Gombe National Park is situated along the Western border of Tanzania and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). The park lies 16kms North of Kigoma town on the shores of the scenic Lake Tanganyika. It was founded in 1968 and occupies an area of only 35sq.kms which makes it also one of the smallest parks in Tanzania.

Gombe National Park is popular for Jane Goodall, the renowned primatologist who lived in the present park’s forest for a long time exploring more about how the endangered chimpanzees behave. It is one of the exceptional safari destination visitors on Tanzania safari should consider a must-visit when it comes to authentic primate experiences. The terrain of Gombe National Park is characterized by steep valleys, lush forest, vegetation which ranges from grassland to woodland and tropical rain-forest.

Attractions in Gombe National Park


Gombe National Park prides itself as a home to diverse wildlife species regardless of its small size and it is what distinguishes it from other parks. The different species of wildlife to sight on Tanzania safari in this park include a variety of primate species including chimpanzees, red colobus monkeys, olive baboons, vervet monkeys, red-tailed monkeys, blue monkeys and many more. It also hosts forest pigs, several snakes, leopards, hippos, cichlid fish and some antelopes to mention but a few.

Activities to do in Gombe National Park

Chimpanzee tracking/trekking

Most tourists on Tanzania safari come to Gombe National Park mainly for chimpanzee tracking. Chimpanzees in this park were studied by Jane Goodall and a visit here to track these rare primates lets you explore in-depth about their daily behaviors and take as many photos as you can. Note only persons above 15 years are allowed to go track chimpanzees and the guide fee is $23.60.


Bird watching in this park involves sighting birds like Peter’s twin spots, fish eagles and many others. Birding experience requires you to have a good camera and pair binoculars.

Hiking/nature guided walks

Nature walks in Gombe National Park take you via the shores of Lake Tanganyika, Kakombe, Mkenke waterfalls and offer you the opportunity to enjoy the incredible view of scenic mountains, valleys, and forests as well as woodland, grassland.

Other safari activities to take part in Tanzania safari in Gombe National Park include visiting Henry Stanley’s site, sport fishing, cultural tours, boat rides, kayaking and many more.

Best time to visit Gombe National Reserve

Depending on what your travel needs are, tracking chimpanzees in Gombe National Reserve is considered easier during the wet or rainy season and this occurs in the months of February, March, April, May, June, and November to mid-December. During the rainy/wet months of the year, chimpanzees stay in the nearby area since there is plenty to feed. The dry months are the best to visit Gombe National Park if you are interested in taking the best pictures of chimpanzees. The dry months in this park occur starting July, August, September, October, and late December.

Where to stay in Gombe National Reserve

Visitors on Tanzania safari in Gombe National Reserve can spend their nights in Gombe Forest Lodge, Gombe Lodge, Jane Goodall Rest house, Kasekela Luxury Campsite, Gombe Tented Camp, Kasekela Public Campsite.

How to get to Gombe National Reserve

Gombe National Park is reachable by boat or by air. By boat, you can take a motorboat starting from Kigoma Town to Gombe National Reserve. By air, there are scheduled flights starting from Julius Nyerere Airport/Kilimanjaro Airport to Kigoma Airstrip from where your tour operator can charter a private motorboat for you to Gombe National Park.

Gombe National Park

Chimpanzee Tracking in Tanzania

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