Changing the face of African travel, the Republic of the Congo (also known as Congo-Brazzaville) has opened up Africa’s equatorial rainforests to travellers, which are now more accessible than ever before. The rainforests of the Congo Basin are sometimes referred to as the second lung of the world, and are also an important biodiversity hotspot - home to western lowland gorillas, chimpanzees, forest elephant, buffalo, hippo, extremely rare bongo antelope, and roughly 100 other mammal species.
Western lowland gorillas
The Congo, specifically the 13 000 km² of undisturbed primary rainforest that is Odzala-Kokoua National Park, is home to a significant population of western lowland gorillas, including family groups that have been habituated to human presence. Gorilla trekking in Congo is unique in that departing from camp on foot, you can be with a family within the hour. There is also the opportunity to go gorilla trekking for three consecutive days, whereas in other countries permits are issued for one day only, and occasionally two. This option allows you to spend more time experiencing various family groups, and comparing the intriguing differences in personality and dynamics.
In addition to gorilla trekking, the abundance of the ‘Heart of Africa’ offers much to be explored. Go swimming in crystal-clear rivers, and kayak and boat along waterways, spotting buffalo, hippo and perhaps even rare bongo – Africa’s second largest antelope. Expert guides will lead you along forest paths clouded with dazzling butterflies; and help identify the calls of monkeys and tropical birds. Marshy forest clearings offer great game viewing opportunities as animals come to obtain essential minerals from the soil, especially elephant, buffalo and giant forest hog.
Cultural enrichment & conservation
The capital of Brazzaville is the ‘Little Paris of Africa’ and has an intriguing French culture, as well as lively fabric markets and colourful architecture. The city is home to very friendly and welcoming people, who pride themselves on keeping their city in pristine condition.
Growing tourism in the Congo strengthens the relationship between local people, wildlife and conservation. Within the Odzala-Kokou National Park you can meet with members of small rural communities in order to gain meaningful insight into traditional livelihoods and culture.
Go2Africa in the Congo
Get in touch to chat to one of our Congo experts about experiencing this incredible country as a stand-alone destination, or to create a package that combines Congo with another African safari or island destination.
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