Bukima Tented Camp is a Congo safari accommodation facility situated adjacent Virunga National Park Congo. This camp was initially a research station however; today it is the main starting point for Congo gorilla safaris in Virunga national park. Basically everything about this camp is just gorillas or gorilla safaris in Congo. At times the gorillas wander into the camp and this never ceases to impress the tourists as they enjoy their Congo safari. The gorillas are always monitored by park staff/ rangers so you shouldn’t be scared. But because it is a wild area, you need to always to be on the lookout since anything can happen.
Just like its name, Congo safari tour guests that chose this as their Congo safari accommodation sleep in tents. However, these tents are no ordinary tents; they are classy and luxurious with big size beds and suite facilities. There aren’t many camps that have a location as wonderful as Bukima. Meaning ‘The place where there are monkeys’, the camp certainly lives up to its name and in fact, goes one better with its proximity to the utterly magnificent mountain gorillas of Virunga National Park.
During your stay here on your Congo tour, you will enjoy magnificent views in and around the tents. The views from anywhere in the camp are spectacular. To the south, the place is dominated by Mountain Mikeno whose peak goes up to 4437m (14,560 foot). This mountain summit towers over the Congo gorilla trek safari gorilla sector. Across the valley is Nyiragongo volcano, whose lava lake colours the sky with a red glow on clear nights. Another interesting feature near the camp is a lava tunnel which has created a good-sized cave, a must for anyone with an urge to do a spot of exploration in the Congo.
Bukima Tented camp is credited to be the most convenient place to start a gorilla trek in Africa. You cannot get a more convenient starting point for an Africa gorilla trek anywhere in Africa. In Uganda, there is no Uganda safari lodge acts as a starting point for Uganda gorilla safaris in both Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park neither does Rwanda have a Rwanda safari accommodation lodge that has a starting point for Rwanda gorilla trek safaris.
The Congo park rangers come right to the compound of the camp in the morning to do their pre-trek briefing about your Congo gorilla safari. Just like it is in Uganda & Rwanda, the park rangers will teach you about the dos and don’ts of gorilla trek safari Congo. These rules are similar to those given in Uganda to tourists going for gorilla tours Uganda and in Rwanda to tourists going for gorilla safaris Rwanda. After the briefing, you will hike straight out of the camp into the forest to find the gorillas.
Bukima tented camp consists of 8 beautiful tents with private suite facilities like flushing toilets and hot Bucket showers, Rooms are in different categories; single, doubles, twins and triple rooms. Everything about Bukima Tented Camp, ranging from the tents to the food is simple yet comfortable. Each of the camps’ six tents features an en suite bathroom with running cold water, flush toilets and hot bucket showers. The beds are great. Lighting is provided by solar panels. You are also likely to find a hot water bottle heating the sheets for you making your nights at more than 6500 feet cool! English language skills among the staff are limited but they are so warm and welcoming.
You can either be at the camp by road or by air transport. Bukima is about 2 hours from Goma and 1.5 hours from Mikeno Lodge. Be warned the final 4.5 miles take almost an hour to cover on a very bumpy road! There is not much to do at Bukima other than the gorilla treks so we recommend spending only 1-2 nights depending on how many treks you are doing.
Besides trekking mountain gorillas in Virunga National Park, Congo has another gorilla safari destination known as Kahuzi Biega National Park Congo. It is unique from Virunga because it is home to lowland gorillas another subspecies of the gorilla family. Kahuzi Biega National Park Congo is, however, is a not just about lowland gorillas, it gives travellers Congo gorilla trekking safaris. The park is home to a pair of inactive volcanic mountains found within the heart of this national park you can hike. Mount Kahuzi is the highest with a height of about 3,308m above sea level while Mount Biega, is the smallest of the two stands at about 2,790m above the sea level. Hiking is one of the common activities done in this park. Hiking Mount Kahuzi takes about 4 hours to the top and 3 hours down while Mount Biega takes about 3 hours to the top and 3 hours down. Once you hike and reach any of the summits of these two volcanoes, you will enjoy a scenic panoramic view of the entire park, you may spot some of the wildlife that habits the park, enjoying viewing the neighbouring communities and countries. During your hiking adventure in Kahuzi Biega National Park, expect to see bamboo and subalpine vegetation that harbour different animals in the park and a few animals like owl-faced monkeys plus a variety of birds.
Nyiragongo hiking safari Congo
After your lowland gorilla trekking Safari Congo in Kahuzi Biega National Park, you can also visit Virunga National Park and experience a double gorilla trekking safari in Congo. Virunga National Park Congo offers a mountain gorilla safari tour Congo making Congo the only destination in Africa with different species of gorillas. It may seem the same experience but they are different because you are going to trek a different species of gorillas that live in a different environment; mountainous area hence the name mountain gorillas.
Virunga National Park Congo is the popularly visited destination in the country with two popular activities done in the park which are Mountain gorilla trekking and a hike to Mount Nyiragongo summit. Mount Nyiragongo is within the Virunga massif close to the Albertine rift a region that is very rich in diversity within Africa. Mount Nyiragongo is about 3,470m high with two distinct lava benches one about 3,175m (10,417ft) and the other at 2,975m (9,760ft). Mount Nyiragongo is one of Africa’s recently active stratovolcanoes with a lava lake once known as the most voluminous.
The most common activity on mount Nyiragongo is hiking especially done alongside Congo gorilla trekking safaris in Virunga National Park. This amazing Volcano is 20km north of Goma town (capital of the North Kivu province in the Eastern DRC) and just west of the border with Rwanda. From 1882, Mount Nyiragongo has erupted at least 34 times. In 1977, there was an active volcanic activity when the walls fractured and the lava lake drained in one hour creating the fastest lava flow recorded (40mi/h). Mount Nyiragongo is one of the recent active volcanoes and for this uniqueness, many are always daring to hike Mount Nyiragongo and never have they been disappointed, the lava and hike experience are 2 different and memorable safari Congo activities.
A hike to Mount Nyiragongo is briefly a single day Congo tour hike and a single day descend with a night spent at the summit. You can decide to take the Nyiragongo volcano hike either as a stand-alone trip or tailor it with a Congo gorilla trekking safari to Virunga National Park. One can also opt to tailor their safari with a Uganda wildlife safari during an extended or long safari. For a Mount Nyiragongo trek, you arrive from your destination probably Kigali International Airport which is the closest airport with daily flight then transfer to Goma town. On the first day of the trek, you are expected to be at the hike start point by 8:00 am Congo local time. The ascent up the volcano starts at around 10:00 am with most climbing groups reaching the summit by 5:00 pm. The trek is split into five legs, so you get four rest stops of about 20 minutes each as you regain your strength and collect your breath. On arriving at the summit, you will spend the night on the crater in small summit cabins just enough for your rest through the cold night. Early morning before sunrise after taking memorable pictures of the lava at the summit, by around 6:00 am getting you then start the descend back to the hike start point going through the steep rocky trail. In case you need help with the hike and your luggage, hiring a porter at a fee is the best option.
Congo gorilla safari packages