In Uganda there are three places where you can trek habituated chimpanzee which includes Budongo forest, Kibale forest, and Kyambura gorge in Queen Elisabeth national park, Budongo forest is one of the biggest rainforests in East Africa, Budongo forest is located in Murchison falls national park which is about 30 minutes drive from Masindi town. Budongo forest is part of the Murchison falls conservation area, as you explore you can always chimpanzee trekking in Budongo forest on your way to Murchison Falls.
That part Chimp trek conservation area of Budongo forest is learned by the research institute called Jane Goodall institute, in Budongo forest you can as well go for chimpanzee habituation, the activity of chimp habituation in Budongo forest can be done any day through the year.
In Budongo forest chimpanzee trekking is done at 7: 30am in the morning, and at 2: 00 pm in the afternoon which means chimp trekking in Budongo is done twice every day throughout the year, so this means that tourists can choose to trek chimpanzee in the morning or in the afternoon depending on your traveling needs.
If you choose to trek in the morning you must be at Kaniyo Pabidi for a briefing about chimp trekking before you start trekking chimps in their natural habitat of Budongo forest led by a park ranger guide.
Chimpanzee trekking can take up to 4 hours depending on the movement of the chimpanzees and once find the chimps you are allowed to spend one full hour interacting with chimps, taking photos, and videos, and asking your park ranger guide questions about chimpanzees, you will trek back to the starting point.
The permit price for chimpanzee trekking in Budongo forest costs $85 per person, chimpanzee trekking permits can be purchased through a trusted tour operator like Kisoro tours Uganda or you can purchase them directly from Uganda wildlife authority headquarters in Kampala.
Kisoro tours Uganda we primates safari specialists, we recommend that you book and purchase chimp trekking permits in advance because permits are sold on a first come first serve basis, and also there is a limit of the chimpanzee permits issued per day, for example, only 12 chimp permits issued per chimpanzee community and Budongo forest has 2 habituated communities so this means only 24 chimpanzee permits are available every day.
The age limit for chimpanzee trekking in Budongo is 12 years old and above, any child below this will not be allowed to trek chimpanzees, because you have to keep in mind that you must present your passport to confirm your age and nationality to Uganda wildlife Authority Officers on the day of trekking and also when purchasing permit.
Tourists and other visitors going for chimp habituation in Budongo forest are reminded to be extra careful during this activity because they are dealing with wild chimpanzees which are not yet used to human presence, so you are advised to keep at least 10 meters away from those wild chimps and also to avoid the spread of human diseases to the chimpanzees which is deadly to the most primates species in Uganda.
These are the few things you have on your packing list when going for chimpanzee trekking or habituation experience in order to your trip more enjoyable, among the top things on your packing list include garden gloves which will protect your hands from thorny trees and bushes, packed lunch because you don’t what time you will come back, hiking boots for easier movements in the slippery and muddy when walking up and down in the forest, sunglasses to protect from strong sun, rain jackets because you will be walking in the rain-forest so it can rain at any time and remember also take enough drinking water.
Yes, Kisoro tours Uganda recommends to all its clients to hire a porter who will help them to carry their bags, porter costs only $15 to $20 per person and by hiring a porter you will be supporting local communities around the park directly, a porter will help tourists by holding their hands in up hills and down hills and in the slippery and muddy forest.
Chimp trekking can take up to 3 to 4 hours while habituation experience takes half-day to 7 hours counted from the time tourists from the briefing center, however, the actual time depends on the movement of the chimpanzee and fitness level of the tourists, chimpanzee habituation experience is an exceptional chimp encounter which gives a chance to spend more time with a chimpanzee in their natural habitats.
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