Below the cities of Brazzaville ( Republic of the Congo ) and Kinshasa ( Democratic Republic of the Congo ), the water plunges into the valley in a series of cataracts as it passes the Lower Guinea Sill over a distance of 350 kilometers . The entire cataract route overcomes a total difference in altitude of 274 meters to the Congo Delta . The section with the highest incline is the so-called Inga Falls in the lower section, which overcomes about 90 meters in altitude over a distance of barely 30 kilometers, in the core area even 40 meters over a length of about 10 kilometers. However, hardly any of these cataracts can be considered a waterfall . The cataracts of the Livingstone Falls, however, with a water flow of around 41,000 m³ / s, are by far the most water-rich rapids on earth.
In the middle part of the Inga cataracts, part of the water is diverted to the Inga dams to generate electrical energy .
The Livingstone Falls are not passable for transport ships of any kind. Since there is neither a canal nor the cataracts are overcome by sluices, the cities on the central reaches of the Congo, such as Kinshasa or Brazzaville, cannot be reached by ship from the sea, despite the enormous water loads of the Congo.