I am the low-budget backpacker. Regardless of my income level, this is the style of travel I most prefer because it gives me the greatest cultural immersion and the biggest opportunity to meet locals and get a real sense of what life is like in a totally foreign coun...
The Hidden Pearl of Africa; Chimp Habituation Experience (CHEX)
Written on: January 15, 2014
I visited in April 2013
After somberly deciding Gorilla Trekking was just way too much money for my mid-twenty year old budget, my travel partner and I decided to check out chimpanzee trekking in Kibale National Park and discovered the option for chimp habituation experience during our research. What's the difference you ask? Chimp trekking allows only one hour with the chimps after hiking in to the forest to find them. With Chimp Habituation, you hike in at dawn (On paper at least; we're working on African time, so it was probably closer to 7:30am that we finally departed) and spend the entire day with them, observing and following,
sometimes running in the woods with them, until as late at 7pm.
It took us about 1 to 1 1/2 hours to find them in the forest, listening to their hoots and hollers and changing directions on the path based on our experienced guides judgement. The mid-morning watching was fun, but they were mostly high in the trees foraging for food. It'd be a shame if we chose only the 1 hour experience and this is all we saw. By afternoon, we saw all different behaviors. Some were relaxing on the forest floor, some young ones wrestling with each other, others chasing baboons trying to snatch babies for a snack, baby chimps practicing their swinging on (and falling off of) tree limbs, as well as a chimp couple trying to get intimate, but a young chimp kept interrupting them! It was a fascinating, amazing experience. We'd find ourselves in the middle of 15-30 chimps in the deep forests of Uganda, with sounds of the chimps hollering at adjacent groups booming around us.
Since we took motorbikes from the place we were staying to the park entrance, we decided to leave at 3pm so we could get back when it was still light and see the route we took in the dark 5am that morning. But again, we could have stayed as long as 7pm.
Overall, CHEX is only $220/person for the park permit and guide, while chimp trekking for the hour is $160/person. If you ask me, the $60 more is far worth it for the option to play Jane Goodall for a whole day. By far, this was one of my most memorable experiences in East Africa. If I ever go back, I will surely do it again!
Side Note: We went in April which is considered the rainy season, which translates to low-tourist season. We literally were the only two in the entire National Park that day! And, lucky for us, it was a completely dry day!
Written on: Mar 18, 2016
| Visited: Oct 2015.
Its past 6 months since I was on an 18-day safari through Uganda and Tanzania. I visited many attractions but Kibale Forest in Uganda was the highlight of these 18 days. We were a group of 6, travelled in a comfortable mini bus and were on a tight budget; therefore used lazy camping as our tour operator was able to provide it.
We craft Uganda safari itineraries around you…. We specialize in tailor-making safaris that suit your time frame, needs, interest, budget constraints as well as your style and pace.
Whether your interest is in a Mountain Gorilla Safari, wildlife safaris or bird w...
Written on: Jan 18, 2016
| Visited: Aug 2015.
Kibale forest is beautiful and contains a vast number of bird species and many primates of which chimpanzees are the star attraction. There a 24 permits issued daily and one 'community' of habituated chimps which live in friendship groups which vary in size. The 24 guests are split into 3 groups.
If you are questioning visiting the chimps before/after the gorill...
Written on: Sep 22, 2015
| Visited: Sep 2015.
As soon as you step into Kibale, you know it's special. A cathedral of nature, with primates as high-priests. We've been living and working in and around the park since 2000, and cannot resist returning year after year. This forest gets into your blood. Some highlights of our 15 years:
-First chimp siting was a spectacular surprise, while out researching other...
Written on: Sep 16, 2015
| Visited: Sep 2015.
I went for a trip to Kibale forest national a park. The park is amazing on our way we say many baboons, the Black and White Colobus monkey, the mangabey etc. This park is known as a home for the chimpanzees and various bird species and butterflies. I enjoyed my stay as I also saw many crater lakes in the area.
Great Value Safari Ltd is a trusted, experienced and professional tours and travel agency in East Africa, headquartered in Kampala, Uganda. Since our inception in 2005, we have grown and recorded remarkable achievements, as we continue to strive to give the best serv...
Written on: Mar 04, 2015
| Visited: Feb 2015.
The driver guide was kind to us, very patient, time-conscious. He easily adapted to our requests and culture and was very peaceful, smart and interesting. He was very knowledgeable about the park, made it exciting to track the chimpanzees.
Written on: Mar 11, 2014
| Visited: Feb 2014.
Known to have one of Uganda’s most gorgeous tropical forests, Kibale National park is one of the few parks containing both lowland and montane forests. The park is located in the districts of Kabarole and Kamwenge in Western Uganda
It is an important eco-tourism and safari destination, popular for its vast number of bird species(375 species), 70 mammal species, ...
Written on: May 12, 2013
| Visited: Sep 2012.
Having been in Arusha National Park for trekking, we once again opted to give it a try…of course in a neighboring country. Kibale National park was our destination after a lot of soul searching considering that the East African country-UGANDA, has a lot to offer in terms of trekking sites. The park is situated en route Bwindi Impenetrable National park, and the mor...
Written on: Apr 26, 2013
| Visited: Nov 2012.
Our destination was Kibale (pronounced: Chibale) National Park which is a 5 hour drive from Uganda's capital Kampala. Our purpose was to find habituated chimpanzees. Our trek started at the kanyanchu centre where we were required to pay the Ugandan Wildlife Authority trek fees. The charges are 150 USD for foreign non-residents, 100 USD for local residents .