Visit the Park

Garamba

ADVISORY: Please note that due to security reasons, sadly the park is not accepting tourists at this time.  Please check back in 2018. However when the park does reopen for tourists, the below information remains the same. 

5 Reasons to Visit

  1. The park is one of the oldest in Africa, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and an incredibly unique biodiversity hotspot.

  2. It is a bird-lover’s paradise, with over 400 species including large colonies of colourful carmine bee-eaters which nest along the riverbanks.

  3. View the last remaining population of Kordofan giraffe in DRC.

  4. Garamba is unique in that it is a savannah eco-system on the edge of the Congolian basin forests. Besides being home to the typical mix of forest and savannah species, it is also one of the best places to see a number of unique species such as the very rare Pousargues mongoose.

  5. View the park’s large populations of elephant – one of the most iconic residents of Garamba.

Travel Information

When To Visit

Garamba’s temperature is fairly constant, with a daily average of around 25°C, while evenings can be fairly cool during December and January.

Rain Season: Garamba has a long rain season that lasts from May through to November. During this time the grass can be very long (particularly between July and November) which makes game viewing more difficult.

Dry Season/Early Rain Season: The Park gets little to no rain between early December and end March. Between February and May, after the annual burning period, the park is covered in short green grass and is thus a more ideal time to visit due to good visibility and increased game activity .

Where To Stay

Guests can stay at the Garamba Lodge, which is situated 1.5 km from the Park HQ at Nagero, on the southern side of the Dungu River. The lodge consists of ten simple cottages with a large open planning dining/sitting area.

Activities

Game drives can be offered in the Park safari vehicle, which can carry 8 guests as well as two armed guards.

Community tours can be arranged to see the Hospital and the school as well as local farming fields and activities.

Sundowner drinks on the Dungu River near the hippo pool.

Travel Essentials

Language

Lingala is the predominant local language, particularly in rural areas but French is DRC’s official language and is widely spoken among the staff in Garamba. Some of the staff members do also speak basic English.

 

Visas

Visitors require a visa for DRC, which should be obtained before arrival at Congolese Diplomatic Missions in their country of residence of processing. Should you need further information on visas please contact the lodge, who can assist with Letters of Invitation to facilitate the process.

 

Payments

The Uganda/DRC border and Garamba Lodge do not accept credit cards, so USD cash should be brought to make all local payments. The Lodge can also arrange that payments for accommodation can be made by EFT to avoid carrying large amounts of cash. Please note that US Dollar notes printed before 2006, as well as notes that have any blemishes or tears on them, are not accepted in the DRC.

Health and Safety

Vaccinations

Visitors need Yellow Fever inoculation certificates for both Uganda and the DRC, and are advised to contact their doctor or travel clinic at least eight weeks prior to travel for an up-to-date guidance on the vaccination requirements and health precautions. It is also recommended that travellers take appropriate medical insurance for their holiday.

 

Malaria

Garamba is in a malaria area and it is recommended that necessary precautions are taken to avoid getting bitten (insect repellents, as well as long sleeves and trousers in the evenings and mornings). It is also advisable that visitors take prophylaxis medication prescribed by a doctor.

 

Drinking water

We advise against drinking tap water unless it is boiled or filtered. Bottled and filtered water is available at the Garamba Lodge as well as in most towns.

 

Safety

Garamba National Park management ensures the safety for all those visiting the Park. A clear briefing on personal safety and the respective actions will be carried out in the unlikely event of an incident, no matter how small. This will be conducted by the event organizer and will be delivered on arrival. The general situation in the region is stable with no threat to personnel or property particularly in the Park HQ at Nagero, where visitors will be accommodated. The situation is constantly monitored and actively patrolled on a rolling basis.

Whilst in Nagero, safety is still maintained and you will see a variety of soldiers and African Park Rangers carrying weapons. Do not be concerned, they are protecting all occupants of the camp by day and night as well as preparing for a variety of tasks in our operational areas. They are all highly trained and disciplined and are there for our collective safety. You will receive daily safety updates where necessary throughout your stay but you are more than welcome to ask questions at any time you wish .

How to get there

Via Uganda

The simplest way to reach Garamba is via Entebbe, Uganda. Eagle Air, a domestic airline in Uganda, flies on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays (subject to change) between Entebbe and Arua. Alternatively one can hire a car from Entebbe to Arua.

From Arua, one of the Park representatives can assist with the border crossing to the town of Aru on the DRC side. From here a small plane can be taken out to the Park, or a car can be hired. The flight in a small plane from Aru to the Park airstrip takes one hour. The trip from Aru to the Park by car takes approximately seven hours (depending on the condition of the road). For charter company options please contact the Lodge.

Via Goma/other towns in eastern DRC

Due to the conditions of the roads in DRC it is advised that a flight charter company is used to fly directly into the Park from towns in Eastern DRC. For Charter company options, please contact the Lodge .

Accommodation

Booking/Enquire