Kahuzi Biega National Park
Kahuzi Biega national park-Congo is one of the largest national parks located in the eastern part of democratic republic of Congo. The national park covers a total area of 6,000 square kilometers which is comprised of tropical rainforest, swamps, grasslands, bamboo forests, afro-montane forests, which act as habitat for wildlife species including 136 mammal species such as forest elephants, buffaloes, giant forest hogs, hippos, 13 primates including Eastern lowland gorillas, chimpanzees, black and white colobus monkeys, bush babies, red tailed monkeys, olive baboons and variety of bird species.
The national park was named after two volcano mountains that is mount Kahuzi which stands at an elevation of 3,308 meters above the sea level and mount Biega which is 2,790 meters above the sea level.
Top things to do in Kahuzi Biega national park
Eastern lowland gorilla trekking in Kahuzi Biega national park
Eastern lowland gorilla trekking in the national park is an adventurous activity which involves moving into the tropical rainforests in search of the habituated gorilla families and once found spend one hour with them in their natural habitat. Trekking of Eastern lowland gorillas in the park starts with a briefing about the rules and regulations at the park headquarters.
After the briefing you will start trekking in the jungle with an experienced park guide who is knowledgeable about the gorillas and also conversant with different trails. Eastern lowland gorilla trekking takes about 30 minutes to 5 hours depending on where the gorillas are located because they like to move from one place to another in search of food.
During trekking you will be able to spot other primates such as chimpanzees, red tailed monkeys, black and white colobus monkeys, baboons, variety of bird species, tree species among others. Once the eastern lowland gorillas are found you will be allowed to spend one hour with them in their environment which gives you an opportunity to learn about their lifestyle, behaviors, habits, take photos, record videos, watch them play, feed, breastfeed, rest, groom young ones among others.
Bird watching in Kahuzi Biega national park
Kahuzi Biega national park is a home of more than 350 recorded bird species including 42 Albertine rift endemic species which makes it the birding paradise. During bird watching you will be accompanies by a well trained park guide who will help you to spot different bird species such as Rocketfeller sunbirds, Congo peafowl, African green broadbill, yellow crested helmet shrink, Rwenzori turaco, Grauers warbler, Shelley’s crimsonwing, yellow bellied waxbill, white tipped crested flycatcher, sharpes sterling, black faced rufous warbler, northern fiscal, golden winged sunbird, cinnamon chested bee-eater, martial eagle, black billed turaco, handsome francolin, red eyed dove, grey cheeked hornbill, yellow billed barbet, bar-tailed trogon among others.
Nature walks in Kahuzi Biega national park
Nature walk is an interesting activity where you will be able to explore the park on foot with the company of a well trained park guide and an armed park ranger. There are different trails in the park which you will follow during the guided nature walk such as Tshibati water fall trail which will lead you to the three waterfalls and Marais Musisi trail.
During the nature walk you will get up-close and personal with different animals, primates, listen to sweet sounds of bird species, enjoy the cool breeze, view colorful butterflies among others.
Mountain climbing/ Hiking in Kahuzi Biega national park
This is a fascinating activity in the national park where you will be able to hike the inactive Kahuzi Mountain which stands at an elevation of 3,308 meters above the sea level and Biega Mountains which stands at an elevation of 2,790 meters above the sea level.
During hiking you will pass through bamboo and sub-alpine vegetation which harbor different animals and variety of bird species. Once you reach the summit you will enjoy great views of the beautiful scenery, Lake Kivu, Bukavu town, surrounding communities among others.
When to visit Kahuzi Biega national park
Kahuzi Biega national park can be visited anytime throughout the year though the best time is in the dry season also known as the peak season during the months of June, July, August, September, December, January and February. During the dry season the national park receives little rainfall therefore access roads, hiking and gorilla trekking trails will be dry and passable compared to the wet season in the months of march to may and November when the trails are muddy and slippery which makes trekking difficult.
Where to stay during your safari in Kahuzi Biega national park
There are several accommodation facilities in the national park where you can stay during your safari. The accommodations in the Park Range from luxury, mid-range and budget including Coco Lodge, L’orchids Safari Club, Mount Kahuzi Hotel Bukavu, Lakeside Hotel Bukavu, Hotel Begonias Bukavu, Exodus Bukavu among others.
How to get to Kahuzi Biega national park
The park is located in the Eastern part of Democratic Republic of Congo and can be accessed by road transport means whereby it takes about 1 to 2 hours drive from Bukavu town to the park headquarters.
Kahuzi Biega national park can also be accessed from Rwanda whereby you will fly to Kigali international airport to Kamembe in Cyangugu town and then cross via Le Grand Barrier in Goma to Bukavu town where you will connect to the park headquarters which takes about 6 to 7 hours drive.
When travelling by air transport means you can book a flight from Kigali international airport to Goma international airport and then connect to the park by road.