Located on the beautiful turquoise waters of Lake Kivu, Tchegera island is known for its distinct crescent shape, which is actually the upper rim of the crater of a long-extinct volcano.
Visiting Tchegera island is a must if you are considering staying in Goma for a while. Tchegera Islands is this idyllic island located in the west of Goma, the touristic capital of the DRC. Moreover, it’s a great place to get out of the movement and traffic jams of the city. Here, you can spend an awesome weekend as a couple, with friends or even with family. If you decide to spend the night at Tchegera Islands, you will be amazed by spectacular views of Nyiragongo and Nyamuragira as their glowing red lava pierce a star-covered sky. So, you will see the red light and the rushes of smoke emanating from the craters of these respective volcanoes.
What to expect when visiting Tchegera island?
Tchegera Island is a perfect place for bird watchers, it is home to African eagles, cormorants, herons and seagulls. If you think you’re full of energy, you can kayak around the island in one of the kayaks, or take a walk on the clearly mentioned trails that surround the island. If you simply want a retreat reading a book after a challenging Gorilla trekking or Nyiragongo hiking, well, you will be able to simply sit back and enjoy a magnificent view of the Virunga mountains, relaxing and enjoying your iced drink on the beach.
How to get there?
Goma ==> Port : JEEP 4X4
Tchegera Island is located west of the city on the Green Lake side. Being an island, arriving at Tchegera necessarily involves a crossing on the lake of about 5 to 15 minutes depending on the type of canoe used.
From the city center to Tchegera port in the locality of Bulengo, it will take you 50′ on average (20 km), if curious enough to visit a crater lake, well you could make a stop at GREEN VERT aka LAC VERT which is 7 km before arriving at the port in the Mugunga quarter. The road between Mugunga and Bulengo to the port to Tchegera is unpaved, so you will need a 4×4 to make this crossing visiting Tchegera island in Virunga National Park. The JEEP will have to wait for you here until your return around 4pm.
Port Tchegera ==>to the Island: Motorized Canoe or speadboat
After your arrival on the port Tchegera, a canoe or speedboat will pick you up for a lake crossing not exceeding 15′. The cruise is often comfortable because the island in your opposite forms a U that prevents the waves from the open lake to have too much impact during this short crossing to Tchegera islands in Virunga National Park.
You can also directly rent a speedboat from the Ihusi Hotel or Goma Serena for example and arrive on the island in less than 20′ from the city center. For this second option, you will have to pay more money because the rental of a speedboat ranges from $ 200 to $ 300 per hour and crossing the open lake could lead to tumults should waves be present that day.
Things to do visiting Tchegera islands?
With a natural beach with volcanic sands, visiting Tchegera Island in Virunga National Park is your only opportunity to find a natural beach in the city. You will notice that most of the lake edge in Goma is rugged following the successive volcanic eruptions that have even formed the city of Goma, pushing back the lake.
Canoeing or kayaking is one of the favorite activities of the majority of visitors to the island. Whether you know how to swim or not, thanks to the life jackets and the continuous supervision of the lifeguards, spend exceptional moments sailing in the bay of the island with fresh and calm waters.
Bird watching, panoramic views and hiking on the island
Visiting Tchegera Island in Virunga national park must necessarily involve learning about the rich history that this place abounds. Also called Pig Island, Tchegera is that part of Virunga National Park that was little known until 2017. It was during this period that the park regained its rights to the detriment of a former member of parliament who illegally held property on the island and was farming there. Under the guidance of your guide, follow the trails to observe the birds and have a beautiful view of the two highest volcanoes of Virunga: Mikeno and Karisimbi apart naturally from the Nyiragongo Volcano and Nyamulagira. In addition, during the hike you observe the beautiful landscapes of Lake Kivu and its surroundings.
Enjoy a picnic organized in your favor. Thanks to the cooks on the island, spend time on the barbecue enjoying meat, fish, fries under the atmosphere of local Congolese music.
Visiting Tchegera Island, where to stay?
The island is equipped with 6 luxury tents with 2 twin and 4 doubles each equipped with en-suite bathrooms, hot showers and flush toilets. The tents use clean and renewable solar energy.
Kwafrika Travel organizes visits for both nationals and foreigners. Spending a day trip can vary between $150 and $50,00 per person depending on the number of people included in the activity.
Spending the night in luxury tents on the other hand varies between $ 120 to $ 180 per person depending on whether you are a resident or not.
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