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About Congo (DRC)

The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) also formerly known as Congo Zaire, Congo Kinshasa is arguably Africa’s second largest country after Algeria. It is located in central Africa and borders Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi and Tanzania to the east, South Sudan and Central African Republic to the North, Angola and Zambia to the south, Republic of Congo to the south and the Atlantic Ocean in the south west. This country is named after the Congo river but her name has been altered several times since independence. From the early 19th century (1971 -1997) it was originally known as Zaire, also the former name for River Congo. Zaire was a Portuguese adaption of the Kikongo word “nzere” to mean a River. It was truncated from the phrase “nzadi o nzere” (river swallowing rivers) as many rivers join together in one course to form the Congo river. The latter is today the second largest river globally by discharge and deepest in the deepest in the world.

History of the Congo

Prior to the colonization Congo, the country is believed to have been occupied by the Bantu as early as the 7th century. This accelerated during the transition from Stone Age to Iron Age that so many migrate to central Africa in search of arable land. Today, it is second to none as the world’s most populated francophone nation but also fourth most populated country in the world. Like any other African nation, DRC was also greatly affected by the salve trade mainly by Arab-Swahili traders. The Democratic Republic of Congo was colonized on 17th November 1879 by King Leopold II of Belgium. The King had sponsored exploration and administrative ventures of Sir Henry Morton Stanley. Following the Berlin Conference of 1885 that led to the scramble and partition of Africa. King Leopold acquired Congo as his private land and named it the Congo Free State. Infrastructure developments were quickly initiated in the state that included construction of a railway line from the coast to Leopoldville that is today known as Kinshasa. .

The Climate and Geograpgy of D.R Congo

The area of the Democratic Republic of Congo spans over the Equator with a third in the Northern hemisphere and rest in the South. As another other state in the equatorial region, it experiences warm climate with rainfall averages of 2000mm a year. The nation has basically two seasons that are the dry and wet season. These influence the economic activity of agriculture in the nation. The also experiences high humidity levels and the highest number of thunderstorms. The climate of the Congo facilitates the Congo Rain Forest, the largest rainforest in the wild that is only second to the Amazon. The extensive blossoming jungle is encompassed by the Congo basin that drains it waters in the Atlantic Ocean. The rain forest is surrounded by plateaus with savanna in the southern region and northern region, highland areas in the west and glaciated mountains in the east on the border with Uganda. The Congo river basin covers an area of 1,000,000 square kilometres with major tributaries like Lulonga, Ruzizi, Kasai, Ubangi and Sangha. Democratic Republic of Congo is also gifted with the world’s few remaining active volcanoes. Mt Nyiragongo and Mt. Nyamulagira are the notable highland areas in the Congo. Mt Nyiragongo last erupted in 2002 with lava flowing to the nearby Goma city damaging it and poisoning the lake Kivu water.

THE LAKE KIVU TOURS IN KAYAK

Lake Kivu is one of East Africa’s greatest lakes where Idjwi Island – the world’s tenth largest inland Island is found. The 3 exponential towns on the lake shore are, Gisenyi, Kibuye and Cyangugu which provide a great experience to travelers through its numerous recreational activities such as canoe ride, swimming, hiking and biking along the shores and the beautiful beaches..

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Important tourist destinations for Congo safaris