5 Days Congo Mountain Gorilla Safari & Nyiragongo Hiking
5 Days Congo Gorilla Safari safari offers you an unrivalled encounter of two things that make Congo one in a million. 5 Days Congo Gorilla Safari – You will track mountain gorillas in Virunga National Park and hike Nyiragongo, a volcano with a boiling lava lake.
Detailed Itinerary: 5 Days Congo Mountain Gorilla Safari
Day 1: Arrive in Kigali, Rwanda
On your arrival at Kigali International Park, our guide will pick you up ahead of a four hours drive to the border crossing at Gisenyi, Rwanda/Goma town. You will cross at the “Grand Barrière” as opposed to “Petite Barrière”. Accessibility through the former entry point is much easier as it is primarily structured for tourism.
Day 2: Hike to the Top of Mt Nyiragongo
Treks to the summit of Nyiragongo volcano takes 4-6 hours and begins at the Kibati patrol post. Here, you can hire some porters to carry your luggage up the mountain. Among the things to pack when coming here include a sleeping bag, raincoats and some food, plus of course your your camera. The lava lake is spectacular and beautifully lights up the sky with its orange glow at night. There is a basic wooden cabin/hut above cloud level where you can stay as you marvel at the waves of lava and listen to its roars. The view, the smell and the sound of the lava boiling down in the lake is a real treat for the senses.
The hike starts in the morning with a hike of about one hour a forest. During the second part of the hike, you will walk on loose volcanic rocks. This is considered the most tiring phase as there are no trees to provide shade.
You are directly exposed to the suns rays, so carry sunscreen. During the third leg, the incline starts to increase but luckily, the volcanic rocks are not really that slippery to walk on. The final lap is a steep hike up to the summit which can be seen from the rest stop.
Day 3: Descent from Nyiragongo Mountain
After breakfast at the crater rim, you will start your will start your slope down the Nyiragongo in a space of 4 hours. On arrival at the base, you will be driven to the Headquarters of Virunga National Park, through a number of small settlements and towns.
You will spend the night at Mikeno Lodge, a boutique accommodation of the 12 bungalows built out of solid lava stone and natural thatch.
Day 4: Mountain Gorilla Tracking in Virunga National Park
You’ll be in a group of 8-25 individuals. These magnificent beasts are worth every level of difficulty because the one hour you will spend with them makes you quickly forget whatever the hike throws at you. You will interface with gorillas of every size from the mega-huge silverbacks to the smallest infants and everything in between.
Some of the members are shy. As you move slowly around to get their faces, the might gently turn around and show you their back. It is impossible not to be touched by the friendly nature of the babies. Some might call it life changing. It was pretty special to see these cute-little-beasts, sitting in the sunshine and happily munching wild fruits.
The trek to see them is mostly an uphill task, through a bamboo forest with all types of tropical trees. You will hike through a route with spectacular views! There are no set paths, as the resident gorillas continuously move in search for food. To this effect, ranger guide leading your group will clear foliage to make the path using his machete.
Depending on the pace of your group, you will walk for 15mins-4 hours before finding the gorillas. On finding them, you will spend an hour with them, which is incredible. The guides will tell you what you can and cannot do while in their presence. We suggest you listen to them carefully.
Day 5: Return to Kigali and Departure
After breakfast, you will be driven to Goma to process your entry back into Rwanda ahead of your flight
out through Kigali International Airport. You will be dropped off at airport early in time for check in.
End of 5 Days Congo Mountain Gorilla Safari