Facts about Kibale forest national park; Kibale forest national park is one of the most visited destinations located in western part of Uganda along the east African rift valley in Kamwenge and Kabarole districts. Kibale forest national park covers a total area of 795 square kilometers and its famously known for harboring 13 primate species including chimpanzees, black and white colobus monkeys, grey cheeked mangabey, red tailed monkeys, blue monkeys, olive baboons, bush babies, pottos, mammals like forest elephants, buffaloes, bush pigs, duikers and over 375 bird species. Kibale forest national park offers a number of activities that tourists can engage in during the safari including,
Activities in Kibale forest national park
Kibale forest national park is a home of over 1,500 chimpanzees hence making it the best chimpanzee trekking destination in Uganda. Chimpanzee trekking in Kibale forest national park starts early in the morning with a briefing about the rules and regulations at Kanyachu visitor’s center. After the briefing you will be allocated an experienced park guide and start trekking in the forest in search of the habituated chimpanzees. Trekking of chimpanzees takes about 30 minutes to 4 hours depending on where the chimpanzees are located because they like to move from one place to another in search of food. During trekking, you will be able to view different wildlife species including primates like red tailed monkeys, grey checked mangabey, black and white colobus monkeys, view different bird species, plants among others. Once the chimpanzees are found, you will be allowed to spend one hour with them in their natural habitat which gives you a chance to learn about their lifestyle, habits, behaviors, watch them feed, breastfeed, hunt, fight, play, rest, groom young ones, take photos and record videos to show people back home after the safari.
Chimpanzee habituation experience
Chimpanzee habituation is an adventurous activity in Kibale forest national park where the wild chimpanzees are trained to get used to human presence for trekking. Chimpanzee habituation takes a period of 2 to 3 years to be complete and it involves a team of researchers, scientists, park guides, park rangers, trackers among others. Chimpanzee habituation experience starts very early in the morning with a briefing about the rules, regulations and expectations at the park headquarters. After the briefing you will join a group of researchers and start trekking in the forest which takes a whole day depending on where the chimpanzees are located. During trekking, you will be able to view other primates, mammals, bird species among others and once the chimpanzees are located, you will be able to spend four hours with them in their habitat which gives you an opportunity to monitor and record their behaviors, watch them carry out their daily activities like feeding, breastfeeding, resting, playing, patrolling, copulating, hunting, grooming young ones, watch them building new nests, take photos and record videos thus Facts about Kibale forest national park.
Kibale forest national park is a home of 375 recorded bird species including Albertine rift endemics, forest birds and migratory birds which make it one of the best birding destinations in Uganda. Bird watching in Kibale forest national park can either be done early in the morning or in the evening with a well-trained bird guide who will help you to spot different bird species including Abyssinian ground thrush, blue breasted kingfisher, black bee-eater, black eared ground thrush, African pied wagtail, the great blue turaco, pin tailed whydah, tropical boubou, African pitta, dusky crimsonwing, blue headed sunbird, cassin’s spinetail, grey parrot, little greenbul, black capped apalis, nahans francolin, masked apalis, red chested owlet, yellow rumped tinkerbird, Ruwenzori apalis, purple breasted sunbird, red faced woodland warbler, white naped pigeon, scaly breasted illadopsis, brown chested alethe among others.
Hiking/ nature walks is an interesting activity in Kibale forest national park which gives visitors an opportunity to explore the tropical rainforest on foot with the company of an experienced park guide and park ranger to protect you from any danger. During the guided nature walk, you will enjoy great views of the beautiful scenery, view different animals, primates like black and white colobus monkeys, l’host monkeys, olive baboons, listen to sweet sounds of bird species in trees, view colorful butterflies, view variety of bird species, take beautiful pictures among others.
Kibale forest national park also offers night nature walks where you will be able to explore the forest at night with spotlight torches for clear viewing different wildlife species. During the night nature walks in the park start at around 7:30 pm, you will be able to spot nocturnal animals like serval cats, nightjar, tree hyrax, pottos, bush baby, cricket, enjoy the forest night sounds among others.
Bush craft children activities
Kibale forest national park offers activities for children who are below the age of 15 years to as they are not allowed to engage in chimpanzee trekking. During the bush craft activities, children will engage in plenty of kid-friendly activities which are led by child friendly guides for example exploring the forest where they will be able to view different wildlife species, plants, trees, birds, visiting the surrounding communities among others thus Facts about Kibale forest national park.
Best time to visit Kibale forest national park
Kibale forest national park can be visited all year round though the best time is during the dry season in the months in the months of June, July, August, September, December, January and February. During the dry season, there is less or little rainfall in the park hence hiking and chimpanzee trekking trails will be dry and passable which make trekking easy.
Kibale forest national park can also be visited in the low/ rainy season during the months of March to May and November because that’s the best period for bird watching where you will be able to view plenty of colorful and migratory bird species.
Where to stay in Kibale forest national park
Kibale forest national park has a number of accommodations facilities ranging from budget, midrange and luxury where you can stay during your safari including Rwenzori guest house, Isunga Lodge, Kibale Forest Camp, Chimps Nest, Chimpanzee Forest Guest House, Mountains of the Moon Hotel, Ndali Kasenda Lodge, Primate Lodge, Chimpundu Lodge, Papaya Lake lodge, Kyaninga Lodge, Rweteera Safari Park, Lake Nyamirima Cottages, Turaco Treetops among others.
How to get to Kibale forest national park
Kibale forest national park is located in western part of Uganda and can be accessed by road transport means where by you will drive from Kampala or Entebbe through Mubende, Fort Portal or Mbarara, Kamwenge which takes about 5 to 6 hours’ drive.