An African safari is almost on all people’s travel bucket lists. But probably most travelers just think of gorilla tours in Uganda, or chimp trekking in Rwanda. Maybe they just picture themselves in front of a powerful waterfall somewhere in the middle of African forest.
Few experienced travelers that reflect on the hiking adventures in Africa still think of Africa’s famous mountains like all year round snowcapped Rwenzori mountain in Uganda, Kilimanjaro mountain; East Africa’s highest mountain and maybe Mountain Kenya or hiking in Rwanda because it is called the land of a thousand hills.
But there are many virgin places in Africa that even some of the world’s greatest travelers have not yet visited. Factors of insecurity and inaccessibility have hindered several tourists from traveling to some countries like D. R. Congo yet it envelopes unique attractions that have not been spotted anywhere else or even something closer to them.
It’s true that D.R. Congo has unexploited destinations, but Mountain Nyiragongo ranks top in offering the best ultimate hiking experiences in the whole of Africa. It is one of the active stratovolcanoes of the chained Virunga Mountains. The mountain is located in Virunga national park and elevates to approximately 3470 meters.
Hiking mountain Nyiragongo is absolutely one of the best activities to do in Congo. It involves a journey to the top of Virunga national park’s volcanoes where hikers get to see the world’s largest active lava lake. Setting off to the summit of Nyiragongo is at the kibati patrol post, early in the morning immediately after breakfast. It’s a five to six hour hike with experienced guides leading all trekkers through Nyiragongo’s magma rocks and the tropical forested slopes. This slow but sure hike has four stops, it is a strenuous but exciting activity for the adventurers of the African wanders.
Summiting mountain Nyiragongo presents striking sights of the remaining evident scars of mountain’s most recent act of destruction that erupted down to the people who live in its footsteps. The view of the merging and cracking lava rocks is extremely breathe taking. Seeing rock plates separate, unbelievably creating a spider-web like pattern is only experienced by the never giving up hikers who reach the top of the mountain.
For physically fit people, it is very possible for them to climb up and descend on the same day. Though in most cases trekkers reach Nyiragongo’s top already exhausted from a thrilling walk through the lava rocks. Hikers have a chance to stay for an overnight at Nyiragongo Cabins which were built on the edge of the lava lake.
All that is needed a hiking permit which a tour operator surely gets for you, a rain gear, head lamp, sleeping bag and lots of warm clothes. Walking poles are sold at the starting point of the hike and also carry food and snacks. Porters are always available at 24 USD and can carry 15kgs. Don’t forget to hire a cook if you can’t cook as there is no food at the top of the mountain, or else you will sleep on an empty stomach.
Note that this can be a perfect additional activity while on a gorilla safari in Virunga national park. It’s a must try challenge for all adventurous travelers. It’s a shame for great hikers who haven’t yet summited the might mountain of Nyragongo. Undeniably, it’s the right time to book a Congo safari for experiences never got before.