Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary was established in October 1998 to care for these orphaned chimpanzees that have been rescued by the Uganda Wildlife Authority from poachers and/or traders, with no chance of survival back to the wild. Ngamba Island is 100 acres (approximately 40 hectares) of rainforest situated 23kms from Entebbe, near the equator in Lake Victoria, Uganda.
It supports a rich diversity of natural wildlife (over 120 species of bird, hippos, a crocodile, monitor lizards) and provides a variety of natural foods for the chimpanzees. The island is set up as an eco-friendly project with compost toilets, rainwater collection, proper waste management practices and solar energy (for electricity and hot water).
When young chimps like Indi first arrive on the island, they are not immediately mixed in with the adults.
Newcomers need to be protected from the adults because chimpanzees will not instantly accept a stranger into their group. New arrivals are kept in a large cage and every day a few of the resident adult chimps are brought in to become acquainted with them. Ngamba offers the traveller the opportunity to observe these great apes in their natural habitat. Saved from a life in captivity they have been bought to Ngamba for care and rehabilitation. For their safe keeping the chimpanzees are fenced into an area of the island where they are free to roam in the forest but are also fed twice a day from the viewing platforms. Day trips, overnight stays and also walks with the chimps in the forest can be arranged.
To walk with the chimps is quite an experience with them play biting and pulling your hair! Please note however that travellers require extensive inoculations to walk with the chimps and this should be checked with World Primate Safaris before booking. Accommodation on the island is in smart self contained tents with views out over Lake Victoria.