virunga national park congo drc

Gorilla Trekking in Virunga

National Park Congo DRC

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GORILLA FAMILIES IN VIRUNGA

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VIRUNGA NATIONAL PARK CONGO "HOME OF THE 3 TEXA OF GREAT APES"

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About Virunga National Park Congo

Virunga National Park is one of the most biologically diverse protected areas on the earth where Congo Gorilla Trekking Safaris is encountered. The park lies on the eastern border of the Democratic Republic of Congo covering a geographical size of about 7800 sqkms bordering Volcanoes National Park, Uganda’s Rwenzori Mountains and Queen Elizabeth National Parks.

The park was formed in 1925 by King Albert I of Belgium as the initial national park on the continent of Africa and is managed by the Congolese National Park Authorities. It was initiated mainly to protect the mountain gorillas living in the forests of the Virunga Mountains controlled by the Belgian Congo, but later stretched north to include the Rwindi Plains, Lake Edward and the Rwenzori Mountains in the far north.

virunga national park congo drc

In the initial 35 years, the margin of the park took shape, poaching was kept to a bottom, and sustainable tourism prospered due to the work of a large body of hand-picked Congolese rangers and dedicated wardens. Land compensation and the use of park resources such as fishing and hunting by the local population became an ongoing problem and attempts were made to solve these issues.

When the Belgians established Congo independence in 1960 the new state deteriorated rapidly, and so did the park. It was simply in 1969 when President Mobutu opened to take a personal interest in conservation, that the park was revived. In the way of Mobutu’s Africanisation battle, it was renamed Virunga National Park, and the first Congolese Wildlife Authority was established. Virunga fared well for the better part of the 1970s.

Foreign investment helped to improve the park’s infrastructure and training facilities, and the park became a popular destination for tourists, receiving on average 6500 visitors a year. In 1979 UNESCO designated the park as a World Heritage Site. In the mid-1980s the Mobutu regime began to lose its hold on power and the country began a long slide into chaos and as well the park suffered terribly. Poaching exhausted Virunga’s large mammal populations, infrastructure was destroyed, and many rangers were killed.

MORE INFORMATION ABOUT VIRUNGA NATIONAL PARK CONGO

The Congolese Wildlife Authority gradually lost mechanism of Virunga and UNESCO reformed the World Heritage Site status to “endangered. In 2013 the World Wildlife Fund raised concerns about plans by the UK based Soco International to carry out exploration for oil in the park. Presently more than 80% of Virunga National Park has been assigned as oil concessions. Soco International’s own environmental impact assessment reports admit that oil exploration is likely to cause pollution, irreparably damage habitats and bring poaching to the park.

The World Wildlife Fund has launched a campaign to petition Soco to refrain exploring the world heritage area for oil, and thereby avoid these outcomes. As of August 30, 2014, SOCO demobilized its operations in the DRC.World Wildlife Fund executives now acknowledge that the battle over Virunga is hardly over. SOCO has yet to surrender its operating permits or commit to an unrestricted withdrawal. The park is known for its remarkable biodiversity, comprising more bird, mammal and reptile species than any protected area on the continent of Africa.

Although mountain gorillas are now tremendously infrequent and listed as one of the most critically threatened species, effective conservation work has helped to secure the remaining populations. Their populations actually increased during the years of political disturbance in the region (1994–2004), and have continued to do so even throughout the difficult period of 2007-2008. The 2010 mountain gorilla census has showed that the conservation efforts of Virunga have been very effective regarding the gorilla population. Savanna and forest elephants as well as chimpanzees and low land gorillas can still be found in Virunga, along with okapi, giraffes, buffaloes and many endemic birds. The neighboring Mount Hoyo area was accomplished with the park and is home to a population of Bambuti pygmy people, caves and waterfalls.

Covering an area of 7800 square kilometres, diverse homes such as swamps, steppes, snowfields, lava plains, moors, and savannahs can be found here. Africa’s two highest lively volcanoes are also part of the Virunga National Park. Populations include mountain gorillas and hippopotamuses, as well as birds that fly in from Siberia during the twilight months. Other animals that are seen in the park are elephants, chimpanzees, giraffes, and buffaloes. In 1979, due to the failure in population of its main residents, the gorillas and hippos, UNESCO has categorized Virunga National Park as a World Heritage Site. Conservation work to defend the remaining populations of these critically threatened species has since been done and is still continuing despite the current complications brought about by the civil war.
For tourists who wish to make a safari exploration in the Virunga National Park, risk avoidance is advised. Raids of park land and poaching are extensive, as well as military employments seeking a safe sanctuary when under attack. In fact, several park overseers have been killed in the line of duty. Regardless of this, remaining park guards and park authorities remain with their work up to the present. People who wish to help with the park’s conservation efforts are really encouraged to give rather than visit. For only $25 monthly, a part of the park will be under one’s name and protection. This volume will help the rangers in guarding that part free from snares set by poachers. Currently, there are 62 areas in the park being secured by donations.

Why should one go to the Democratic Republic of Congo?

Why should one go to the Democratic Republic of Congo, Congo Safari Attractions to Virunga Massif, Kahuzi Beiga National Park, Mount Nyiragongo Volcano Congo, Gorilla Trekking Safaris in Congo’s Virunga, Mountain Climbing Safaris Trips. There is something mystic about the DRC. The extensive countryside is alive with colourful flowers, thriving fruits and luscious green plants. Here, immense mountain peaks are decorated with wisps of mist and giant primates roam the rainforests, masticating juicy leaves, swinging from vines and rolling teasingly in the dirt.

Safari Attractions in Virunga National Park Congo

Mountain Gorillas in Virunga National Park Congo

about virunga national park congo

Virunga National Park counted six mountain gorilla families open for the trekking before it was closed in 2012 for insecurity in the area. Unfortunately

Flora and Fauna in Virunga National Park Congo

about virunga national park congo
The park boasts an astounding biodiversity due to the large variety of habitats it offers. In the southern sector the Mountain Gorillas attract most attention

Mount Nyiragongo Volcano in Virunga Park

about Virunga National park Congo

Nyiragongo is one of the world’s most beautiful and active volcanoes and a large stratovolcano near Lake Kivu at the eastern border of DRCongo

Congo Virunga Ranges in Virunga National Park

congo virunga ranges
Not only does tourism in Virunga entail wildlife but one can also enjoy hiking the volcanoes. The conservation area is a home to eight volcanic mountains

Mountain Mikeno in Virunga National Park

mountain mikeno in virunga national park
Mount Mikeno is noted to stand at a height of 4,437 metres and is the second highest peak in the Virunga Mountains after Karisimbi, and the 13th highest mountain of Africa.

Gorilla Trekking in Virunga National Park Congo

VIRUNGA NATIONAL PARK CONGO
This is the most done tourism activity in the Virunga National Park Congo. There are six habituated gorilla families in the national park available for trekking.

Congo Gorilla Trekking Safaris Tours, Wildlife Safari in Congo

2 Days Congo Gorilla Safari to Virunga National Park

14 Days Uganda Safari
The 2 Days Congo Gorilla Safari to Virunga National Park is a short Congo gorilla trip specially designed for the travellers who want to see gorilla in Congo but are time constrained. READ MORE

2 Days Congo Lowland Gorilla Trekking Safari

Attractions in Virunga National Park, Congo gorilla trekking safari, tour Congo
The 2 Days Congo Lowland Gorilla Trekking Safari to Kahuzi Biega National Park is a short Lowland Gorilla Trip starting in either Kigali or Gisenyi and ends in Rwanda. READ MORE

3 Days Lowland Gorilla Safari in Congo

7 Days Chimps & Gorilla Safari in Uganda
The 3 days Low Land Gorilla trekking Safari in Congo is one of the highly unique safaris that will allow you to trek the stunning lowland gorillas in Khauzi Biega National Park READ MORE

3 Days Gorilla Trekking Tour in DR Congo

6 Days Uganda Gorilla Safari
The 3 Days Gorilla tour in Congo is one of the short gorilla trekking tours that allow you to trek gorillas in Congo Africa’s most beautiful Virunga National Park located in North-Eastern part of DR Congo. READ MORE

3 Days Congo Mountain Gorilla Trekking Safari

4 Days Gorilla Safari in Uganda
3 Days Congo Mountain Gorilla Trekking Safari in Virunga National Park is a short primate tour that starts and ends in Kigali. Virunga National Park is part of the greater Virunga Massif shared among Congo READ MORE

4 Days Gorilla Trek and Nyiragongo Volcano Hike

5 Days Adventure & Congo Safari in Congo to Virunga
The 4 Days Hike Safari in Congo is one of the highly rewarding short tours Gorilla trekking tours that gives you that unique opportunity to have memorable gorilla trekking experience READ MORE

5 Days Adventure & Congo Safari in Congo to Virunga

3 Days Lowland Gorilla Safari in Congo
5 Days Congo Gorilla & Adventure Safari in Congo & Mount Nyiragongo is primarily a primate viewing and Mountain climbing safari. The Safari includes tracking Mountain Gorillas in Congo READ MORE

5 Days Congo Lowland Gorilla Trekking Tours

4 Days Gorilla Safari in Uganda
5 Days Congo Lowland Gorilla Trekking Tour, Chimpanzee trekking & Mount Climbing Safari is an exciting Africa adventure tour to the South Kivu Province of Democratic Republic of Congo READ MORE

6 Days Congo Mountain Gorilla Trekking Safaris Tour

4 Days Gorilla Trek and Nyiragongo Volcano Hike in Congo
The 6 Days Congo Mountain Gorilla Trekking Safari and Volcano Climbing adventure to Virunga National Park is an adventure filled exploration to one of the less explored wilderness areas of Africa. READ MORE

6 Days Mountain Gorilla trekking in DR Congo and Rwanda

Gorilla Trekking in Virunga National Park Congo
The 6 Days Mountain Gorilla trekking safari in in DR Congo and Rwanda is one of the most impressing safaris that will offer you an opportunity to have double mountain gorilla trekking experience READ MORE

7 Days Gorilla Trekking in Congo Wildlife Safari

3 Days Lowland Gorilla Safari in Congo
The 7 Days Congo Wildlife Safari is one of the interesting wildlife safari packages that will combine Congo’s most splendid national parks with unique ape experiences READ MORE

10 Days Gorilla trekking Safari in Congo and Uganda

Gorilla Trekking in Virunga National Park Congo
The 10 Days Gorilla Safari in Congo and Uganda is an impressing safari package that will combine Congo and Uganda’s most splendid national parks with unique cultural experiences READ MORE

Safari Activities in Virunga National Park Congo

Gorilla Trekking in Virunga National Park Congo

Safari Activities in Virunga National Park Congo
This is the most done tourism activity in the Virunga National Park Congo. There are six habituated gorilla families in the national park available for trekking. READ MORE

Gorilla Families in Virunga Park Congo

virunga national park congo drc
Virunga National Park counted six mountain gorilla families open for the trekking before it was closed in 2012 for insecurity in the area. READ MORE

Mountain Gorilla Behavior in Virunga National Park

about virunga national park congo
Severe aggression is rare in stable groups, but when two Mountain Gorilla groups meet, the two silverbacks can sometimes engage in a fight to the death, using their canines to cause deep, gaping injuries. READ MORE

Facts About the Mountain Gorillas in Virunga National Park

virunga national park congo drc
A newborn gorilla weighs about 1.8 kg (4 lb.), and spends its first few months of life in constant physical contact with its mother. In its first few months of life, infant Mountain Gorillas ride on their mother’s backs. READ MORE

Mountain Gorilla Social structure

VIRUNGA NATIONAL PARK CONGO
The Mountain Gorilla is highly social, and lives in relatively stable, cohesive groups held together by long-term bonds between adult males and females. Relationships among females are relatively weak. READ MORE

About Virunga National Park Congo

Virunga National Park Congo is one of the most biologically diverse protected areas on earth. Virunga National Park lies on the eastern border of the Democratic Republic of Congo covering a geographical size of about 7800 sqkms bordering Volcanoes National Park, Uganda’s Rwenzori Mountains and Queen Elizabeth National Parks. This is where Mountain Gorilla Trekking in Virunga Park Congo DRC takes place

The park was formed in 1925 by King Albert I of Belgium as the initial national park on the continent of Africa and is managed by the Congolese National Park Authorities. It was initiated mainly to protect the mountain gorillas living in the forests of the Virunga Mountains controlled by the Belgian Congo, but later stretched north to include the Rwindi Plains, Lake Edward and the Rwenzori Mountains in the far north.

In the initial 35 years, the margin of the park took shape, poaching was kept to a bottom, and sustainable tourism prospered due to the work of a large body of hand-picked Congolese rangers and dedicated wardens. Land compensation and the use of park resources such as fishing and hunting by the local population became an ongoing problem and attempts were made to solve these issues.

When the Belgians established Congo independence in 1960 the new state deteriorated rapidly, and so did the park. It was simply in 1969 when President Mobutu opened to take a personal interest in conservation, that the park was revived. In the way of Mobutu’s Africanisation battle, it was renamed Virunga National Park, and the first Congolese Wildlife Authority was established. Virunga fared well for the better part of the 1970s.

Foreign investment helped to improve the park’s infrastructure and training facilities, and the park became a popular destination for tourists, receiving on average 6500 visitors a year. In 1979 UNESCO designated the park as a World Heritage Site. In the mid-1980s the Mobutu regime began to lose its hold on power and the country began a long slide into chaos and as well the park suffered terribly. Poaching exhausted Virunga’s large mammal populations, infrastructure was destroyed, and many rangers were killed.

The Congolese Wildlife Authority gradually lost mechanism of Virunga and UNESCO reformed the World Heritage Site status to “endangered. In 2013 the World Wildlife Fund raised concerns about plans by the UK based Soco International to carry out exploration for oil in the park. Presently more than 80% of Virunga National Park has been assigned as oil concessions. Soco International’s own environmental impact assessment reports admit that oil exploration is likely to cause pollution, irreparably damage habitats and bring poaching to the park.

The World Wildlife Fund has launched a campaign to petition Soco to refrain exploring the world heritage area for oil, and thereby avoid these outcomes. As of August 30, 2014, SOCO demobilized its operations in the DRC.World Wildlife Fund executives now acknowledge that the battle over Virunga is hardly over. SOCO has yet to surrender its operating permits or commit to an unrestricted withdrawal. The park is known for its remarkable biodiversity, comprising more bird, mammal and reptile species than any protected area on the continent of Africa.

Why should one go to the Democratic Republic of Congo?

Why should one go to the Democratic Republic of Congo, Congo Safari Attractions to Virunga Massif, Kahuzi Beiga National Park, Mount Nyiragongo Volcano Congo, Gorilla Trekking Safaris in Congo’s Virunga, Mountain Climbing Safaris Trips. There is something mystic about the DRC. The extensive countryside is alive with colourful flowers, thriving fruits and luscious green plants. Here, immense mountain peaks are decorated with wisps of mist and giant primates roam the rainforests, masticating juicy leaves, swinging from vines and rolling teasingly in the dirt.

As a visitor to the DRC, time is spent climbing to great altitudes for impressive views, having close encounters with some of the world’s erratic creatures, and paddling through thick, wet rainforests in search of adventure. This country offers the most astonishing experiences and, by the very essence of its impressiveness and variety, deserves to be seen, appreciated and protected.

Isn’t it dangerous to Visit Democratic Republic of Congo?

It’s true that the DRC is a deeply distressed country. Beginning with the arrival of Europeans in the late fifteenth century, and the subsequent colonisation in 1885 by Belgium, extensive pillaging of the country’s rich natural resources, slavery and war mar its history.

Although the DRC enjoyed some prosperous years in the 1950s, the country fell apart again after independence in 1960 and continues to face waves of violence and war, kept at bay only in some regions by the huge UN peacekeeper presence. It’s because of this that the DRC still struggles to break free from its reputation as a country of ‘darkness’. The reality is that the DRC now, as ever, faces the huge challenges of protecting its rich and varied landscape, saving its precious wildlife and creating a more prosperous future for its people in a complicated political and economic climate.

So is it actually safe to visit the Tourist Sites in Congo?

It’s possible to visit parts of the DRC safely. The harmless and most touristic areas of the country are Goma, Virunga National Park and Bukavu in in the east, and the capital Kinshasa in the west. Given that there are still serious security threats in the DRC for tourists, it’s best to visit with a tour operator who will know how best to keep you safe. The eastern region of the DRC where Virunga is located is still troubled by armed rebel groups, so tour operators will arrange armed escorts to accompany travellers at all times.

Where should one go while in Democratic Republic of Congo?

There are only a couple of regions of the DRC that travellers can visit at present. One of these is the spectacular Virunga National Park, home to about a quarter of the world’s critically endangered mountain gorillas.

This is Africa’s oldest national park and is famed for its thick forest, towering mountain peaks and ancient swamps. On the western side of the DRC is its capital Kinshasa, the world’s second largest French-speaking city. It’s known as the heart of central African music, and the bars in Bandal or Matonge are worth visiting to sample the local nightlife.

Can one go hiking while in Democratic Republic of Congo?

With its spread of vast mountain ranges and dense rainforest, the DRC presents some top-notch hiking. There are masses of options in Virunga National Park, including various hikes to see the legendary mountain gorillas, but adventurous hikers will also want to tackle Mount Nyiragongo. This active volcano towers over Goma in eastern DRC, emitting a strange red glow from its bubbling lava lake as darkness sets each night. The hike takes around six hours, climbing to 3470m through humid tropical forest, over scraggy lava rocks and past steaming springs, before being rushed into mist at the top.

At the summit, trekkers camp in small huts on the crater rim, from where the boiling waves of lava can be heard booming over each other like water in the ocean. The evening is spent wide in awe into the molten, fiery heart of the earth, and watching as the covered top of the lava lake steadily separates, revealing bolts of luminous orange liquid below.

How to Travel to Virunga National Park Congo?

How to get to Virunga National Park Congo, getting to Virunga Park by Ro ad, Air, Water and any other transport means in Congo.

Visitors can get to Virunga national park using different means of transport depending on the visitor’s interests though the most commonly used is road transport as well as air travel and water transport.

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