Uganda was one of the African countries that was having a good number of rhinos in the 1950 & 1960s. By 1982, the country had none of these wild animals that are among the “big five” attracting tourists to East and Southern Africa. The rhino populations were completely wiped out due to poaching during the “dark ages” of Idi Amin rule, a period which was characterized by loose wildlife park management. In 2005 Uganda embarked on a project to bring back rhinos to Uganda.
The combined effort of several private and public bodies saw the establishment of the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary and the number of rhinos is steadily increasing. Six southern white rhinos were introduced here in 2005. Now there are fifteen.
The Ziwa Rhino and Wildlife Ranch is located in Nakasongola district, about 110 miles (177 kilometers) north of the capital Kampala. The sanctuary is a privately owned non-profit farm extending over 7,000 hectares of suitable savannah and native woodlands. This is the proud home of the only wild rhinos in Uganda.
The sanctuary is located 177km north of Kampala along the Gulu highway towards Murchison Falls National Park.
Visit the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary
Ziwa is the only place in Uganda where you will be able to see rhinos in the wild and the main activity here is rhino tracking. Presently the sanctuary is home to fifteen southern white rhinos. It has become increasingly popular with tourists; for rhino trekking, bird watching, nature walks and relaxation.
The sanctuary ranger will meet you upon arrival and give you an introduction to our sanctuary and some information about our rhinos. Depending on where the rhinos are, you will drive to the closest point and approach the rhinos while walking. You will then have a chance to watch the rhinos in their habitat at a very close and very safe point. This is another wonderful African experience. These creatures are magnificent and you will also have a chance to watch them at a close range while grazing.
Tracking these enormous creatures on foot through the savannah and swamps is a thrilling experience, and your specialist guide will share his expert knowledge on these impressive animals. The guides know each of the nine rhinos by name, from the huge, battle scarred males to the gentle females resting in the shade with their calves. Tracking excursions lasts for about 1-2 hours. Visit Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary in Uganda and see Rhinos up close in the wild of Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary.
Where to Stay
There are several options for those looking to stay near the sanctuary. At the sanctuary there is Amuka Safari Lodge offering overnight visitors a great place to stay. The lodge offers nice and clean lodging, tasty food and drinks for those wanting to spend a night on their way up or from Murchison Falls National Park. Camping is also possible at this lodge.
For those looking for cheaper accommodation in the nearby Masindi town. Several places offering accommodation may include;
- New court view hotel offering accommodation in hotel rooms and those interested in camping,
- Masindi hotel and
- Kabalega Resort,
- Masindi Kolping Guest house