A visit to this underground forest of Queen Elizabeth N/P provides an exceptional encounter with man’s genetically close relatives, Chimpanzees. The family that lives here comprises of over 10 members belonging to different age brackets. This offers one an understanding of how chimps behave as they get through different phases in life, from infancy to teenage age and eventually adulthood.
The half day tour we shall organize for you will start early so as to enable you see chimps at a time they are most active. As the day gets hotter, they start to take things slow.
If you are not big walkers or hikers, the ranger will tame down this guided tour to your benefit. You will navigate an easier trail in the forest with a long wooden bridge. Below it flows a river with a rich concentration of hippos. When most of the water holes have dried up in the dry season, buffaloes and elephants flock this river in big numbers to quench their thirst. On the day of your visit, you might find warthogs wallowing in mud to protect their delicate skin from scorching sunlight.
At first, you might have difficulty in finding the chimps—if you are noisy. They keep shifting away from noisy settings. Everything starts to change for the better the minute you start observing silence. They relax and start hollering to each other as you watch from underneath the canopy.
Some might even climb down to the floor of the forest. A walk by the river that bisects the forest will reward you with fruitful sightings of schools of hippos.
Don’t forget to keep your camera on standby mode; a troop of chimpanzees might suddenly surround you as they search for food. You are free to take advantage of the proximity to get exceptional photographic opportunities. One of the things that draws primate lovers here is that watching chimps is far more entertaining than watching gorillas. They don’t just sit by and watch the day drift by. They are much more active and reactive. You will watch them whoop each other, play hide and seek and swing swiftly across branches like acrobats.
Best time to visit: All year round