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How to visit Eastern lowland Gorillas

Eastern Lowland Gorillas in the Kahuzi Biega National Park, Congo

Kahuzi Biega National Park Congo is located in the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo just 50 kms away from Bukavu town which is known among the biggest towns in the eastern part with developed accommodation facilities including the orchids safari club, Coco lodge with modern amenities. Kahuzi Biega national park is listed under the world heritage sites as it’s known to be the home for the most endangered species of the eastern lowland gorillas which are only found in Democratic Republic of Congo in the entire world.

Getting around Kahuzi biega national Park

All travelers that are planning a safari to Congo’s famous Kahuzi Biega national park have various options to enable them reach the destination for the memorable Gorilla trekking safari experience, those that will have booked Virunga Sector before heading to Kahuzi Biega are always advised to use the ferry that leaves Goma town in the morning and it takes 5 hours, this is local ferry and those without time are always advised to book the private speedboat which takes 3 hours depending on the winds on the lake Kivu. This ferry or speedboat will drop you off at Ihusi port or orchids Safari club and its where the driver from the park can pick you up . Travelers are advised to book their overnight stay in Bukavu hotels (Coco Lodge, Begonaise , Orchids safaris lodge) as there is no hotel at Kahuzi biega national park headquarters except camping.

Yet those who are coming from the Republic of Rwanda and having Kahuzi Biega visit as an extension of the Africa safari, your always recommended to cross the border using the Rusizi border 1 as the park driver can easily find you there at the Customs with the approved visa letter to ease crossing to democratic republic of Congo . Most of the visitors who always visit Kahuzi biega national park, come from either Goma or Rwanda via Ruzizi Border. The entrance of the park is at Tshivanga on the eastern side.

Visitors always stop at Kigali international airport and proceed to Congo by road whereby it takes a 7 hours drive to reach the border crossing at Rusizi. Therefore it is recommended for all visitors to spend a night in Kigali and then proceed to Bukavu the next morning, since international flights to Kigali often arrive in the late afternoons or evening.

Transportation between Kahuzi Biega National Park & Bukavu

Kahuzi Biega can easily be accessed since it is located 40km away from Bukavu town, and the means of transport depends on the tourist’s interest. But due to the rough terrains, most visitors prefer to go by road that is, the 4×4 fleets, which takes 90minutes drive to the park

The most reliable way to reach the park is by using trusted tour operators from the Association of Congolese Tours Operators and Travel Agents ‘’ATOAV-RDC’’ who currently are offering Lowland Gorilla safaris in Congo. Since the park is at the West of Bukavu, one can easily drive from Bukavu to the entrance of the park, then head to the road leading to Kavumu airport and turn left at the intersection of the town of Miti, and then stop at the Tshivanga visitors center.

For those coming from Burundi, it usually takes about 3 hours crossing from Rwanda border of Ruwa, to Ruzizi , which is the shortest way to the park. For those who would prefer to use the Ugandan route, it may be a little bit hectic because it requires an overnight stay in Musanze if the visitor is to cross via cyanika border to Rwanda and then drive to Bukavu the next day.

Airlines are also available whereby visitors use domestic charter flights from Kigali to Ruzizi border and then cross to Congo (Bukavu town), after then you are required to take a 4×4 fleet to the park, that might take about 90 minutes to reach.

Simplest Ways To Get A Congo Visa

Getting a tourist Visa in DRC is not so complicated. The cost of the Visa is $105. A tourist Visa is usually two weeks. Just like any other destination, the authorities have to get assurance that you need this Visa for valid reasons.

You need either of the following to qualify for a tourist Visa.

  • Proof of purchase of a gorilla Tracking permit
  • Proof of payment of any accommodation facility more preferably in a National park
  • Proof of payment for any other tourism related event
  • Any other agreement with a registered tour operator.

To make sure you have your Visa, you will have to travel to the DRC and Visas are issued on arrival.

Kwafrika Travel Ltd will help you find you visa in no time thanks to our experience and given the fact that we are a member of the Association of Congolese Tours Operators and Travel Agents (ATOAV-RDC) and incorporated under the laws of the DR Congo.

You can process the Visa two weeks prior to your travel but can only get the visa on arrival. This Visa is single entry and it’s valid for 14 days. You will email a scanned copy of your passport to kwafrikatravel@gmail.com upon completion of the tourist visa application form sent by us to you.

Proof of yellow fever vaccination is key into getting access to the country but its not part of the requirements for the Visa.

The authorities have a right to reject your visa application or terminate it, therefore don’t be too sure, just have your documents right.

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