Congo Nile Trails – Congo Safaris Tours

Congo Nile Trails:  The Congo Nile Trail pales in comparison to Rwandan gorilla tourism. Because gorilla tours are so popular, many only consider tackling the Congo Nile dive as an optional extra. Rwanda’s government should be commended for its efforts to ensure diversity in its tourism attractions. One of the most recent advancements was the 2011 introduction of the Congo Nile Trail, which aimed to make Rwanda a top riding destination in Africa.

The Congo Nile Path is a 227-kilometer trail that runs through Lake Kivu, beginning on the northern sides in Gisenyi and terminating on the southern shores in Rusizi District. The route does not actually cross through Congo or anywhere near the Nile River, rather it is called after a landmark/watershed that separates the Congo and Nile rivers. The Congo Nile Path is widely considered to be the greatest bike trail in East Africa. It is the finest way to appreciate Rwanda’s natural beauty and fresh air. The path travels through breathtaking scenery, including Nyungwe Forest National Park, Rwanda’s famed rolling hills, Lake Kivu’s clean waters/beaches, and vistas of the distant Democratic Republic of Congo.

Aside from the landscape, you can watch how the natives go about their everyday lives on their coffee, banana, and tea farms. You will also drive through tiny towns, shops, valleys, waterfalls, small local markets, and fishing villages, where you will be greeted warmly by smiling youngsters and inquiring elders. You may also pay a visit to the Mugonero orphanage and be entertained by traditional Rwandan dances. The Kiziba refugee community, which houses around 17, 000 Congolese refugees, is also close to the path. Going up to the very top of the Congo Nile is the pinnacle of it all.

Congo Nile Trails
Congo Nile Trails

The path may be completed in four ways: by automobile, motorbike, bike, or walking. Each approach has its own set of benefits. Walking and biking are the most efficient ways to complete the path. The two approaches allow guests to enjoy the lovely landscape along the trail while also connecting with the people. They are good kinds of exercise and, unlike driving or riding a motorcycle, may readily be joined by other travelers. The Congo Nile Trail may be completed in 10 days by walking and 5 days by bicycle.

If time is an issue, trekkers might finish the path in portions. Keep in mind the wet seasons (March – May and October – November). Due to heavy rainfall, certain portions of the route are muddy and difficult to navigate.

Regardless of how you choose to finish the trail, there are free maps available to tourists at the Rwanda Development Board offices in Kigali, Musanze, and Gisenyi to help you along the way. Maps aid in pointing out directions, proper lengths, fascinating sights, landmarks, route alterations, and the amount of time spent travelling through various portions of the path. A solitary traveller in Rwanda simply requires a map, self-assurance, and personal supplies.

More affluent travelers to Rwanda can hire their own guides, porters, and cooks to join them on their journey. If you are travelling to Rwanda as a guest, it is better to engage the services of a tour operator to plan everything on the ground before you arrive. A tour organization can assist you in arranging porters, guides, and other essentials while taking your interests, schedule, and money into account.  Congo Safaris Tours can assist you in obtaining the necessary maps, as well as renting or purchasing appropriate mountain bikes and accompanying replacement parts. We have previous expertise organizing guides, cooks, porters, and transportation to and from the beginning and conclusion sites.

Hiking the Congo Nile Trail in Rwanda.

The Congo Nile route is divided into parts with distinct features. There are rocky outcroppings, sandy roads, and uneven terrain. The majority of the path is not level for significant stretches of time. Nothing beats a single riding or walking trail. Before re-entering smaller paths, you will frequently be rising and sloping while sharing the road with others. Travelers must be cautious on the roadways and keep an eye out for automobiles, motorbikes, and local people.

How to get to the starting point of the Congo Nile Trail in Rwanda

The bus ride from Kigali to the starting site in Gisenyi takes around three hours. If you are going with your own bike, you must negotiate with the bus conductor to reserve extra space/seats for you and your bike. Alternatively, a tour operator can arrange for a tour van to transport you to the trail’s beginning point in Gisenyi and then pick you up once you’ve completed it. The travel back to Kigali from the finish line is significantly lengthier. If you stop at Kamembe, your travel back to Kigali will take around 5 hours.

As an international traveller, traveling with your own bike is expensive. You may need to buy or rent a decent mountain bike from a specialized shop in Kigali or after you get in Gisenyi. In Gisenyi, Inzu Lodges may be able to assist with bike rentals upon request. Make sure you try the bike personally to make sure it’s in good mechanical condition and that you’re comfortable with it. Important spare parts and a pump should also be included with the bike.

Congo Nile Trails
hiking the Congo Nile Trails

Is the hike along the Congo Nile Divide Trail Difficult?

To complete the path by walking or bike, you must be relatively fit and familiar with mountain riding. If you are unsure about your general fitness, you may complete the path in portions while taking stops to participate in refreshing and entertaining activities like as resting and taking boat excursions or canoe rides around Lake Kivu, swimming, or checking out the waterfalls.

What to pack for your Congo Nile Trail Safari.

If you want to walk, cycle, or bike across the Congo Nile trails, you should consider bringing the following items/gear; a sleeping bag, toiletries, gloves, a dust mask, warm clothes, an extra bike tire, a bike pump for bikers, sunscreen and insect repellent cream, snacks, a bicycle headlamp, biking/hiking shoes, Helmet and a camera.

Other Activities that you can combine with a Congo Nile Trail.

Travellers can combine the Congo Nile Trail Safari with other activities in Rwanda such as; gorilla trekking and golden monkey trekking in Volcanoes National Park, Visit Dian Fossey Gravesite, Game drive and  boat cruise in Akagera National Park, canopy walk and chimpanzee trekking in Nyungwe Forest National Park, Kigali City Tour, mountain climbing and Community Cultural Tours.

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