Where there is water, there is usually boat services to some extent. In the DRC boats are the primary means of transportation due to the extensive network of rivers and lack/quality of roads. Some noteworthy river travels in Africa are:
Along the Niger River small, wooden pirogues varying in design from a 2 person canoe to wide, ~10 person boats with a canopy and toilet. Travelling by pirogue is slow, but the Sahelian scenery and people you meet on the boat and during stops make this a memorable African experience. Due to cataracts, pirogues on the Niger only operate in Mali & Niger
Along the Congo River large, old and often overcrowded ferries connect cities along the river in the Congo, DRC, & Central African Republic. Small boats from villages come out and moor themselves to these ferries to sell food and merchandise and the boat is a bustling marketplace of hundreds of people much of the time. Conditions aboard these ferries are poor and bearable only by the most seasoned of travellers. Talk to the captain to see if you can use one of the handful of rooms to sleep.
The Most Frequently Asked Travel Questions about Africa
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