Kibale National Park comprises of a diverse zones of tropical forest in Uganda. Large forest cover, mixed together with some patches of grassland and swamp covers much of the northern and central parts of the park along a high plateau. Kibale forest is habitat to a over 13 primate species including the chimpanzee.
Chimpanzee tracking is the mojor safari activity that takes place in this park. The park also comprises of over 375 species of birds. Kibale connects Queen Elizabeth National Park to the south to form a 180km-long corridor for wildlife between Ishasha, the remote southern sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park, and Sebitoli in the north of Kibale National Park.
Areas of interest in Kibale national park include;
Kanyanchu River Camp
Kanyanchu, in the middle part of Kibale, is the main trailhead for the park’s renowned forest walks, the most popular of which is the daily Primate Walk. There are 13 species of primate to seek out for, including habituated chimpanzees. Bird watching, nature walks for both kids and adults and guided night treks are also available here.
Sebitoli Forest Camp
Kibale’s secondary tourism centre in the north of the forest where you can have guided forest walks and a chance to come across primates such as red Colobus, black-and-white Colobus, blue monkeys and vervet monkeys. Visitors may also see a variety of water, forest and savannahs birds and enjoy views of the Mpanga River.
Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary
Rich in biodiversity and beautiful scenery, the wetland is a birder’s heaven with about 138 specie of birdss. Located outside the park in Magombe Swamp it also hosts species of primates including the black-and-white Colobus, grey-cheeked mangabey, red-tailed, L’Hoest’s and blue monkeys, and olive baboons. Bushbucks and mongooses can also be found here. The haven was set up to conserve the special environmental features along with the wetland and is managed by the local community.
Positioned near Sebitoli in northern Kibale, this community-run scheme also offers bird watching and visits to the local tea estates and factory. Nature walks will bring you closer to primates such as the black-and-white Colobus, red Colobus and red-tailed monkeys. Other animals like otters, mongooses and bushbucks can be observed in the wetlands.
Activities in Kibale National Park
Chimpanzee tracking and habituation in Kibale
Kibale’s most famous activity is the Kanyanchu Primate Walk. Thirteen species can be hunted, and a good range of diurnal monkeys always encountered, but the stars of this twice-daily show are chimpanzees.
Bird watching expeditions start at 7am at Kanyanchu. Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary, positioned just outside the park, is home to 138 bird species which may be seen during guided strolls along the boardwalk path and viewing platforms.
Connect with a local guide on a stroll through the Magombe swamp wetlands to enjoy the local wildlife, birds and vegetation. The daily life of the Batooro can be learnt at length during village strolls, including stops at the village’s primary school, church and traditional healer.
Hiking and Nature Walks
When chimpanzees and other forest residents rest up at dusk, a nighttime change of rarely seen creatures becomes lively. Night walks though the darkened forest use powerful torches to look for night-time creatures.