Did you also know that you can save $50 by trekking the chimpanzees on the discount? This not only applies to the mountain gorillas but also the chimps. The chimps are also trekked at a discounted rate now days. The cost of the chimp permit is reduced from $150 to $100 during the low season between the months of April, May and November. This idea of giving the chimp permit at a discount was put by the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) which is a body that is responsible for wildlife conservation in association with the tour operators. This discount was also put as a way by the government to offset the seasonality effect that has been a challenge that is affecting Uganda’s tourism.
Chimpanzee trekking is also done with in the tropical rainforest of Kibale National park which is home to the highest population of chimps. Uganda has got over 5000 chimpanzees. And 1500 of these are found in Kibale Forest National park. Moere so, the increase in the number of chimps ensures that the tourists get a chance of meeting their closest relatives and also interact with them which is also an adventure that can’t be got anywhere else.
The discounted permits were at first put for only gorillas but also the chimpanzees have been included in order to encourage many of the chimpanzee trekkers to visit during the low season. Apart from the chimpanzee trekking, chimpanzee habituation experience is another adventure that you can enjoy within Kibale National park is also done. This safari experience also allows the trekkers to spend the whole day with the chimpanzees though at a higher cost. The habituation permits cost $ 220 dollars which is higher than the $150 for chimpanzee trekking. The habituation permits can be got from Uganda Wildlife Authority or can be a trusted tour operator. Advanced booking and payment of these booking fees is also highly needed for the trekkers. These chimps can also be found in Kyambura gorge of Queen Elizabeth National park, Budongo Forest and Kalinzu forest and the chances of trekking these less not like in Kibale forest.
Even though the low season is well known for rains, this doesn’t mean that you will not trek the chimps. More so the chimpanzees also live in the tropical rain forest were the weather cannot be easily predicted. This also means that the rain can fall anytime of the year well regardless of the season, whether sunny or rainy. Uganda as a country is blessed with very conducive climate were the sun shines in short time after the rains. This also means that the tourists can trek after or even during the rains. The season is also good for the adventurous trekkers who need experience the hard way. About the time, the exact time to spend in the jungle is not so specific. It also ranges from 30 minutes to 6 hours and this depends on the location and the movement of these primates.
Getting a short briefing for the park wardens is compulsory and must be attended by every participant before trekking. This also meeting also allows the trekkers to know the dos and don’t of trekking the chimpanzees. The travellers are also allowed to spend an hour with the chimpanzees as they keep a distance of 7 m away from them. The tourists with sicknesses like flue and cough are not allowed to trek the chimps to avoid spreading of the diseases to the primates. These species ate the closest relatives to the human beings thus making them so vulnerable to the human diseases hence needing to keep a distance for the safety purposes.
The participants must prepare in advance before the trek. This also includes; booking and paying in advance for the permits, dressing in long pants, the sleeved shirts, rain coats, hand gloves, as well as the hiking boots, you must also carry the flash light cameras, enough drinking water, lunch, the walking stick as well as the energy supplements.