Chimpanzee Trekking in Queen Elizabeth National Park
Chimpanzee Trekking in Queen Elizabeth National Park is one of the key activities in the park that many travelers engage on their itinerary while on a Uganda safaris tour. Queen Elizabeth national park is one of the most visited destinations in Uganda due to a wide range of attractions and activities that visitors on a safari can engage in. Queen Elizabeth national park is the second largest national park that is located in western Uganda in Kasese, Kamwenge, Rukungiri, and Rubirizi. Chimpanzee trekking is an adventurous and exciting activity where visitors move into the forest in search of the habituated chimpanzee families in their natural habitat and once found the visitors spend one hour with the chimpanzees.
Chimpanzee trekking in Queen Elizabeth national park is carried out in Kyambura Gorge which is also known as the valley of Apes because it’s a home of hundreds of chimpanzees and habituated chimpanzee families in Queen Elizabeth national park. Kyambura Gorge is located in the eastern part of Queen Elizabeth national park and is comprised of the tropical rain forest and Kayambura River that serves the entire forest hence keeping the vegetation fresh for the primates and animals to feed on.
Chimpanzee trekking experience
Chimpanzee trekking in Kyambura Gorge has two sessions that is the morning and the afternoon session. Chimpanzee trekking starts with a briefing at the headquarters about the expectations while trekking in the jungle and the dos and don’ts. After the briefing, you will be grouped into 8 people, allocated a chimpanzee group depending on your physical fitness and interests and a guide that will guide you during trekking. Chimpanzee trekking in Kyambura Gorge takes about 2 to 4 hours depending on the location of the chimpanzees because they like to move from one place to another in search of food and once they are found you will spend one hour with the chimpanzees in their natural habitat learning about them, recording the moments, taking photos with flashless cameras, watching them de-nesting, breastfeeding, feeding, playing among others which gives you a great memories on your safari in Queen Elizabeth national park. During chimpanzee trekking in Kyambura Gorge you will be able to view other primates such as vervet monkeys, baboons, black and white colobus monkeys, red tailed monkeys, beautiful vegetation, some animal species like the giant forest hog and different bird species such as White winged warbler, African skimmer, Papyrus gonolek, Papyrus canary, African broadbill, African skimmer, Blue-headed bee-eater, White napped pigeon, Falcon flycatcher among others.
Cost of a Chimpanzee trekking permit Queen Elizabeth national park
A chimpanzee trekking permit in Kyambura Gorge costs $50 per person for both Foreign Non Residents and Foreign Residents and UGX 30,000 for East African citizens. Chimpanzee trekking permit in Kyambura Gorge is far cheaper as compared to that of Kibale forest national park which costs $150 per person, therefore, Kyambura Gorge is the best destination for budget travelers in that they will be able to save $100. Chimpanzee trekking permit in Kyambura Gorge should be booked in advance whereby you can either book via Uganda Wildlife Authority offices through email or telephone calls or the offices in Mweya or you can book via Achieve Global Safari a trusted tour operator where you will contact us with the date month and year when you want to engage in chimpanzee trekking activity and we will purchase a chimpanzee trekking permit for you as well as plan for your entire safari in Queen Elizabeth national park or any other destination in Uganda.
When to go for chimpanzee trekking in Queen Elizabeth national park
Kyambura Gorge can be visited any time throughout the year though the best time is during the dry season which is also known as the peak season in the months of June, July, August, December, January, and February. The dry season is the best time in that the Kyambura Gorge will receive less rainfall, therefore, the chimpanzee trekking trails will be passable compared to the rainy season in the months of March to May and September to November when the forest receives heavy rainfall which makes chimpanzee trekking difficult in that the trails will be muddy and slippery. However, the rainy which is also known as the low season is the best season for bird watching because there will be plenty of fruits and food in the forest hence best time for breeding and migratory birds.
What to pack for a Chimpanzee trekking safari in Queen Elizabeth national park
Visitors going for a chimpanzee trekking safari in Kyambura Gorge which is located within Queen Elizabeth national park should pack different equipment’s for the safari including
- Chimpanzee trekking permit is a legal document that is issued allowing you to trek chimpanzee families in Kyambura Gorge. A chimpanzee trekking permit should be valid so as to allow you to trek a chimpanzee family for one hour.
- Hiking boots, hiking should be comfortable so as to allow you to trek in the jungle for long hours and also to protect your feet from mud especially during the rainy season.
- Insect repellent, the insect repellent will protect you from the insects during trekking since the forest contains some biting insects such as tsetse flies, safari ants, mosquitos among others.
- Long sleeved shirt and trousers, these clothes will keep you warm while trekking in the forest and also protect your body from thorny trees.
- Long socks, the socks will be tucked into the long trousers to prevent the insects from entering your trousers and biting you while in the forest.
- Garden gloves, the garden gloves will protect your hands from germs and holding thorny and stinging plants when in trekking
- Waterproof rain jacket, this will protect you from rain fall in case it rains when you are still trekking chimpanzees.
- Hat and sunglasses, these will protect your head from rainfall and direct sunshine during the dry season
- Walking stick, the walking stick is provided at the starting point and it’s used for support during trekking especially in the steep slopes and it will protect you from sliding or falling.
- Energy snacks, the energy snacks include packed lunch from the lodge and enough drinking water. Chimpanzee trekking is unpredictable just like gorilla trekking, therefore, you need to carry energy snacks to give you energy when trekking chimpanzees for long hours.
- Camera, when going for chimpanzee trekking activity in Kyambura gorge you should have a charged camera and also carry extra batteries so as to capture all the moments and also take a lot of pictures during the one hour with the chimpanzee family.
- Binoculars, Kyambura Gorge is also a habitat for various bird species, therefore, the binoculars will help you to clearly view different bird species in the forest which will give you great memories and experience on your safari in Queen Elizabeth national park.
- Backpack, this is a bag that will be used to carry all your items including the energy snacks, camera, chimpanzee trekking permit, binoculars among others.
Chimpanzee trekking rules and regulations in Queen Elizabeth national park
- You should not visit the chimpanzees if you have a cold because they will be infected with human diseases
- Do not leave litter while trekking in the forest
- You should keep 8metres distance away from the chimpanzees
- Do not eat while near the chimpanzees
- Do not use flash cameras when taking photos
- Keep quiet while trekking and when in the presence of the chimpanzees
- If you need to ease yourself you do so off the trail and bury your waste 30cm deep
- Follow your guide’s instructions
- You should be 15 years and above
- You should stay in your group so as not to get lost while in the forest.
Chimpanzee trekking in Queen Elizabeth national park makes your safari complete because you will be able to combine lion tracking, boat cruise at Kazinga channel, game drive in Kasenyi plains, mongoose tracking at Mweya peninsular with chimpanzee trekking experience in Kyambura Gorge which gives you incredible experiences on your safari in Uganda.