Chimpanzees in Uganda
Chimpanzees in Uganda: Chimpanzees, commonly referred to as Chimps are major attractions for visitors coming to Uganda after the mountain gorillas of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. There are about 5,000 chimpanzees in Uganda with a number of forests having their presence. The numbers were higher in the past but due to the poachers and political instabilities in the past, chimpanzees were killed for bush meat which saw a decline in the numbers of the chimpanzees. On top of being poached for bush meat, some people sold them as pets. Chimpanzees are also often trapped in snares set in the forests by the poachers and some are injured and left to die.
There are a number of places in the entire Africa on where you can see the chimpanzees and these chimpanzees are native to the African continent and can be visited in up to 21 African countries. East Africa is however the best destination for the chimpanzee lovers because of the instability in the West and central African countries and the human encroachment on the forests which are the homes to the chimpanzees forcing them out. You can visit the chimpanzees in Rwanda in the Nyungwe forest national park, the Democratic republic of Congo in the Virunga national park and Kahuzi Biega national park, Tanzania in Gombe Stream national park and in Uganda which has the biggest numbers of the chimpanzees in a number of forests.
Uganda is the best destination for chimpanzee lovers and there are a number of safari packages you can book to chance these playful creatures in their natural habitat. In Uganda, the chimpanzees can be trekked or even habituated in a number of the national parks and these parks offer both chimpanzee habituation and chimpanzee trekking experience or one of the two. Kibaale forest national park is the most commonly visited national park, Kyambura gorge of Queen Elizabeth national park, Budongo forest of Murchison falls national park.
You may chance a chimpanzee while in the Bigodi wetlands sanctuary, Semuliki national park, Bwindi impenetrable forest or the Buniga forest. The chimpanzees of the national parks are habituated meaning they are used to human presence but that does not mean they are not wild animals anymore that is why all chimpanzee experiences are guided. Chimpanzees are very playful creatures and will be seen swinging from one tree branch to another unlike the gorillas that you can view as they are sitted in one place. Each of the above mentioned national parks have a different cost for the permit.
Chimpanzee experience in Kibaale forest national park is one of the unique ones in the country as the park offers both chimpanzee trekking and the chimpanzee habituation experience. The chimpanzee trekking permit in Kibaale forest national park goes for 200 USD per permit and the chimpanzee habituation permit goes for 1,500 USD per permit. Kibaale is also a home to about 12 other primates like the different monkey species like the black and white colobus monkey. You will be able to hear the sounds of the chimpanzees as soon as you enter the forest and catch them swinging from one tree to another. These are very playful creatures.
For the habituation experience, the guests will join the team of researchers who are trying to make a chimpanzee family get used to human presence. This is a full day activity so be packed and prepared to spend enough time in the forest. Habituation is usually a two year long process but you can take one day to join the team. This chimpanzee habituation experience is only offered in the Kibale forest national park of Uganda. The Budongo forest offers some guests this chance but only in the off season months.
Chimpanzee trekking in Uganda can also be done in the Kyambura Gorge of Queen Elizabeth national park. The scenery of the gorge is the highlight of opting to trek the chimpanzees from here as it has in the past been called names like the Valley of Apes or the lost Valley by BBC. This Kyambura gorge is a one of the outcomes of the Western Rift valley and treks in this gorge can be a bit demanding because of the terrain and the crossing of rivers and creeks but that is all part of the experience in the gorge. It is usually a 3 hour activity and the chimpanzee trekking permit in the Kyambura gorge costs only 50 USD.
One can also opt to trek the chimpanzees of Uganda in the Budongo forest of Murchison falls national park. The Murchison falls National Park is famous for its wildlife but there is also primate life that you can top up on your safari to Murchison. A chimpanzee trekking permit in the Budongo forest goes for 90 USD and this park is the closest to Kampala so you can do a short 1 day chimpanzee trek to and fro. The Murchison Falls National Park is only a 4 hour drive from Kampala.
Our team of skilled tour consultants is waiting to hear from you about your chimpanzee trekking experience in Uganda.