Last Updated on March 28, 2019 by Jeremy
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As far as Africa safaris are concerned, Uganda one of our favorite trips to date.
This was not just because we went chimpanzee and gorilla trekking in Uganda, but also because of the other wildlife viewing opportunities at places like Queen Elizabeth National Park and Murchison Falls National Park.
But out of all of the animals we spotted during our travels around the country, one was favorite was missing: the rhino.
This is because Uganda no longer has any rhinos remaining in the wild, as poaching and other activities rendered them extinct in the country. But conservation efforts are underway to bring their population back, and for those wanting to help out and see these beautiful creatures, you simply must visit Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary.
Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary is a Must Visit Near Murchison Falls
Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary is a non-profit animal sanctuary located in central Uganda, just southeast of Murchison Falls National Park.
The sanctuary was established in 2005 as a means to reintroduce rhinos back into Uganda, and many zoos, conservation centers, and even Disney's Animal Kingdom sent rhinos to the facility in order to assist the effort.
As of 2019 the sanctuary has approximately 20 rhinos, a successful breeding program, armed rangers overseeing and protecting the rhinos daily, and plans to, one day soon at least, re-introduce rhinos back into the wild at Uganda's National Parks.
Visitors to the park are actively helping this conservation effort, as the fees go directly into the program in order to help save these gentle giants.
What is the Rhino Trek Like?
Much like other treks in Uganda, our visit to see the Rhinos at Ziwa was on foot- yes, you read that right.
But since rangers spend every minute of the day with the rhinos, they are much easier to “find” and can be reached, in most instances at least, in just a short walk after a drive through the park (depending on location in any given day) to spend up to an hour viewing these stunning creatures.
During our visit, we were fortunate enough two see four rhinos, each a mother with child- one being the youngest in the park born just a few months earlier!
This is exceptionally rare as quite often the rhinos are spread out such that you see only one or two at any given time (pending how many are congregating in the “group”).
So while the exact number of rhinos you may see will vary, making the trip out to the sanctuary is still highly recommended as it was an experience, much like the other treks in Uganda, that we will never forget.
For those who decide to visit Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary, the biggest things to keep in mind is that you need ample bug spray and sunscreen as the park is quite open without a lot of tree cover. Likewise, in the rainy season, the guides may provide boots to wear as the park is known to get quite muddy.
Overall, we highly suggest visiting this park in order to support the conservation effort to help reintroduce this gorgeous animal back into Uganda!
Thinking of taking a safari in Africa? Check out Churchill Safaris who we used for our own private tour of Uganda. Or, if you're looking to head out with a group to save a bit of cash, check out Intrepid Travel or G Adventures! And since this is an adventure activity, do not forget to pick up travel insurance before you depart as well!
Book a Tour of Uganda
Looking to take a tour of Uganda?
Check out the Culture and Wildlife of Uganda and Rwanda tour from G Adventures to see sights and the mountain gorillas with like-minded travelers!
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About the Author: Jeremy is a full-time travel writer based in Pittsburgh and primary author of this site. He has been to 70+ countries on five continents and seeks out new food, adventure activities, and off-the-beaten-path experiences wherever he travels.