Kibale is a broad National Park that protects a large block of verdant rainforest which offers some of the best Bird Watching Experience in Uganda. It is home to the largest variety as well as number of primates in the whole of East Africa. the easy access as well as large variety of primates and birds offers a variety of fascinating which makes this one of the best forested destination to explore in Uganda. The park is best known as the best place to enjoy Chimpanzee Tracking Safaris in the whole of East Africa.
Communities living around the Park
There are two major tribes living in the area around the park and these are the Bakiga and the Batooro. These two tribal groups survive on this forest for herbal medicines, fuel as well as building materials,
Primates living in Kibale National Park
This park is home to thirteen different primate species despite the fact that it is most known for its exciting Chimpanzee tracking expeditions. It is the best place to enjoy a Primate Watching Safari. Some of the primates you will easily be able to see during the guided forest walks include: the black and white colobus monkeys, blue tailed monkeys, Guereza Colobus, Red-tailed Monkeys, Olive Baboons, L’Hoest’s as well as Grey-cheeked Mangabey.
Mammals living in Kibale National Park
There are about sixty different mammal species that have been recorded with the park. As you explore the forest trails, you won’t fail to notice evidence of presence of buffaloes, elephants, as well as Bush Pigs. Other shy species including bushbucks and Duickers can best be deep in the interior of the forest. There are a number of nocturnal species such as African Civets, Genets, Pottos, Demidoff’s and Thomas’s Galagos as well as Lord Derby’s Anomalure can be seen during the guided Night Forest Walks
Giant Hog, Ichneumon, Warthog, Banded and Marsh Mongooses, Leopard, Alexander’s Cusimanse, Serval, Swamp Otter, Hippopotamus Ratel as well as the African Palm Civet. Lions and golden cats can hardly be encountered especially within the Kanyanchu area. Within the Bigodi Swamp you have a chance to see the Sitatunga which is the largest antelope species.
Birds in Kibale National Park
There are a variety of bird species living within this park which can be encountered during our exciting bird watching trips and these include:
Grey-headed Olive-back, Red-winged Francolin, Sunbirds, Red-chested Flufftail, Chestnut-winged Starling, White-naped Pigeon, Grey-throated Flycatcher, Woodland Warbler, Green-brested Pitta, Black-capped Apalises, African Pitta, Joyful Greenbul, White-bellied Crested Flycather, Grey-winged Robin as well as the Abyssinian Ground Thrush.
Chimpanzee tracking in Kibale National Park
Chimpanzees are the living known closest cousins to man. They share 98% of the DNA with ma. So during this amazing activity you will have a chance to come face to face with them, take photographs, videos and observe them. Chimpanzee tracking Safaris in the park begin at Kanyanchu Visitor Centre with a briefing by the park wardens during which you will be briefed on the guidelines of this amazing activity. They start early morning by 8.00am and in the afternoon by 3:00pm and take approximately 2 to 3 hours. For anyone to take part in this amazing activity, they are required to have a Chimpanzee Tracking Permit.
Chimpanzee tracking is done in groups of six people; which means that the number of available chimpanzee trekking permits is limited so this will require prior booking to guarantee availability.
Chimpanzee Habituation Experience
During this amazing experience, tourist will get an opportunity to join the chimp habituating team which sets out in the very early morning. The activity starts at 6:00am before the chimpanzees de-nest and ends in the evening – around 7:00pm after they have built new nests for the night.
The Chimpanzee Habituation process involves habituators together with researchers following the chimps beginning very early in the morning as the chimpanzees leave their nests for the night; follow them through the whole day as they go about their day to day activities of feeding, catering for each other and playing until when they make their night’s nests in the evening. the primary purpose of this activity is to familiarize the chimpanzees to the presence of people.
This activity s conducted during the low tourist season in the months of March, April, May and November.
Nature Walk in Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary
Immediately outside the park border is the Bigodi wetland sanctuary found in the Magombe swamp. this commonly visited site is best known for its large number of varied wildlife among which are more than 130 different bird species, primates including chimpanzees, tourists frequently visit this wetland to see the large number and diversity of wildlife residing there including: over 130 bird species, different primates such as chimpanzees, black & white colobus monkey and the red colobus monkeys in addition to the huge sitatunga, mongeese plus bushbuck. The wetland is best explored during guided nature walks.
Where to stay in Kibale National Park
There are a number of different accommodation facilities found in and around this park ranging from luxury, mid-range to budget facilities, and some of these include: Mantana Luxury Tented Camp, Luxury Kabale Primate Lodge, Ndali Lodge, Rwenzori View Guesthouse, Sebitoli basic cottages and Chimpanzee Guesthouse.
How to get to Kibale National Park
Kanyanchu the main starting point for the various tourist activities here can be accessed from Kampala by road using the Kampala-Mubende- Fort portal tarmac-road and then a 36 kilometer distance along murram to Kanyanchu.
Those heading to the Sebitoli tourism centre will follow Kampala-Fort Portal highway. You may use either private or public transport to reach this park