end of February in 2019.
The suspension of gorilla safaris in the eastern region of Congo was for the well being and safe guarding of tourists from getting any danger while enjoying their gorilla trekking safaris.
As of now, gorilla lovers can start booking with Eco Tours Congo to go for the gorilla safaris in Congo. Congo gorilla trekking offers a cheaper alternative for gorilla lovers to meet the rare endangered mountain gorillas and fulfill a life time adventure, and it is only in Congo where a trekker will be able to interact with both mountain gorillas and the eastern lowland gorillas. A gorilla trekking permit in Democratic Republic of Congo costs US$ 400.
Mountain gorilla trekking
Virunga National Park is the only base for mountain gorillas in Democratic Republic of Congo and the Park is a habitat to 8 habituated gorilla families which are; Nyakamwe, Munyaga, Bageni, Kabirizi, Lulengo, Rugendo, Mapuwa and Humba. All these gorilla families are tracked from Bukima patrol post sector of the Park and trekkers will spend one hour with them. Briefly, Virunga national park is claimed to be Africa’s oldest national park established in 1925 as the Virunga Massif, which included three different Parks; Mgahinga national park in Uganda, Volcanoes national park in Rwanda and Virunga national park itself. All these three Parks lie in the same conservation area, are contiguous to each other, and all host gorilla trekking safaris, with a total of over 600 mountain gorillas they reside.
Gorilla trekking safaris in Uganda and Rwanda are quite expensive as compared to that of Congo. A Congo gorilla permit costs US$ 400 much cheaper than that of Rwanda which costs US$ 1500 and for Uganda which costs US$ 600.
However, for a superb experience in mountain gorilla journeys in Africa, you can ask your tour agency to organize for you a complete mountain gorilla trekking safari which will take you through all the three countries, (Uganda, Rwanda and Congo), reserving the mountain gorillas. Tracking these rare endangered primates is quite a tiresome activity but its rewards are for a life time experience that you can’t just forget easily.
The trekkers will be escorted by professional and expert park rangers who will be telling you full details about each gorilla family to interact with in the Park. Trekkers should access the Park headquarters before 07:00am in order to attend the briefings and to be given their gorilla trekking groups as the activity is done in groups of 8 individuals per each group trekking.
The Park comprises of good accommodations in which the guests/trekkers will base for their gorilla trekking expeditions in Virunga. Some of the good accommodations in the Park include; Mikeno lodge, Bukima tented camp, Lulimbi tented camp, Kibumba tented camp, and Tchegera Island tented camp. Virunga is also a home to one of Africa’s most active volcanoes; Nyamuragira volcano and Nyiragongo volcano.
Nyiragongo resides a large bubbling lava lake at its summits which offers a fantastic view to the hikers. Many of the hikers will be shocked and surprised at viewing the bubbling lava lake due to the way it sparkles smoke and fire as if they have spiced it with petrol or paraffin yet not. Nyiragongo summit shelters, at the top of the volcano, are the ideal accommodations for Nyiragongo hikers.
Lowland gorilla trekking
Lowland gorilla trekking in Congo takes place in Kahuzi-Biega National Park, which is found in the eastern parts of the country, near the western bank of Lake Kivu. Due to the inhabitance of lowland gorillas, the Park is one of the top destinations and among the mostly visited ones in Democratic Republic of Congo. The park was named after its two dormant mountains, Mount Kahuzi and Mount Biega.
The Park consists of only few habituated lowland gorilla families open for trekkers, which means that trekkers should to book their trekking permit in advance such that you are not disappointed on last minute booking, gorilla trekking experience we all know that it is a life time experience which needs planning ahead for you to be able to enjoy the tour.
We will ensure that you get affordable and comfortable accommodations in the area and our expert local tour guides/drivers are very knowledgeable and friendly and frequently speak English thus let us know in time and get you one of them to take you through the entire safari and make it incomparable.
Lowland gorillas take residence in the rain forest and swamps of Democratic Republic of Congo and the tropical rain forest of Congo is one of the world’s biggest rain forest. As of current, no clear number of lowland gorillas because they reside some of the most dense and remote rain forest in Africa. Significant populations still exist, including in isolated swamps and the remote swampy forests of the Republic of Congo.
Trekkers are given an opportunity of spending one hour with the habituated lowland gorilla families. This Congo’s rain forest is also home to many other species of animals like Bongo antelope, forest elephants, buffaloes, and Western sitatunga among other animals. Orchid’s safari club and Coco lodge are some of the park’s accommodations ideal for lowland gorilla trekkers in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.