The Democratic Republic of Congo is the second largest country on the African continent and home to a diverse and proud people. The nation exemplifies the heart of this long suffering country after an agonizing civil war which despite ending in 2003, still breeds intermittent unrest in some areas.
Culture is vibrantly celebrated with age-old traditions maintained through the generations. Winding through the bustling streets, the traditional moambe dish of eight mixed foods offers a sumptuous aroma reminiscent of all that defines custom and history. Cuisine, as well as the arts aid in sustaining the vitality of the people. Despite the intermingling of Western culture from a past of Belgian colonialism, the country is known as the hub of West African music.
Almost entirely landlocked, the Democratic Republic of Congo has a forty-kilometre stretch of Atlantic coastline at Muanda, offering critical access to the ocean. The lifeblood of the country is received through the presence of the Congo River and its many tributaries; these waterways enable economic growth and a means of transport.
Located in the heart of Africa, the country straddles the equator leading to a climate characterised by abundant rainfall and the greatest frequency of thunderstorms in the world. The weather is ideally suited to sustain the Congo Rainforest; one of the country’s greatest wilderness attractions and the second largest rain forest in the world. The Virunga National Park lies further east, consisting of 7800 square kilometres of savannahs, marshland, alpine forest and lava fields. The area is home to over 700 bird species and 200 of the world’s 750 remaining mountain gorillas. These gentle giants offer a profoundly intimate experience, alongside the ice capped mountains and active volcanoes of the park.
Harsh, yet mesmerizing, prosperous yet challenged by struggle, and lush yet interspersed with frigidity; the Democratic Republic of Congo offers a kaleidoscope of experiences and illustrates without apology the many wonderful faces of Africa.