Location of Adventure
Republic of the Congo, West Central Africa
Group Size Limit
Approximately 10 Travelers
A very important feature of our Congo tour is the limited group size, as nature expeditions are best experienced with fewer travelers. At Lango Camp, activities are done in groups of 4-8 travelers, and gorilla tracking at Ngaga Camp is strictly limited to 4 travelers per group.
Specialized 4x4 Land Rovers and Land Cruisers
Our Private Leaders
Internal scheduled round-trip flights between Brazzaville and Odzala-Kokoua National Park, accommodations, airport transfers on Day 1, all meals from dinner on Day 1 to lunch on the final day, non-alcoholic drinks at camps and in vehicles, house alcoholic beverages in camps, services of NHA Expedition Leader, local guides and camp staff, some gratuities, all permits, entrance fees and taxes.
Travel to and from start and end point of trip, premium alcoholic beverages, some gratuities, passport and visa fees, optional activities, items of a personal nature (phone calls, souvenirs, etc.), airline baggage fees, airport and departure taxes, optional travel insurance, and required medical evacuation insurance.
Moderate to Difficult
Activities primarily include exploring thick primary rain forest by boat and on foot, which is the best way to observe the primates and other endemic wildlife. Trekking through untouched forest is strenuous, requiring good physical fitness and a sense of adventure. Treks can involve anywhere from one to several hours of steady walking over rough, often muddy terrain, sometimes at a distance of up to eight miles, and it is typically not possible to turn back due to fatigue. From Lango Camp, walks are more leisurely, departing in the early morning hours and returning to camp by lunchtime, while gorilla treks from Ngaga Camp sometimes last into the early afternoon and are fast-paced with very little time to stop and rest. Most areas we walk through are very wet, and while trails have been established to allow access, travelers almost always return to camp wet and muddy. Shoes will get soaked on most excursions, and it may be necessary to walk in hip- or waist-deep water at some point along the journey. Travelers must also be able to climb into high, open 4x4 vehicles and get into and out of small boats, in order to participate in all activities. Travelers are not required to participate in all activities and are welcome to forego any portion of the program, but with the understanding that full participation is the best way to view resident wildlife in the area.
Important Information About This Trip
The Republic of the Congo is an emerging ecotourism destination, and its infrastructure is limited compared with Africa's core safari countries such as Botswana or Kenya. While English is spoken by our guides, English is not widely spoken by other people you may encounter. While staffing is the best available, service standards may be at a slightly lower level than we are accustomed to. This adventurous safari is ideal for the genuine naturalist who wants to observe unrecorded plant and animal life, unique insects and birds, wildlife spoor and rare subspecies of forest elephant, forest buffalo, various monkeys and the semi-habituated western lowland gorilla. You should not take this trip expecting the large herds of animals or close wildlife encounters that you would experience on a typical photographic driving safari in East or Southern Africa. The jungle of the Congo is thick and untamed, and wildlife here is viewed in smaller numbers, usually on foot, and often at a much greater distance than on a typical safari. The gorilla-viewing experience is also very different from that which takes place in Uganda and Rwanda, where highly habituated mountain gorillas may come within arm's reach, and visibility is much better. Typical western lowland gorilla viewing occurs from 22-55 feet away and often farther, and amid the thick foliage, visibility can be limited. This is not meant to be a photographic safari, as photography is often difficult due to the terrain, moisture and thick jungle. It is also very much a walking safari, where vehicles are used sparingly and mainly for transfers. We walk because it is the best, and sometimes only, way to get to where the wildlife is. This trip is ideal for the naturalist and is best enjoyed with a strong level of physical fitness, a desire to see the more rarely visited, wild and uncharted parts of Africa, and an open-minded sense of adventure.
Since the areas we travel to on this trip are remote and wild (that's why we go there!), we require medical evacuation insurance for our guests' safety. If you decline the medical evacuation insurance coverage offered by Natural Habitat, we request that you send us documentation of the independent coverage you have selected. We will add the cost of a medical evacuation policy to your tour invoice until you provide our office with proof of coverage including your insurance company's name, contact number and your individual policy number. Thank you for understanding that our policy exists exclusively in the interest of our guests' safety.
Getting There & Getting Home
You should plan to arrive in Brazzaville, Republic of the Congo by 6 pm on Day 1, where you will be met and transferred to our hotel in the city (approximately a 15-minute drive). You may depart Brazzaville anytime after 1:15 pm on the final day. We can best serve you if our Natural Habitat Adventures Travel Desk makes your reservations, as our staff is intimately familiar with the special requirements of these programs and can arrange the most efficient and cost-effective travel. Please call us at 1-800-543-8917. Note that while we offer you the best possible rates available to us on airfare and additional nights' accommodations, you may find special web rates or better fares online.