Trip to Angola and DR Congo (with Cabinda)
Trip to Angola and the DR Congo we are going to discover part of two neighbouring but totally opposite countries. Let's say they couldn't be more opposite. While Angola is a serious, emerging country with good infrastructures where everything seems to work, the DR Congo is absolute chaos.
In this trip designed by Austerio Alonso, who will guide the trip, we will travel through part of southern Angola, enjoying the spectacular coastal route of the Iona National Park where we will reach the Cunene Foz and visit some tribes such as Muilas, Mucubal and Himbas. We will also stop in the pleasant colonial town of Namibe, which is a delight to explore on foot. In Cabinda we will attend a traditional mask ceremony before crossing the border into the Democratic Republic of Congo. We leave prosperous Angola and plunge into total Congolese chaos. Forgotten colonial towns and the unbridled city of Kinshasa await us.
Highlights of the trip to Angola and DR Congo
- Visiting both sides of Africa at the same time: Angola vs DR Congo
- Cities with an impressive history and architectural heritage such as Namibe (Angola) and Boma in Congo.
- Luanda is spectacular, reminiscent of any Mediterranean city VS Kinshasa, the Congolese megacity is experiencing an unprecedented cultural explosion.
- Iona National Park and take the brutal coastal route from Tombua to Foz de Cunene along the beach, squeezed between dunes and the sea.
- We will visit 3 different tribes in southern Angola: Himbas, Muilas and Mucubales. We will try to spend one night with each of them in villages.
- We will attend a mask ceremony of the Bakama secret society in Cabinda.
- Travelling through Central Congo, a province dotted with colonial remnants that are still standing as best they can.
- Kinshasa, goodbye party in Matonge with Congolese sapeurs and artists.
Part of the trip to Angola
The years that plunged Angola into the chaos of war are long gone. On this trip to Angola you will discover that Angola is a serious country, comfortable to visit, with decent infrastructure and a friendly population. Modernity is making its way into Luanda, Lubango and Cabinda, but not far from these cities, an ancestral and tribal world lives on.
On this trip to Angola we will combine the tribal south, visiting some of its traditional villages, with the colonial heritage that is beautifully preserved in cities such as Namibe or Chibia. We will also enjoy the untamed landscapes of the Iona National Park, where its dune seas meet the waters of the Atlantic. In the enclave of Cabinda, we will attend a traditional Tchizo mask ceremony, perhaps one of the few still used in Angola. In Luanda we will visit Santiago beach, a spectacular ship graveyard and its lively fishing port.
Tribal South Angola
On this trip to Angola we will spend several days visiting different tribes in the south of the country. We will focus on 4 different tribes: Muilas, Himbas, Hakaona and Cubal. With each of them we will spend one night in a traditional village. We will also have the opportunity to meet other different ethnic groups in the regional markets such as the Tua or Dimba.
Iona National Park
Iona Park has 160 km of coastline along the Atlantic Ocean, from Tombua to Foz de Cunene. It is a spectacular stretch of dunes and desert that ends abruptly at the Atlantic in many cases. This marine area is in the process of becoming Angola's first coastal protected area.
The wetlands at the mouth of the Cunene River, the beaches of Iona and the lagoons of Baia dos Tigres are important breeding grounds for shorebirds and large colonies of Cape fur seals. In addition, this region has the largest known concentration of green turtles on the west coast of Africa, which also nest along the beaches and on Ilha dos Tigres. April is perhaps the end of the animal-sighting season, so you may see some, but you'll certainly be amazed by the desert landscapes by the sea.
Camping in the dunes
Trip to Angola to discover its colonial heritage
In Luanda, Chibia, Tombua and especially Namibe you will discover a rich colonial architectural heritage. It is a delight to stroll through the streets of Namibe, chatting with the locals and sipping a good beer from time to time in some of the taverns. In Namibe we will stay in a nice colonial house converted into a basic guesthouse.
Luanda ship cemetery, the landscape of the apocalypse
About 25 km north of Luanda is a large bay where the skeletons of huge iron ghost ships loom on the horizon above the water or stranded on the sand.
Some say that the ships were towed there after the companies that owned them went bankrupt; others say that the ships were abandoned off Luanda in 1975 and that, over time, ocean currents broke the moorings and washed them up on these beaches. Other "ears" also claim that these ships were carrying weapons and were stranded there on purpose by the crews, who abandoned them after transferring the cargo ashore in the dark of the night. ....
Cabinda, the oil enclave
We will continue our trip to Angola by flying to Cabinda, the only region of Angola that is not linked to the rest of the country. In Cabinda we will attend a traditional mask ceremony of the Bakama secret society. We will continue to the border of the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Trip to the Democratic Republic of Congo
The part of our trip to DRC will focus on the Central Congo region and Kinshasa.
Congo Central - Trip to Congo in search of forgotten colonial heritage
The passage of time and the chaotic situation in the country have left the country's colonial and historical heritage in a state of neglect that is close to disappearance. With the exception of the country's historic cathedrals and churches, which are very well preserved and well worth visiting, the rest of the buildings, palaces, stations and factories from the colonial and Mobutu eras are on the verge of collapse. We will visit a number of interesting places in Central Congo such as Moanda, Boma, where we will spend two days among old historical buildings, Kisantu and Mbanza Ngungu with its impressive railway hangars.
Kinshasa, the capital of African street art
We will also explore the current and urban currents in the megacity Kinshasa. The Congolese capital is experiencing an artistic and cultural explosion unparalleled on the African continent. During the trip we will have access to different artistic movements and social denunciation with some great friends of ours, as well as having an interesting encounter with the fascinating sapeurs.