The Congo (river)

satellite photograph (NASA) of Kinshasa and Brazzaville, the Congo is visible in the center, on the left of the beginning of the Livingstonefälle

of 4,374 km the long Congo [also Congo called; in former times and partly still Zaire (= “river” and/or. “Water”)] is thatlargest (after the catchment area), secondarylongest and water-richest river and/or. River in Africa and even the secondarywater-richest of the earth. Its catchment area lies mainly in the democratic Republic of the Congo (in the following “DR the Congo” mentioned) - where it by the enormous Congo basin flows.

Table of contents

to work on] river course


also rises as Lualaba in the south from that DR the Congo in the region Shaba in the south from runners Mitumba mountains. There its source is appropriate for about 100 km to the west of Lubumbashi. The Lualaba flows first northward, past at the lakes Lac Upemba and Kisale and takes approximately150 km of far north the water of the river run Luvua - Luapula -, coming from the east, Chambeshi up, which is clearly longer as tributary up to this place than the Lualaba - the source river of the Congo. The Congo has with thatRiver course Luvua - Luapula - Chambeshi a length of 4.835 km. For instance during this river inlet it occurs the Congo basin expanded very far . North to it the Lukuga coming from the east continues to flow to again approximately 150 km. From thereout the Lulalaba continues to flow toward the north to the Boyomafällen with Kisangani.

From there it - westward flowing - on carries the name the Congo. Where it toward southwest turns flows through it an expandedSwampland shank with Mbandaka. Therein the Ubangi flows to it , its largest tributary. From there it forms on the natural border of the States of democratic Republic of the Congo and Republic of the Congo. Somewhat south the Kwa continues to flow - to Kasai,its second largest tributary. Afterwards it reaches the pool Malebo, Brazzaville and Kinshasa; the river is navigable above these cities.

Its water at the exit of the Congo basin falls a little later with the break-through valley by the Niederguineaschwelle over the 274 m high, cascade-like and several kilometers are enough for Livingstonefälle. With Mbanza it leaves the common border and traverses the only about 100 to 150 km broad westernmost Zipfel of the “DR the Congo” and reaches therein the city Matadi, those at the borderto Angola lies. On this border the river - now Rio Zaire mentioned - continues to flow still approximately 135 km to the west, around also funnel broad at the border in the Zaire low country in one up to 40 km into the Atlanticto flow, where it continues as Congo gutter still 150 km under the sea.

catchment area

of the Congo

, which is after of Amazon the second largest the earth, is appropriate for data [work on] mainly in the DRThe Congo; it covers 3.822.020 km ² and is still enough into neighbour states Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Republic of the Congo and Central African republic.

depth, length & navigability

partial 40 to 90 m deep the Congo are 4.374km long, about which approx. 3,000 km are navigable. It is an important navigation road; the often large not navigable sections are gone around by railway lines.

water wealth & - as previously mentioned

, is the Congo the water-richest river fell in Africa and after of Amazon even the secondarywater-richest the earth: It leads at its delta between 23.000 and 75.000 m ³ /s water off in the annual average makes this 42,000 m ³ /s. The brownish color of the water, itself at its delta inthe Atlantic pours, is partly still 20 to 30 km from the coast far away to be recognized.

The river forms many currentfast and Wasserfälle (among other things the Stanley - and Livingstonefälle).


the discovery in such a way specified of the Congo1482 took place by the Portuguese sailor Diogo Cão . The British Africa researcher Sir Henry Morton Stanley investigated his run in the inland, when he drove on the river from 1876 to 1877 and explored the country.


of tributaries

because the Lualaba - the Congo - from the south coming and mainly toward the west flowing - in a large link elbow by the countries and landscapes mentioned before, is it flows without oneView of the world Atlas to throw with difficulty to clarify orographisch which river of “left” and/or. “comes right”. In the following list, in which the supplies of the Congo were listed river downward, therefore also the directions are - from that the suppliescome - notes.

Upper run - up to the beginning of the Congo on the left of elbow (to Kisangani):

central run - starting from beginning of the Congo on the left of elbow (from Kisangani to Mbandaka):

  • right - of northeast: Lindi
  • left - of the south: Lomami
  • right - of northeast: Aruwimi, Itimbiri
  • left - of the east: Lulonga -Maringa, Ruki - bus Irish Republican Army

central run - to the end of the Congo on the left of elbow (to Brazzaville/Kinshasa):

  • left - of the north: Ubangi, Sangha
  • left - of the east: Kwa - Kasai (Kassai, Cassai)

underflow - after endthe Congo on the left of elbow (starting from Brazzaville/Kinshasa):

  • no call-worth supplies

of countries

see also


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