Ferries on Lake Kivu

Lake Kivu is one of the great central African lakes, on the border of Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. As roads on both sides, especially the Congolese side of the lake, are bad and unsurfaced, passenger ferries and cargo ships play an important role in providing transport between Goma, on the northern side of the Lake, and Bukavu on the southern shore. Both cities are in DRC. The Rwandan cities Gisenyi in the north and Kamembe in the south both have good roads to the capital Kigali and little transport demand between them. After the civil war the shipping services on the Rwandan side have not been restarted. Goma and Bukavu have no decent connections with other Congolese cities other than by air and there is quite some demand for transport between them. The fastest small boats take as little as two hours for the direct trip, larger vessels may take six or seven hours.