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Cameroon’s diary – Lobe River

Lobe River. Cameroon. It is always better to start early and have a long day and avoid also noon heat. I wake up about 6 am, eat fast breakfast and leave hotel. Main street is almost empty only few moto-taxis are here. To say truth I do not like to go on a motorcycle. That’s why I am looking for standard taxi. But at this morning time it is not easy. But after few minutes I am lucky. Long bargain I do not want to pay more than 2 000 CFA to Lobe Waterfalls. They are about 10 kilometers behind the Kribi town.

Lobe Falls is one of the few places in the world where waterfalls drop directly into the ocean. Cameroon. Lobe Waterfalls are known as one the waterfalls falling directly to the sea. Well it is funny definition. Waterfalls are nice more cascades than classic water fall. Local people are taking shower here, washing clothes. It is their water source. I watch the scenery which is full of green color by surrounding forest. Small birds, fishermen. Idyllic spot.

Traditional dance at Pygmy village down to the Lobe River. Cameroon. I want to take tour on the Lobe River and visit some Pygmy village. I know that it is standard tourist trip but I know that I have no time and money visit further places around Lobeke National park where Pygmy villages are more authentic. Bargain for price of the boat trip is hard. Local guides are clever and hard businessman. For half day trip I pay around 60 000 CFA and they promised to spot at two villages.

You can easily get impression of the colonizer who came to Africa. I sit inside the boat and leaving coast to the unknown interior. I just see green wall of dense forest and small for over it. Sun and hot together with high humidity. Sound of the forest and its majesty Lobe River. I have great feeling. Our boat meets only few other boats, river looks very empty.

Palm oil pressing. Lobe River. Cameroon. After two hours we arrive at left river bank. I can see small path going inside the forest. At the bank people from coast have small pressure machine for getting oil. Our group stops and speaks with them. They explain and show us their work. Seeds from palm are baled. The result is oil which is used for cooking or selling at market. We follow the path inside the jungle but after few hundred meters small Pygmy village is found.

Pygmy hunters, village down to the Lobe River. The Pygmy people are gatherers and hunters. They hunt animals such as antelopes, pigs and monkeys, and also gather honey, wild yams, berries and other plants. Cameroon. Pygmy people are really smaller as I remember from photos. They are mostly hunters and gatherers and they live only at forests with great symbiosis with surrounding nature. They build only simple huts because they move from place to place at jungle. These houses are more permanent that it is tradition because these people live half of the year at jungle and half of the year here near river (in dry season). Well it is their explanation. Now it is dry season so they are resting here and relaxing. Invitation to the village is fine and people are generally friendly. We go for small hunt men want to show me their traditional way of getting food. They have spears and move fast inside the jungle. It is difficult for me to follow them. They go really fast. Changing directions stopping and listening. But no wild animal. After one hour they decide it is enough and we go back to the village. Nice experience. We sit at the village and later they perform small dance. They take huge drum and start drumming. People stay at circle and always one person is dancing – man or woman. It is very driving dance with nice rhythm and simple traditional music. It is really nice visit.

Traditional dance at Pygmy village down to the Lobe River. Cameroon. Time is over so I have to start to head back to the coast. The same river the same scenery. I am fascinated by number of birds which can be spotted on the way. Great. I am back on the coast back on the rod to Kribi. It is hot afternoon so I sit in small bar and drinks coke. Local ladies drink beer and dance on typical African music. Fine refreshment stop before way back to Kribi.

I walk along road and hoping to get some lift. But there are not so much cars. Eureka almost empty taxi-brousse. I am very fast back at Kribi and have enough time to take dinner at open seaside restaurant. Excellent barbeque fish. It is nice dot after whole day.


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