Chimpanzee Trekking Safaris in Uganda/primate safaris
Chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda are one of the most popular Uganda wildlife and primate tours. In Africa, Uganda is the best country for chimpanzee trekking and many tourists sign up for chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda’s Kibale National park, Budongo forest, Kyambura gorge and Kalizu forest.
Chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda start in the morning at 8am with a briefing by the guides or officials from Uganda wildlife Authority. After breakfast, your driver guide will transfer you to the park offices for briefing about the dos and don’ts of chimpanzee trekking. After the briefing, you will start your trek in the forest to follow where the chimpanzees are.
If you decide to go for the afternoon chimpanzee trek, the same procedure will be followed. Your guide will pick up from your lodge after lunch.
The chimpanzee treks take about 2-3 hours before finding the chimpanzees. This depends greatly on where they nested the previous night
On the day of the trek, we include a walk to Bidodi wetland sanctuary. By doing this walk, you are supporting the community directly. The walk rewards you with nature, and spotting different types of birds that include the great blue Turaco, black and white cascade hornbill, etc. You will also see about 5 types of monkeys. These include black and white colobus monkey, red tailed colobus monkey, grey cheeked mangabey, velvet monkeys among others.
How much are chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda
The cost of chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda depend on many different factors. The cost will depend on which place one treks the chimps from. For example it is more expensive to trek chimpanzees in Kibale National park, than it is to trek them in Budongo forest, Kyambura gorge or Kalizu forest. The type of accommodation chosen too is another price determinant of how much the whole chimp trekking safari in Uganda will cost. It costs more for a traveller who stays at a luxury lodge like Kyaninga Lodge than for someone who will stay at a mid-range lodge or budget lodge.
The cost will also depend on the number of days a visitor is interested in. If not combined with other Uganda safaris, one needs 3 days for chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda.
Because of the above factors, at Gorilla Link Tours, we choose to organize customized safaris so as to quote the price of a safari package accordingly.
How much is a chimp trekking and habituation permit
In order to be allowed to go for chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda, one needs a chimpanzee trekking permit. For Kibale National park and Kyambura gorge, the permits are issued by Uganda Wildlife Authority on first come first served basis.
The cost of a normal regular chimpanzee trek is 150 US dollars per permit, and per trek in Kibale National park, it costs 50 US dollars to trek in Kyambura gorge, 100 US dollars in Bundongo forest and 40 US dollars in Kalizu forest
The chimpanzee habituation permit costs 200 US dollars. Chimpanzee habituation takes a whole day and very few people allowed to sign up for this experience.
The cost is more if you are interested in filming chimpanzees. Let us know if you are interested in this.
All chimpanzee trekking permits or filming costs should be booked way in advance
Difference between Chimpanzee habituation and chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda
Many travellers who come for Uganda wildlife safaris ask about the difference between chimpanzee habituation and chimpanzee trekking. The main difference is chimpanzee trekking is aimed at following chimpanzees already habituated and already comfortable with human presence. Chimpanzee habituation is a process of making wild chimpanzees get ‘comfortable’ with human presence without charging at them.
Best time for chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda
Chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda can take place all year round. However, it is nicer to trek or habituate chimpanzees during the sunny months of June-October and December to February. It should be noted that it can rain anytime of the year during the chimp treks since these take place in rain forests.
During the green months of March-May and November, it is rainy and wet but chimpanzees do not move far for food since it is in plenty compared to the dry periods
Best place for chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda
The best place for chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda is Kibale National Park. It is located in Western Uganda, and has been nick named the primate capital of the world for a reason. It is home to countless chimpanzees and other primates and be sure you will not miss chimpanzees during the treks.
Apart from chimpanzees and primates, the park a bird watcher’s paradise because it is home to a great number of birds which can be seen on Uganda bird watching safaris.
What to bring for chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda
Below is an outline of some of the things you should bring for chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda
- Hiking sturdy walking shoes
- Rain gear
- Enough drinking water- at least 1-2 litres (will be provided)
- A pair of binoculars
- Long sleeved shirts and long trousers that can be tucked into your socks
- A camera
Chimpanzee Trekking Rules and Regulations as per Uganda Wildlife Authority
- Keep about 8 meters in between you and the chimpanzees.
- Persons with illnesses are not allowed to visit the chimps.
- Avoid eating or drinking near the chimpanzees.
- Children below 15 years of age are not allowed trek chimpanzees
- A Guide is the only person to help you get right of entry to the forest.
- Avoid provoking chimpanzees during trekking.
- Flash photography is not allowed in the park
Where to stay for chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda
There are different lodges in each location where chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda take place.
Accommodations in Kibale National Park
- Kyaninga Lodge
- Ndali lodge
- Papaya Lake Lodge
- Primate Lodge
- Crater safari Lodge
- Kibale Forest Camp
- Isunga Lodge
- Kibale Forest Camp non self-contained tents
- Kyaninga royal cottages
- Chimpanzee Guest House
Budongo Forest in Murchison Falls National park
- Budongo Eco lodge- Budget lodge
- Accommodations around Kyambura in Queen Elizabeth National park
How difficult are chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda
Chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda are not difficult. One does not require special physical appearance. Chimpanzee trekking depends on where the chimpanzees nested and where they move too. Some treks take longer than others
Suggested chimpanzee trekking safaris in Uganda
There are different chimpanzee safari packages in Uganda. Below is a list of some of the itineraries.