Ethnic expedition from Rhumsiki to Dja Reserve:
Koma, Mbororo, Dupa, Baka Pygmies and other tribes

CAMEROON

January 15 - 30, 2023
Tour Cameroon

tour to Cameroon expedition to Baka Pygmies Dja Mbororo Dupa Koma Alantika Rhumsiki travel to Central Africa tours to Africa

Explore real Black Africa with its authentic tribes and wildlife, learn the secrets of the tattooed faces of Mbororo people, breathe the fresh air in the Alantika mountains and discover living in the Stone Age Koma tribe, stare at the Martian landscapes of Rhumsiki, collect honey from a huge tree in the jungle of Dja Reserve with the Baka Pygmies and feel like a member of the ethnographic expedition of National Geographic.

Cameroon comprises all African features. This is Africa in miniature.
Expedition is supported by comfortable 4WD SUVs.
SCHEDULE AND COST:

Dates: January 15-30, 2023

Duration: 16 days / 15 nights

Number of participants: 6 – 12

Cost per person:
• 2 590 EUR subject to 11 - 12 participants,
• 2 740 EUR subject to 9 - 10 participants,
• 2 890 EUR subject to 6 - 8 participants.

10% early booking discount (in case you book before August 15, 2022)

Everything is included except for:
- international flight to Yaoundé and back from Douala,
- international medical insurance,
- dinner and lunch in Kribi,
- Cameroon visa (USD 85), to be arranged on your own in Cameroon embassy in advance.

Single supplement: EUR 400 (single supplement provided along the whole route, including in the night train)



TRAVEL PROGRAM:
TOUR TO CAMEROON


Day 1. January 15, 2023. Yaounde

Late evening arrival flight to Yaounde. Meeting with a guide at the airport and transfer to Safyad Hotel 3*. Overnight at the hotel.

* Recommended flight TK-669 by Turkish Airlines from Istanbul, arriving in Yaounde on January 15 at 23:45.

Meals included: no

Accommodation: Safyad Hotel 3*


Day 2. January 16, 2023. Yaounde - Ngaoundere


Breakfast. In the morning city tour of Yaounde - the capital of Cameroon, visit the Museum of Yaounde, the Symbole of Reunification. In the afternoon we visit the panoramic view on Mount Febé, where you can enjoy a panoramic view of the city. Transfer to the train station, where we will take the night train to Ngaoundere (departure at 19:10). Dinner and overnight in the train (compartment with 4 beds each).

Meals included: breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Accommodation: overnight train (compartment with 4 beds).


Day 3. January 17, 2023. Ngaoundere - Poli. 211 km.


Breakfast in the train. Arrival in Ngaoundere, the capital of Adamawa province, around 10-11 am (train may be delayed) . Departure by 4WD off-road vehicles to Poli. We descend from the Adamawa Plateau into the Benue Valley. You can feel the climate change and see the stunning scenery of the African plains. Then we will see traditional earthen structures instead of modern settlements around Ngaoundere. On the way wel meet different tribes, including the Mbum tribe. The Mbum are considered to be the first inhabitants of Ngaoundere. The Mbum are polygamous. Although some are Christian and Muslim, others still practice animism. We also visit the Duru tribe who, along with the Fulani.They live in the area between Ngaoundere and Garoua.All the diversity of local tribes can be found in the village of Banda, also known as the village of the 12 tribes. Arrival in Poli around 6 pm, accommodation at the Municipal Auberge hotel. Dinner and overnight.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch, dinner
Accommodation: guesthouse Municipal Auberge


Day 4. January 18, 2023. Poli - Namji, Dupa and Mbororo tribes. 20-55 km.


Breakfast in Poli, the capital of Faro province. Today we visited a number of authentic tribes. We will start with the Namji tribe and get acquainted with their lifestyle and traditions. The Namji tribe is famous for the production of so-called "Namji Statuettes", a kind of sacred amulets that are considered as holy spirits. Watching traditional namji dances. Photo shoot in traditional clothing.. Visit the village of Sari and the Dupa tribe who are similar to the Namji tribe. We get acquainted with the lifestyle (basically agriculturalists and also keen on hunting) and culture of these people. Transfer to the village of the Mbororo tribe. The Mbororo are nomadic people, migrating with their cattle in search of fresh pastures. Being officially Muslim, they still practice some animistic beliefs that make their culture unique. The Mbororo are an ethnic group of Fulani people who are known to be among the most beautiful people in all of Africa. Sometimes in November they still practice their famous Guerewol – men's beauty contest where a female jury chooses the winner. Female beauty is underlined by elaborative facial tattoos and scarifications of very original and unique patterns. Such tattoos and scarifications are applied to girls starting from the age of 8. We take time to learn more about their culture and possibly witness the night dance. In order to get closer acquainted with the Mbororo people, we have to stay overnight with them. Set up camping in the Marka village of the Mbororo tribe near Poli, or in a village near Waco (depending on the nomadic location).

Meals included: breakfast, lunch, dinner
Accommodation: camping


Day 5. January 19, 2023. Woko - Wangai - Koylo village of the Koma tribe (Alantika mountains). 40-70 km.

Breakfast, transfer to Wangai through Faro Park, where you can meet wild animals such as antelope, baboons and others. In Wangai lunch. Arranging porters and driving to the village of Librou in the beautiful Alantika Mountains (hike takes about 2 hours, 8-9 km). Koilo is a village of the Koma tribe. The Koma tribe lives only in the Alantika Mountains, on the Nigerian and Cameroonian side. Koma life and culture are authentic. The Koma, being animists, have "witch doctors" or healers who tell the tribal people predictions about all important things in their life like good time to cultivate, time to harvest, the date of marriage or festival. Camping with Koma people.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Accommodation: camping


Day 6. January 20, 2023. Keolo - Librou - Laira - Nagamalou - Koylo campsite villages

Breakfast and trekking to the Koma tribal villages in the Alantika Mountains. Today we will walk about 10 km on mountain trails. Trekking to the village of Librou (1 - 1.5 hours), another traditional Koma village. Trekking in Alantika mountain is the adventure in itself: we will see many beautiful views, take a bath in the rivers and take amazing pictures. Koma are indeed unique people. Their clothing is more than modest. Women wear the leaves around the waist, and men wear the animal skin. Koma are agriculturalists, therefore their life is strongly on the work on the fields where they grow their staple food - the wheat. In addition, they also hunt with bow and arrows. We continue through the village of Laira, to the village of Nagamala, high up on the mountain. The ascent is about 350 meters in elevation (about 1 hour trekking). The village of Nagamalu is literally a mile and a half from the border with Nigeria and has only 4 families. Almost all of the Koma have descended from the mountains to the plains. There are a few hundred of them left in traditional villages in Cameroon. Back down the slopes to our camp near Keolo (about 1.5 hours). Lunch and a time where we can go deep into their culture, sit around a campfire and see the traditional dance of the women and men.
If we are lucky we will witness the Sorcier Peteur ceremony when Koma performs their mystic dance and remember the ancestors. Dinner and overnight camping.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Accommodation: camping.


Day 7. January 21, 2023. Koelo - Wangai - Dowayo tribal village - Poli - Garua. 225 km.

After breakfast we walk back to Wangai (2 hours), where we get into the cars and drive to Garoua.On the way from Wanggai to Poli we visit a village of the Dowayo tribe, who are known to be animists with their own witch doctors and also they collect human skulls. Lunch in Poli. If possible, visit Catholic Mission in Fygnolé village, visit interesting market in Ngong village. Upon arrival in Garoua, visit of Handicraft Center and learn more about traditional medicine. Dinner and night at Hôtel la Tour d'argent hotel.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Accommodation: Hôtel La Tour d'argent.


Day 8. January 22, 2023. Garoua - Cola Gorge - Rumsiki. 350 km


Today we have a long way to go and a difficult road. We climb into the north of Cameroon, very close to the border with Nigeria. Eearly breakfast and a two-hour drive to Kola Gorge, an unusual volcanic gorge resembling Antelope Canyon in the United States, but smaller and gray in color. In Maroua, lunch and the guards from the Cameroonian B.I.R. unit (the equivalent of the Russian SOBR) will join us. Continue driving to Rhumsiki via Mandara Mountains, a short visit the Mafa village. Arriving in Rumsiki by sunset taking amazing pictures of unique landscapes. Dinner and overnight at Rhumsiki Lodge.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch, dinner
Accommodation: Rhumsiki Lodge


Day 9. January 23, 2023. Rumsiki - Trekking Rhumsiki Mountain Valley - Garoua. 215 km

Breakfast, trekking to the Mountainous valley of Rhumsiki within 3 hours. Here travelers discover the Martian surreal landscapes of verdant highlands which are pierced by popped up peaks of volcanoes. Particularly unusual and notable is Mount Ziwu which resembles the finger of God sticking out of the ground. Or it is the Devil's finger. Nobody knows but the mountain is considered sacred for Kapsiki and their shamans perform healing ceremonies right near Mount Zivi. Immediately after trekking, we will witness a beautiful traditional Kapsiki dance on the best spot with a panorama view of the mountains. Then we will see the Kapsiki village, meet the local potters and meet a real hereditary witch doctor who predicts the future with the help of... crabs. Early lunch at our hotel and a long drive back to Garoua. Overnight at Hôtel La Tour d'Argent. Arrival after sunset.

Meals included:breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Accommodation: Hôtel La Tour d'Argent.


Day 10. January 24, 2023. Garoua - Ngaoundere - Ranch Ngaoundaba. 320 - 390 km.

Early breakfast and departure before 8 am. Long drive to Ngaoundere. Upon arrival in Ngaoundere, visit the very bright royal palace of Lamido in Ngaoundere. Continuing to Wina Falls. On the way visiting the village of the Peul (Fulani) tribe. If we have time, we will drive further, to the village of Idool of the Peole Tribe. A very beautiful place to stay near the crater lake. Dinner and overnight at the ranch.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch, dinner
Accommodation: guest house Ranch de Ngaoundaba


Day 11. January 25, 2023. Ranch de Ngaoundaba - Berthoua - Abong Mbang. 570 km.

After breakfast we have a long drive to Bertua and further to Abong Mbang (the road is very good). On the way we will visit the Gbaya people. The Gbaya people inhabit the area between Ngaoundere and Bertoua, make up a large part of the population of the neighboring CAR. They cultivate cassava and collect honey. Honey is very important to the Gbai, so they even dedicate their holiday to honey. Today we would drive 50 meters from the border with the CAR. Lunch in Berthois, see the colonial German buildings. Arrival in Abong Mbang, accommodation and overnight in Hotel Résidence le Zurikoi.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch, dinner
Accommodation: Hotel Résidence le Zurikoi


Day 12. January 26th 2023. Abong Mbang - Lomie - Messoc - Baka Pygmies Traditional Village. 185 km.

Early breakfast, drive to Lomie, continue to Messok where we start trekking (about 1 hour) deep into the forest before we arrive in the nomadic camp of Baka Pygmies tribe. Meeting one of the shortest people on the planet. The height of some of them does not exceed 120 – 130 cm. According to studies of the Baka Pygmies' DNA, it turned out that they are one of the oldest people on Earth. Activities with Baka: building of the hut, dance, photo session. Setting up our camping. Overnight in tents in our camping area near Baka village.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Accommodation: camping


Day 13. January 27, 2023. The traditional village of the Baka Pygmies in the Jah Reserve


Breakfast. Walk into the forest with the hunters men from the Baka Pygmies tribe. The Baka tribe belong to the Pygmies people who live in the rainforest in Cameroon, RCA, Gabon and Congo. Baka are deemed the first inhabitants of Cameroon rainforest. It is believed that thousands of years ago Pygmy tribes populated vast areas in Africa but were later squeezed out by other tribes to the deep forest and adjusted to the nomadic life in the jungle. They live by hunting and gathering, changing the place for nomads' camp from time to time. They are also famous for their procedure of collecting honey from the tops of the huge trees. Man who can bring honey to his wife is considered the most successful person and is gonna be loved by her. That is why Pygmies are ready to run the risk but get the honey. Even though nowadays most Pygmies wear modern clothes, they remember and respect their traditions very well. Baka adhere to animistic beliefs. They worship the forest spirit known as Jengi or Ejengi, whom they consider their ancestor and protector. After each successful hunting , Baka performs a thank-you dance called Luma, which is accompanied by drumming and polyphonic singing. Baka are very skilled in using a variety of plants, from which they receive various chemicals used to treat diseases and infertility. Traditional medicine is widely known among neighboring tribes who often come to Baka healers for help. After hunting in the jungle we also attend the process of climbing the tree and collecting honey, learning about traditional medicine etc. We will listen to their magic stories, stare at rhythmic dances and enjoy the beauty and sincerity of the place. We will listen to their magic stories, stare at rhythmic dances and enjoy the beauty and sincerity of the Ejengi forest! Dinner and overnight in tents in the Baka village.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch, dinner
Accommodation: camping


Day 14. January 28, 2023. Baka Pygmies Village - Messok - Lomie - Yaounde. 440 km.

Early breakfast. Trekking for about 1 hour through the jungle.
Trekking through Messok and Lomier to Abong Mbang (about 6 hours). Lunch at the Hotel Résidence le Zurikoi. Here we change from jeeps to a large comfortable bus, which is better for the good and fast paved roads of the last two days. Transfer to Yaoundé, the capital of Cameroon (about 3 hours). Dinner and overnight at the Safyad Hotel 3* in Yaoundé.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch, dinner
Accommodation: Hotel Safyad 3*.


Day 15. January 29, 2023. Yaounde - Edea - Pongo Songo Reserve - Kribi. 395 km.
Breakfast and drive to the south west, to Pongo Songo, a part of Douala-Edea Sanctuary bordered toth Sanaga river in the north and Atlantic ocean on the west. Here we visit Pongo Songo Chimpanzee Sanctuary where chimps are brought to live in the wild in order to multiply the population of these primates. Chimpanzees are social animals who live in communities and are constantly moving. They are not as easy to photograph as gorillas, but believe us, not less interesting. Chimpanzee is the primate closest to humans; our DNA is 98% identical. Excursion to chimps. Lunch on the way. Drive south to Kribi, a beautiful resort on the Atlantic Ocean, a kind of Cameroonian Sochi. Trying to catch the Lobe Falls, one of the most beautiful cascades in Cameroon, and one of the few waterfalls in the world that falls directly into the ocean, before sunset. Check-in at Hôtel Ilomba and relax on the beach. You can have a great dinner with local seafood.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch
Accommodation: Hotel Ilomba


Day 16. January 30, 2023. Kribi to Douala airport. 180 km.

A leisurely breakfast with a beautiful view of the ocean and a swim in the warm waters of the Atlantic.
Drive to the local market, meet the fishermen and appreciate their catch: barracuda, stingrays, lobsters and giant shrimp. Right there you can buy, cook and enjoy super fresh seafood, especially the prawns, which are considered probably the largest.Late afternoon drive directly to Douala city airport (180 km but by very good road). Flight back.

* Recommended flight TK-667 by Turkish Airlines, departing January 31 at 1:30 am.

Meals included: breakfast
Accommodation: none

Cost includes:

• accommodation in hotels based on double or twin rooms (in Cameroon very often separate twin beds are not available and DBL beds are provided)
• accommodation in camping based on single
• camping equipment (tents, mattresses, cooking stuff, cutlery)
• full board meals (3 times a day) along the route, except for Kribi
• breakfasts in Kribi
• drinking pure water along the route
• train tickets from Yaounde to Ngaoundere (sleeping compartment for 4 people)
• 4WD SUVs with AC and experienced drivers throughout the entire itinerary (Toyota Land Cruiser 100, Toyota Land Cruiser Prado или аналогичные), 3 – 4 participants in each car
• all airport transfers
• all boats along the route
• armed security Escort in Rhumsiki area
• porters and cook services
• all permits for visiting protected areas, National reserves, sanctuaries,
• all activities, visits and entrance fees along the route
• governmental taxes
• financial support of local communities/tribes
• photo- and video shooting allowance
• experienced English-speaking local guide along the whole route
• Russian-speaking and English-speaking team leader Mzungu



To be additionally (personally) paid:

• international flight to Yaoundé and back from Douala
• international medical insurance
• visa of Cameroon (purchased in advance in the embassy on your own or upon arrival with preliminary entry permit arrangement)
• lunch and dinner in Kribi
• tips and personal expenses
• single accommodation in hotels



To take with:

- sets of clothes suitable for the weather conditions, including lightweight clothes (shorts, T-shorts), and one set of warm clothes (hoody or light jacket), long sleeve clothes
- sun hat/panama
- swimwear
- raincoat
- comfortable trekking footwear, light footwear (sneakers)
- sleeping bag for warm weather
- mosquito net for sleeping place (is a must!)
- personal hygiene items (towel, wet tissues, soap)
- individual medical kit (analgesics, antiseptic, antibiotic, antiviral, intestinal, multivitamins, rehydron, court plaster, your personal medications)
- anti malaria prevention pills (up to you to decide but recommended)
- yellow fever certificate (is a must!)
- certificate with negative result of PCR coronavirus test that is to be taken (that is sample to be taken but not result issued) at maximum 72 hour prior to your departure to Cameroon (negative coronavirus test result should be in PDF format, clearly stating the date of the sample collection and the type of test, e.g. PCR)
- sunblock set (cream, spray)
- various repellents (is a must!)
- sunglasses
- big backpack for stuff (up to 70 l)
- small backpack for radial walks (25 – 30 l)
- head torch
- favorite meals (chocolate, nuts)
- photo and video camera, tripod
- Power bank, batteries
KEY FEATURES:
TOUR TO NIGER
Cameroon

Best season: October – April


Hunting, fishing and collecting honey with Baka pygmies, night in the jungle in Dja Sanctuary.

Deep dive into the culture and lifestyle of Koma - the unique tribe of animists, trekking in Alantika mountains.

Trekking in Rhumsiki with surreal Martian landscapes.

Explore tribes of Mbororo, Fulani, Dupa, Dowayos, Kapsiki and others

Kola Gorge – African "Antelope Canyon"

Chimpanzee in the wild in Pongo Songo sanctuary

Swimming in Atlantic Ocean and the biggest and delicious shrimps

Comfortable journey throughout Cameroon by 4WD SUVs
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1
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