Mossendjo is a town in the Niari Valley It lies within the Chaillu Massif. It's principle activities are hunting and agriculture. The main products cultivated are manioc, coffee, cocoa, peanuts, banana, tobacco and rice. The Congo-Ocean Railway (COR; French: Chemin de fer Congo-Océan, CFCO), built in the 1920's, passes through Mossendjo.
Unemployment rates are high in the region, due to the lack of industrial job opportunities.
Mossendjo is a 5 hour drive north (175 km) from Dolisie on dirt roads. In the rainy season these can become rutted, muddy and nearly impassable. No "normal" height car can make the trip- only trucks and preferrably, land rovers are up for it. However, there is an old airstrip that can be used if chartering a plane. The train line from Point Noire through Dolisie goes to Mossendjo from there. As with driving, it is a several hour ride from Dolisie. Trains typically go every other day in each direction as there is but one track. There were first and second class train cars in the late 90's, depending on your association preference you may choose to ride with the well to do or the common man. A ticket allows passage, but does not necessarily guarantee an actual seat= usually not an issue, but if the train is more than an hour late beware (heavy rainstorms have on occasion caused the reduction of cars on the train leading to overcrowding.) Neither class will have any amenities other than seats, thought you can buy lunch through the window from people selling food at the train stops. Bathrooms exist though their repair varies. Bring your own drinking water as you do everywhere.
The main road in the town is paved. Howvever, all surrounding are dirt roads. Walk or ride bicycle or scooter if you have one. Town's commercial center is about one km square, though the town officially extends to outlying residential areas.
The market in Mossendjo has a wide selection of fruit and vegetables. Make sure to go early because after noon, the shops start to close up. There are impressive waterfalls- Les Cascades de Mouroula- 31 km away by road (east of town) a 30 minute drive in winter dry season.
There is roadside food and a few restaurants near the "carrefour" the main intersection with the main road and the road to the market. The two small hotels in town may serve food. If you eat at a restaurant be sure to ask what the meat is. Antelope, Gazelle, and sometimes Chicken and Fish (especially tilapia- which may have many small bones) are the most common, though some sell other bushmeat- pangolin-a small sort of armored tree dwelling armadillo/anteater with full body scales, and on occasion monkey or chimp. True vegetarians may have difficulty, though the first two options described are about as close as you will get. Mwamba is a tasty gravy type dish made from oily palm fruits. Saka Saka is the everpresent cassavaleaf dish, rich with palm oil and seasoned sometimes with bouillon cubes and occasionally with dried fish. Trois Pieces is the national dish, or thin shredded (actually sliced) somewhat tough leaves with a peanut butter fish gravy. Everything is served over Kwanga or "baton de manioc" a dense, steamed fermented starch roll with the glutinous texture of an enormous soft grain of white rice and a slightly beer like sourish flavor. Flavor varies slightly from one to another- at best the sourness is very slight and the texture is rather soft. A timeconsuming specialty dish is made from pumpkin seed paste formed into balls combined with "magi" bouillon cubes and dropped into boiling mwamba to make something with a flavour akin to meatballs. This may be served with stick mushrooms- farmed by termites!