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Where is the Best Chimpanzee Trekking in Uganda?

Posted by on April 22, 2021

The Best Chimpanzee Trekking Parks & Places

Where in Uganda is the Best Chimpanzee Tracking found with sure sightings?

the Best Chimpanzee TrekkingUganda is known all over the world as the premier primate destination. What is not known is where to track Chimpanzees in Uganda. Tourists. 

We have put together a list of the Best Chimpanzee Trekking. You can evaluate which chimpanzee tracking destination in Uganda is the right choice for you. We cut through the tourist hype and give it to you straight. Each Chimpanzee Tracking destination is evaluated and includes the pros and cons for each location,

You will find it easier to find the Best Chimpanzee Trekking parks that suit you in Uganda. Further, we inform you about the quality of the chimpanzee tracking experience and costs.

Uganda is the Best Chimpanzee Destination in East Africa. When it comes to the number of chimpanzees, Uganda, with over 5,000 chimpanzees, comes out as number one in East Africa.

 Not only that, but Uganda also has more Parks and Places where you can track Chimpanzees. Additionally, Uganda offers more Chimpanzee Trekking Choices and a higher percentage of sightings. When it comes to trek difficulty, Uganda provides the most accessible Trekking in East Africa, but there are also more challenging treks.

Where is the Best Chimpanzee Trekking in Uganda?

1. Kibale Forest – Best Park for Chimpanzee Trekking:

For the Best Chimpanzee Trekking in Uganda, it is Kibale Forest that wins hands-down. If you want to see Chimpanzees on a Trek or during an all-day Chimpanzee Habituation Experience.

Kibale Forest is the best Chimpanzee Tracking in Uganda, but not only in Uganda but all of East Africa.

None of our Clients have ever missed seeing the Chimpanzees in Kibale Forest, home to 1,500 Chimpanzees plus 12 other primates, making it a primate lover’s paradise. The success rate for Chimpanzee Sighting approaches 100% success.

Another advantage is that you can spend more time with the Chimpanzees on the Chimpanzee Habituation Experience (CHEX). The permit price is $250 instead of $200 for regular Trekking. The Minimum Age for chimpanzee trekking is twelve in Kibale Forest.

Kibale Chimpanzee Trekking Advantages:

  • Best Chimpanzee Sighting Rate (almost 100%) in all East Africa.
  • Trekking Chimpanzees in Kibale Forest takes less effort and is doable by most.
  • There are 12 other primate species found in the park besides Chimpanzees.
  • Hiking Trails are there for bird and butterfly enthusiasts.
  • It is the only park where you experience the forest at night on a nocturnal walk.
  • The Bigodi Wetlands Swamp Hike borders Kibale Forest and is a must-add-on.
  • A wide array of Lodging is available.
  • A Children Wilderness Experience is available for those below 12 while the parents track Chimpanzees.

Kibale Chimpanzee Trekking Disadvantages:

  • The Chimpanzee Trekking Permit Price is $200. The Chimpanzee Habituation Experience is $250 for Visitors.
  • Unlike the Gorilla Habituation Experience, the Chimpanzee Habituation Experience does not always meet the expectations of trekkers.
  • Permits are in short supply during peak season months.
  • You will see more tourists. However, no more than six Visitors are allowed on a trek.

 Here you will find more information about Kibale Forest Chimpanzee Trekking and other activities.

2. Kalinzu Forest – Second Best Chimpanzee Trekking Location:

Kalinzu Forest is the second-best area in Uganda for Chimpanzee Trekking. It is near Queen Elizabeth Park, and Chimpanzee Trekking can be incorporated into a visit to Queen Elizabeth. It is also the closest Chimpanzee Trekking location from Bwindi Impenetrable Forest.

Japanese Researchers have habituated the Chimpanzees here for over 25 years. They have done an excellent job habituating the Chimpanzees here. 

There are six other species of Primates are found here. Birders and Butterfly enthusiasts love hitting the trails in the forest because of the abundance of species found here.

There are no quality lodging facilities here, so you must stay at a lodge in Queen Elizabeth Park. 

Not only do we rate it as the second-best chimpanzee trekking, but the esteemed Bradt Guide to Uganda does the same. Though second-best, it means trekking without the tourism crowd.

Kalinzu Forest Chimpanzee Trekking Advantages:

  • The Forest has become the second-best chimpanzee trekking location in all of Uganda. Kibale Forest being deemed the Number One.
  • You can easily combine Kalinzu Forest Chimpanzee Tracking with Gorilla Tracking in Bwindi Impenetrable. It is the closest chimpanzee tracking site to Gorilla Trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest.
  • It is easily combined with a time spent in nearby Queen Elizabeth Park.
  • The critical reason to track chimpanzees here is the $50 Permit. That is a fraction of the price that it would cost you in Kalinzu Forest. Also, there are no daily park fees to be added if you are tracking chimpanzees here.
  • The success rate of sighting Chimpanzees is about 90% of the time, extremely high and the second-best in Uganda.
  • Typically permits are readily available even during peak season months. 

Kalinzu Forest Chimpanzee Trekking Disadvantages:

  • Chimpanzee treks are more challenging and require that you are in reasonable shape.
  • Lodging is not available in or just outside of the Forest. You have to stay in the northern area of Queen Elizabeth Park. 

 Here you will find more information about Kalinzu Forest Chimpanzee Trekking and other activities.

3.  Budongo Forest – Third Best Chimpanzee Trekking Location

Budongo Forest is the third best place for Chimpanzee Trekking. Budongo Forest is the largest forest reserve in Uganda. Portions of the forest are part of the largest wildlife conservation area in Uganda, Murchison Falls National Park.

Budongo Forest is home to between 600 to 700 chimpanzees. Other primates found here include black-and-white colobus monkeys, red-tailed monkeys, blue monkeys, and olive baboons. Nocturnal primates include potto and several forest galago species. Rarely will you see the tree pangolins that are here.

Larger wildlife venture into the forest from Murchison such as elephants, Lions, Leopards all which are rarely seen by chimpanzee trekkers.

There are six chimpanzee communities in Budongo.  Three have been habituated meaning that they are used to being around humans. The Sonso and Waibira Chimpanzees are the subject of continuous research, and they cannot be visited by tourists.

The Kaniyo-Pabidi Chimpanzee community or troop was habituated by the Jane Goodall Institute. It is this large troop that trekkers visit in Budongo Forest. The KaniyoPabidi community not only roams the forest but ventures out into the surrounding savannah. The probability of seeing this chimpanzee community exceeds 80%.

Budongo Forest Chimpanzee Trekking Advantages:

  • The Forest is the third best Chimpanzee Trekking Location with a sighting success rate of 80%.
  • You can Chimpanzee Trekking with a Safari to Murchison Falls National Park.  Additionally, you can track Rhinos on foot at nearby Rhino Trekking at Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary.
  • You can have more time with the Chimpanzee on a Habituation Experience Trek during the off-season months.
  • Chimpanzee Tracking in Budongo Forest costs $100 which is lower than Kibale Forest. You do have to pay an additional park entrance fee of $40. The minimum age requirement is 12 years.
  • Besides Chimpanzee Trekking, this one of Uganda’s hotspots for birding. Additionally, Butterly enthusiast will find the forest like a treasure trove for them.

Budongo Forest Chimpanzee Trekking Disadvantages:

  • Budongo Eco Lodge is the only lodge here with budge and mid-range options.
  • Chimpanzee Trekking is second highest in the country.

 Here you will find more information about Budongo Forest Chimpanzee Trekking and other activities.

4. Kyambura Gorge – Fourth Best Chimpanzee Trekking Location:

Kyambura Gorge in Queen Elizabeth is the fourth best place for chimpanzee trekking in Uganda. Although it has the smallest Chimpanzee Trekking is what brings most to descend into the Kyambura Gorge. The price of tracking permits is a fraction of what it is in Kibale Forest. The chance of seeing chimpanzees’ hovers around 60%.

Despite the lower odds of seeing the chimpanzees, the Chimpanzee trek is well worth it. Most do see, hear, see and observe the chimpanzees. The terrain and the one-of-a-kind experience are worth it. You will see other primates such as black and white colobus, blue monkeys, red-tailed monkeys, baboons, vervet monkeys, and other primates.

Chimpanzee Trekking is what brings most to descend into the valley of apes, the Kyambura Gorge. The price of tracking permits is $50 plus daily park entrance feeof $40. The chance of seeing chimpanzees’ hovers around 60%.

There are reasons for that. One, there is a smaller than 30 chimpanzees habituated Troop found here. It is an isolated community cut off from other nearby forests such as Kalinzu and Maramagambo.  Chimpanzees travel to other forests in search of food, habitat, and mating. Most of the chimpanzees found in the Gorge tend to be males, which means that there are few off-springs. Though efforts are underway to change that.

Despite the lower odds of seeing the chimpanzees, the Chimpanzee trek is well worth it. Most do see, hear, see and observe the chimpanzees. The terrain and the one-of-a-kind experience are worth it. You will see other primates such as black and white colobus, blue monkeys, red-tailed monkeys, baboons, vervet monkeys, and other primates.

Kyambura Gorge Chimpanzee Trekking Advantages:

  • The main reason for Chimpanzee Trekking is the setting. You are descending into a mysterious underground forest that holds all kind of treasures besides Chimpanzee.
  • The convenient location of being inside of one of the most visited parks in Uganda.
  • It is a one of a kind of experience.
  • There is a wide array of lodges to choose from

Kyambura Gorge Chimpanzee Trekking Disadvantages:

  • A sighting success rate of 60%.
  • The fewest Chimpanzees of any chimpanzee trekking location.

 Here you will find more information about Kyambura Gorge Chimpanzee Trekking and other activities.

5. Toro-Semliki Wildlife Reserve – Fifth Best Place for Chimpanzee Trekking:

The Toro-Semliki Wildlife Reserve is known for birding, tropical jungles, the Semliki River, and increasingly for Chimpanzee Trekking in what is more like the Congo than Uganda.

Chimpanzee Trekking takes place on a primate walk in the Mugiri Forest which is a spillover of the vast Congolese Ituri Forest.

There are about 70 Chimpanzees, and they have been semi-habituated by researchers from Indiana University.

The Primate walk takes 3 to 4 hours and is conducted near Semliki Safari Lodge.  You will be led by experienced Uganda Wildlife Authority Rangers. You will see various primate species on this walk including Chimpanzees, Red-Tailed Monkeys, Vervet Monkeys, Grey Mangabey Monkey, Black and White Colobus Monkeys, Olive Baboons. Additionally, you might encounter Waterbuck Antelopes, Warthogs, Bushbuck Antelopes, Uganda Kob Antelopes. Buffaloes, and Elephants.

 Toro-Semliki Wildlife Reserve Chimpanzee Trekking Advantages:

  • The setting in the spectacular Semiliki Valley framed by the Rwenzori Mountains of the Moon.
  • Chimpanzee Trekking takes place in an area where the only Tropical lowland forest is found.
  • The Primate Walk is well worth it if you are into birding.

Kyambura Gorge Trekking Disadvantages:

  • Lowest Chimpanzee Sighting Success Rate.
  • Limited Lodging

Best Advice about Chimpanzee Trekking:

Your Safari in Uganda will determine where you trek Chimpanzees.  If you plan to track Gorillas and combine them with Chimpanzee Trekking, then the logical places to include would be Kibale or Kalinzu Forest. Kibale Forest has the Chimpanzee Habituation Experience called CHEX.

Uganda is the best East African Country for Chimpanzee Trekking with more Chimpanzees and more trekking locations, plus it is the only country where the Chimpanzee Habituation Experience is offered.

Those that want more than one Chimpanzee can do so in various locations in Uganda.

Chimpanzee Trekking Safaris can be done as a stand-alone activity or chimpanzee trekking can be included in a longer Safari. You can combine, Gorilla Trekking, Chimpanzee Trekking with wildlife and other activities such as Volcano Climbing.

For the Best Chimpanzee Trekking in Uganda- Please Contact us if you are interested.



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