Straddling the Equator, the Republic of the Congo (aka Congo-Brazzaville – not to be confused with the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is located in the heart of the Congo Basin, the world’s largest tropical rainforest region after the Amazon.
The country is bordered to the north by the Central African Republic, to the north-west by Cameroon, to the east and south by the DRC, to the south-west by the Angolan exclave of Cabinda, and to the west by Gabon. Between Gabon and Cabinda there are 100 miles of wild Atlantic coastline.
Around 60% of the country is lowland tropical rainforests, home to a remarkably rich diversity of flora and fauna including western lowland gorilla, forest elephant, chimpanzee, various colobus monkeys and the bongo.
Facing the DRC’s capital, Kinshasa, across the Congo River, Brazzaville is the country’s capital and the largest city in terms of population and employment. Pointe-Noire, on the Atlantic coast, is the Republic of Congo’s main port and second city, where Congolese oil is refined.
With one of the richest and most biologically important – yet least visited –forest ecosystems on the planet, a visit to the Republic of the Congo is a must for lovers of off-the-beaten track adventure and rare, endangered wildlife. By visiting pristine national parks such as Odzala, one contributes to their conservation and protection from unsustainable exploitation.