Kibale forest is one of the finest places in the world to watch and observe primates. The forest is home to 13 primate species, more than any other East African park, this includes red-tailed L'Hoest and blue monkeys, grey-cheeked mangabey, red colobus and black and white colobus, along with a substantial population of habituated chimpanzees. The chimp tracking takes place twice a day, morning and late afternoon and is the park's main attraction. In addition, the park authorities offer fantastic night walks, which is a great opportunity to search for nocturnal primates such as the wide-eye bush baby and the sloth-like potto.
On a Kibale safari there's also the rare opportunity to see the elusive forest elephant, smaller and hairier than its savannah counterpart. Other mammals include buffalo, giant forest hog and several antelope species. The network of forest trails are a delight to botanists, birders and butterfly lovers. Located on the fringes of the park the Bigodi Wetlands Sanctuary can be found. It is a superb community tourism initiative, established to protect the Magombe Swamp; a haven for both birds and primates. The walks through the sanctuary are led by knowledgeable guides, and for birders the morning walks are particularly recommended.
Another attraction to take in is the Ndali-Kasenda Crater Lakes. The nearest set of lakes to Kibale are set to its west, and are known as the Kasenda Cluster. Formed over 10,000 years ago, this is an area of outstanding natural beauty and ideal for stealing some quiet time.
There are few accommodations in the National Park itself, with the majority skirting the edge of the forest.
Our favourite itineraries, showcasing the best of Kibale
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Against the backdrop of the Mountains of the Moon discover Kyaninga Lodge on the edge of a crater lake. Enjoy a comfortable stay, a beautiful setting and embark on excursions in Kibale National Park.
Stay in stone and thatch cottages, marvel at stunning views, surveying the Mountains of the Moon, travel to nearby Kibale National Park for chimp trekking, go swimming in Lake Nyinambuga and enjoy spectacular birding.
A simple lodge and one of the few located inside the park boundaries, expect a complete immersion in the surrounding wilderness. With the Rwenzori Mountains as a backdrop explore the forest in search of a wide variety of species, including chimps and forest elephant.
Kibale Safari Lodge boasts fantastic views of the Rwenzori Mountains and provides guests with comfortable accommodation from which to explore the national park.
Surrounded by thick tropical forest in the heart of Kibale National Park, this lodge is the perfect place from which to track the park's chimpanzees. A nice choice for exploring Kibale, stay in either Meru style tents or forest cottages.
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