From the wonders of the Dja reserve to meet the BA’AKA pygmy peoples
11 days and 10 nights to discover the wonders of the Dja Reserve and immerse yourself in BA'AKA culture
Located between the southern and eastern regions, the Dja reserve was created in 1950 and covers an area of nearly 526,000 ha. The Dja reserve is an integral part of the dense humid forests that make up the Congo Basin with a wealth of incredible animal and plant species. This vast ensemble constitutes one of the largest and best-protected humid forests in Africa, 90% of its area is intact. The reserve is practically surrounded by the Dja River, which forms its natural limit and from which it takes its name. The reserve is especially remarkable for its biodiversity and for the great variety of primates that live there. Due to the diversity of its species and its state of conservation, Unesco decided in 1987 to include it as a World Heritage Site. Together with Odzala-Kokoua National Park (Republic of Congo) and Minkébé National Park (Gabon), it forms the TRIDOM or TRInationale of Dja. Nature lovers will be delighted to discover a remarkable natural wonder of Africa and Cameroon in particular.
The tropical climate is characterized by an alternation of 4 seasons, including two rainy seasons and two dry seasons. A rainy season from September to November, a dry season from November to March, a rainy season from March to June and a dry season from July to August. Its relative humidity varies between 60 and 90% while the annual precipitation is 1500 mm. Average monthly temperatures range from 23.1 ° C to 25 ° C, with an annual average of 24 ° C.
The natural vegetation consists of evergreen semi-deciduous and Atlantic forests. The forest is severely degraded around the tracks, due to pressure from housing and agriculture. Industrial logging is highly developed in the region, which is home to five industrial logging companies. These companies actively exploit a large number of logging concessions. Rainfall is very abundant there, so it has favored marshy environments and the specific plants that grow there such as Raphia palms.
Of exceptional universal value, the reserve is especially remarkable for its biodiversity, it is home to 107 species of mammals, including a few endangered species, including the African forest elephant (Loxodonta africana), estimated to be around 420 specimens, the bongo, the giant pangolin, the leopard, around 14 species of primates including several endangered like the western lowland gorilla (Gorilla gorilla), the chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes), the white-collared mangabey, the drill and the mandrill. An inventory carried out at the end of 2015 estimated the number of gorillas living in the reserve at around 6,500 individuals and 3,600 chimpanzees. The reserve is also home to more than 60 species of fish and around 360 species of birds including the Gabonese gray parrot (Psittacus erithacus) and the world’s largest population of Cameroon picathartes (Picathartes oreas) which are two endangered species.
Five ethnic groups coexist in the district of Djoum (around the Dja reserve): the Baka, the Kaka, the Boulou, the Fang and the Zaman. The Bantu (Boulou, Fang and Zaman) are sedentary people who have settled along the tracks, in villages whose number of inhabitants rarely exceeds 400 people. The Baka are a pygmy tribe, forest people of Central Africa living in Cameroon and Gabon. In the countries covering the Congo Basin, their number is close to 40,000 individuals. They live by hunting, fishing and gathering.They collect forest products such as medicinal herbs, food plants and more. The Baka are considered the oldest forest dwellers in Cameroon. Traditionally, they live in small encampments in the forest and their life is strongly linked to the exploitation of forest resources. Agriculture and commercial hunting are prohibited there, but traditional hunting is authorized for the pygmy populations because it is their main means of supplying animal proteins. This circuit will allow you to have an authentic experience with unique images, you will discover a magnificent nature with a rich and impressive biodiversity in which the Baka and Badjué pygmy peoples intermingle.
Day 1: Europe – Yaounde
Reception at Yaoundé International Airport which is the political capital of Cameroon, commonly known as the City of Seven Hills. Transfer to the Mérina hotel, dinner and overnight stay.
Day 2: Yaounde – Somalomo (250 km)
Breakfast, departure from Yaoundé for Somalomo, observation of the magnificent green landscape along the route, picnic in a village, stopover in the Bantu villages for shots, arrival and Park Entry formalities, dinner and overnight stay at the Hostel.
Day 3, 4: Somalomo – Bouamir
Day 5, 6,7 : Rocher De Bouamir
Early Wake up for observation of animals on the rock, breakfasts, with a lot of luck we will be able to observe monkeys and antelopes throughout the day, on a rock, we will then try to track the buffaloes who come to spend the night in quest for warmth, picnic on the rock while observing the sublime nature. Return to the camp and visit of the AUGUSTIN rock in the afternoon. Return to the camp, dinners and overnight stays in tents. In the night, we will go for nocturnal explorations equipped with flashlights with our guide and the tracker
who are experts in the forest. We will go in search of antelopes and many other forest animals. With great luck we might meet some forest animals. Return to camp, night in tents, the last night will be at the small rock.
Days 8, 9: Petit-Rocher - Pygmy encampment (13 km)
Early wake up, breakfast, walk to join the main path, little by little towards civilization, we will spend the night in the camp of the pygmies in a folkloric atmosphere, dinner and overnight stay.
Day 10: Ba’aka encampment
After breakfast, we will spend the day doing various activities with our Baka friends in the reserve, after dinner, our evening will be very atmospheric, we will connect with the spirit of the forest “through the Djengui dance”, overnight stay.
Day 11:Ba’aka encampment – Yaounde (250 km) - EUROPE
Breakfast, departure for Yaoundé, lunch on the way, arrival and orientation tour, Day-Use, transfer to the Airport – END OF OUR SERVICES.
Price: 2 069 € / pers. (2 pax)
Included / Excluded
This tour includes:
► Reception and escort by a certified national tourist guide.
► Transport in a Pick-Up
► Accommodation in a double room,
► Full board meals
► Entrance fees into the attractions.
► Toll fees.
► Guided tours of all the sites and attractions indicated in the program.
► Professional driver.
► Ba’aka Traditional dances
This tour does not include:
► International flight fees (Roundtrip).
► Costs related to travel formalities such as visa and immigration charges.
► Costs related to travel insurance.
► Additional expenses of the tourist such as the purchase of souvenirs.
► Alcoholic drinks such as liqueurs, wines, and whiskeys.
► Tips and gifts (freewill gestures)
Please specify :
► The exact dates of the visit (date of arrival and date of return).
► Flights and airports of arrival (Douala or Yaoundé-Nsimalen).
► Group or tourist’s interests to permit tailored modifications of the tour.
► Names and information of visitors for bookings.
► Food exigencies; diabetes, vegetarian etc.
NB : This program can be modified by demand to suit the expectations of the tourist(s).