Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary for Safari Goers

Posted by on November 22, 2015

Safari add-on Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary

A Day Trip to the orphaned and rescued Chimps found on Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary

Morning Visit to Ngamba Island Sanctuary – Afternoon Visit to Entebbe Botanical Gardens


Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary is a project of Chimpanzee Sanctuary & Wildlife  Conservation Trust and managed by the Jane Goodall Institute.  The island is 23 kilometers on Lake Victoria from Entebbe and take 45 minutes to get there in a speedboat.

The Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary is home to about 40 rescued chimpanzees not only from Uganda but as far away as the Democratic Republic of Congo. The Sanctuary is about 100 acres in size with most of it dedicated to the rescue Chimpanzees.  Unfortunately for various reasons  it is not possible to return them to the wild.  They do have free range of the forest on the island however they also know where they are fed and return to the area where they sleep at night and visitors can observe them being fed.

For visitors there is no comparison to seeing the Chimpanzees in the wild in places such as Kibale Forest  where they roam freely.  In spite of that Ngamba Island remains a worthwhile experience for visitors since they can observe their ways and manners up close as they are being fed, and yes the feeding times are expensive since all that you see being given to them costs a lot of money when shopping in markets for it.


 Our Driver – Guide picks you up at your hotel and we drive to the Boat Pier for Ngamba Chimpanzee Sanctuary Island.  It is a 45-minute boat ride across the lake to the Island.

You will be given a short briefing about the Sanctuary, the chimpanzees and why the island sanctuary was created for the rescued chimpanzees.

Feeding time is about to being and you from a walk above it all are able to see, the chimpanzees are behind an electrical fence and are fed produce and fruit purchased from local markets.

It is an enjoyable time for all, the chimpanzees and of course you the observer. Watch the interaction of the chimpanzees with one another and with their keepers.  The chimpanzees are free to go back into the island rainforest after feed and they know when to return for the second feed of the day.  Some choose to sleep in the forest while others in cages.

One wishes that the chimpanzees could be released into the wild, but that has not worked out as of yet and that is why you have the sanctuary.

After the feeding, it is back to Entebbe – once again a 45-minute boat ride where you are met by our driver –  guide upon landing.

Have Lunch at Goretti’s Restaurant located on the sandy beach of Anderita Beach, great food, a bit slow on service, but a fantastic view of Lake Victoria, beautiful garden like setting with Palm Trees.

After lunch we proceed to Entebbe Botanical Gardens that is a quiet place of tranquility away from busy Kampala and downtown Entebbe. It is a great place to spend the afternoon, established over 100 some years ago, it is still doing well, a place where you can see Colobus Monkeys, exotic plants and trees and countless of bird species both along the lake in the forest.  There is the medicinal garden and a guide we will engage can explain all that is found here in this equatorial tropical paradise where it is claimed that early black and white Tarzan Films were made here.

Birders can find species such as slender-billed Northern Brown –throated, yellow backed, Jackson’s Golden –backed , Black-headed and Vieillot’s black weavers . The rocky headland along the Lake making an ideal observation point . On the lake and around the shore look for long-tailed Cormorant , Common Squacco and black-headed herons, hamerkop ,African Open-billed Stork , yellow billed duck , Grey headed gull , various terns ,giant and pied Kingfishers and swamp Flycatcher . Scan the boats at the large jetty where you often find Pratincoles (2-3 pairs are usually present). Black headed Gonolek and Red- chested Sunbird occur in the dense scrub covering the headland .

A full birding day can be created for you at Entebbe and it can in include our Mabamba Swamp Shoebill trip in the morning. In the afternoon we concentrate on the best birding sites in and around Entebbe

After the Entebbe Botanical Gardens Visit it is time to return to your hotel in Kampala or Entebbe.

You can also stay overnight and have an intimate encounter with the Chimpanzees.


 If you are interested in the Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary day trip – along with the Entebbe Botanical Gardens please let us know.