Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary

Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary is the largest chimpanzee sanctuary in Uganda. It was started in 1997 as a home to over 40 orphaned chimpanzees. The sanctuary is situated on Lake Victoria. The island is usually visited by primate lovers who are usually on their Uganda safari. On the visit to the sanctuary, travelers usually enjoy seeing the chimpanzees playing and feeding themselves in the forested area of the island. The area covers about 100 hectares and 98% of this land is forested. The chimpanzees in the area are orphans who were saved from the poachers in different protected areas in Uganda and neighboring areas. It is believed that some of these chimps were usually sold as pets in the black market.

The Chimpanzee Sanctuary and Wildlife Conservation Trust is a nongovernmental organization in charge of the chimpanzee sanctuary in the East Africa region. Its main duty is to save the chimps from poachers and the illegal trading of pets. The major activity done here in this sanctuary is chimpanzee trekking. The feeding of these chimpanzees is timed and involves supplementary feeding so that they can have a healthy life. Additionally, the travelers on their Uganda safari have the opportunity to see the chimpanzee in their natural habitat.

What to do in the Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary?

While in the Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary, there are a variety of activities to do. These include;

Chimpanzee trekking

This is the key activity that is done within the Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary. And usually, it can be done either in the morning or the afternoon. During this activity, you will get time to have a close encounter with the chimpanzee to learn about their behavior and life. A chimpanzee is considered to be a close relative to human beings with over 98% of their DNA.   During the chimpanzee trekking tour, you are required not to have shouting-colored clothes that may send away the chimpanzee. Additionally, the other requirements are face masks, waterproof clothing, a backpack, a camera, and many others.  Chimpanzee trekking can also be done in other parts of the country like Kibale National Park, Kyambura Gorge, Kalinzu and Forest Reserve

Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary

Feeding of the chimpanzees

Feeding the chimpanzees is a voluntary activity that is done by travelers on their Uganda safari. The activity is usually done in the afternoon and it is on a balanced diet basis to overcome malnutrition. This activity starts with preparing the food, environment enrichment, cleaning, and recording keeping. This is one of the volunteering activities which also involves funding to purchase food for the chimpanzees.

Birding tours

The Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary is home to over 140 bird species. This makes it a birding destination for the birders on their Uganda safari. The bird species include the green Cuckoo, Grey heron, Grey crowned crane, Gull-billed tern, Hadada Ibis, White-throated bee-eater, and many others. This makes the island a true birder’s haven away from the chimpanzee trekking. A visit to Ngamba Island can be combined with a birding tour at Mabamba Wetland for shoebill stork tracking.

Accommodation facilities in the Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary

There are fewer accommodation facilities on Ngamba Island and the only facility on the island is the Ngamba Eco Lodge which has the best views of Lake Victoria on each side. The other facilities that a traveler on a Uganda safari would have from Ngamba island are located within Entebbe. In Entebbe, there is a variety and choice of accommodation facilities that travelers can choose from. These include; Lake Victoria Serena Hotel, Green Valley Resort, Via Via Hotel, Jet Villas, Sky Hotel, Pretoria Hotel, and many others.

What is the best time to visit the Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary?

 Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary can be visited throughout the year. The best time to visit the island is during the dry months of the year that is to say December to February and June to September. During these months the area is clearer where you can track the wildlife on the island. On the other hand, during the wet months of the year, there is a low chance of seeing wildlife since the vegetation is thick due to the heavy rains. Also, during these months, there is less traffic.  This implies that one will get a more personalized tour since the guides have a few travelers to attend to. The other advantage is that accommodation facilities in Uganda tend to lower their prices during the low seasons. This might be the best time for budget travelers to visit Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary.

How to get there?

Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary is located on Ngamba Island in Lake Victoria. Here you need to take a boat ride which is either a speed boat or a traditional boat to the island. The boat ride will take about 40 to 50 minutes using a speed boat and the traditional boat will take about one hour to reach the island. The chimpanzee sanctuary is usually a 1 day excursion tour where travelers on their safari to Uganda will enjoy this destination since it is near the airport.

Now that you have learned about the Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary, book your tour now and create an everlasting memory with the magical primates.

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