The return journey from Bukavu to Goma had no surprises. Our final destination was Tchegera island, a secluded piece of land, just 20 minutes away from busy Goma. It is tiny, only 400m in circumference and shaped like a croissant. It hosts a tented camp that consists of eleven tents, eight for lodging and three utility tents that serve as kitchen, restaurant and leisure area. It can can host up to sixteen guests, but on that day we were the only guests aboard!
Tchegera is part of the Virunga National Park and run by its staff. It is a unique retreat that offers spectacular views to the fuming Nyiragongo volcano and the opportunity to get some rest after several days of trekking on the mountains.
Right after the sunset, the mighty Nyiragongo begun to transform. A faint red color started painting the smoke and clouds over the crater and as the blue hour gave in to the dark of the night, blues turned to blacks and the red glow dominated the sky over the volcano. Despite the wet season, the skies were clear offering an amazing view. There isn’t much to do on the island except relaxing and admiring the fuming Nyiragongo and this is exactly what we needed after one exhausting week.
The next day we took the return speed boat to Goma and I had the chance to see Coma from an entirely different point of view. The lake front is full of people collecting water, cooking, doing laundry, taking a bath or some, simply laying and having fun.
I was surprised with all the people filling their yellow jerry cans with water. Why in a city, located next to a lake and with abundance of water flowing down the mountain, there is no running water in their homes? This is the problem across sub Saharan Africa: the resources are there, but people cannot take advantage of them.