This is where the endangered Rhinos are kept and the place is located close to Murchison Falls National Park. The Sanctuary is located in Nakasongola district on the Kampala-Gulu highway and it is seated on a 70sqkm piece of land and takes 3 hours to reach the Sanctuary from Kampala.
Uganda was one of the countries that had a big number of Rhinos in almost all the national parks but because of poaching for the horns and encroachment of the locals on the land during the insurgencies, Rhinos became endangered species because they started reducing in number.
The government of Uganda in collaboration with the Uganda Wildlife Authority and the Rhino fund had to establish a sanctuary to re-introduce the Rhinos to ensure that they are safe in 2005 with plans of introducing them back to the parks when their numbers increase. When the Sanctuary was established, there were 6 southern Rhinos but the number has increased to 32.
Ziwa rhino Sanctuary is where you can find the Rhinos in their natural habitat and tourists who come to visit usually track them on foot some of the Rhinos in Uganda can be found at Uganda Wildlife Educational Centre in Entebbe.
The sanctuary is blessed by skilled and trained rangers who are always on guard to keep the rhinos safe and also guide the tourists who are tracking the Rhinos in the wild.
Apart from Rhino tracking, there are also different activities like birdwatching, game drives in the sanctuary, nature walks, and shoebill canoe safaris among others which takes place at ziwwa rhino sanctuary. Tourists who go for the endangered white Rhino tracking, are able to watch the experience of the Rhinos moving around, feeding, and learn their breeding habits a reproduction while watching this, you are told to stand six to seven meters away from the rhinos whereby you can take photos of the animals.
The Rhino tracking permits cost;
- Adults……….$50 per person
- Children……$25 per person
East African Residents
- Adults…….$40 per person
- Children….$20 per person
- Adults……. Shs 30,000 per person
- Children……Shs 10,000 per person
Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary offers other different activities apart from Rhino tracking and these include;
The sanctuary is blessed with over 350 bird species thus making it a destination for bird lovers more especially the rare shoebill stork. The bird-watching activity is always done very early in the morning by a trained bird guide who will take you on a canoe trip in search of the birds where it is connected to the swamp.
The sanctuary has four bird trails where you can be able to view the different bird species in their habitats which include; White-crested Turaco, speckled breasted woodpecker, African cuckoo, blue-spotted dove, shoebill stork, Abdim’s stork, African black crake, Palm-nut vultures among others. A non-resident tourist will pay $30 per person for birdwatching.
In ziwa Rhino sanctuary nature walks are done either in the morning or in the afternoon. You can take any depending on your schedule. During the nature walks, you can be able to spot the different animals like; black and white monkeys, Uganda Kobs, Water bucks, reedbucks, warthogs, Oribis, gray duikers, hartebeests, vervet monkeys, ground squirrels, and chameleons among others.
These mostly start at 9:00 pm or 10:00 pm after dinner whereby you head out at night with a ranger and a spotlight to walk in the bush for two hours to view the nocturnal animals like the porcupine, aardvark, leopards and listen to the whispers of the night making a great memory for the tour.
Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary is blessed with 40 mammals offering a great opportunity to view the animals which include butterflies, mongoose, ground squirrels, vervet monkeys, oribi, bushbucks, hippos, and antelopes among others and this can be done when you go for a game drive.
Shoebill canoe safaris is an opportunity where you can be able to view the rare shoebill stork this canoeing starts very early at 6:00 am and it takes about four hours through the swamp which reaches the birding destination. During the shoebill safari, you will be able to view the African Fish eagle, pied kingfisher, great egret, giant kingfisher, malachite kingfisher, black crake, African jacana, African open-billed stork, Egyptian goose, goliath heron among others and during the safari, you can be able to take photos to make a great experience.
Accommodation at Ziwa Sanctuary includes; Amuka safari lodge, Campsites, Budget Bandas, Max hotel, New court view Hotel, and Talemwa guest house which are located in Nakitoma town whereby they offer bed, breakfast, and dinner.