Lowland Gorillas in
Odzala National Park

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  • 7 Nights
  • Year Round
  • Congo
  • From £8,640 PP
  • Authentic

Trip Overview

Take an expedition to the heart of the great Central African rainforest to track lowland gorillas in Odzala National Park, a true oasis of tranquillity.

This week-long adventure transports you to one of the least-visited but most important biomes on the continent. Exploring by foot, boat and jeep, this unusually varied safari allows you to experience multiple habitats. As well as gorillas, you’ll also encounter the critically endangered forest elephant and many other mesmerising rainforest species like the forest buffalo, bongo and sitatunga, and red river hog.

Unexpected Highlights of this itinerary

Often the best safaris involve looking beyond the obvious highlights. It’s about the myriad exhilarating encounters that will make your heart sing. These are encounters that nobody could ever predict, but that make your safari genuinely unique.

Trip Itinerary

Lowland Gorillas in Odzala National Park

Odzala National Park (3 Nights)
3 Nights

Odzala National Park

On both full days here, you will accompany a researcher to locate one of the three habituated gorilla families. This is very different from the mountain gorilla experiences in Rwanda, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. There is no advance party and no bleeping radios — just you, your guide and the researcher, who tracks the gorillas and notes their behaviour every single day.

Furthermore, lowland gorillas tend to be more active than their mountain cousins, perhaps most akin to giant chimpanzees. As such, the experience is less about merely looking at the apes and more about experiencing their behaviour.

The treks can be long and the resident stingless-bees are bothersome (though head nets are provided), but the ground is generally pretty flat and easy to walk on.

Accommodation

Located in the Ndhezi Forest adjacent to Odzala National Park, Ngaga Camp is primarily for gorilla tracking, although vocal chimpanzees, birds and lots of other wildlife can be seen and heard here.

The camp’s deck is a great place to watch for monkeys through the canopy. And unlike most wild places in Africa, the absence of large, threatening, nocturnal predators means Ngaga is a great place to take a night walk and look for seldom-seen species such as the tree civet and potto.

Ngaga Camp

Being built on raised platforms takes you up into the canopy and makes you feel like your floating among the trees.

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Parks & Areas

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Odzala National Park (2 Nights)
2 Nights

Odzala National Park

Drive through the forest and across the park to Mboko Camp, set out in the savannah sector of the park. Setting out on a canoe in the afternoon is a great way to view creatures that typically hide in dense foliage, such as putty-nosed monkeys, forest bee-eaters and kingfishers.

Accommodation

Mboko Camp is located a small tributary of the nearby Lekoli River, you can often watch forest elephants, hyenas and forest buffalos from the camp’s main deck.

Mboko Camp

Mboko Camp’s ten double/twin rooms are set above a small tributary of the nearby Lekoli River while the main mess area overlooks a large savannah-like plain.

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Odzala National Park (2 Nights)
2 Nights

Odzala National Park

Lango Camp is based in a baï — a large marshy clearing deep in the forest — and you can get to camp by canoeing the Lekoli River to the baï confluence where it is no longer navigable by boat. Then wade through knee-deep water for a couple of hours, past inquisitive buffalo and hog, into the camp.

This is a great way of getting to grips with how the forest and wetlands merge and is remarkably hazard-free. The local slender-snouted crocodiles are much smaller and more timid than the leviathan Nile crocs of East and Southern Africa.

Accommodation

Raised on decks and set on the edge of the forest looking down on the clearing, Lango gives unparalleled access to the comings and goings of life on a baï. Expect regular visits from herds of forest elephants and great flocks of African grey parrots which are attracted to the mineral-rich soil.

Lango Camp

Time at Lango is truly about getting up close with nature, walking in the footsteps of elephants through streams, bais and forests.

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