Lwiro Chimpanzee Sanctuary Congo. Travelers Guide.

Welcome to Lwiro Chimpanzee  Watching Experience  guide to Democratic Republic Of  Congo. An authentic and  unique guide featuring  travel details including; How to get there, when to Visit, safari lodges, safaris to Kahuzi biega National Park among others,as well as trusted tour operators.

Located in the South East of Democratic Republic of Congo, Lwiro now situated in Bukavu town is just 10km  from Kahuzi Biega national Park and has been graded 3rd most prominent site by IUCN for Chimpanzee Conservation  in Congo. Lwiro Chimpanzee Sanctuary is a popular choice for orphaned Chimpanzee  enthusiasts all over the world. The Sanctuary was established by 2 Congolese institutions including Congolese Institute for Nature Conservation (ICCN) and National Center for Research in Natural Sciences (CRSN),  during the last years of the second Congolese war that resulted to high rate of poaching chimpanzees, leaving behind orphaned children of chimpanzees.

Chimpanzee sanctuary in Congo-LwiroThe hope of spotting these chimpanzees, in their home is the most exciting kind of experience . The feeling of taking a safari in this sanctuary makes adrenaline rush through your blood. The Sanctuary currently protects approximately 105 monkeys of different species as well as other species such as parrots, turtles and a porcupine.

However,it charges upto $500 to all the other volunteering  programs,each month, on top of other visits to the sanctuary. Lwiro receives both international and local tourists. Although the sanctuary is situated in a political unstable region, it is regarded as the most prominent and safe place to visit and welcomes upto about 2000 to 3000 visitors annually.

The Sanctuary was set up by two National Parks of Virunga National Park and Kahuzi Biega National Park, alongside other rescue teams who decided to take care of the orphan chimpanzees  who became homeless after the loss of  their parents and their families.Today, the Sanctuary is giving most chimpanzees a second chance to live again and protecting them in the wild, hence  helping them to recover from psychological torture. Some NGOs have also joined the fight for the success of the chimpanzee sanctuary.

Have a passion of traveling to Africa and a soft spot for Chimpanzees. Chimpanzee  watching experience and volunteering can take you to the farthest and most -traveled reaches to Democratic Republic of Congo while at the same time giving you the opportunity to get to know more about your closest  cousins.

The main attraction of tourists and Chimpanzee enthusiasts to this Sanctuary is that the majestic view of Chimpanzees with all its wildness in this Sanctuary. This park is a natural home for the rare species of chimpanzees that are facing extinction and wealthy flora and fauna with of magnificent Baby Monkey parrots, turtles and  porcupines, among others all of whom have been victims of poaching and pet trade,  which makes it a heaven for Chimpanzee watchers. It is a place that draws huge tourist inflow and offers excellent sightseeing.

Being part of the Pan African Sanctuary Alliance, Lwiro Chimpanzee Sanctuary has offered many programs, through which  it receives funds to help run the sanctuary as well as achieving certain goals including Emergency responses, protecting primates of the region, rescuing and caring for the  species that have been rescued, capacity building, wildlife law enforcement, training, community support, education and research.

Visiting these Chimpanzees shows your great concern upon their upbringing, as well as giving them a better life and helping them find their own freedom. Getting involved gives you an opportunity to get  out in the field, to participate  in the conservation work. This  gives  them a second chance to interact with humans, which makes a difference, hence making your long time dream come true.

What You Ought To Know about Lwiro Chimpanzee Sanctuary

lwiro chimpanzee sanctuary and conservationLwiro Chimpanzee Sanctuary, is now the most important primate Sanctuary habitat in Congo, that without it’s existence, there wouldn’t be any confiscation of captive animals. It is because of this reason, that the Sanctuary is regarded “a center of law enforcement”.

Currently, the chimpanzees and the monkeys, have without a doubt become ambassadors for their wild cousins. Not only does Lwiro Chimpanzee Sanctuary encloses primates but involves other activities among others;Rescue, rehabilitation, and planned reintroduction of confiscated wildlife, Conservation and environmental education, Community development, health, and sanitation projects, Research programs and activities,Local and international tourism, Collaboration with local and international organizations

How To Get There

Being within the proximity of the  Kahuzi Biega National Park, the sanctuary is  easily accessible by road ,and  Air.

From Bukavu, it takes a bout a 50 km drive by road to Lwiro  Chimpanzee Sanctuary,  10km drive from kahuzi Biega National park and 5 km from Kavuma Airport Bukavu. Whereas, You will have to fly to Kigali international Airport, after then you will be transferred by road to Bukavu.

Lwiro Chimpanzee Sanctuary , the one and only santuary in Congo, is the prime Chimpanzee destination for the Primate loving as well as nature loving tourists from all over the world.

 When To Visit Lwiro Chimpanzee Sanctuary

So, the visit to Lwiro Chimpanzee Sanctuary is truly memorable and unforgettable. It remains open throughout the year. The famous Southern and North Kivu zone  welcomes the visitors in large numbers during the peak season from  long period of the months of mid may to September allowing a number of  visitors to visit, the gates of the Sanctuary get closed late at 6:00pm and no drive  is allowed in/out of the sanctuary is allowed at that time.

In conclusion, The Centre Intégral d’Education de Lwiro (CIEL) is managed by  a Spanish NGO Coopera alongside  Centre de Recherches en Sciences Naturelles (CRSN), a research center  that was  established in 1950s by the Belgians, the CIEL privide  a tour to  visitors through the  human and natural history of the region. Apart from the primates attractions, the sanctuary as well show cases other attractions including; a biodiversity room showcasing the high endemicity of species in the region, an anthropological center, a botanical garden, a walk through the CRSN and its herpetology lab, and a magnificent. library built by the Belgians.

What Should I Wear?

This is one of the first questions you will ask once you are ready to begin your  safari. However, there are many travelers who think they know what makes for great safari clothing, but actually have very little idea about what works and what doesn’t work well to improve your safari experience. At the end of the day, getting the best advice and packing the correct safari clothing will add to your enjoyment of your safari.

We always suggest packing;

4 Shirts (two long-sleeve and two short-sleeve)
2 jackets (one heavier than the other)
2 Safari pants.
1 linen button-up shirt.
1 Leggings for layering if it’s very cold.
1 water proof / windproof and sun proof Hat. etc