Kibale Forest National Park

Kibale Forest national park welcomes you in Uganda for primate’s tours and on how to guide you to plan for your Uganda Chimp Safaris. This article will give you details of how to get there, activities done, tourist attractions, where to stay and Uganda safari tour companies to take you to this primate’s park.

Kibale National Park

Kibale forest national park is one of the best sounding safari destinations in Africa for chimpanzees trekking in Uganda. The park has a moist evergreen rain forest on land covering 780 square kilometres located between 1,100 metres to 1,600 metres in elevation and above all, it contains a diverse array of landscapes. Perhaps, is one of the last remaining expanses to contain both lowland and tropical montane forests. Kibale national park was gazetted in late 1932 and formally established in 1993 to protect a large area of forest managed as a logged forest reserve. However, Kibale national park is home to a number of forest wildlife, mostly the 13 species of primates coupled with unique chimpanzees. The forest covering predominates in the central and northern side of the park raising up to fort portal Plantae. To note at the northern part of the park, kibale is the highest and raises around 1590 meter above sea level.

The park is one of the best primate’s safari destination in Africa for chimpanzee tracking tours, home to over 1500 individuals. However for you to participate in chimpanzee tracking it will bring you close to your related cousins which are said to be 98% DNA to those of human genes. See advice, on how to get chimpanzee tracking permits and more information on Uganda tours.

Travellers may think that it’s only a home for primates but also rich in other wildlife species with over 70 mammals such as buffalos, warthogs, bushbucks, leopard, sitatunga, bush pigs, giant forest hogs, servals, African golden cats, others primates like Uganda mongoose, red colobus monkeys, L’hoest’s monkeys, with over 380 bird species such as Blue-breasted ground thrush, Black-capped apalis, African pitta, Black bee-eater, Black-eared,  Blue-breasted Kingfisher, Crowned eagle, Grey narrot, Green-breasted Pitta, Blue-headed Sunbird, Blue-headed sunbird among others.

Activities in Kibale National Park

Kibale national park boasts of a number of stunning activities and attraction which can be best done in the dry seasons, from the months of mid-November to February and June to September such activities include forest hiking, birding, Cultural trails, chimpanzees tracking, visiting the crater lakes, cultural encounter and many more others.

Forest hikes: The forest hiking done in this park brings out the hidden treasures of the park such as the river line forest, grassland, swamp and tropical rainforest. The hike measures 12km accompanied by the trained guides who leads you to different forest trails where you can be able to sightsee famous wildlife species such as chimpanzee, red colobus monkeys, black and white colobus, red tailed monkeys, bush-bush as well as mongoose, visit Bigodi wetland a top birders spot where you can spot beautiful bird species.

Cultural Trails: This is one of the highlight activity which starts from Kanyanchu and it takes about 2 to 6 days to complete all the amazing trails while on foot as you enjoy the nature walk. The en route will help you to discover the forest and in the community-run campsites close to the villages of keikogi, Nyaibanda, Nyakalongo.In addition, the wettest area in Northern part of the park, it receives an average annual rainfall of equal to 1700mm, mainly during the month of Month of March to May and September to November.

The park’s climate usually occurs with an average annual temperature range of about 14 to 12 degrees Celsius. More so, the temperature is at maximum and rainfall at a lower rate in the south where the terrain drops onto the blistering rift valley floors and the forest gives way to open grassland. 

Note that: The southern part of Kibale national park borders Queen Elizabeth national park one of best visited national park and second largest park among the 10 Uganda national parks. The bordered part to Queen Elizabeth national park is preserved areas to maintain measuring 180 kilometres long migration corridor for wildlife species that adjoins from the remote southern sector of Queen Elizabeth national park in ‘’Ishasha’’ up to north of kibale in ‘’Sebitoli’ ’Furthermore, kibale forest national park in northern part of Uganda in fort portal region is one of Uganda’s most highlight places to explore weather with a family or group, friends or as an individual. Note that is the best place for chimpanzee tracking safaris. The park is positioned close to the stunning Ndali kasenda crater area and takes a half day’s drive to Queen Elizabeth, the snow Rwenzori Mountain and Semuliki national park.

Bird watching in Kibale: The park is a haven for birders with over 380  bird species which travellers can be able to spot on their birding tour in kibale national park including 6 that are native to the Albertine Rift destination such as blue-headed sunbird, collared apalis, red-faced woodland warblers, crimson wing, black-capped apalis, and purple breasted sunbird. Other common bird species include Yellow rumpled tinker bird, little greenbul, African pitta, Abyssinian ground thrush, yellow spotted nectar, little greenbul, black-eared ground thrush, blue breasted kingfisher, crowned eagle and many more.

Cultural Experience Around Kibale: Kibale national park is surrounded by the local people mostly the Batoro and Bakiga people where you enjoy their culture experience from with the help of the guide. It is known that the batoro people are the native to the region while the Bakiga are just immigrating from the thickly populated south-western side of the country. Visiting these local people, you will express into their traditional dances, songs, folklore as well as their languages.

Chimpanzee in Kibale Forest National Park
Chimpanzee in Kibale Forest National Park

Where to stay in kibale 

Travellers shouldn’t get worried about where to sleep on their primate safari in kibale forest national park Uganda, because the park boost with beautiful accommodation facilities with rewardable sightseeing of primates on your veranda and are located in the middle of the forest where your chimpanzee tracking starts from, the lodges have a charming restaurant, bar and fire place where you can spend your evening from and such comfortable lodges ranges between mid-range to luxury it depends on your warrant and these include, primate lodge, modern bandas, luxury tents, comfortable sky Treehouse.

Montana Luxury Tented Camp positioned in the middle of the forest with comfortable beds.

Ndali Lodge is a luxury accommodation with thatched cottages with panoramic viewing of crater lakes.

The Rwenzori View Guesthouse sits in Fort portal approximately 30kms from the forest with comfortable beds middle-class rooms but without private bathrooms available.

However, the park offers a very affordable chimpanzee tracking permits at a cost of USD 150 per person but by 1st July 2020, there will be high demand for permits to track chimpanzees in kibale forest with an increase of USD 50 each. And all the potential travellers that with effect from 1st July 2020 will have to pay USD 200. Note that Kibale forest national park is a primate capital and a first stop destination for chimpanzee tracking in Uganda. We recommend you to always book your chimpanzee tracking permits in advance like 6 months before your time off of arrival to the park, through the help of the tour operator or recognised tour companies. Like we Achieve global safaris we can help you in all means that is booking for you your permit, accommodation facilities where you can enjoy your night from, transport and many more.

Rules followed for tracking chimpanzees in kibale national park

  • Carry your packed lunch on the track
  • Travellers shouldn’t look directly into the eyes of chimpanzees.
  • Carry enough mineral water 
  • You should wear hiking boots in order to ease your movements in the forest trails.
  • Keep a distance of about 7 meters’ away from chimpanzees.
  • There is a limited number of 6 people to participate in chimpanzee tracking
  • Do not litter in the forest ‘
  • The track starts at exactly 8 am in the morning after a short briefing and accompanied by the trained ranger.
  • Children below 16 years are not allowed to engage in chimpanzee tracking for safety reasons.
  • You should stay in the group and obey your guide’s rules.
  • If you need to urinate please do so off the trail system and if you want to defecate you have to talk to the guide or dig a hole and after you bury your waste.


Kibale national park can be easily accessed whether by vehicle or air, by car can be approximately 5 hours by road while using a safari vehicle or your personal car. Alternatively, a traveller can decide to fly to and from Entebbe international airport while using a charter flight which lasts 1:15 hours to kasese airstrips a nearby airstrip to kibale and then after a tour guide is the one responsible to pick the traveller from the airstrip and drives him or her to the park which takes 35 minutes only to reach to the main destination.

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