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Kibale Forest

  • Destinations
  • Uganda
  • Kibale Forest

Why Go

Kibale chimpanzee trekking is rapidly becoming part of the Uganda wildlife experience, giving you the opportunity to view rare chimpanzees in combination with your gorilla trek.

Located a short flight or a morning’s drive from Bwindi, Kibale National Park is home to both mountain and lowland rainforest, providing a unique sanctuary to a dozen different primates as well as hundreds of bird species and clouds of butterflies. And thanks to a conservation corridor between Kibale and next-door Queen Elizabeth National Park, it’s possible to look for other animals too – bush pigs, buffalo, antelope and even elephants.

Chimpanzee trekking accommodation is available in the park itself as well as nearby. Lodges within Kibale Forest are set close to the trekking trails and offer a more immersive experience – animals such as monkeys and small antelope are often seen from camp or indeed pass through it. Kibale lodges located near the park offer a greater range of budgets and include our top family-friendly camps. These lodges come with stunning views and are only a short drive away from the start of the trekking trails.

Chimpanzee trekking is the main focus at Kibale and there are opportunities to experience much more. Nature walks reveal the depth of the bio-diversity in Kibale – a walk with local guides through the Bigodi Swamps is especially recommended – and there are chances to visit and interact with local communities too.

The best time for Kibale chimpanzee trekking is during the year’s two dry seasons which happily coincide with the two gorilla trekking seasons: from December to February and again from June to September. These periods offer the easiest conditions for trekking and the best sightings of chimpanzees; temperatures remain fairly constant at these times – daytime temperatures are 28°C/82°F on average, falling to about 14°C/57°F at night.

We’ve highlighted our favourite Kibale experiences below as well as our suggested accommodation for inspiration and ideas. Contact us with your requirements and we’ll recommend a packaged tour for you or will tailor-make one to your specifications.

Kibale Forest on the map

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Hike a jungle trail with expert guides & your reward could be the sight of a troop of wild chimpanzees, foraging for food in their rainforest home. Kibale offers some of the best & most accessible chimp trekking in Africa.


Black & white colobus, Blue monkeys & Olive baboons are among the 13 different primate species found in Kibale; you’ll be on the lookout for them on your chimpanzee trek as well as on nature hikes & even around your jungle lodge.


With an amazing 325 species recorded in the park – including an endemic thrush – Kibale Forest is a bird watcher’s paradise. You’ll see plenty from camp but join a specialist bird guide on a forest trail & the Bigodi Swamp Walk for more.


Several Kibale lodges offer the chance to visit a local village & meet the indigenous Batoro community. You’ll have the chance to gain fascinating insights into life in the rainforest as well as perhaps contribute to a local development programme.


After the thrills of the chimpanzee trek, go on a guided nature walk to absorb the smaller details of the rainforest – there are over 300 types of tree in Kibale, more than 200 different butterflies & 60 orchid species.


Trek for chimpanzees & other primates in Uganda’s pristine Kibale Forest



In Short: Exclusivity at Kibale’s heart
Location: Kibale Forest National Park
Set deep in the forest close to the start of the chimpanzee trekking trails, Primate Lodge offers luxury cottage accommodation as well as a Sky Tree House, located away from camp & overlooking an elephant grazing meadow. Activities include chimp treks, birding, night walks & visits to local communities.
In Short: Good-value lodge with great views
Location: Near Kibale Forest National Park
A family-run lodge set a 45-minute drive from Kibale Forest, Ndali sits on the rim of a crater lake & commands sweeping views of the Rwenzori Mountains. A comfortable base for chimp trekking, it’s a small rustic lodge with 8 stone & thatch cottages. Children are welcome.
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In Short: Luxurious cottages in stunning setting
Location: Near Kibale Forest National Park
With its 8 thatched cottages perched on a hill overlooking lakes & mountains, Kyaninga has a superb, romantic location & makes a great base for chimpanzee safaris. It offers great comfort & comes with lovely gardens, a tennis court, croquet lawn & its own kitchen garden.
View Gallery View Location

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