Each year, Tacugama welcomes about 3,500 visitors. By far the best way to visit Tacugama is as part of a day trip in the cool hills surrounding Freetown. The 100-acre sanctuary is located in a spectacular rainforest habitat in the hills of the Western Area Peninsular National Park. You can get there by car as well as public transportation.
Tacugama offers tours year-round, twice a day, at 10:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. The tours last 90 minutes and coincide with feeding times to give you the best opportunity to observe the chimpanzees. Tour group sizes are limited, so call ahead if you have more than five people in your party. Tour costs for nationals are Le 30,000 for adults and Le 10,000 for children. For others, the tour costs Le 110,000 (about $15) for adults and Le 40,000 (about $5) for children.
If you’d like to enjoy the rainforest at night, think about staying overnight in one of Tacugama’s eco-lodges. There are six in all, with four located at tree-canopy level. The next morning, explore nearby Krio villages and take in the beauty of surrounding waterfalls with a stroll on one of Tacugama’s well marked nature trails. For rates and reservations, please click here.
Tacugama has a gift shop, and there are restaurants nearby.
For more information, please check out the Tacugama visitor page.
TACUGAMA CHIMPANZEE SANCTUARY
Near the Village of Regent, Sierra Leone
Tacugama, just a 30-minute drive from Sierra Leone’s capital, Freetown, cares for over 80 chimpanzees in several large forested enclosures. Tacugama operates dynamic volunteer, internship and research programs to national and international volunteers and students. Volunteering at Tacugama will give you the opportunity to develop your skills, understand more of the challenges facing wildlife and habitat conservation, and learn much about the history of Sierra Leone.
Volunteers participate in all aspects of our work and the volunteer role is varied. Volunteer activities include: assisting with chimpanzee husbandry activities such as preparing food, cleaning enclosures and making enrichment (but no direct contact with chimps); assisting our community outreach team with education and reforestation activities; assisting our rangers on forest anti-poaching patrols; assisting with behavioural data collection and research; marketing and administration; and maintenance tasks. In order to ensure you get the best experience here at Tacugama, we try to match your skill set with sanctuary requirements.
Though not far from the city, volunteers at Tacugama will be living at the sanctuary, which is located inside the Western Area Peninsular National Park. Our volunteer house has electricity during the day and solar energy at night. Volunteers have a private bedroom and share two communal bathrooms,a living area and kitchen. There are plenty of opportunities to explore Sierra Leone – it is a very safe country with beautiful beaches, fun nightlife, interesting culture, and wonderful wildlife. We endeavour to ensure that volunteers get lots of opportunities on their days off to enjoy these activities.
If you would like to contribute to the conservation of critically endangered Western chimpanzees and experience the beauty of Sierra Leone, volunteer at Tacugama!
WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW
Number of Volunteers
Minimum Length of Stay
$800 for 2 weeks
$950 for 3 weeks
$1100 for 4 weeks
$1350 for 5 weeks
$1500 for 6 weeks
$1750 for 8 weeks
$2250 for 12 weeks
EcoLodge Accommodation at Additional Cost
On-site: private bedroom; shared bathroom, kitchen and lounge; wifi; running water; and electricity
3 per day: cooked lunch & dinner; breakfast provisions
Nearby – weekly transport to supermarket provided
Volunteers are encouraged to find 5 candidates for the chimpanzee adoption program
One of six eco-lodges for visitors who want to overnight at Tacugama.