dates & group size

AUGUST 3-16, 2024

SEPTEMBER 7-19, 2024

NOVEMBER 16-29, 2024

Max. 12 participants.



*Remote rural areas of Mbanga Nzambi - Mbanga Ndugu (Tata Gonda sect).


*Lokele Tribe, Mooto & Ntomba tribe.

*Batwa (pygmies). 

*Lake Ntumba & Congo River.

*Coffee & cocoa plantations.

*Tribes of Banunu, Bateke & Kuba.


*Boating Congo river experience

*Dances and singing of local remote cultures.

*Colonial architecture

*Experience in the remote rural areas.

*Traditional Congolese art.

*Experience protected forest on the shores of lake Ntumba.

suitable for

Open-minded curious travellers.

Photography enthusiasts.

All ages & skill levels.

Educational seekers.

Nature lovers.


Day 1 (Saturday 3 August): ARRIVAL IN KINSHASA

Arrival in Kinshasa, the capital of DR Congo and the fastest growing city in Africa, with almost 20 million inhabitants. Transfer to the hotel.

Accommodation at: Stella Hotel or similar. BB

Day 2 (Sunday 4 August): KINSHASA - MBANZA NZAMBI - MBANZA NGUNGU (4h)

Breakfast. Early morning drive to the small community of Mbanza Nzambi (3h drive from Kinshasa). In this remote rural area of Congo Central Province we find a religious group, known as Tata Gonda who live a secluded life in a self-sufficient congregation. This Christian sect is inspired in the philosophy of Samuel Kimbangu, a prophet that fought against European colonial oppression through a pan-African Christian-influenced movement. Besides the ethnographic and sociological interest, Tata Gonda followers have a unique aesthetic look that makes the visit quite a unique experience. We will take lunch in the community and in the afternoon, we will continue (1h drive) to the colonial town of Mbanza Ngungu, former Thysville. In this hill town we will visit the railway station (with old and semi-abandoned machines), the old Belgian hotel and some other colonial buildings that still stand. Mbanza Ngungu used to be a residential town where the Belgian colonists would come on weekends and holidays to get some fresh air. After the visit, we will go to Kisantu to spend the night.

Accommodation at: Mbuela Lodge Hotel or similar. HB (lunch)

Day 3 (Monday 5 August): MBANZA NGUNGU - KINSHASA (4h)

Early breakfast and drive back to the Congolese capital. This day will be dedicated to one of Africa’s most vibrant cities. Kinshasa is full of popular creativity. We will start by visiting the city center to visit the National Museum, with amazing works of traditional Congolese art. After the visit, we will enjoy a meal in the city center. After lunch, we will explore on foot the remnants of Kinshasa’s, former Leopoldville, Belgian past. We will visit the Forescom Art Deco building and nearby colonial buildings. After the visits around the city center, we will drive back to our hotel and meet a group of local urban artists. We will enjoy their artistic performance and wrap up the day with a match of Voodoo wrestlers.

Accommodation at: Hotel Stella or similar. BB


Breakfast and morning transfer to the airport for domestic flights to Mbandaka, formerly Equateurville. We have to leave with enough time to avoid traffic jams and manage the chaos at the airport. Arrival in Mbandaka and meeting with our local team. Transfer to the hotel and introduction to the region, one of the most isolated in the Congo. We will start the visit by the local museum, located in the old colonial post office. We will continue towards the market, parallel to the Congo River. Lunch and end of day visiting the Nzambe Na Bakoko religious sect.

Accommodation: Half Century Palace Hotel or similar. HB (lunch)

Day 5 (Wednesday 7 August): MBANDAKA – LOKELE TRIBE - MBANDAKA (1h)

Breakfast. Morning visit to tow Lokele villages on a motor canoe. The Lokele are a Bantu-speaking fishing tribe that had the tradition of tattooing their bodies. Today this practice can only be seen in the bodies of old women. After the visit to the Lokele people, we will return to Mbandaka for lunch. In the afternoon, we will visit the botanical gardens, designed by a Belgian botanist in 1900. It is one of the oldest arboretums in Africa and inside the semi-abandoned garden, there are some interesting colonial buildings that merit a visit.

Accommodation: Half Century Palace Hotel or similar. HB (lunch)

Day 6 (Thursday 8 August): MBANDAKA – MOOTO - LOPOSO – NTOMBA TRIBE - MOOTO (4h)

After breakfast, we will take 4x4 vehicles to visit another tribal area; the Ntomba territory. This hunting and agricultural Bantu ethnic group has a peculiar tradition that affects women who give birth to their first son or daughter. After being mothers for the first time, the young Ntomba become 'walés' (women who breastfeed) and begin a life of seclusion in which they will spend several years taking care of their children exclusively. A walé, as soon as she has a baby, leaves her husband and moves to her mother's hut, where she will remain confined. The walés are subject to many taboos: they cannot have sexual relations, nor speak alone with any man, nor work, nor leave the village, nor serve food, nor cook... She is treated like a queen: body painting red that is applied to her face and body, copper bracelets, a fly swatter. She lives half-naked to arouse the desire of men, which increases her merit when she complies with the sexual taboo and rejects them all. After 3 years of imprisonment (average time this ritual lasts) the walé is once

again free and the taboos are lifted. After a special ceremony, she will resume her normal life, leaving the town to go to work in the fields with the rest of the women. After visiting the Ntomba community of Loposo we will return to Mooto to spend the night camping in the mission gardens.

Accommodation: tents. FB

Day 7 (Friday 9 August): MOOTO – BATWA – BIKORO (2h drive) - MABALI

Breakfast. Morning excursion to a camp of nomadic Batwa (pygmies), 1 hour on foot from Mooto. The Batwa depend on the agricultural products of the Bantu peasants of Mooto and the latter depend on the animals they hunt and the medicinal plants that the Batwa gather. It is a total symbiosis between both peoples. We will learn aspects of the life of this jungle town and after a good time with them, we will say goodbye and continue to the colonial small town of Bikoro. Meet the local chief and check if there is any Walé woman to meet her. In the afternoon we will take a motor boat to Mabali, a protected primary forest on the shores of Lake Ntumba.

Accommodation: tents. FB

Day 8 (Saturday 10 August) : MABALI - IREBU

Breakfast. Morning visit to the old colonial laboratories built decades ago and now abandoned to study the flora and fauna of the Congolese primary forest. After the visit, we will leave Lake Ntumba and navigate to the Congo River. Lunch on board. Arrival in the afternoon in Irebu, where Lake Ntumba meets the Congo River and where the river commandos are formed to control the goods coming up and down Congo’s main commercial natural highway.

Accommodation at: Tented camp. FB

Day 9 (Sunday 11 August): IREBU - NGOMBE - LUKOLELA

Breakfast. Morning mass and choirs at the church. The male choirs are especially emotive. After this experience, we will continue navigating down the river. We will pass through Ngombe, a fishing village of Ngombe, in the Congo Republic (former French Congo). Lunch on board. Before 4am we will reach Lukolela town, an important colonial base for the exportation of coffee and cocoa. We will visit the town and the nearby cocoa plantation.

Accommodation at: Tented camp. FB

Day 10 (Monday 12 August): LUKOLELA - YUMBI - BOLOBO

Breakfast. Our fourth day in the river. Today we will stop in the village of Yumbi inhabited by the Banunu tribe. Meet the local chief and organisation of some local ceremony to learn about their culture. Lunch and continuation for Bolobo, a historical site where explorer Stanley stopped in its expedition towards Mbandaka in the late 19th Century. We will camp on the sand of the river bank.

Accommodation at: Tented camp. FB

Day 11 (Tuesday 13 August): BOLOBO - TSHUMBIRI - NGABE

After breakfast, we will continue with the motor boat to Kinshasa. Stop in the old capital of the Bateke Kingdom. Stop in Negate and meet members of the Teke or Batch royal family. King Makoko signed the treaty with explorer Ferdinand de Brazza to anexe his kingdom to the French colonial empire at the end of the 19th Century. We will learn vabout the Bateke culture and see a traditional dance.

Accommodation at: Ngabe Site Touristique (bungalows). FB

Day 12 (Wednesday 14 August): NGABE - MAMBUTU - KINKOLE - KINSHASA

Breakfast. Last day in the boat. Navigation to the small Bakuba village of Mambutu to meet the local chief and experience the Kuba culture. The Bakuba or Kuba Bantu tribe is originally from Kassai Province in the Central-South Democratic Republic of Congo. Due to the civil war some Kuba people migrated near the capital and have tried to reproduce their world in a safer environment. After greeting the chief and the elders we will experience a traditional dance and admire the Kuba fibre textiles. Lunch with the chief’s family and continuation for Kinkole port already in Kinshasa. Transfer to the hotel and farewell from the amazing Congo River. Accommodation at: Hotel Stella or similar. HB (lunch)

Day 13 (Thursday 15 August): KINSHASA - FLIGHT HOME

Breakfast. Last visits and shopping. At the appointed time, transfer to the airport to take your international flight back home. Breakfast included.

Tour price EUR 4500 per person

What's included

*All transfers

*Domestic flights

*Motor Boat

*Transportation by minibus and 4x4 vehicles

*English speaking guide

*Local guides

*Meals according to itinerary. AD=Accommodation with breakfast, MP=half board, PC=full board

*Accommodation in hotels and tents according to the itinerary

*Cisits and activities mentioned in the itinerary

*Basic travel insurance

What's not included

*Meals not specified in the itinerary

*Soft drinks or alcoholic beverages

*Visa + Management


*Cancellation insurance

*Expenses cause by delays and/or cancellations of flights and ships due to force majeure

*Any service not indicated in the section includes