Discover Loango Tour, 7 Day
Dry Season (June to September)
Duration: 7 days
Area: Loango National Park
Style: lowland gorilla, boating & exploring forest on foot
Loango National Park is said to be the most beautiful and diverse national park of Gabon, representing all of its forest and coastal eco-systems. In the park, we have created a circuit that allows you to see and experience all the highlights and ecosystems.
- Experience Loango National park’s variety of intact eco-systems: rainforest, lagoon, savannah and beach.
- Accompanied by expert guides, take walking safaris and cultural excursions, boat trips and game drives.
- Visit a gorilla sanctuary and meet the team behind its efforts.
This program is from June to September. This is the dry season. You see swimming elephants, you can make hiking aound Akaka, and try to spot gorillas and chimps there.
|Day 1||Upon arrival at Loango Lodge you will be showed to you accommodation and have time for a light lunch. After lunch you will start your exploration of Loango National Park with a tour of the Estuary by Boat.|
|Day 2||Depart Loango Lodge for a boat trip across the length of the iguela lagoon towards Akaka via the Yatouga Gorilla research camp.|
|Day 3||Depart early from Akaka for the hike to Petit Loango. This hike will take you through some of Gabon’s most pristine coastal forests.|
|Day 4||You’ll have an early coffee/tea followed by breakfast at Petit Loango Camp before hiking back to the Akaka Region.|
|Day 5||Enjoy the early morning boat ride on the river and again across the lagoon. A safari vehicle will meet you at the pick-up point (sitatunga point) for a short drive to Louri Wilderness Camp.|
|Day 6||Today you’re guide will take you on an early morning hike in the Louri Area after which you will gather your bags and depart for Loango Lodge by road. (A hike is also an option back to the pick-up point close to Loango Lodge.)|
|Day 7||Departure to Port Gentil and on to Libreville.|
Day 1 :
Upon arrival at Loango Lodge you will be showed to you accommodation and have time for a light lunch.
After lunch you will start your exploration of Loango National Park with a tour of the Estuary by Boat. This tour of about 2 to 3 hours will introduce you to the enormous Iguela Lagoon-system and the roll it plays in the greater loango ecosystem.
On this tour you will have the possibility to see the Iguela Hippo family and a good variety of birdlife. (Hammerkop, Goliath Heron, Giant Kingfisher, Pied Kingfisher, African Skimmer, Royal Turn, Rosy bee eater, palm-nut vulture and more).Spend the last hour of the day on the beach and appreciate the sun setting over the Atlantic.
Dinner at Loango Lodge.
Today you will depart Loango Lodge at around 08h00 for a boat trip across the length of the iguela lagoon towards Akaka via the Yatouga Gorilla research camp.
Note: Remember to pack for spending 4
We’ll gladly keep the bulk of your luggage at the lodge.
About the Gorilla visit
The Yatouga Research Camp is approximately 1 hr. by boat from Loango Lodge. This project is the result of years and years of investment and hard work, which resulted in the first, properly habituated, lowland gorilla group in Gabon.
You will meet up with the research team and be given a briefing about the visit. After the briefing you will depart by boat and then enter the forest on foot following a team of Pygmy master-trackers whose daily task it is to track Kamaya, the western lowland gorilla silverback, and his family, including two youngsters.
Once contact is made with the gorilla group, you will have the chance to observe them from close-up (often 10 – 15 meters). It is an incredible experience watching these great apes in their natural habitat doing what gorillas do for a living.
After spending an unforgettable hour with the gorillas you will return to the researchers’ Yatouga Base Camp. At Yatouga you’ll have light refreshments, and a picnic lunch followed by a debriefing and questions and answers session about the research activities, thereafter you’ll continue towards Akaka.
Towards Akaka Camp….
You’ll cross the remaining part of lagoon before travelling up the Rembo Ngowe River. This part of Loango captures the essence of coastal Gabon: vast waterscapes, remoteness, and the constant forest backdrop.
Enjoy this vast river system and flood plains. Bird life along the rivers is prolific, crocodiles (3 species) and manatees are present but shy, in the dry season the concentrations of particularly forest buffalo and forest elephant that migrate into the area are easily seen from the boat. Smaller mammals like sitatunga (a swamp-dwelling antelope), red river hogs, forest duikers, five species of monkey, and great apes inhabit the area all year round. The river is also home to the Slender-snout, Dwarf and Nile crocodile.
The Akaka forests are rich in butterflies and harbor a number of special bird species. But, more so than just what one might see, Akaka is really about being immersed in a peaceful outback setting and having one’s senses flooded by natural splendor.
About Akaka Camp:
The camp is a rustic yet comfortable tented camp with flush toilets, Running water, comfortable
beds and LED lights.
Meals are served in the restaurant, overlooking the river and elephants often stroll through the camp in the evenings!
Today you will depart early from Akaka for the hike to Petit Loango. This hike will take you through some of Gabon’s most pristine coastal forests. There is always a good chance to encounter the lesser-spotted species like Chimpanzee, Duiker or even Leopard. The hike is around 16 km and will take anything from 3 to 4 hours to complete. You’ll have lunch at Petit Loango and spend the afternoon exploring the area. Spending the night at the Petit Loango Fly camp is an unforgettable experience.
Petit Loango is the place where the legendary Mike Fay ended his Mega Transect. Beautiful coastal forest, wild beaches and small lagoons is home to most of the forest animals with hippo sightings common.
About Petit Loango’s Camp:
Petit Loango is a true wilderness area with limited facilities and no permanent infrastructure. We use comfortable and spacious tents with high quality camping beds and mattresses. The guides will make a fire and you will spend the evening in our “Boma” enjoying one of the most remote coastal areas in Africa. Foods are basic, yet tasty. Petit Loango camp has shower and toilet facilities.
NOTE: We will provide you with backpacks for the hike to PL if you do not have your own. You are welcome to leave the remaining luggage in your tent at AKAKA.
NOTE: The hike to Petit Loango is optional and only recommended for people who are in good physical condition and use to long hikes. In case the Petit Loango Hike is not chosen, the extra nights will be spend between Akaka Camp and Louri Wilderness Camp.
Day 4 :
You’ll have an early coffee/tea followed by breakfast at Petit Loango Camp before hiking back to the Akaka Region. You’ll be back at Akaka Camp for lunch with a bit of time to relax after lunch. Late afternoon your guide will invite you for yet another late afternoon excursion by boat.
You’ll enjoy an early dinner and spend the night listening to forest noises with always the chance of an elephant visiting the camp for closer inspection.
Today, after breakfast, you will depart from this amazing part of Loango, Enjoy the early morning boat ride on the river and again across the lagoon.
A safari vehicle will meet you at the pick-up point (sitatunga point) for a short drive to Louri Wilderness Camp. Although not very active in the dry season, you will have a glimps of the vast savanna which is yet another of Loango’s remarkable ecosystems.
About the Louri Area:
Louri Lagoon is a long lagoon running parallel to the coast for about 15 km. Our campsite is situated on the bank of this lagoon and on the edge of a beautiful forest. A short boat ride takes you to the beach and one have the possibility to explore the area either on foot or by boat. Louri Lagoon is home to some enormous Nile crocodile, measuring up to 5 meters in length! Louri Wilderness camp is a small, intimate tented camp with each tent on a platform overlooking the lagoon. Tents are equipped with semi-open air bathrooms with flush toilets and running water. Tents are equipped with charging points, LED lights and pedestals Fans.
You will reach Louri Wilderness Camp at lunchtime and settle into your tent before going on an afternoon excursion exploring the Louri Area. This area offers many excursion options. Enjoy a boat ride in the afternoon (Louri is home to some enormous Nile Crocodile – up to 5 meters!) and hop across to the beach for a sundowner. The Louri area is different and will give you the opportunity to take things a bit easier and soak up the incredible atmosphere.
For dinner you will be treated to an unforgettable BBQ !
Today you’re guide will take you on an early morning hike in the Louri Area after which you will gather your bags and depart for Loango Lodge by road. (A hike is also an option back to the pick-up point close to Loango Lodge.)
You’ll enjoy lunch at Loango and have the afternoon at leisure; your guide may propose another afternoon activity if you wish.
Subject to the season and weather conditions, Whale Watching will be offered as an additional excursion.
Note on the Whale at Iguela:
From Mid July to Mid September good numbers of humpback whales are visiting the waters off Gabon and the Loango coastline. Although some incredible sightings are possible, it is important to consider that crossing the Iguela river mouth can be tricky most of the year, but dangerous in the dry season.
Since the safety or our clients & staff are considered the highest priority, we will not attempt crossing the mouth in case of unsuitable weather/sea condition. We will also not attempt any whale excursions, unless the suitable, experienced and trained crew and equipment is available.
This is your departure day and you’ll be served breakfast from 07h00 on and have time to prepare for your departure to Port Gentil and on to Libreville.