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Visit DR Congo Goma City – Time, Tourism, Safety & More

Goma is a town/city located near the town of Gisenyi in Rwanda, on the northern shore of Lake Kivu, just about 13 kilometers away. It is the capital of the North Kivu province in the Democratic Republic of Congo and is home to Mount Nyiragongo volcano and many other great attractions.

Goma town was affected by the 2002 eruptions of Mount Nyiragongo, which destroyed 40% of the city.

Goma follows the Central Africa Time (GMT+2).

Goma City

Goma is near one of the world’s active volcanoes, Nyiragongo, which is part of the Great East African Rift Valley and one of the eight Virunga volcanoes straddling across Rwanda, Congo, and Uganda, with their slopes being home to the mountain gorillas.

Hike Mount Nyiragongo

Mount Nyiragongo is located just on the outskirts of Goma town in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The mountain, together with Mount Nyamuragira, is among the world’s most active volcanoes. The unfavorable political environment has made it difficult for scientists to study the mountain, so there is little known about Mount Nyiragongo.

This stratovolcano stands 3,465 meters above sea level, with a lava lake that is 600 meters deep. The lava lake is recorded to be the most fluid lava lake in the world. Unlike other lavas that flow at a speed of 1-10 kilometers per hour, the lava at Mount Nyirangongo flows at 97 kilometers per hour.

In 1997, Mount Nyiragongo erupted, and there were over 5 million cubic meters of lava that flowed to the north. Within 30 minutes, the entire lava lake was drained, and in just 20 minutes, it had reached Goma town, killing about 300 people.

Mount Nyiragongo is said to have erupted at least 32 times since 1882, and it’s not known how long the volcano has been active. However, Mount Nyiragongo offers thrilling lifetime experiences to travelers. The views of the bubbling lava lake at night are extraordinary, with smoke puffing into the clear skies.

Hiking to the top of Mount Nyirangongo takes about 6 hours, and there are summit shelters at the top where tourists can sleep. The hiking starts at Kibati ranger post after a briefing, and there are porters available to help tourists with their luggage.

Visit Virunga National Park

Virunga National Park is situated in the Democratic Republic of Congo and is one of the three places in the world where tourists can trek to see mountain gorillas, besides Uganda and Rwanda. Virunga National Park is a world heritage site and the oldest national park in Africa.

Lake Kivu

Lake Kivu is one of Africa’s great lakes, bordering Rwanda and Congo, located in the Albertine Rift Valley. The lake is 50 kilometers wide and 90 kilometers long, with a maximum depth of 475 meters, making it the eighth deepest lake in the world.

Lake Kivu is an ideal place for tourists to relax. The lake is bilharzia-free, so you can enjoy recreational activities like swimming, sunbathing, fishing, and more. Tourists can also take a boat ride on the lake and explore the flora and fauna, with views of the spectacular islands. You can also visit one of the islands and interact with the locals.

Goma town can be easily reached from Rwanda’s Kigali in just 3 hours, or tourists can fly into Goma International Airport. It can be visited all year round.

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