Kyambura Gorge is a breathtakingly beautiful location situated on the eastern side of Queen Elizabeth National Park in Uganda. Known as “the valley of Apes,” the Gorge is home to chimpanzees and is the only place in the park where visitors can see these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat. The Gorge is approximately 16km long, 1km across at its widest point, and has a depth of 100m. It is composed of a tropical rainforest that is close to the Equator, surrounded by savannah vegetation that is typical of Queen Elizabeth National Park. The Gorge is drained by the Kyambura River, which flows through its center.
The rich biodiversity of the Gorge makes it a standout location, with thick vegetation of trees that form a dense forest canopy, supporting a variety of animal species, including primates and birds. The dense vegetation of the Gorge also prevents sunshine from penetrating through, which creates a unique and enchanting atmosphere. Visitors can expect to see a range of primate species, including chimpanzees, black-and-white colobus monkeys, red-tailed monkeys, and baboons. Bird enthusiasts can also expect to see a variety of bird species, including the African Finfoot, African Skimmer, Pel’s Fishing Owl, and many more.
Overall, the Kyambura Gorge is a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to Uganda and Queen Elizabeth National Park. It offers a unique and unforgettable experience of trekking through dense forests in search of chimpanzees and other wildlife species, as well as breathtaking views of the surrounding savannah vegetation. Visitors can also expect to learn more about the region’s rich biodiversity and conservation efforts.
Kyambura Gorge, located on the eastern side of Queen Elizabeth National Park, offers an incredible chimpanzee tracking experience despite the current reports indicating only sixteen habituated chimpanzees remaining in the valley. Although chimpanzee tracking can also be done in other places like Kalinzu Game reserve, Kibale Forest National Park, and Budongo Game Reserve, Kyambura Gorge remains a must-visit destination that offers more than just a chimpanzee experience. With the option to do a game safari in Queen Elizabeth National Park after the trek, Kyambura Gorge provides a unique and diverse experience for visitors.
Stretching approximately 16km long and 1km across, Kyambura Gorge is a tropical rainforest close to the Equator surrounded by Savannah type vegetation that dominates Queen Elizabeth National Park. Known as “the valley of Apes,” it is the only place in Queen Elizabeth National Park where visitors can encounter chimpanzees. The gorge is drained by one mainstream, Kyambura River, and boasts rich biodiversity with thick vegetation of trees and a dense forest canopy that supports various species of primates and birds.
Despite the limited number of habituated chimpanzees in the valley, a visit to Kyambura Gorge offers a spectacular view and an unforgettable experience. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast or simply looking for an adventure, Kyambura Gorge and its inhabitants offer a unique opportunity to explore the wild and enjoy the natural beauty of Uganda.
Chimpanzee tracking in Kyambura Gorge is an exciting adventure that is done twice a day in groups of a maximum of six people. Uganda Wildlife Authority provides a ranger guide who leads the trek to the chimpanzees. With only six people allowed at a time, the trek becomes more personalized, giving trekkers a chance to interact in-depth with the rangers and take the trek at a slower pace, which enables them to see more than just the chimpanzees, including other primates and birds.
However, chimpanzee tracking in Kyambura Gorge is more complex and laborious compared to Kibale Forest National Park, as there is only one community of chimpanzees in the area. Despite the complexity, the success rate of seeing the chimpanzees is at 80% and above. The trek can be long, with the chimpanzees being more elusive and keeping in trees and thickets as they search for food.
During the trek, visitors are allowed to spend a maximum of one hour with the chimpanzees, taking photos and making memories. The Kyambura Gorge is rich in biodiversity and has more than just chimpanzees. Visitors may also get to see Black and White Colobus Monkeys, Baboons, Red-Tailed Monkeys, Vervet Monkeys, Giant Forest Hogs, and other mammals. A visit to the Kyambura Gorge offers more than just a chimpanzee experience, with the option to do a game safari in the Queen Elizabeth National Park after the trek.
If you’re planning a trip to Uganda, don’t miss out on the chance to go chimpanzee tracking. While Kibale Forest National Park may be more famous for this activity, Kyambura Gorge offers a unique experience at a more affordable rate. For just USD50.00 per person per trek, you can explore the stunning natural beauty of the Gorge and observe its resident chimpanzee family.
Compared to Kibale, the success rate for seeing chimpanzees in Kyambura Gorge is slightly lower at around 80%. However, with only one family living in the area, you’re guaranteed to have an intimate and unforgettable experience. The Trek Africa Tours team can help you secure your permit in advance, as there are only six slots available for each group.
During the trek, you’ll be accompanied by a Uganda Wildlife Authority ranger guide and a maximum of five other people. This allows for a more personal and immersive experience as you explore the lush rainforest and spot other primates and birds along the way. Keep in mind that the walks can be long and challenging, but the reward of seeing these magnificent animals in their natural habitat is well worth the effort.
So, why wait? Contact us today to book your chimpanzee tracking adventure in Kyambura Gorge and create memories that will last a lifetime.
Getting to the Kyambura Gorge in Queen Elizabeth National Park is easily accessible by those traveling from Kampala through Mbarara, which is a distance of 420km, or for those coming from Kampala through Fort Portal, which is a distance of 410km. It is also possible to access the park from Kigali, Rwanda, for those starting their trip in Rwanda. For those who prefer air travel, charter plans are available from Entebbe that connect to Kasese and Mweya Airstrips. The drive to Kyambura Gorge usually takes around 6 hours, but it is well worth the journey to witness the beauty of this region.
When planning a visit to Kyambura Gorge, there are several accommodation options to choose from in the surrounding area of Queen Elizabeth National Park. These facilities cater to different budgets and preferences, offering a range of amenities and services to enhance your safari experience. Some of the popular options include Katara Lodge, Jacana Safari Lodge, Elephant Hab Lodge, Kingfisher camp, and Kyambura Gorge Safari Lodge. Depending on your needs, you can choose to stay in luxurious lodges with stunning views, cozy campsites, or budget-friendly options that provide a comfortable stay while exploring the beauty of the region.