10-Days visit of South Kivu(DRCongo, Gisenyi, Nyungwe(Rwanda) & Burundi
Gorilla, Nyungwe, Paradise Malahide & Burundi
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Congo is the 2ndbiggest and one of the most beautiful countries in Africa, and Virunga is its jewel, the oldest National Park on the continent. Established in 1925 by King Albert I of Belgium, it has the greatest biological diversity of any national park in the world – its 3,000 square miles contain all manner of landscapes and wildlife, including savannah, lakes, mountains, rainforest, 703 recorded bird species and two seriously active volcanoes. World’s 50% of lightening happens in the Congo.
Day one (30-June-2019): Kigali to Paradise Malahide Resort, Gisenyi
Receiving at Kigali Airport and transfer to Gisenyi, bordering Congo. Drive to the beautiful Paradis Malahide Resort along the Lake Kivu Beach, 7 kms from the border to enjoy the peaceful, neat, clean and rejuvenating Rwanda lake beach.
Relax away from the city life to spend a day for refreshing and rejuvenating in this luxurious lodge, tastefully built for the world tourists. Lunch and dinner at the Resort.
Activity: boating, sun bathing and relaxing. Lunch, Dinner and Breakfast included.
Single Full board $122; Double/Twin Full board $170; Triple Full board $245; 4 Persons $340
Day two: Gisenyi – Nyungwe Forest Rwanda
Nyungwe Forest became a national park in 2005. Nyungwe Forest National Park lies in the southwestern corner of Rwanda. The nearest town is Cyangugu, 54 km away at the shore of the beautiful Lake Kivu. Nyungwe Forest is an acclaimed chimpanzee trekking destination, but it’s also home to East Africa’s only Canopy Walkway. Take another perspective into the untouched rainforest canopy, walking upon the wildlife and centuries old treetops. And what a thrill it is!
The rainforest of Nyungwe dates back to hundreds of thousands of years – it survived even the Ice Age! Imagine countless, jazzy butterflies flying around you, more orchid species than you’ve ever seen, and birds that aren’t seen anywhere else in the world. Then there are vicious snakes hiding in the twigs and the tension of seeing one of the 13 primates inhabiting this unique ecosystem – at least you’d probably hear monkeys shouting in a distance. Add to that the adrenaline kick of the 60 meters high canopy walkway, and well – you have the adventure to remember!
Tucked away in the middle of tea Plantations, the biggest mountain rain forest on this side of the African continent can be a bit deceptive in its vastness if you simply catch a glimpse of it from a far. Nyungwe forest is probably the most preserved forest in Africa. Some say it is the most important site for biodiversity in Rwanda. It is home to over 1000 species of creation after all.
Nyungwe Forest is a tourist favourite with those on safari in Rwanda. This forest also covers an area of over 1000 sq kilometers.
When you arrive in Nyungwe forest, you come here on the winding roads through the huge tea fields and then there is Nyungwe forest national park, developing its massiveness like a national Geographic Video and only better since you are here in that large forest with its endless Kamiranzovu swamp, the trails through out, the forest canopy walk, which is the only one in East Africa, the chances for birding, the primate tracking and viewing and taking in the flowers like the orchids that are found here and the many butterflies that they attract.
Nyungwe is also not a compact park but large forest and the things to do and see here also take some planning as that your time on the safari is not wasted with drive times. You can also find over 300 different bird species, many butterflies, orchids, 75 mammal species including the 13 primates, and there have also been the sightings of the golden monkeys.
07h30: After breakfast, JT will pick them from the lodge and drive to Nyungwe Forest. The driver will pay $75 each at Nyungwe Forest for trekking of the tourists.
After trekking, drive to Nyungwe Top View Hotel on full board. Lunch and Dinner at the restaurant.
Day three: Nyungwe Forest – Bukavu, DRC
After breakfast, spend some more time in any of the trekkings, bird watching.
09h00: Drive to Rusizi 1 border post with Bukavu, Congo DRC.
After Immigration, take another vehicle and drive to Orchids Safari Hotel, facing the beautiful Lake Kivu for check-in. Lunch at the restaurant.
After lunch, drive to the IITA (International Institute of Tropical Agriculture) research Fish Pond and the Cathedral of Bukavu where natural honey and some other natural products are also on display.
Dinner at ‘Coco Lodge Restaurant’.
After dinner, return back to the hotel. Overnight at the hotel (single $160, double room of $210 for 2 – price included).
Orchids Hotel: Single = $160 & $190 Double = $210 & $225
Panorama Hotel: Single = $130 & $150 Double = $160 & $180
Coco Lodge Hotel: Single = $140 & $170 Double = $190 & $210
Day four: Kahuzi Biega lowland gorilla trekking and Lwiro
In 1970, the Kahuzi Biega National Park (KBNP) was gazette to conserve the Grauer’s gorilla (Gorilla Beringei Graueri), the world’s largest gorilla species. It remains the only place in the world where visitors can see these gorillas in the wild.
The park covers an area of 6000 sqkm and protects a mountain forest in Eastern Congo, which is the most densely populated region of the country.
The park is named after the two spectacular extinct volcanoes which dominate its high altitude sector, Mont Kahuzi (3,308 m) and Mont Biega (2,790 m).
The KBNP is divided into two zones that are connected by a narrow corridor: on one side there is mountain forest covering 600 km from an altitude of 1,800 m to 3,300 m and on the other side is a tropical forest between 600 m and 1,200 m. The KBNP is therefore, one of the biggest reserves serving to conserve flora and fauna in Central Africa’s high mountain regions.
06:00 a.m. – After breakfast, pickup from your hotel/residence/Port and drive to Kahuzi Biega National Park precisely in the southern part at Tshivanga (pronounced Chivanga).
Arrive at the National Park Headquarter where you will be briefed by the Park staff. Have a quick cup of coffee, enter into the park accompanied by armed Park rangers and enjoy Eastern Lowland Gorilla trekking. A typical visit will start with a 1-2 hour trek, in search of the gorilla group.
After the trekking, drive to Lwiro (optional) where there is the Scientific Research Center (Entrance fee $70 each, not included), which was built in 1947 by Belgians. Here chances are to visit the Chimps’ sanctuary, the museum, the library, the biodiversity room and snakes in cages. (Though not in very good shape)
14:00 Lunch at a restaurant in Lwiro / Packet.
Evening – Retrieve back to your hotel.
Dinner and night stay at the hotel. (double room for 2)
Day five: Kahuzi Biega trekking, birds watching and chutes (waterfall)
07h30: After breakfast, pickup from your hotel / residence and drive again to Kahuzi Biega National Park for trekking, bird watching and the Mont Biega Waterfalls (as shown in the picture).
The park rangers will accompany you as guide and security alongside.
After trekking, return to the nearby restaurant and have your lunch.
After lunch, retrieve back to your hotel.
Things to remember while trekking:
- Walks in the forest can be strenuous and the temperatures / weather can vary greatly
- Wear a long sleeved shirt and / or rain jacket with trousers and solid shoes
- Consider your fitness level
- Leave no rubbish behind
- Keep a safe distance from all wild animals
- Do not use flash photography
Permit for trekking and chutes = $35 each (cost included)
In the evening drive to Emmanuel Boat Port, Bukavu. Take a night big boat to Goma. Dinner on board. Night spent in the dormitory of the boat.
Day six: Bukavu – Goma
06h00: Arrive at Emmanuel Port, Goma, about 100kms in the North. The boat will sail through the beautiful Lake Kivu where you will witness many small islands and also Africa’s second biggest Island Idjwi (North and South). You will also find traditional fishing boats of the lake residents who spend whole of their life on fishes and the little bit of plantations on their islands.
After Immigration, drive to the refugee camps in Goma and interact with them and to learn about their life and difficulties faced in the past and present.
After that, drive back to town to visit ‘Volcano Observatory office’ and collect first hand info about world’s biggest lava lake and how it is monitored in different sections of the Observatory.
Then, visit the ‘Goma Souvenir Market’. Different models of Tchikudu, gorillas and pirogue, as well as famous African masks are found here.
13h00 – Lunch at Au Bon Pain / Paradise Club (Ethiopian + Eritrean buffet) / Ble D’or (Lebanese Restaurant).
14h30 – After lunch, drive to the beautiful Lac Vert in the crater of mountains. If possible, a visit to Lac Noir will also be arranged.
A visit to Pygmies: After visiting the mesmerizing lake, a visit to nearby village of the pygmies, who would perform the traditional dance.
Night stay at Lac Kivu Lodge, facing the beautiful Lake Kivu.
Day seven: Goma (DRC) to Bujumbura (Burundi)
07h30 a.m.: After breakfast, drive back to the Goma/Rwanda border (La Corniche). Rwanda visa on arrival to be paid by the tourist $30. Take a shared taxi (Mapasa) to drive to Bujumbura (leaves after every 2 hours). Drive through the beautiful scenic Rwanda’s hilly swinging road. Take some memorable pictures from above the hill and the flowing Lake Kivu. Arrival at Bujumbura in about 4 and a half hours. Transfer to Hotel Club du Lac Tanganyika. Check in and free time till lunch.
Day eight: Bujumbura – Nile Source – Gitega (Burundi):
After breakfast, drive to the southern source of Nile at Rutovu. Visit of the water falls of Karera and trekking around.
Visit of the German fault of Kayove. Lunch en route. Heading towards the centre of the country, visit of Gitega town. Dinner and overnight at Gitega Hotel.
Day nine: Gitega – Drummers – Pygmies – Bujumbura (Burundi): After breakfast, visit of the National Museum,drummers’performance, avocado’s oil processing factory at Murayi,(optional).
Lunch en route.Visit of the Batwa village of Busekera, stopover at Bugarama, shopping, dinner and overnight In Bujumbura.
Day ten: Bujumbura – Return home
After breakfast, free time. Transfer to Bujumbura Bus/Taxi Stand to take the shared taxi to drive to Kigali.
Departure: 09-July-2019 (Wednesday) 16h20: KGL-DOH-LAX/QR
**** End of tour ****
Price: Includes Transport, Hotels, Food, Water, Road taxes/toll etc. No alcoholic drinks are included.
$3,065 for 1 person; $3,895 for 2 persons; $5,725 for 4 persons
Not included: Medical services, individual insurance, tips, meals outside Virunga national park and other drinks and other things not listed in the itinerary.
+ Permits: Gorilla $400 (50% discount from 15-October to 15-December-2019 – $200 each in Virunga Park);
+ Lwiro Research Center Fee in Kahuzi Biega (optional) $70 each
+ Lodge at Paradise Malahide – prices mentioned above.
+ DRC Tourist Visa $100+$10 each for 14 days. (Obtaining any of the above DRC Park permits is mandatory)
- Total (including Permits, lodges, visa) for 1 person = 3065+400+70+122+110 = $3,767
- Total (including Permits, lodges, visa) for 2 persons = 3895+800+140+170+220 = $5,225 ($2613/ person)
G. Total (including Permits, lodges, visa) for 4 persons = 5725+1600+280+340+440 = $8,385 (2096/ person)
(Tour package + Gorilla, Lwiro Center, Paradise Malahide Resort, DRC Visa)