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“Great and interesting visit”

Chimfunshi Wildlife Orphanage
Ranked #1 of 1 things to do in Chingola
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Attraction details
Owner description: Chimfunshi Wildlife Orphanage Trust is one of the largest chimpanzee reserves in the world and is internationally recognized as such. Chimfunshi is home to 120 chimpanzees, most of them living in 4 large forested enclosures, and as close to their natural environment as possible. Chimfunshi started as a family-run wildlife orphanage in the north of Zambia, and today Chimfunshi is managed by a Board of Trustees to ensure the long-term sustainability of the Sanctuary. Chimfunshi was founded in 1983 when a game ranger brought a badly wounded infant chimpanzee to the cattle ranch of David and Sheila Siddle. The Siddle's nursed that chimp - named "Pal" - back to health, thereby establishing a tradition of care and respect that forms the legacy of the sanctuary. Once word of Pal's recovery spread, the Siddle's were inundated with orphaned chimpanzees. Sheila Siddle quoted "All I know is that I held a dying chimpanzee in my arms that day and it changed my life forever." Although many of the chimpanzees were confiscated from poachers who attempted to smuggle the infants into Zambia for sale as pets, an equally large number were rescued from dilapidated zoos and circuses from all over Africa, Asia, Europe and South America. With 120 chimpanzees, Chimfunshi is now one of the largest chimpanzee sanctuaries in the world. In 2002, an Education Centre was built to provide a facility to teach the youth of Zambia about ecology and wildlife conservation. Local and international students researching group behaviour and ethnic studies also use it. Chimfunshi Wildlife Orphanage operates entirely on donations and sponsorship, without the financial support provided by our valued Donors, volunteers and visitors, the sanctuary and its inhabitants could not survive. Join us for a day visit or overnight stay and be intrigued by humans' closest relative and learn about our similarities from our knowledgeable Keepers.
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities, Food available for purchase
Fermoy, Ireland
Level Contributor
9 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“Great and interesting visit”
Reviewed 17 May 2013

Had a great trip with a friend to Chimfunshi- worth the full day of hitching and overnight stay in Chingola it took to get there! Unfortunately the weather wasn't on our side, but despite the rain we got to see the chimps and spend time with the volunteers and speak about what they do. My friend and I both have backgrounds in primatology so it was of interest to both of us and we really enjoyed ourselves. The keepers were lovely and very informed, as were all the staff and volunteers. The chimps were fascinating and so different to the old world monkeys I'm used to working with. As someone who has worked in serval primate rehabs though, it's sad for me to think they will never get a second chance (well, for many a first chance, as more have been born in the centre than rescued) of freedom. And I don't think "we can't release them as they might just get poached" is a very good excuse for not attempting to do so. In that case no animals could ever be re-introduced as it's a risk they all face. However, Chimfunshi is definitely the next best thing to the wild for the chimps, and a million times better than some of the places they came from. I definitely recommend it to anyone interested. Didn't participate in the chimp walk, as I feel it's not an appropriate activity for animals which should be being kept as wild as possible. But that's just my opinion :)

Visited March 2013
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6 Thank irishkoala
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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38 reviews from our community

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English first
Darwin, Australia
Level Contributor
11 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Great experience”
Reviewed 14 March 2013

had a wonderful time at Chimfunshi Chimpanzee Orphanage. The keepers were so very knowledgable and seemed to enjoy talking to us. Hardly anyone else there at the time so we felt priviledged to have their attention at all times. Mrs Siddle is doing a fantastic job but obviously needs help financially so any form of donation is greatley accepted. Thoroughly recommend visiting.

Visited September 2012
Helpful?
3 Thank ChrissieC813
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Essex
Level Contributor
27 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Sanctuary for orphan chimps”
Reviewed 2 March 2013

On the way there we saw a snake slithering across the road! A reminder that we were in the bush and just visitors...What an amazing place, the work Cheila Siddle and her team do to protect and provide the chimps with a natural home is humbling. We saw the chimps being fed and there was a definite pecking order and no intelligent chimp would mess with! Educational and inspirational! Loved it.

Visited October 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank TatianaEssex
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Durban, South Africa
Level Contributor
103 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
“Once in a lifetime experience!”
Reviewed 4 December 2012

We happened to be in Chingola in August and needed a place to stay when we found out about Chimfunshi - we camped at their beautiful campsite on the banks of the Kafue River for 2 nights. We did the bush walk with the chimps which was just unforgettable!!! We spent a lot of time with Sheila, who had the most incredible stories to tell. We absolutely loved our stay there and can't wait to return in the near future!

Visited August 2012
Helpful?
3 Thank TR15784
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Prescott, Arizona
Level Contributor
66 reviews
36 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“Walking with the Chimps”
Reviewed 10 October 2012

Chimfunshi Wildlife Orphanage is an awesome experience. You can stay at a comfortable lodge in the jungle, walk with the chimpanzees, learn about chimp behaviors and individual chimp histories. The guides are committed and helpful. The cost is for a good cause and easy to pay. The hardest part is getting there. The website lists a wrong number and does not have any pricing, maps, transport tips, or reservation information. Luckily, another Peace Corps Volunteer gave me a working phone number so I could get pricing and make reservations. I flew into Solwezi and later learned that Ndola airport is closer. I hitched to the turnoff which took about 1 1/2 hrs, then proceeded to walk 10 kim before the center sent a vehicle to pick me up. Once there, it was golden and worth the trip. The center dropped me back at the turnoff where I got a ride back to Solwezi on a bus.

Visited October 2012
Helpful?
3 Thank ZamGram
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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