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“Unique experience”

Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary
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Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary in Uganda
Ranked #15 of 159 things to do in Uganda
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Surrounded by the peaceful waters of Lake Victoria, Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary is home to 49 orphaned chimps rescued from throughout Uganda. Island facilities offer day trips and overnight trips which provide exceptional opportunity to closely observe and interact with these fascinating great apes in this unique setting.
Sydney, Australia
Level 5 Contributor
50 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“Unique experience”
Reviewed 12 January 2014

This was a very special experience but would not have been the same if we didn't exercise the option of being carers for a day and staying overnight and actually walking with a select group of chimps in the forrest the next morning. Without that it would have been just like visiting the Chimp enclosure at any zoo.

The only real negative was the quality of the toilets during the dattime. Quite ordinary. Tented rooms were very comfortable and well appointed with flushing toilets that were only to be used during the night.

Very good staff and level of service provided with adequate, reasonably priced food and beveradges.

Visited December 2013
Thank Ross C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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148 reviews from our community

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English first
Swindon, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
261 reviews
67 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 146 helpful votes
“Fantastic Work done Here”
Reviewed 23 December 2013

We did a half day tour to the island on the fast boat. It was a lovely day on the lake and a smooth journey both ways.

It is clear that they do some fantastic work for Chimps on this island, and the animals seem really well looked after. In addition to the chimps there were an abundance of beautiful birds to look at.

I did think this tour was very overpriced, as you only actually spend about 30 mins watching the chimps being fed, and it is quite some distance away. However, it is good to know this place does exist for the chimps who need it., and the entrance money supports this.

Not somewhere I would visit again, but had an enjoyable day.

Visited November 2013
1 Thank Henster79
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Emerald, Australia
Level 3 Contributor
21 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Long boat journey”
Reviewed 29 November 2013 via mobile

Not much of a sailor myself, the long wooden boat we boarded didnt have me convinced that we werent going to sink in Lake Victoria. We took off & probably travelled just over an hour. We had brought our lunch, so we ate that whilst a talk on the chimps was going on. The tour of the grounds was informative & interesting. We met the vet, talked about their contraception, heard about the breakouts, read the journals kept on each Chimp, watched the 2 males in the night enclosure who refuse to go out. It was good. The feeding is fun to watch, theyre so clever. I know there are some reviews on here that say the fence is hindering, i just stopped trying to take photos, & enjoy the moment. On the way home the boat driver stopped to allow people to 'swim over the equator'. Only 2 people did. It is a whole day trip.

Thank MB-Aust
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dublin, Ireland
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Not Worth It”
Reviewed 20 November 2013

I didn't have time to trek the chimpanzees in the wild and I really wanted to see chimpanzees (besides in the zoo). So I thought the next best thing would be Ngamba island, I heard nothing but positive feed back about the place so I said I'd give it a go. I was travelling on my own and I found it extremely hard to find a company or anyone to bring me to the island (Only two company's responded to my emails and they both replied the day after I saw the chimps).

In the end the cheapest I could get was $330 for the transport and admission on the island with was organised by somebody who knew somebody . The boat trip was the most expensive part of the trip as I was the only person on the boat (they even brought down the price by $20 because I refused to pay that much). The boat was average nothing special, I did boat trips to the source of the Nile and of Lake Bunyonyi for $25 each and they were amazing in comparison.

I thought Ngamba island itself was a huge let down. There were chimpanzees in big cages for research which didn't look nice or feel right. The whole viewing area is fenced so there is no opportunity to get good pictures on either level at the viewing area. This was a huge disappointment, I didn't get a single good picture because of the fence. When the staff were finished throwing food at the chimps everybody was told to move and look around the rest of the island until the boats were scheduled to leave. There is nothing else to see on the island apart from inside one of the tented accommodation that is available on the island and the tiny (overpriced) gift shop. I walked back up to see the remaining chimps who were still feeding and I was questioned as to why I was going back to the viewing area, a staff member followed me and i felt slightly uncomfortably be watched as if I was going to do something to the chimps even though there was a hug electric fence between us, which isn't even in arms length distance.

I tried to look at the bright side of things and I was happy to see chimpanzees as the chimps were on the island for good reasons and the tour leader there was very informative about the chimps that lived there and their background. However I think it was over priced and you can probably get near enough the same experience in a zoo

I think you are far better off going to see the chimpanzees in the wild but if you do want to visit Ngamba island to see the chimps being feed I recommend you book well in advance in the hope that other people might join your boat to make the price go down.

Visited November 2013
5 Thank Sara G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kampala, Uganda
Level 3 Contributor
7 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Ngamba chimpanzee sanctuary”
Reviewed 19 November 2013

Had one of the best times at the sanctuary with the chimps during the feeding time.we spent about one hour with them while our guide Joseph explained there behaviours.
It was a great experience.visits a normally during feeding hours which lasts for 45minutes

Visited November 2013
Thank Mugisha H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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