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GORILLAS – GOLDEN MONKEYS – NYIRAGONGO

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  • 1
  • 6 Days

Marcel Walter

Mapendano Voyages

We are a company aiming to offer the ultimate natural experience in Central and Eastern Africa.

  • Local time:15:42

GORILLAS – GOLDEN MONKEYS – NYIRAGONGO

HIGHLIGHTS The last mountain gorillas The seldom golden monkeys Nyiragongo volcano Lake Kivu and its islands The unique landscapes PRATICAL ASPECTS Approximately 500 km of tracks and roads on board comfortable vehicles. 4 nights spent in good hotels, 1 night under canvas. Varied menu, cold lunches and hot diners. Equatorial climate (25 – 30°C). Nights can be fresh, mostly at high altitudes. High risk of rain in the Virunga region. Experienced English-speaking guide during the whole safari.

DAY 1

KIGALI - VOLCANOES NP

Meet in the morning on arrival at the airport, coming from Nairobi on a regular flight. After lunch in a small garden, we follow the road as it climbs to the base of the majestic volcanoes, with spectacular views across the five peaks. Stop at some market places during your drive toward Kinigi.

Volcanoes 1 night
DAY 2

MOUNTAIN GORILLAS

As the first light of dawn breaks through the curtain of mist clinging to the summits of Karisimbi, Bisoke, Sabyniyo, Gahinga and Muhabura, we make our way into the Parc National des Volcans. Tracking the gorillas through the unique vegetation can take several hours of challenging walking in wet and muddy conditions. To see a gorilla, the trek will have been worth the hardship. Read more

Volcanoes 1 night
DAY 3

GOLDEN MONKEYS - TO DR CONGO

During the morning hours, follow a habituated group of golden monkeys (cercopithecus mitis kandti), which are endemic in the Virunga. After a shower and a quick lunch, leave toward Gisenyi. The countryside is patchwork of green, from the bluish green of the eucalyptus trees planted on the hilltops, the dark green of the cypresses lining the narrow tracks, to the soft green of the rice fields in the valleys. Vast tea plantations cover the hills surrounding Gisenyi, a small town on the shore of Lake Kivu. Lying at 1,460metres above sea level, its beauty is magnified by the mountains and lush vegetation which surround it. We cross the border into the Democratic Republic of Congo before stopping for the night at a charming little hotel in Goma. Read more

Goma 1 night
DAY 4

NYIRAGONGO VOLCANO

Situated in the east of the country, some 20 km north of Lake Kivu, the Niyiragongo volcano rises to an impressive 3,470 metres overlooking the town of Goma. The volcano is situated in the eastern stretch of the Rift Valley and belongs to the Virunga chain. Niyiragongo is a stratovolcano with two additional satellite volcanoes: Shaheru (2,800 m high, with a crater 80 m deep) and Baruta (standing 3,100m high, with a crater of over 300m in depth) as well as a number of other smaller scoria cones. At the summit is a crater almost 1,200m in diameter. Since the volcanic eruption in 1977 the area had enjoyed a period of relative calm until volcanic activity started again in 1994. The volcano then erupted on 17 January 2002, sending a great cloud of smoke and ash into the sky, and three rivers of molten lava forced their way through the western flank of the volcano at a speed of 60 km per hour. One of these rivers of lava destroyed several neighbouring villages, while the other two passed through Goma cutting a trench 60m wide, before finally reaching Lake Kivu. Once again on 16th July 2002, fountains of molten lava exploded hundreds of metres into the air, from the lake of molten lava at the bottom of the crater. From Goma to the Park Office it takes approximately 1 hour. Once all the park formalities have been completed, we set out on our 1,250m climb towards the summit, accompanied by our guide and porters. The climb takes between 5 and 6 hours. After roughly 2 hours, we come upon the lava flows left behind when Shaheru, the volcano we are actually climbing, fractured in January 2002. Increasingly the forest gives way to sparse, often denuded stretches of land, caused by the devastating effect of the volcanic gases. These areas are covered only by groundsel, ferns and sedge and everlastings. Finally we arrive at the summit, and discover for ourselves the volcano’s vast crater. After exploring the crater rim, we set up camp for the night and enjoy dinner prepared by our porters. For the rest of the evening, and part of the night, we wonder at the lake of molten lava below us. Night under canvas. The next day, we spend the early morning hours at the summit, walking, studying and observing the volcanic activity with fantastic views over Nyamulagira. Our backdrop to the west is the imposing forest of the Congo and the other extinct volcanoes which lie to the East (Bisoke, Mikeno and Karisimbi whose summits can appear snow-covered, shrouded in cloud). We dismantle the camp before setting out on our descent (3-4 hours). Return to Goma. Cross to Rwanda and enjoy some hours relaxing on the shore of Lake Kivu. Read more

Goma 1 night
DAY 5

NYIRAGONGO VOLCANO

we spend the early morning hours at the summit, walking, studying and observing the volcanic activity with fantastic views over Nyamulagira. Our backdrop to the west is the imposing forest of the Congo and the other extinct volcanoes which lie to the East (Bisoke, Mikeno and Karisimbi whose summits can appear snow-covered, shrouded in cloud). We dismantle the camp before setting out on our descent (3-4 hours). Return to Goma. Cross to Rwanda and enjoy some hours relaxing on the shore of Lake Kivu. Read more

Gisenyi 1 night
DAY 6

CROSS TO RWANDA - DEPARTURE

After a last look at the magnificent volcano range, drive to Kigali and transfer to the airport (BL).

ACCOMMODATIONS

Day in trip
Location
Hotel
Day 1
Location Kinigi
Day 2
Location Kinigi
Day 3
Location Goma
Hotel HOTEL IHUSI
Day 4
Location Goma
Hotel EGITES
Day 5
Location Rubavu

TRIP PACKAGE

Package includes

  • Transfer from/to the airport
  • Transport during the tour
  • Accommodation
  • Local guides
  • Information services
  • Entrance fee

Package excludes

  • Airfare
  • Personal expenses
  • Visa, consular 76fees or any other formalities.
  • Tips
  • Beverages
  • Additional journeys and transfers

REVIEWS

3 Reviews

Kris de Bardia, France

Gorilla and Chimps tour : a dream trip ! Great tour, great organisation, great vehicle, great countries (Rwanda and Ouganda) and world class quality guide. We got what we came here for (Apes) but got much much more thanks to the flexibility of the management and thanks to our smart and knowledgeable guide. Thanks Mapendano ! :) Read more

Dan FAVRE, Switzerland

EXCELLENT ! I contacted Mapendano a few months before the departure. They organised everything and all was perfect in the communication (answers to my questions were quick and complete). During the trip, I visited twice the gorillas and both experiences were different and complementary. The hotels were excellent, so was the food. Samuel, guide / driver, couldn't possibly have been nicer or more helpful - he felt like an old friend by the end of the first week. He was perfect during the safari drives in the animals parks. We only got little problems with the car (2 flat tires and another problem with the transmission), it was just part of the trip and the lost of time was minimal. I highly recommend MAPENDANO for any trip in central Africa. Read more

Corinne, France

Nous avons eu la joie et la chance de tomber sur cette agence en septembre 2014. Nous avons été plus que satisfaits, vraiment enchantés par le pays et surtout par notre chauffeur guide Jean-Marie Kiguge que je recommande vivement pour ses grandes connaissances mais aussi son service impeccable. N'hesitez pas, avec Mapendano vous êtes entre de bonnes mains. Read more

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