Reasons To Visit Kibale National Park
Finding unspoiled locations like Kibale National Park is getting harder and harder as global warming and development are hitting the world like wildfire. Kibale National Park is one of the few still existing tropical rainforests where chimpanzees and other primates can find a home.
At the moment, about 1500 chimpanzee population is confirmed to be meandering Kibale Forest. One needs a permit card to do chimpanzee trekking or habituation.
Most Popular Safaris
Doing birding in Kibale National Park is rewarding as this topical rain forest provides a haven for the survival of over 325 bird species, including Albertine rift endemics.
About 12 other primate species, like olive baboons, black and white colobus monkeys, and red-tailed monkeys, are residents of Kibale National Park and can be seen with a guided primate walk in the forest.
What to do in Kibale National Park?
Chimpanzee trekking Kibale National Park is Uganda’s largest chimpanzee trekking habitat and has the largest number of habituated chimpanzees in East Africa. You can book a chimpanzee trekking permit from Uganda Wildlife Authority or through a tour operator like Encounter Africa Safaris.
Daily chimpanzee trekking starts early, norming at about 0800 hours and in the afternoon at 1500 hours. The right chimpanzee trekking gear, like safari boots, convertible trousers, long-sleeved shirts, and others, make your experience enjoyable and memorable.
What Is The Cost Of Chimpanzee Permit For Kibale National Park?
Each Chimpanzee permit costs $ 200 per person for foreign nonresidents, $150 per person for foreign residents, and 150000shs for East African Residents.
The cost of a chimpanzee trekking permit for Kibale includes the following:
- Park entrance fees.
- Ranger guide fees.
- 1 hour with the chimpanzees.
- Security during chimpanzee trekking.
- Local community support.
- Chimpanzee conservation support.
Exclusions of the chimpanzee trekking permit cost for Kibale National Park are; transport, tips, porters, and any other items of personal nature.
Can I reschedule the Chimpanzee Trekking Permit for Kibale National Park?
Yes, you can reschedule the cost of the chimpanzee trekking permit for Kibale National Park, but you need to seek permission from Uganda Wildlife Authority.
Write to Uganda Wildlife Authority requesting to reschedule to change the date for chimpanzee trekking. Attach some evidence where possible to back this up.
When approved, your chimpanzee trekking permit is moved to the new date according to the prevailing availability status.
If the chimpanzee trekking permit still needs to be topped up, you must top it up before moving it to the new date.
Can I Purchase The Chimpanzee Permit For Kibale National Park In Instalment?
Uganda Wildlife Authority accepts installment purchases for chimpanzee trekking permits but only applies to those that purchase the permits before 90 days of the trekking date. The Chimpanzee trekking permits for Kibale National Park can be purchased in installments of 30% and 70%, respectively.
You must remember to top up your partially purchased chimpanzee trekking permits 90 days after the trekking date.
When you fail to adhere, a penalty is applied.
- Chimpanzee Habituation Experience In Kibale National Park
The Chimpanzee habituation experience in Kibale National Park is an adventure where you escort a team of researchers and habituators in the wilderness to trace and follow a semi-habituated community of chimpanzees. This helps them get used to human presence without altering their nature.
It would be best to have a chimpanzee habituation permit from Uganda Wildlife Authority to access this activity.
During the chimpanzee habituation experience, also called CHEX, you wake up early and accompany researchers and habituators to follow the chimpanzees, and you may find them just out of their nests or just de-nesting. You take notes, watch them go about their day-to-day activities, and take photos of the chimpanzees to keep memories of your experience.
A maximum of 4 gorilla permits can follow a troop of chimpanzees under habituation. When you locate the chimpanzees, you are allowed 4 hours with them.
What Is The Cost Of Chimpanzee Habituation Permit For Kibale National Park
A chimpanzee habituation permit for Kibale national park costs $25o per person per trek. You can book the chimpanzee permits in advance to prevent last-minute panic while checking for availability. Yet, a maximum of 4 chimpanzee habituation permits are allowed per day per troop.
What Is Included And Excluded In The Chimpanzee Habituation Permit For Kibale National Park?
The cost of the Kibale National Park permit includes the following:
- A researcher fee.
- Ranger guide fee.
- Security during chimpanzee habituation.
- Chimpanzee conservation.
- Four hours with the chimpanzees.
- Local community support.
- Park entrance fees.
Exclusions of a chimpanzee habituation permit cost transport during chimpanzee habituation, tips, porter, and any other items of personal nature.
Can I Purchase Chimpanzee Habituation Permits In installments?
Uganda Wildlife Authority accepts installment purchases for chimpanzee permits bought 90 days before the habituation date. Securing your chimpanzee habituation permit with full payment is the best way for this experience; however, you may opt for an installment purchase due to circumstances.
Top-up must be done before 90 days of the habituation date, or a penalty is applied.
- Birding in Kibale National Park
Kibale National Park is an extensive biosphere National Park with a range of rainforest birds. About 335 bird species are residents of this tropical rainforest, with the best birding spot being the main road close to Kanyanchu Visitors Center.
Just on the outskirts of Kibale National Park, the Bigodi sanctuary in Magombe Swamp is a haven for Uganda birding. From the observation tower and boardwalk, you may spot birds like scarce grey-headed Olive-back, Black-crowned Waxbills, Green-backed Twin Spot, Black and White Mannikin, and others.
- Primates watching in Kibale National Park
Kibale national park is home to about 13 primates species which you can spot during a primate walk. Apart from chimpanzees, you may get to see other primates like L’Hoest’s, potato, red colobus monkeys, blue monkeys, black and white colobus, grey-cheeked mangabey, olive baboons, bush babies, and red-tailed monkeys.
You need an escorting ranger guide to lead you into this primate search.
- Cultural Heritage And Nature Trail
This is the former long-distance walk where tourists can follow the 2 to 6 days tracks through the forest. You start this trek from Kanyanchu Visitor Center or Sebitoli and end at the same point. You can explore the forest during the day and emerge in the evening to spend the night in the community, like Kikoni, Nyakalongo, and Nyaibanda.
You can interact with the local people, especially the Batooro and Bakiga Cultures. You may hire porters to help you lift your bags. A porter is a person who assists you in carrying your belongings in the wilderness at a friendly price. This is the most direct way to support the local community as they use these funds to run their families.
Children’s Activities In Kibale National Park
Children 12 and below are not allowed to do Chimpanzee trekking in Kibale National Park, so the park has children’s activities. Trained children’s instructors take them on a 1 to 2-hour forest walk. The children learn about ecosystems and their inhabitants in the shortest possible time.
Children participate in games, and creative activities, including pond dipping, cyanotype, photography, and batik making.
Forest Hike In Kibale National Park
During the forest walk, you explore the park habitats
through the tropical rainforest, riverine forest, swamp, and grassland; watch out for a number of primates and birds that the forest hosts. This forest starts from the Kanyanchu Visitor Center ending in the Elephant Wallow around 1400.
This hike requires pre-booking.
When Is The Best Time To Book Safaris To Kibale National Park
Safaris in Kibale National Park is open all year round; however, the dry season is most preferred because their forest is full of life. The chimpanzees are active in the wilderness, and other enchanting primates are interesting to meet.
The dry season is normally the peak tourism season in Uganda: June, July, August, September, December, and January. The trails in Kibale National Park are more visible in the dry period, with less undergrowth or overgrown vegetation obstructing your way.
During the wet season, which serves as the low Uganda tourism period that is March, April, May, and November, the chance of discounted prices from service providers is more open. For those with a limited
budget, can use the low season and grab the possibility of discounted prices where applicable.
How Much Is A Safari In Kibale National Park?
The safaris cost in Kibale National Park is categorized into luxury, mid-range, and budget. If you must do chimpanzee trekking or habituation experience, you must obtain the necessary permits. The cost of each chimpanzee permit cuts across all budgets, as mentioned above.
The cost of Kibale national park safaris is determined by factors like:
- The number of days in Kibale National Park
- The more days in Kibale National Park, the higher the safari cost. Most service providers charge per-day costs like accommodation and vehicle hire.
- Time for booking Kibale National Park safari
- During the peak season, which is June, July, August, September, December, and January, safari package costs are high due to demand worldwide. Sometimes service providers offer discounts during the low season.
- Number of activities to do in Kibale national park
- When you participate in several activities within Kibale National Park, the cost is hiked because each is charged differently.
- Safari package you choose during the Kibale National Park tour
- When you choose a luxury, mid-range, or budget safari package, the cost differs as inclusive, and exclusives are not the same. The more inclusions, the higher the safari cost.
Is Kibale National Park Safe For A Visit?
Kibale national park is cared for by a well-trained team of rangers and wardens protecting wildlife. They try to create awareness programs for the local community about conserving the chimpanzees in their natural habitat.
Other Uganda security agencies operate around the park to keep law and order in and around Kibale National Park.
You must be vigilant with personal security by seeking an escorting guide if you wish to move into the forest for any activity. This rainforest hosts primates and other wild animals, like forest elephants, giant forest hogs, and others. These are not habituated, so encountering them alone may not be a good idea.
Do not let unfamiliar people into your room because they may have no good intentions for you.
When doing any transaction with large sums of money, do it out of the public eye, or you may attract thieves.
What Are The Dos and Donts Of Kibale National Park Visit?
- No feeding the chimpanzees because they are wild animals that should not depend on human provision but on the forest. If you wish to eat or smoke, do it at least 200 meters from the chimpanzees.
- Chimpanzees are highly susceptible to human infections, so volunteer to stay behind if you catch flu, cough, covid-19, and others.
- Provoking or mimicking the chimpanzees may cause is not a good act, as you may need to know what you are communicating.
- Entering Kibale forest national park with an escorting guide is safe. If you wish to walk in the forest, seek a ranger guide.
- Only persons above 12 years are allowed to do chimpanzee trekking or habituation experience. This is because there are rules every participant is expected to follow during chimpanzee trekking or habituation, which may require more work to comply with a child below this age.
- When you need to defecate, ask the ranger guide to dig a hole for you at least 30 centimeters and cover it well beyond recognition.
- When photographing, do it with no flashlight. The chimpanzees are easily scared of strange occurrences in their presence.
- Do not surround the chimpanzees when you locate them. They may tend to feel ambushed.
- No littering or dumping waste into the forest where chimpanzees and other forest dwellers thrive.
- When you locate the chimpanzees, keep a distance of about 8 meters from them to prevent the chances of spreading any germs to them.
- When you locate the chimpanzees, you have one hour for chimpanzee trekking and 4 hours during chimpanzee habituation experience,
- Wearing a mask when doing chimpanzee trekking or habituation experience is a must as a measure adopted after the coronavirus pandemic.
Contact us for more information.