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Kidepo NP Celebrates 50th Year

Kidepo Valley National Park, one of the most remote National Parks in Uganda located in the North Easterly region, is celebrating 50 years of National Park status this year. There are plans within the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) to celebrate the milestone with a Golden Jubilee year!

The park itself covers an area of 1442km² and borders Sudan and Kenya (if only over a 5km strip). The celebrations have already begun for the park this year, as it was recently named the third best national park in all of Africa by the CNN Travel site, citing huge herds of wildlife including buffalo, ostrich, giraffe and even cheetah, and undisturbed natural scenery, no doubt a result of its remote location.

'Kidep' means 'to pick' in the native Karamajong and was taken up by the first colonialists in the area as the name, transforming it into 'Kidepo' for ease of pronounciation. In 1958 it was gazetted as a game reserve and in 1962 it was given National Park status by the newly established Ugandan government.

Uganda is one of the most diverse and beautiful countries in the African continent and is also one of the most protected. National Parks are scattered throughout the whole country and Volcanoes Safaris operate on the borders of three of them at Queen Elizabeth, Mgahinga and Bwindi Impenetrable Forest (as well as Parc National des Volcans in Rwanda).

For more information about visiting these spectacular wildlife parks, contact a member of our sales team.

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To protect gorillas from disease, no children under 15 years are allowed to go gorilla tracking. For guests booking a stay at Virunga Lodge, please note that the minimum age limit for children at Virunga Lodge is 12 years.

Safari Activities

Chimpanzee Tracking

Tracking chimpanzees in their natural habitat, as they swing from the branches in the canopy high above the forest floor is nothing short of exhilarating. The chimps effortlessly cross and scamper through the trees above the gorge, and visitors on the other hand must cross the river using natural bridges in order to keep up with the chimps. So although the walk usually lasts only 2–3 hours, descending the steep gorge and crossing the log bridges over the river requires some agility and fitness.

Chimpanzee tracking is also available in nearby Kalinzu, a forest reserve 30 minutes drive from Kyambura Gorge Lodge where there is a community of about 40 habituated chimpanzees.