Republic of Congo and Central African Republic
Dzanga-Sangha and Ndoki National Parks:


ITINERARY

Day 1: The tour begins in Bangui in CAR, where we will be met at the airport and transferred to our hotel.
Day 2 -7: After an early breakfast we transfer back to the airport for our flight to Bayanga, then a short drive to Sangha Lodge on the border of the Dzanga-Sangha reserve where we will be based for the next 6 nights. This comfortable lodge on the banks of the kilometer wide Sangha River will be the ideal base from which to explore the Dzangha-Sangha reserve, providing access to the Dzangha bai forest clearing and also two habituated groups of Western Lowland Gorillas.
            Dzanga-Sangha is the northern section of the northwestern Congo Basin. In the reserve there are large populations of Forest Elephant (very different to the African Elephant), Western Lowland Gorilla, 16 of the country's primate species (such as De Brazza's Monkey with its distinctive white beard), hundreds of bird species, reptiles, frogs etc.
The next few days will be spent visiting Dzanga Bai, tracking Lowland Gorillas and hunting with the Ba'Aka Pygmies. Each location and activity will provide a unique set of photographic challenges as well as access to some of the most hidden parts of the world.
Photographic opportunities abound at Dzanga bai where wildlife that is usually hidden in thick rain forest habitat ventures out into the clearing and can be viewed from a spacious raised platform. In addition to large groups of Forest Elephant other animals that can be photographed include Red River Hog, Sitatunga antelope, Forest Buffolo, flocks of African Grey parrot as well as the extremely rare and beautiful Bongo antelope.
We visit a village of the Ba'Aka Pygmies and if we wish we may join them in a hunt into the forests. The women will share some traditional knowledge of the plants and we learn about their lifestyle in the forest. The WWF works with the Ba'Aka in establishing conservation, education and health programmes in the area.
 
Day 8: We travel by boat down the Sangha river (a key tributary of the Congo) for approximately five hours to the village of Bomassa where we spend the night. Bomassa is the headquarters of the WCS project that runs Nouabale-Ndoki National Park, Congo Brazzaville. It is run as a research and logistical support centre for the Nouabale project. Although a long journey, travel by boat in rain forests provides an ideal opportunity to capture forest-scapes and wildlife on the river banks or in the water.
Night in Bomassa.

Day 9-12: After breakfast we transfer to 4 wheel drive vehicles for our trip through the buffer-zone surrounding the National Park. On arrival at the Ndoki River we transfer into small pirogues and are poled upstream to Mbeli camp, our home for the next four nights in the heart of the rainforest and a prime gorilla habitat.
We walk through the forest to the natural swamp clearings called Bais. Mbeli Bai is one of these well known bais where we watch from a viewing platform the comings and goings of gorillas and other forest inhabitants. Wildlife can be photographed undisturbed and unaware of us while going about their day-to-day business. Of interest is that researchers use these observation posts as a way of studying the behavior and social dynamics and of the Western Lowland Gorillas. As a result of these observations they are able to identify over 130 individual gorillas and have an understanding of some of their social behaviors, which would otherwise be very difficult to obtain in the dense forest habitat. 
We also see a wealth of other animals using this area as a waterhole, for example, Forest Elephant, Sitatunga, Red River Hogs, Black-and-white Colobus, and others.
Day 13: Travel by pirogue, 4WD and motorised boat to Bayanga. Night at Sangha lodge.
Day 14: We catch the plane to Bangui .
Day 17: Departure.
 
The Projected Cost for this trip is to be announced. (Note that there are no single rooms at Mbeli or Bomassa)
This amount includes all landed costs. (ie transport, activities entrance to parks, accommodation etc)
Excluded are International airfares, visa fees, drinks and items of a personal nature.
Due to logistics this itinerary may be subject to changes.
Average group size 5/6 with a maximum of 8 people.


Facts about Central African Republic
Time: GMT + 1
Population: 4.3 million
Seasons: Wet throughout although less rain falls in November through to April.
Telephone: No phones in the areas we visit as yet. Satalite phones are available in the local town for a fee.
ATMs: None
Money:Central African CFA. 1 euro = CFA 655
Capital: Bangui
Visa Required?:Yes!! Contact us for updated Visa requirements
Languages: French, Sangha, and Ba'aka.
Area:342, 000 sq km