Mondika is one of the world’s oldest western lowland gorilla research site, and arguably the best place to walk alongside habituated groups. In this historic place, located in one of the most intact forests of the Congo Basin, you can observe the fascinating behavior of our primate cousins.
Tourism Experience
Get ready for a sweat that is worth every drop, and dive into the humid forest of the Djéké Triangle to track gorillas and to observe them firsthand in an astounding preserved environment. 
From Bomassa, it is a 45-minute drive followed by a 2.5-hour walk to reach the Mondika research camp. Take the time to rest while keeping your eyes open for colorful birds and dragonflies in this picturesque setting, especially around the stream running through the camp. 
Most of the gorilla groups home ranges are around a 1-hour walk from the camp. Be prepared for a once in a lifetime experience, during which you may be lucky enough to hear the impressive growl of a silverback or catch a glimpse of the incessant play of the endearing babies of the Mététélé group. 
Western gorillas are Critically Endangered and so throughout your stay at Mondika, it is essential that you listen to and follow all instructions given by Park staff to ensure your safety and health, as well as that of the animals. The Park staff meticulously follows all the best practices promoted by the IUCN.
Species you could see
    Frequent visitors:
  • Gorillas

  • Forest elephants

    • Elusive visitors:
  • Duikers

    • Birds:
  • Paradise-flyccetches

  • Western Vicator

  • Finfoot

  • Good to know
    • Three groups of gorillas have now been habituated: Kingo's in 2000, Buka's in 2007 and Metetele's in 2021. A fourth one is currently being habituated.
    • Kingo, world's first habituated lowland gorilla, is believed to be arround 45 years old.
    • Mondika's research team has a long heritage of female leadership.

    Established in 1995 by Dr. Diane Doran, Mondika was first thought to be in Central African Republic, before GPS were accurate enough to locate the camp on the other side of the border.

    The management of the camp changed hands, but scientific research continued throughout the quarter of a century of the site's existence, by relying on the unparalleled expertise of indigenous trackers to find and observe the gorillas.
    In the current team, some trackers have followed Kingo almost daily for nearly 15 years. Others have taken up the torch from their fathers, and learned everything about the slightest clue that could lead to the gorillas.

    Long-term data collection on gorillas’ life history in Mondika has allowed considerable advances in our understanding of gorilla behavior, ecology, and social structures. Habituation of the gorillas to human presence, which is a long, difficult, and dangerous process, is necessary for the observation of the natural behavior of the gorillas, who eventually accept that the observing humans are a harmless part of their environment.

    In addition to the direct observations collected, Mondika research teams also sample dung and other biological residues to assess the health of the gorillas and study their genetic makeup to better understand their parentage and group genealogy.