Gombe Stream National Park : Gombe Stream is an untamed place of lush trees and magnificent lake vistas, located on the white sandy shores of Lake Tanganyika. It’s one of just two spots in Tanzania where you can go chimp trekking. It’s a wonderful choice for travelers looking for a private safari experience when combined with Katavi and the Mahale Mountains.
This fragile stretch of land is Tanzania’s smallest national park, at only 52 square kilometers. It is known for Jane Goodall’s chimpanzee research, which began in the 1960s, making it the world’s longest-running study of its sort. Gombe Stream National Park has a sandy beach surrounded by steep slopes and river valleys of forested mountains, comparable to Mahale. Despite its small size, it has a diverse range of landforms, including undulating grasslands, evergreen forests, and steep slopes covered in semi-deciduous forest.
It has become a small, isolated environment and a good chimpanzee habitat, bordered on the west by Lake Tanganyika and on the east by the high rift escarpment. It was first designated as a game reserve in 1943, but it wasn’t until Goodall’s research that it was designated as a national park in 1968.
Climate and weather
Gombe has two seasons: a beautiful, mostly cloudless dry season (May to October) and a humid, stormy wet season (November to April). The absence of cold nights is one of the best aspects of the dry months. It cools down to roughly 15°C (59°F), which isn’t too horrible. When it rains, a lot of water can be spilled on the park, but it usually happens late in the day and doesn’t persist for long.
Location and getting there.
Tanzania’s Gombe National Park is located in East Africa. On the shores of Lake Tanganyika, about north of Kigoma, Take a boat from Kigoma town to Gombe National Park, or arrange an international flight to Kilimanjaro International Airport in Arusha or Julius Nyerere International Airport in Dar es Salaam.
It takes roughly four hours to travel from Kigoma to the park by public motor boat or lake taxi. In most situations, though, your operator will book you a flight to Kigoma Airport and a private motor boat to Gombe, which will take less than an hour. Trip companies frequently book charter flights as part of a tour package, but numerous local carriers offer domestic flights to Kigoma.
Wildlife In the park
Gombe is becoming a more attractive tourist destination due to its diversity. Beachcomber olive baboons, red colobus, red-tailed monkeys, blue monkeys, and vervet monkeys are among the primates found in Gombe. In the area, red-tailed and blue monkeys have been found to hybridize. Over 200 bird species and bush pigs live in the park. There are numerous snake species, as well as hippopotami and leopards on occasion. Visitors to the park can go on chimpanzee treks through the forest and swim and snorkel in Lake Tanganyika, which is home to about 100 different species of colorful cichlid fish.
Tourist Attraction in the park
The habituated chimpanzees, of which there are currently over 150, are well-known in the neighborhood. Their instantly recognizable pant-hoot sound heightens the anticipation, and you’re likely to come within meters of these extraordinary creatures. With 98 percent of their DNA shared with humans, you get a sense of comprehension when you make eye contact, almost as if you’re both aware of the thin line that separates you. There are also beachcomber olive baboons, red-tailed colobus, and vervet monkeys in this ideal primate territory, but they mostly remain in the forest canopy to avoid becoming supper for the chimps. Bush pigs and elephants, as well as the occasional hippo, may be seen. Rare leopard sightings have also been reported. There are approximately 200 bird species, and visitors interested in marine life can snorkel among hundreds of colorful cichlids in Lake Tanganyika.
It has simpler access than Mahale because it is closer to the local town of Kigoma (where you will find the little airport). The only way to get there is by boat from Kigoma, which has regular connecting flights from Dar es Salaam. To help ensure monkey sightings, we recommend staying for two or more than two days. During the rainy seasons, from February to June and November to mid-December, the chimps are less active, making it easier to spot them. The dry seasons, from July to October, and late December, are ideal for photographers.
What to do Gombe national park
Trekking with chimps, hiking, swimming, snorkeling, and witness the famed dhow makers at work are among things to do in Gombe national park. The main activity in Gombe national park is chimp trekking, but you can also walk down the coastline near the resident baboons, observe waterfalls, and swim in the lake. Aside from chimp trekking, you can see gorgeous primates like blue and red-tailed monkeys and colobus monkeys.
The common African fish eagle, Common paradise flycatcher, Tropical boubou, Livingstone’s turaco, African broadbill, double-toothed barbet, crowned eagle, and Golden-rumped tinker bird are among the nearly 200 bird species found in Gombe national park. The months of November to April are ideal for bird watching in Gombe National Park, as migratory species from Europe and northern Africa arrive.
Snorkeling and diving
Lake Tanganyika is an excellent diving and snorkeling location. The water maintains a constant 25 degrees Celsius all year, and visibility can reach 20 meters in the dry season. Cichlids abound in the lake, which is brilliant and colorful. This lake is home to 98 percent of the 250 known cichlid species. The majority of the diving takes place along the shore, making it ideal for beginners and intermediate divers.
You’ll be accompanied by a local expert. It’s crucial to know that some regions of the lake have crocodiles, hippos, and Bilharzia, so consulting a local expert is required. Kayaking, wakeboarding, and water skiing are among the additional water sports that may be accessible through your lodging.
Sundowners on Lake Tanganyika
Climbing onto a dhow (traditional boat) and joining the mob of lantern-laden dug-out canoes headed out to fish for the evening is one of the most popular nighttime activities. On a 1.5-hour excursion, you can have romantic sundowners while watching the sunset across the lake.
When is the best time to visit Gombe Stream National Park?
During the dry season, from June to September, is the best time to explore Gombe Stream National Park. This time of year, trekking through the forest is easier, and the chances of encountering chimps increase. From November to April, Gombe has one continuous wet season, which we recommend avoiding because nature walks are less pleasurable in the mud and rain, and they are more likely to be canceled.
What to Wear and bring in your safari Visiting Gombe National Park
To avoid any regrets, dress appropriately for the Tanzania safari to make your experience real more than your expectation. You should bring only what you need for the walk and make wise clothing choices. It is suggested that you bring neutral clothing, such as khaki, mid-tone brown, olive, and green colors, rather than bright, white, or dark colors. To avoid being pricked by thorns or sharp plants and stones, make sure you bring long pants, long-sleeved shirts, socks, shoes, and gardening gloves with you. In Tanzania, mosquitoes and tsetse flies are plentiful, so bring bug repellant. Due to the rough terrain in Tanzania, hiking boots and water-resistant shoes are also recommended for game drives for maximum comfort.
ACCOMMODATION AT GOMBE NATIONAL PARK
Depending on your budget, you can stay in luxury, mid-range, or economy lodges or hotels while trekking. Gombe forest lodge, Mbali mbali gombe lodge, Mbuzi mawe Serena camp, and Gombe bandas are just a few of the hotels/lodges that may accommodate you while in Gombe safari. These establishments have welcoming employees who will provide all kinds of hospitality in Tanzania to thrill while on Tanzania Safaris Tours. Bathrooms, hot tubs, and toilets are available in the rooms. There is only one rest house and a luxury tented camp inside Gombe.