Maiko National Park – Gorilla Trekking Congo, Safaris Congo
Maiko National Park is found in eastern part of Democratic Republic of the Congo situated near the western rift valley West of Kisangani south of Lake Kivu bordering Rwanda. The park lies in one of the most remote forest areas of the country and covers 10,885 km2.
The park is divided into three provinces of Orientale, North Kivu and Maniema, all of which feature three of the country’s spectacular endemic such as unique Eastern Lowland gorillas, the Okapi and the Congo peafowl. Maiko is also an important site for the conservation of the African forest elephant, eastern chimpanzee and the endemic aquatic genet.
Others include Bongo and leopard. Whereas this protected area is credited for its intense biodiversity, little attention both nationally and internationally on its management since its establishment in 1970.
How to get to Maiko National Park
Maiko National Park is situated in the thick forest of Democratic Republic of Congo and can be only reached by 4×4 safari vehicles. There is one 4 by 4 route that takes you from Bafwasende to some small villages within the park. There are many routes to help you reach to Maiko National Park but they all require a 4×4 safari jeep and overlanders may not be all that preferable for you to drive to Maiko National Park. More routes are available from Benin or Butembo, Goma or from Okapi Wildlife Reserve within DR Congo.
For those who may need to travel by air, can fly and land in Bangoka International Airport (FKI) in Kisangani, Orientale province on scheduled or chattered flight. At Kisangani, you can travel to Maiko National Park by road which is nearly 515 kilometers Northwest of Maiko National Park. Kinshasa Airport to Bangoka International Airport, Kisangani takes about 1 hour and 50 minutes.
Where to stay in Maiko National Park
Maiko protected area has camping areas as an option for accommodation as there are no lodging facilities and you are encouraged to come with your own camping gear. Therefore, the Park is the remotest protected area that rewards visitors with authentic African experiences. If you are interested in catching a glimpse at the magnificent eastern lowland gorillas, then consider visiting Maiko National Park and Kahuzi Biega National Park in Democratic Republic of Congo
Activities at Maiko national park
Travelers to Maiko national park have a variety of activities ranging from eastern lowland gorillas to bird watching depending on their travel interests and time and below are popular activities to do in Maiko national park
Tourists can go on a gorilla trekking safari at the great Maiko national park and encounter eastern low land gorillas and the endangered Grauers only endemic to Congo, other primates that tourists can come across include red tailed monkey, chimpanzees, okapi and many more it’s said that gorillas in Maiko number up to 800.
After gorilla trekking, tourists can go on a game drive and enjoy spectacular views of other wild life such as; African forest elephants, leopards, bongo, aquatic Genet, okapi and Congo peafowl to mention a few.
The Congo Peafowl-the large underground bird species from the Congo and real pheasant native to Africa and you would be lucky to see them, only if you visit this Park. Other bird species include the Rwenzori Turaco and Handsome Francolins among others.