Kibale Forest National Park is one of Uganda’s many spectacular nature reserves, located in the western part of the country. It borders another famous park, Queen Elizabeth National Park. Together they make up a network of safari itineraries that are among the most popular in this part of Africa. Referring to Fort Portal, the closest city, tourists can go on adventure especially to observe some beautiful animals up close.

What to do, what to see in Kibale

Monkeys are the main tourist attractions of the Kibale Forest. There are 13 different species, including vervet, colobus, chimpanzee, baboon. Also present here are the great African predators, especially lions and leopards. You will meet elephants, mongooses, buffaloes and African golden cats too. Over 300 species of birds and 144 different types of tropical butterflies make this forest a truly magical place!

Tourists who do not just want to admire animals can participate in hiking, exploration of the extinct craters that characterize the region, boat safaris on the marshes, visit ancient caves. But they will also be able to familiarize themselves with the locals. Learn about the customs of the local tribes and witness their traditions, it is a great lesson of living.

The beauty of this territory means that many also want to “be part of it”. And the best way to do this is to live and sleep in the midst of this wild nature for a few days. There are many tourist solutions to allow visitors to stay near – or inside – the forest, and the choice could also be complex.

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photo from Crater Safari Lodge

Stay in Kibale

Tourists who want to stop in the forest expect mostly African-style cottages and huts. And in fact most of the reception facilities of this place recall the typical poor architecture of the continent. But it is not uncommon to find, next to the “huts”, also brick houses. You will have typical western services (swimming pool, laundry, wi-fi), as well. The sites illustrating the facilities are modern and well designed and also allow you to book online. Here is a selection of the four best lodges in the Kibale forest area.

Crater Safari Lodge

On top of a hill overlooking the largest volcanic crater in Uganda stands Crater Safari Lodge. As the name implies, this resort offers accommodation, meals but also excursions into the forest and to the discovery of craters. The accommodations are wooden chalets of various types (from normal to semi-luxury up to super luxury) served by every comfort. To contact the property in time, website: The telephone contact refers to a number based in Italy: +39/3270461699.

Primate Lodge Kibale

Most famous for its honeymoon accommodation, Primate Lodge offers independent chalets and cottages. Some common areas (restaurant, bar, library, laundry, camping area …) are also well served by wi-fi. Each cottage has its own terrace overlooking the forest, with a dream atmosphere! They organize trips and safaris in particular to admire the monkeys. For contacts: +256/701726368 or from the website

Chimpundu Lodge

Chimpundu is a spread hotel made up of several brick houses, with parking, garden, playgrounds and swimming pool in the center. The services are very “western style” and the overall quality is that of a truly luxury property. The structure organizes safaris of different types and for all the needs of visitors. Contact them via

Kyaninga Lodge

In the heart of the forest stands a village of wood and straw, with a large central house – almost a castle! – and many smaller houses that surround it. This is the charming Kyaninga Lodge, a romantic resort surrounded by greenery that does not forget the comforts for guests. Lots of state-of-the-art services and the opportunity to take more varied themed excursions in the surrounding area. The contacts of this resort are: phone +256 772 999750.

How to get to the forest

You can easuly get to Kibale forest and resorts by airplane. Domestic flights from Entebbe land at Kasese Airstrip (1 hour and a half) which is at one-hour drive from Fort Portal. Or you can rent a jeep and drive for 4 hours from Kampala to Kibale forest.

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photo from Primate Lodge web site