Where can one see Rhinos in Uganda? For visitors interested in seeing rhinos in their natural habitat, Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary in the northern part of Uganda is the place to be. The rhino sanctuary is the only place in Uganda where tourists are able to see rhinos in the wild and the sanctuary’s close proximity to Murchison Falls National Park makes it the perfect stopover destination for tourists on a Uganda wildlife safari in Murchison falls national park.

The rhino sanctuary lies in the Nakasongola area, some 176 kilometers from Kampala on the Gulu High route to Murchison Falls. Ziwa Ranchers, a private, non-profit organization, manages the refuge in collaboration with the Uganda Wildlife Authority and Rhino Fund Uganda.

The Ziwa rhino and Wildlife refuge was founded in 2005 with the goal of reintroducing the rhinoceros species to Uganda and increasing its population. The sanctuary’s objective is to “create a sustainable rhinoceros population and reintroduce rhinos to their natural habitat in Uganda’s protected areas.”

Where can one see Rhinos in Uganda?
Where can one see Rhinos in Uganda?

Uganda was originally home to the black and northern white rhinoceros, both of which were endemic to the nation. However, the species was declared extinct in 1982 as a result of a continual succession of poaching operations, as well as extended civil conflicts and encroachment on its natural habitat.

Since its inception, the rhino sanctuary has worked relentlessly to guarantee that the rhino species is reintroduced into Uganda and that the country’s rhinoceros population grows.

The Ziwa rhino sanctuary is located on 70 square kilometers of land and is surrounded by a 2 meter electrified fence to protect the rhinos from predators and poachers. The sanctuary has roughly 78 park rangers and security guards on duty 24 hours a day, seven days a week. In addition, the sanctuary is home to over 40 species of animals and reptiles, including monkeys, crocodiles, hippos, antelopes, and approximately 300 bird species.

Rhino Trekking Experience in Uganda.

From January 2010, Ziwa rhino sanctuary has been the only place in Uganda where visitors may observe rhinos in the wild. The sanctuary began its conservation mission with only six rhinos: four from Solio Ranch in Kenya and two from Disney Animal Kingdom in Florida, in the United States of America. The sanctuary currently houses 22 southern white rhinos.

Visitors may take a rhino trekking adventure trip at Ziwa rhino sanctuary, where they can witness rhinos up close grazing and relaxing in the park’s savannah grasslands. Most tour operators, such as Explore Rwanda Tours, combine rhino trekking in Ziwa with a wildlife safari to Uganda’s Murchison Falls National Park in the north.

A rhino trekking tour in Uganda’s Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary costs $50 USD per person. Other activities available to visitors to Ziwa Sanctuary include bird watching, Shoebill trekking, canoe riding, and nature hikes, among others.

How long is rhino trekking in Uganda?

Visitors can trek rhinoceros in the sanctuary for 1–2 hours, depending on where the rhinos are located. To get the most out of your rhino trekking experience in Ziwa, tourists should wear closed shoes (ideally hiking boots), long trousers, and insect repellent lotion to keep the nasty bugs and flies at bay. Don’t forget to bring a bottle of mineral water with you to stay hydrated on your journey.

When is the best time to see rhinos in Uganda?

The optimal times for guests to experience rhino trekking in Ziwa rhino sanctuary are between 8 and 10 a.m. and 4-6 p.m. However, those who want to trek rhinos in the sanctuary can do so throughout the day.

Where can one see Rhinos in Uganda?
ziwa rhino sanctuary

How to get to Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary in Uganda.

The Ziwa rhino reserve is conveniently placed on the Gulu-Kampala Highway, 176 kilometers from Kampala. Visitors traveling to the sanctuary must deviate from the Nakitoma trade hub, which is approximately 7.3 kilometers distant. To reach the rhino refuge in Ziwa, visitors must take a 14-minute journey from the trade area.

After a game drive at Murchison Falls National Park, visitors may also visit the rhino sanctuary at Ziwa. The refuge is roughly 125 kilometers (2½ hours) from the national park.

Guidelines to follow while doing Rhino Trekking in Uganda.

While visiting Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary for your rhino trekking safari in Uganda, visitors are advised to maintain the following rules and regulations;

  • Avoid littering rubbish while at the rhino sanctuary.
  • Avoid feeding and touching the animals given that they are not habituated and might end up attacking you.
  • Avoid wearing bright colors while trekking rhinos at the sanctuary.
  • Avoid driving around or taking nature walks without a guide.
  • Jogging and cycling are prohibited in the rhino sanctuary.
  • Drones and firearms are prohibited in the rhino sanctuary.
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