Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary

Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary

Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary
4.5
8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Monday
8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Tuesday
8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Wednesday
8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Thursday
8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Friday
8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Saturday
8:30 AM - 1:00 PM
Sunday
9:00 AM - 5:00 AM
About
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.
Duration: More than 3 hours
Meets animal welfare guidelines
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  • Johanna P
    10 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    impressive and amazing experience with chimps, awesome over night stay
    Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary is a must go to place in Uganda, the whole experience there is impressive and amazing. Already the boat drive to the island is great, with a beautiful view on the lake and other islands. The atmosphere at the island is very welcoming and relaxing. You can see lots of birds, monitor lizards, crocodiles and of course the amazing chimps. The whole staff is very friendly, competent and cares about you. All of them are happy to chat with you and ask you if you need something. We did a one night stay there, we can just recommend to stay there at least for one night. Because then you can spend more time with the chimps, attend more different feedings and you can see and learn more about them. Because of our overnight stay we were allowed to feed them through throwing food into their area, this was an amazing experience. We were also able to attend the feedings in the evening and morning, therefore observe how they go to bed and wake up in the morning. In the afternoon we did a little boat cruise to see the chimps in the forest, they came to the beach to eat the fruits our guide brought for them. It was very amazing to see them in such a different surrounding. They fished out food of the water. We enjoyed this experience of our overnight stay. The food is delicious. For sunset they prepared us popcorn and a vine bottle we could choose. During our stay we had a guide, Amos, who was responsible for us. He showed us the whole area such as the chimp area or food storage. He was very competent, knew so much interesting stories about every chimp, you could see he loved all of them and cares about them. In the evening they made a campfire. Even some memebers of the stuff joined us and for exampke Amos told us impressive stories about his work and the chimps. We highly recommend to go to Ngamba Island and even do a overnight stay there. The whole experience was relaxing, we only heard nature sounds. It was heartwarming to see and experience the chimps and learn about all of their stories and how they managed to overcome their tragic stories and become happy chimps.
    Visited September 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written September 23, 2023
  • Lorraine C
    Honiara, Solomon Islands118 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Island refuge for wonderful chimps
    This island refuge for rescued chimps is a real marvel. So much care and concern for these wonderful animals. Saving them and providing a safe place to live freely in the forest in the day and have safe places to come and get fed and sleep and allow preservation of the forest. . Dedicated staff share their knowledge and stories of individual chimps. Each has a name and all are family. It is possible to stay overnight or two snd do some volunteer caring for the chimps. Great endeavour that combats the challenges chimps face.
    Visited September 2023
    Traveled with friends
    Written October 13, 2023
  • nanwner
    Cincinnati, Ohio50 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Amazing up-close experience with chimpanzees!
    Hillary was a great guide and wonderful teacher! Although it is a little pricey, I'm very glad we stayed overnight on the island (one night is plenty!), so that we got to interact with the chimpanzees more and learn so much. So many beautiful birds too! We got to tour the facilities, meet the keepers and vet on staff, talk with visiting researchers, take a brief boat ride around the edge of the island, and feed the chimpanzees at three separate feedings. All of the staff were friendly and knowledgeable!
    Visited February 2024
    Traveled with friends
    Written February 6, 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles259 reviews
Excellent
182
Very good
49
Average
21
Poor
4
Terrible
3

Kathryn
Portsmouth, UK5 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2022 • Couples
We felt the price was incredibly high for the duration and quality of the visit. There were 8 of us on our trip each paying 88usd which is a significant price, for a half day you are travelling almost an hour each way on the boat (which is nice and scenic but nothing is pointed out en route so largely uninteresting if you don't know the area). The visit on the island is about 2 hours, you have an intro from Amos which was good but having visited gorillas and chimps already we found the quality of information quite limited compared to other tours we've done in Uganda and Rwanda. The chimp feeding itself is about 30 mins which was fascinating watching them eat, interact and clap (!) whilst holding their hands up to get more food. It didn't sound like there was any clear plan to actually rehabilitate the chimps which we found a bit strange and the facilities were all a little tired and needed some work (perhaps a COVID impact) so whilst it's great to see the chimps up close if you go on a good trek you will probably see them much more closely for the same or lower price with much more included. The food options after chimp viewing were also limited (3 choices) and very overpriced - the most expensive meal we ate in 2 weeks in Uganda and not the best! All in all, we felt the money paid was high given the facilities but hopefully as things get busier they can do some improvements and maybe reduce the cost for larger groups!
Written March 5, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Margaret H
Manchester, UK173 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2022
There were good and bad things about this day out. First, it was very complicated trying to book a half day trip to the sanctuary. The web site is not clear. It is best to have someone go to their office in Entebbe and find out which days there are already people planning to go as this makes it MUCH cheaper.
The trip out was actually frightening - the boat was tossed around by the wind, rain and waves and because of the bad weather the trip took twice as long as usual. We arrived soaking wet and cold.
They did give us hot drinks on arrival, then a talk about the chimps before watching a feeding session from high up a tower outside an eletric fence. The guide was good, interesting and informative. Happily the lake was much calmer when we returned to Entebbe,
Written September 13, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

John H
Westmount, Canada496 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020
The concept of the Sanctuary is honorable. The set-up on the island is both professional and interesting. It is all about the chimps, and it is interesting to learn and see them. We also had a very nice lunch at the island dining room. The trick is the boat ride for about 45 minutes out into Lake Victoria. It is a nice escape, but one also needs to be comfortable on the open water (in case of motion sickness).
Written January 29, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

alli1804
Newtown Square, PA77 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2022
Visited the Ngamba Island Chimp Sanctuary on a trip to Ugnada where we had tracked gorillas and chimps. Ngamba Island gave us an opportunity to see rescued chimps that are being rehabilitated to hopefully one day return to the wild. The trip started with a boat ride on beautiful Lake Victoria to the island. We were greeted by Amos at the dock and he explained the purpose and history of the island. We were greeted with tea in the gift shop where we were able to buy some items to help support the island and the local community. Amos gave us a little more information about the chimps and then we went to view their morning feeding. We watched the chimps come out of the forest to get their morning snacks. The island partners with University of Michigan to study behavior so some of the keepers were taking notes during the feeding. Amos answered all of our questions and then at the end of the feeding we returned to the boat for the ride back. During the ride back we crossed the equator and the captain let us know exactly where that was. Friends of mine had adopted one of the chimps for my 50th birthday and Amos was able to show me Sara and tell me more about her. It was a great way to finish up our experience in Uganda.
Written January 30, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Katie F
4 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2023 • Business
I fully recommend a visit to Ngamba chimpanzee sanctuary and if possible an overnight visit. The island is a forest sanctuary not only for the chimpanzees but also for birdlife. Sunset on the beach as the birds return from the lake to roost, bats emerging for the night and the sound of the chimps settling down for the night is magical, as is spending the night in a cabin on the beach.
The staff are very knowledgeable and work hard rehabilitating the chimpanzees rescued from the illegal wildlife trade. Watching the chimpanzees being fed and hearing their stories was a highlight of my trip.
In addition to caring for the chimpanzees on Ngamba island the trust also supports communities on the nearby islands and in western Uganda to address human-wildlife conflict challenges.
A fantastic organization to support with dedicated staff.
Written February 21, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jeffercakes
Peterborough16 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020
Really good half day trip with Ngamba Island.
Our guide was hugely knowledgeable and friendly. He answered our many questions excellently, and knew so much about the individual chimps.
Watching the chimps interact with each other and feeding was excellent. We also had the option of throwing the chimps food ourselves.
Written February 24, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Dear Guest, Greetings from Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary, Thank you so much for sharing the positive feedback and memorable experience while you visited the island. Hopefully next time you will visit full day or spend a night and have more time at the island. Once you visit the sanctuary you become one of our ambassadors,we kindly request you to recommend more friends and family to visit the Sanctuary and learn more the chimpanzees. #Stay safe and Cheers
Written May 12, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

PawelJK
Pennington, NJ131 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2023 • Couples
On Ngamba Island chimps are in an enclosure. You see them from behind a tall fence only during feeding. So it is a long boat ride, then less than an hour watching them fed (fruits thrown over the fence) and another boat ride back. Considering how expensive is the experience (we paid $200 per person) it was not worth it. Especially after seeing chimps in the wild in Kibale NP.
Written January 18, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Johanna P
10 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2023 • Family
Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary is a must go to place in Uganda, the whole experience there is impressive and amazing. Already the boat drive to the island is great, with a beautiful view on the lake and other islands. The atmosphere at the island is very welcoming and relaxing. You can see lots of birds, monitor lizards, crocodiles and of course the amazing chimps. The whole staff is very friendly, competent and cares about you. All of them are happy to chat with you and ask you if you need something. We did a one night stay there, we can just recommend to stay there at least for one night. Because then you can spend more time with the chimps, attend more different feedings and you can see and learn more about them. Because of our overnight stay we were allowed to feed them through throwing food into their area, this was an amazing experience. We were also able to attend the feedings in the evening and morning, therefore observe how they go to bed and wake up in the morning. In the afternoon we did a little boat cruise to see the chimps in the forest, they came to the beach to eat the fruits our guide brought for them. It was very amazing to see them in such a different surrounding. They fished out food of the water. We enjoyed this experience of our overnight stay. The food is delicious. For sunset they prepared us popcorn and a vine bottle we could choose. During our stay we had a guide, Amos, who was responsible for us. He showed us the whole area such as the chimp area or food storage. He was very competent, knew so much interesting stories about every chimp, you could see he loved all of them and cares about them. In the evening they made a campfire. Even some memebers of the stuff joined us and for exampke Amos told us impressive stories about his work and the chimps. We highly recommend to go to Ngamba Island and even do a overnight stay there. The whole experience was relaxing, we only heard nature sounds. It was heartwarming to see and experience the chimps and learn about all of their stories and how they managed to overcome their tragic stories and become happy chimps.
Written September 23, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Totosfamily
Dunedin, New Zealand194 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2022 • Couples
I get why the reviews are mixed but we did the full day option and paid full whack. After all, the excursions are a fundraiser for a fantastic conservation project. We were fortunate that we shared the boat over with Joshua (humble, informative and turns out CEO) and peppered the poor bloke with questions. Hilary was our earnest and informative guide. We learned a lot from him. The real highlight was feeding the Chimps on the beach which is only part of the full day experience. Without that, the day would have been less impressive I suspect. Lunch was awesome. Boat ride back fortunately calm. All up recommend the full day version. Price difference was basically $15 each for lunch.
Last tip - save yourself $100 taking the slightly longer canoe and then sponsor a Chimp. Love ya Tam Tam.
Written October 6, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Lucie V
11 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2022
I volunteered during one week at the Sanctuary in March 2022. It was an amazing experience where I learnt a lot about chimpanzees, their behavior, as well as the major threats and what is being implemented to ensure their conservation in Uganda. The caregivers and staff overall are extremely nice and warm people. They have accompanied me throughout the stay and across the different tasks (preparing food for chimps, feeding sessions, cleaning the facilities etc...). I have had the opportunity to come with them for a boat trip and a visit of the neighbour village they are supporting. Life on the island is very pleasant, everything is made for the volunteers (or guests) to be at ease.

Chimpanzees are very well-treated. They live in semi-freedom, as they can come back to the facilities to sleep and they are fed 4 times a day. Indeed, as they have been rescued mostly from illegal pet-trade, they cannot be reintroduced into wildlife.

For the reasons above mentioned, I fully recommend visiting or volunteering at the Sanctuary.
Written April 3, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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