Activities in Kahuzi Biega National Park
Activities in Kahuzi Biega National Park: Located in the eastern province of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Kahuzi-Biega national park is the second most visited national park in the country after Virunga National Park. The national park is the number one destination for trekking the rare eastern lowland gorillas. Recent gorilla census reports show that there are about 3,800 eastern lowland gorillas left in the world with a great majority found in Kahuzi-Biega national park in DR Congo.
The national park derives its name from two dormant volcanoes which are called Kahuzi and Biega. Mount Kahuzi is the taller of the two volcanic mountains standing at 3,308 meters above sea level; and finally Mount Biega which stands at 2,790 meters above sea level.
Kahuzi-Biega national park in Congo covers 6,000 square kilometers and spreads across the Congo Basin near Itebero-Utu all the way to Bukavu in the northwestern province of Congo. It is one of the biggest conservation areas in the country and is home to about 136 mammal species, 349 species of birds, 1,178 plant species and approximately 250 eastern lowland gorillas.
Activities in Kahuzi Biega National Park
There are quite a number of activities offered to visitors in the national park and these include;
Gorilla Trekking in Kahuzi-Biega:
Tourists interested in gorilla trekking in Congo have the opportunity to track eastern lowland gorillas in Kahuzi-Biega national park. The park has two habituated groups of eastern lowland gorillas and these include the Chimanuka and Mpungwe gorilla groups. Gorilla trekking activities in the park started as early as the 1970s, with the eastern lowland gorillas as the first sub-species of gorillas to be tracked by tourists who visited the national park. A gorilla trekking permit in Kahuzi-Biega national park in Congo costs USD 400 dollars per person.
Chimpanzee Habituation at Lwiro Sanctuary:
Chimpanzee habituation at Lwiro Sanctuary offers a unique experience to tourists visiting Kahuzi-Biega national park in DR Congo. Chimpanzee habituation at Lwiro Sanctuary costs a fee of USD 40 dollars per person; and it gives visitors an opportunity to learn more about the history and conservation programs at the sanctuary..
Camping Safaris in Kahuzi-Biega National Park:
Kahuzi- Biega national park in Congo offers its visitors camping thus giving visitors an opportunity to soak in the beautiful scenery at the park. Camping safaris in the national park cost USD 50 dollars per person per day and is inclusive of food and a park guide. However, tourists who wish to camp in the park must bring along their own tent and sleeping bag, or hire them from the park at a cost of USD 5 dollars per person per night.
Community Cultural Tours:
Community cultural tours in Kahuzi-Biega national park are ideal for visitors looking to interact with the friendly locals and learn more about the various indigenous cultures at are existent in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Visitors on community cultural tours in the park get to visit local communities staying within the national park; learn about their daily lifestyles and watch interesting performances like; dances, storytelling, singing traditional songs and playing traditional games which are performed by the local dance groups.
Kahuzi-Biega national park in Congo is ideal for bird watching safaris in the country since the park is home to over 349 species of birds. Tourists on a birding safari in the national park have high chances of spotting bird species like; the Congo pea fowl, Yellow-crested Helmet Shrike, African Green Broadbill, Rockefeller’s Sunbird, Ruwenzori Turaco and the trogons among others.
Hiking and Climbing Mountains Kahuzi and Biega:
Since Kahuzi-Biega national park encompasses two mountains, mountain climbing is one of the activities offered to visitors at the park. The Mitumba Mountain ranges provide the iconic spot for hiking safaris for any tourist visiting the park. Visitors can hike through the thick forest vegetation and explore the beautiful scenery and wildlife in the national park. Tourists can also hike to the Kibatu waterfalls at a fee of USD 25 dollars per person, while hiking the mountain ascents of Kahuzi or Biega will cost US 100 dollars per person.
Boat cruise on Lake Kivu:
A boat cruise on Lake Kivu is a must do for any tourist visiting Kahuzi-Biega national park in Congo. This activity costs US 50 dollars per person and is best done after trekking gorillas in the park. There is a lot that you can explore during a boat cruise on Lake Kivu in Kahuzi-Biega national park such as marine and birdlife within and round the lake.
How to get to Kahuzi-Biega national park in Congo.
Kahuzi-Biega national park in Congo can be accessed by means of road, air and water transport. However, the safest travel option to the park is by road and air. The park is located approximately 230 kilometers from Goma town and takes about 5 to 6 hours of driving.
The national park can also be accessed by visitors travelling from Rwanda with road trips to the park taking about 9 to 10 hours from Kigali city. Visitors can also opt to fly from Kigali International Airport to Goma International Airport and then drive for about 1½ hours to Kahuzi- Biega national park.