A good idea is to bring a local guide, who knows Goma really well.
He will also be very useful in organising things and negotiating prices.
When in Gisenyi (just across the border in Rwanda) I met Modest, a young man living in Goma and working in Gisenyi. I told him about my plans and he offered to show me around. He did a very good job and wants to show others around as well.
If you want to meet him contact me and I'll try to explain ;-)
update 10/2005: we are lucky enough to have an active member from Goma on VT: KennedyRW, so I hope we can have a VT meetin there soon!!!
Okay so not my favourite thing, but something you need to know before visiting Goma. The following US Dollar bills are not accepted.
New Notes from the years 1996, 1998 or 1999.
It's really dumb, but there's this mass paranoic myth about these notes and they will not be accepted by most people, who say that they cannot cash them at the bank because the banks will not accept them.
They will also not accept any US Dollar bills that are slightly torn (even just a few mm on the edge) Although they are quite happy to return your change in soggy wads of ripped torn and defaced local currency or US Dollars that are fake, damaged, the 'wrong year' or just plain dirty from grubby paws. So check your change carefully.
This is another view from the restaurant's lawn featured under the recent category.
Lake Kivu is part of the great east african lake system and safe to swim or dive (beware of the currents).
The rwandan mountains can be seen in the background.