6 Days DJ Nyiragongo volcano & Virunga gorilla trekking

Destination: Congo

Virunga National Park

Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo is a world heritage site which is made by four main sectors, the Nyiragongo and Nyamulagira volcanoes; the Mikeno sector of the Virunga Volcanoes Mountains; the Lulimbi savannah along Lake Edward; and the Rwenzori Mountains.

You will visit the Mikeno sector, named after one of the Virunga volcanoes, a mountaineering area where today there are 8 gorilla groups open for tourism activity, making up a total of 120 gorillas (of a total population in Virunga of about 480). These 8 groups are found in four trekking points, which are: Bukima, Kibumba, Katovu and Jomba. The Mikeno sector of the park enjoys stunning view over the Albertine Rift Valley, which comes from Uganda and proceeds down to Lake Kivu. The roads along the park are currently very dirt and the transportation is made with good land rovers.

Nyiragongo Volcano

Nyiragongo is an active volcano, with a biggest lava dam in the world, visible from its edge at an altitude of 3.470 meters. With the Nyamulagira volcano, they are the last of the Virunga volcanoes, located near the Lake Kivu and overlooking Goma Town, making the area to be separated from the Mikeno sector of the park. Nyiragongo erupted last time in January 2002. The volcano can be climbed in a 2 days trekking with an overnight on top along the edge, where a number of wooden cabins are available as dormitories, plus the common latrines and kitchen area where the cooks of the organization prepare hot meals for the tourists. The trekking follows the vegetation of the mountain and you will have four stopping points with available latrine along the way.

Organization of the trekking of the Nyiragongo

Climbing the Nyiragongo is not a difficult activity and it can take about 5 to 6 hours to reach on top. You will need your trekking gear including: rucksack, sleeping bag (the mattress is provided in the cabins), torch, light and worm rain jacket, warm hat, trekking boots, rain gear for your own protection (rain is a bit frequent in this area). You will carry with you a full change of clothes in case of having found the rain on the way (socks, t-shirts, trousers, shirt and sweater). At night the temperature goes down to minus zero degrees, so it is advisable to have layers of clothes to spend the night on the edge and for sleeping.

The park will give you as part of the service: rucksack, sleeping bag, poncho, warm jacket. You might go with it or prefer your own personal gear.



Day 1
Arrival in Kigali / Goma
Arrival in Kigali international airport or in Goma International Airport, pick up and transfer to the hotel for the overnight in BB at The Manor / The Quiet Haven Hotel in Kigali or Lake Kivu Lodge in Goma. BB

Overnight at: The Manor / The Quiet Haven Hotel in Kigali or Lake Kivu Lodge in Goma. BB

After breakfast, drive to Virunga National Park precisely in the southern sector of Mikeno, which is the area of the Virunga volcanoes, home to about 400 mountain gorillas. Lunch en route. Dinner and overnight at Bukima Tented Camp / Kibumba Lodge, found at an altitude of about 2200 meters at the foothills of the Mikeno volcano. Full Board nNote: the transfer of today takes about 3 hours from Kigali. The road from Goma to the park is dirt.n

Overnight at: Bukima Tented Camp / Kibumba Lodge

After a very early morning breakfast, go to the park rangers post for the registration and briefing for the mountain gorilla trekking. The area of the tracking will be decided by the park among the current four areas open for this activity.nPacked lunch served for the day out or late lunch at the lodge. nIn the afternoon you drive to Rumangabo village, where there is the national park head quarters.

You can visit Senkwekwe center, started in 2007 hosting 3 gorillas (Ndeze, Matabishi and Ndakasi) and from 2017 also a baby gorilla called Muzuka. Next to the center also the gorilla cemetery with the tombs of about 15 gorillas, many of them killed by poachers in the past, like the Semkwekwe who died in 2007. Dinner and overnight at Mikeno lodge at an altitude of 1800 meters. Full BoardnNote: the transfer of today takes about 2 hours from Kibumba or 1 hour from Bukima along a dirt road.n

Overnight at: Mikeno lodge at an altitude of 1800 meters. Full Board

After an early morning breakfast, drive to Kibati where the Nyiragongo volcano mountain hike starts at an altitude of about 2.000 metres. The summit is at an altitude of 3,470m where you will see the lava lake in the largest crater. The trekking is not difficult and follows a well demarcated route. Along the route there are also stopping points with benches, latrines and to rest with some snacks.

Dinner and overnight at the summit in the wooden cabins of the park. The Nyiragongo is a continuous experience all through the night as it keeps changing colours and sound. From the top you will also have a stunning view of Lake Kivu, Goma town and the Rift Valley where across continues the Virunga National Park on the North. Overnight at the tents at the summit.nNote: the transfer of today takes about 2 hours from Mikeno to Nyiragongo.

Overnight at: Mikeno lodge at an altitude of 1800 meters. Full Board

After an early morning breakfast, drive to Kibati where the Nyiragongo volcano mountain hike starts at an altitude of about 2.000 metres. The summit is at an altitude of 3,470m where you will see the lava lake in the largest crater. The trekking is not difficult and follows a well demarcated route. Along the route there are also stopping points with benches, latrines and to rest with some snacks. Dinner and overnight at the summit in the wooden cabins of the park.

The Nyiragongo is a continuous experience all through the night as it keeps changing colours and sound. From the top you will also have a stunning view of Lake Kivu, Goma town and the Rift Valley where across continues the Virunga National Park on the North. Overnight at the tents at the summit.nNote: the transfer of today takes about 2 hours from Mikeno to Nyiragongo.

Overnight at: Mikeno lodge at an altitude of 1800 meters. Full Board

After the last visit to the lava lake, have your breakfast then descend the volcanic mountain going back to the starting point. After writing comments, drive back to Goma. Lunch in the hotel. In the afternoon visit some of the most interesting handicraft shops of Goma and the take a tour of this town of more than 1 million people. Dinner and overnight in Goma at Lake Kivu lodge. Full Board

Overnight at: Lake Kivu lodge

After breakfast, reserved to departure from Goma International Airport or from Kigali International Airport with a transfer back to Kigali. BB

Please contact us to get flight itinerary for this package.


Itinerary Extention

You can choose to extend your safari package with these activities

Option 1:

Day 6 – Tchegera on Lake Kivu

After breakfast, take the boat on Lake Kivu to Tchegera Island, which will take a short trip. In the island you will enjoy the beauty of the nature, the beach, the abundant birding life and you can also take activities like paddle board to other parts of the island.nnFull board at Tchegera Island Camp. Full Board.

Day 7 – Tchegera – Departure

After breakfast, take the boat back to Goma and complete your journey with the departure or transfer back to Kigali. BB

Option 2:

Day 6 - Explore Lake Kivu - Bukavu

After breakfast the journey continues on board the ferry boat on Lake Kivu, for the crossing to the south to Bukavu. Lunch. In the afternoon you can visit the local markets, the harbor and the long lake or visit the orphanage of chimpanzees (Primary Rehabilitation Center). Dinner and overnight stay, Lodge Coco. Full board.

Day 7 - Low land gorilla trekking in Kahuzi - Biega National Park

After breakfast early in the morning, depart for the Kahuzi Biega National Park. With 600 square miles of forest, the park offers the opportunity to experience the true Congolese jungle. The main activity is definitely trekking to see gorillas on the plains or Gorilla Gorilla Graueri, chosen among the familiar families for this tourist program. Take your packed lunch with you from the hotel and keep ready for a walk in the forest. Dinner and overnight stay, Lodge Coco. Full board.

Day 8 – Bukavu - Kigali

After breakfast I move to the border of Rwanda from Bakavu heading to Kigali. Lunch break at Butare. Visit the royal palace of Mwami at Nyanza. Dinner and overnight in Kigali, Flame Tree Village Hotel / The Manor Hotel / The Quiet Haven Hotel. Full board

Day 9 - Kigali

Reserved for the city tour of Rwanda's capital and transfer to Kigali International Airport. BB


The price includes:

  • Visa fee to Congo DRC
  • Package for the Nyiragongo gear
  • Cook and an English speaking guide
  • Porter for the Nyiragongo
  • Nyiragongo trekking
  • Gorilla permit
  • Accommodations based on full board
  • The driver guide
  • Transportations (4wd vehicle) and fuel
Highlights
  • Gorilla Tracking