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    Rubondo Island National Park Travel Guide 2024/2025: The Complete Guide to The Home of Chimpanzees

    7 minutes read
    7 minutes read
    aerial view of Rubondo island national park
    Aerial view of Rubondo Island National Park - Easy Travel Tanzania

    Rubondo Island National Park is one of the hidden gems in East Africa. This unique and diverse national park offers breathtaking natural beauty and is home to a thriving population of chimpanzees.

    If you’re a nature enthusiast, wildlife lover, or adventure seeker, Rubondo Island National Park should be on your travel bucket list for 2023/2024. In this comprehensive travel guide, we will explore the wonders of Rubondo Island National Park, provide essential information, and offer tips to make your visit an unforgettable experience.

    Getting to Rubondo Island National Park

    By Air: The most convenient way to reach Rubondo Island National Park is by air. The nearest major airport is Mwanza Airport, which is well-connected to other major cities in Tanzania.

    From Mwanza, you can take a domestic flight to Rubondo Island airstrip, located within the park.

    By Water: Another option is to travel by water. You can take a ferry from Mwanza to Rubondo Island, offering a scenic journey across Lake Victoria.

    This option is suitable for those who prefer a slower pace and want to enjoy the breathtaking views of the lake.

    Accommodation Options

    Rubondo Island National Park offers a range of accommodation options to suit different budgets and preferences. Whether you’re looking for luxury lodges or prefer a more rustic camping experience, there’s something for everyone.

    Here are some popular choices that you can opt for:

    1. Rubondo Island Camp

    This luxury camp offers spacious tents with comfortable beds, en-suite bathrooms, and stunning views of Lake Victoria. It provides excellent dining options and various activities, including guided chimpanzee tracking.

    Picture yourself waking up to the gentle sounds of nature, the soft rustling of leaves, and the distant calls of exotic birds. As you open your eyes, you find yourself in the lap of luxury at Rubondo Island Camp, nestled on the shores of Lake Victoria within the captivating Rubondo Island National Park.

    This is where adventure meets tranquility, where comfort harmonizes with the untamed wilderness. Rubondo Island Camp is a haven of elegance and serenity, offering an exceptional retreat for travelers seeking a touch of indulgence amidst the unspoiled beauty of nature.

    The camp embraces the eco-luxury concept, seamlessly blending into its surroundings with its harmonious design and environmentally friendly practices.

    2. Flycatcher Camp

    Flycatcher Camp offers comfortable tents and basic facilities for those seeking a more budget-friendly option. It is located near the airstrip and provides easy access to the park’s main attractions.

    Imagine a tranquil retreat in the heart of Rubondo Island National Park, where simplicity meets comfort and nature welcomes you with open arms. The Flycatcher Camp is a charming haven that captures the essence of adventure and relaxation in one delightful package.

    A warm and inviting ambiance greets you as you approach Flycatcher Camp. The camp blends harmoniously with its surroundings, seamlessly integrating into the natural landscape.

    The camp’s rustic charm and understated elegance immediately make you feel at home as if you’ve stumbled upon a hidden gem in the wilderness.

    3. Camping

    Rubondo Island National Park also has designated camping areas for visitors who prefer a closer connection with nature. Remember to bring your own camping gear and supplies.

    Picture yourself beneath a star-studded sky, surrounded by the untamed wilderness of Rubondo Island National Park. Camping in this pristine paradise is an experience that will ignite your sense of adventure and immerse you in the raw beauty of nature.

    Camping on Rubondo Island allows you to connect with the natural wonders that genuinely abound. Set up your tent in one of the designated camping areas, where the scent of the earth and the symphony of wildlife become your lullaby.

    As you lay in your cozy sleeping bag, the gentle breeze whispers through the trees, inviting you to surrender to the peaceful embrace of the night.

    Exploring the Wildlife

    1. Chimpanzee Tracking

    Rubondo Island National Park is famous for its chimpanzee population. Engage in an exciting chimpanzee tracking experience, accompanied by experienced guides who will lead you through the dense forest searching for these incredible primates.

    Observe their behavior, learn about their habitat, and contribute to their conservation efforts. Chimpanzee tracking is an awe-inspiring experience that allows you to witness the lives of these intelligent and fascinating creatures up close.

    2. Birdwatching

    The park is a paradise for bird enthusiasts, with over 400 species of birds inhabiting the island. Take a guided birdwatching tour and spot rare and colorful species such as the African fish eagle, gray parrot, and the African open-billed stork.

    Picture yourself standing amidst the vibrant foliage of Rubondo Island National Park, your binoculars poised and your senses heightened in anticipation. Birdwatching in this beautiful sanctuary is a symphony of colors, melodies, and encounters that ignites your passion for avian wonders.

    As you embark on your birdwatching adventure, the air is alive with the sweet melodies of chirping birds. The island is home to over 400 species, each a unique testament to the incredible diversity of avian life within these boundaries.

    With your field guide in hand and the guidance of expert birdwatching guides, you set off on a journey of discovery.

    3. Game Drives

    While chimpanzees steal the spotlight, Rubondo Island National Park is also home to diverse wildlife. Embark on a game drive and encounter animals like elephants, giraffes, hippos, crocodiles, and antelopes.

    Remember your camera to capture these incredible moments. Imagine yourself in an open-top safari vehicle, the wind tousling your hair as you venture into the untamed wilderness of Rubondo Island National Park.

    Game drives offer a thrilling adventure, an opportunity to witness the mesmerizing wildlife that roams these vast plains and dense forests. As your game drive begins, your senses sharpen in anticipation.

    The knowledgeable and experienced safari guide takes the wheel, navigating the rugged terrain with expertise and grace. With each turn, you embark on a journey of discovery, never knowing what majestic creatures may grace your path.

    Outdoor Activities

    1. Forest Walks

    Explore the lush green forests of Rubondo Island on foot. Take a guided forest walk and immerse yourself in the tranquility of nature.

    Discover hidden waterfalls, ancient trees, and encounter unique plant species along the way. Imagine stepping into a world of enchantment, surrounded by a tapestry of lush green foliage and a symphony of natural sounds.

    Forest walks in Rubondo Island National Park offer a captivating journey into the heart of the island’s verdant landscapes, allowing you to immerse yourself in the tranquility and raw beauty of the forest. As you begin your forest walk, the air is thick with the earthy scent of moss and damp soil.

    The towering trees form a cathedral-like canopy overhead, filtering the sunlight and casting a soft, mottled glow on the forest floor. With each step, you become part of this living, breathing ecosystem, your senses heightened by the sights, sounds, and scents that define this captivating realm.

    2. Canoeing and Fishing

    Lake Victoria offers excellent opportunities for canoeing and fishing enthusiasts. Rent a canoe or join a guided excursion to explore the lake’s shoreline, observe aquatic life, and catch Nile perch or tilapia.

    Imagine gliding silently through Rubondo Island National Park’s calm waters, your canoe propelled by your paddles. The rhythmic sound of your strokes blends harmoniously with the soothing symphony of nature surrounding you.

    Canoeing and fishing in this pristine paradise is a serene and immersive experience that connects you with the tranquil beauty of the park’s aquatic wonders. As you embark on your canoeing adventure, the vastness of Lake Victoria unfolds before you.

    The shimmering waters stretch as far as the eye can see, reflecting the vastness of the sky above. Your canoe becomes your exploration vessel, navigating through the intricate channels and bays crisscrossing the island.

    3. Boat Safaris

    Boat safaris in Rubondo Island National Park offer a unique and exhilarating way to explore the park’s diverse landscapes and encounter the rich wildlife that calls this watery wonderland home. As you embark on your boat safari, the lake’s vastness unfolds before your eyes.

    The horizon stretches endlessly, merging seamlessly with the sky, creating a sense of infinite possibilities. The boat becomes your vessel of discovery, carrying you to hidden corners and revealing the hidden gems of the park’s aquatic wonders.

    Best Time to Visit Rubondo Island National Park

    The best time to visit Rubondo Island National Park is during the dry season, typically from June to October. During this period, the weather is pleasant, and wildlife is more easily visible as they congregate near water sources.

    However, visiting during the wet season (November to May) has its own charm as the park transforms into a lush, green paradise, and birdlife thrives.

    Essential Tips

    Remember to obtain the necessary permits and adhere to park regulations during your visit. Respect the wildlife and maintain a safe distance from animals.

    Pack lightweight and breathable clothing and sturdy walking shoes for forest walks and treks.

    Bring insect repellent to protect yourself from mosquitoes and other insects.

    Carry a good-quality camera and binoculars to capture stunning wildlife and birdlife moments.

    Stay hydrated and carry a refillable water bottle.


    Rubondo Island National Park is a captivating destination that offers a unique combination of chimpanzee encounters, wildlife sightings, and outdoor adventures. Whether you’re interested in exploring dense forests, witnessing incredible bird species, or immersing yourself in the beauty of Lake Victoria, Rubondo Island National Park has something to offer every nature lover.

    Plan your visit for 2023/2024, follow this travel guide, and create memories that will last a lifetime in this remarkable home of chimpanzees.

    Musaddiq Gulamhussein - Owner - Easy Travel Tanzania

    About the author: Musaddiq

    Meet Musaddiq Gulamhussein, owner of Easy Travel Tanzania, a tour company creating life-changing safari experiences for over 35 years. Musaddiq has explored Tanzania, developing a deep understanding of the local cultures and traditions. Follow his journey and gain insights into the African Safari experience through Easy Travel's social media and blog.

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