Folks often wonder where to travel for a slow, leisurely getaway for some rest and relaxation. Congo is not one of these places. Fortunately for humanity and the good of mankind, there are brave – if not slightly crazy – men like Phil Harwood, a British man who recently became the first person in history to do the entire 3,000 gauntlet that is the Congo River.

You might wonder why that feat was until recently something that had yet to be conquered. Well let’s see…crocodiles, really big snakes, men with machetes, really nasty insects, corruption and generally about a million ways to curl up and die. Not to mention the length of the river, which at 3,000 miles, is one of the longest rivers in the world.

His journey is as fascinating as the river he travelled. And, considering the troubled history of Congo, thanks in no small part to 18th century imperialism, the river itself tells a story, of the people of the region and the land to which it belongs. Harwood documented his record-breaking travel along the Congo River in his book Canoeing the Congo. There’s a video here that tells some of his story.

Good on ya Phil Harwood 😉