The lava lake of Nyiragongo is one of only five permanent lava lakes currently in existence in the world. Nyiragongo volcano is one of the most active volcanoes in Africa. It is noted for long active lava lakes which appear in the summit crater. Nyiragongo is one of eight volcanoes in the Virunga Mountains. The volcano is located near the town of Goma in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.
The summit of the volcano contains a 1 km wide caldera. The summit is 2000 m above the level of Lake Kivu. Two other peaks in the complex are Baruta (3100 m) and Shaheru (2800 m). From 1928 to 1977 there was a long active lava lake in the summit crater. In 1982 there was a lava pond which rapidly cooled. The fissure eruption at the volcano in 1977 was related to regional tectonic activity.
A major eruption began at Nyiragongo Volcano on Thursday 17th January 2002 with lava flows reaching the city of Goma. The 2002 eruption of Nyiragongo displaced 500,000 people. Not much is known about how long the volcano has been erupting, but since 1882, it has erupted at least 34 times, including many periods where activity was continuous for years at a time, often in the form of a churning lava lake in the crater. The volcano partly overlaps with two older volcanoes, Baratu and Shaheru, and is also surrounded by hundreds of small volcanic cinder cones from flank eruptions.
The Nyiragongo trail is normally a day trail but will need three days for the entire trail with a stay in Goma. This Nyiragongo trail can be done as an extension to one of the Uganda Safaris or Rwanda Safaris