Explore The Primates Of Kibale National Park On Uganda Safaris

Uganda Safari

Primate trekking is one of the top activities in Uganda. If you are planning for it, there is no better place than Kibale National Park.

Kibale National Park contains one of the loveliest and most varied tracts of tropical forest in Uganda. This National Park is located in the Kabalore district, the western part of Uganda. It has a high concentration of ape population. If you are planning for Uganda Safaris, add Kibale National Park to your list.

Primates of Kibale National Park

Kibale is the habitat for many wildlife. But, it is famous Tourist Destinations In Uganda for primates. Call it the primate capital of Africa, the richest ecosystem in Africa or the primatologist’s dream; but one thing that rings on about Kibale National Park is its diversity and abundance of primate species. There are 13 species that are being recorded. Here you will get brief information about these colourful animals.

  1. Chimpanzee
  2. L’Hoest Monkeys
  3. Red-Tailed Monkeys
  4. Black and white Colobus Monkeys
  5. Uganda Red Colobus
  6. Grey – Cheeked Mangabeys Monkeys
  • Uganda Mangabeys
  • Vervet Monkey
  • Olive Baboons
  • Blue Monkeys
  • Demidoff Galago
  • Patas Monkey
  • Potto


Chimpanzee is the most intelligent animal. It can cry, laugh, and show various emotions as a human do. They have the ability to adopt the use of tools. If you are visiting during rain, you can watch Chimps using leaves as an umbrella. Their natural habitat includes Chimpanzee Habituation Experience and chimpanzee tracking in the rainforest and woodlands of Savannah.

There are over 1000 individual chimpanzees in the forest. Only 80 among them are human-habituated and welcome the trekkers.

How to identify

  • This species does not have a tail.
  • They can walk with their two legs.
  • Their bodies are fully covered with furs except for their face, fingers, toes, palms, and soles.
  • Males weigh up to 40-70kg and females weigh up to 27-50kg. They can stand a height of 3.3-4.9 ft.

Kibale has become one of the top Tourist Attractions forChimpanzee Trekking In Uganda.

L’Hoest Monkeys

These are also known as Mountain Monkeys. You can find L’Hoest Monkeys abundantly in the Kibale forest. Having a large cheek pouch helps them to store food.

These monkeys live in small groups of females with one male. When a male grows up, he has to leave the group but the female stays in the group.

How to identify

  • They have a dark coat with a chestnut color across the back.
  • They can also be identified by their white beard.
  • Their tails are long and hook-shaped.
  • They are born fully covered with fur and with eyes open.

Red-Tailed Monkeys

This ape family is also known as the spot-nosed monkey, red-tailed guenon, or black-cheeked-white-nosed monkey.

They have a big cheek pouch to protect their food from other primates. The pouch can hold as much food as the stomach does.

How to identify

  • As its name suggests, it has a red tail.
  • They also have white cheeks, and a nose with black or dark grey body furs.

Black And White Colobus Monkeys

You can find these monkeys almost everywhere in the forest. They do not have thumbs which is another unique feature of this family.

How to identify

  • Colobus Monkeys are born with white fur and a pin face.
  • As they grow, their body is covered with a black coat, and their beard, back, and shoulders remain white. This justifies their name as Black and white Colobus Monkey.

Uganda Red Colobus

You will find these apes leaping from tree to tree with their tails helping them balance. These apes live in very large groups with 20 to 80 members. The group is led by a male. The head of the troop is chosen by the process of succession.

How to identify

  • They can be distinguished by their rust-red cap with a grey to black colored face.

Grey – Cheeked Mangabeys Monkeys

They can be named Grey-cheeked or White-cheeked Mangabey as per color.

You can trek this primate family in Kibale and Semiliki National Park. They are currently undergoing through habituation process to optimize visitors’ experience.

How to identify

  • They look similar to hairy baboons with a mane around their neck
  • Have grey or white cheek color

Uganda Mangabeys

Before 2007, this family was a part of the Grey-cheeked Mangabeys. Later, they are recognized as their special family.

How to identify

  • They look almost similar to the Grey-cheeked Mangabeys.
  •  Comparatively smaller than Mangabeys.

Vervet Monkey

Vervet monkey (Chlorocebus) grooming, Lake Mburo National Park, Uganda, Africa

They are mostly seen in the trees. They seldom move on the ground. This is why Kibale National Park is very much suitable for their habitat.

Their favorite activity is grooming. You will find them removing parasites from each other’s bodies. The male dominant receives this treatment the most.

How to identify

  • They are identified by their Greenish-olive or Silver-grey colors.
  • Always found on the trees.

Olive Baboons

Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya

You are definitely going to catch a glimpse of these Baboons while your driveway into the forest.They are omnivores and very fond of human leftovers. Be careful with your food!

How to identify

  • Baboons look scary because of their dog-like heads and long fangs.
  • They are covered with Green-grey fur coats.
  • Males are 28 inches tall with about 50kg mass. Whereas females are 24 inches tall with about 24kg weight.

 Blue Monkeys

They make small groups of 4 to 12 monkeys. You can easily find them on your trekking.

How to identify

  • The dark-blue-grey color justifies its name as Blue Monkey.
  • You can also find a white throat and a white fur patch on its chest.

Demidoff Galago

These Bush Babies are the tiniest primates of Africa. With their large eyes and sharp ears, they can see and hear things at night. Thus, they are nocturnal animals. They maintain balance with their long tail.

If you plan to see these cute tiny creatures, you can go for night trekking.

How to find

  • They are mostly found in bushes.
  • They have big eyes.
  • They have long tails

Patas Monkey

Also known as Military Monkey. It is the fastest monkey with a speed of 35 meters per hour.

Unlike other troops, these monkey troops are led by females. Males are only for breeding. In case of danger, males will alarm others.

How to identify

  • Red fur
  • Have soldier-like mustache


This nocturnal primate also has large eyes like Bush babies. Potto is a very cautious animal and spends most of the time on trees. It can hold a branch with enough grip for a long time.

How to identify

  • It is a small monkey 14 inches long and weighs only 1.8 to 3.5 pounds (0.816k to 1.587kg).
  • They are born with a white and creamy color.
  • Adults are reddish, grey, or brown.

Other Things To Do In Uganda Safari

Chimpanzee Habituation Permit

If you are not satisfied with spending a short time with chimpanzees from afar, the Chimpanzee Habituation is for you. You can monitor and learn about their habitats for 4hrs. You are also allowed to record the amazing moments with them with your camera.

Bird watching

Over 372 birds live in the Kibale forest. You can opt for this park for your Uganda Birding Safari. An experienced bird guide will help you to spot different birds. This will give you a great feeling of being surrounded by these colourful musical creatures.

Nature walk

With the company of an experienced guide and armed park ranger, you can explore the forest on foot. The park offers both diurnal and nocturnal nature walks.

You can explore different wildlife, listen to the sweet chirpings, and see the colourful butterflies during the day. It starts from Kanyanchu Visitors Centre and takes up to 2 to 6 hours.

There are plenty of creatures to see at night too. You will regret it if you miss the night bush, Potto, several cats, civets, etc. You can hear cricket cry during your night walk.


How to Visit

The primate trekking starts at Kanyanchu, 35km southeast of the town of Fort Portal. The park is 360km away from Kampala airport. The roadway will take about 6 hours to reach.

You can also visit by air. This park has access to two airstrips; Naykisharara airstrip in Mbarara, and Kasese airstrip.

Best Time To Visit

Looking for a suitable date to visit? Then book your dates from December to February or June to August. These are the driest time of the year. You can visit primates and enjoy your activities. It is the most crowded time. So, book your tickets ahead of time.

If you don’t mind a little rain, you can plan your trip for March or May. The fair can be a little low and visitors will be fewer.

April, September, October, and November are the peak rainy day. You can avoid those months for trekking. But, this is the best time for the research process as only a few visitors would be there.

You can also check Best Time To Visit Uganda to plan your Kibale visit.

Looking for Uganda Safari Adventure? We can help you with lots of exciting plans. We design our Uganda Safari Packages to suit travellers of all types and age groups as we pay attention to time, safety, and budget constraints.


Kibale National Park is one of the most visited Uganda National Parks. Both day and night will amuse you. If you are planning for Uganda Safari, explore primates here in Kibale. Saso Uganda Safaris is the best tour operator in Uganda organizing affordable Uganda Safari Tours in different destinations.


  1. very perfect thanks for sharing it with us

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