In August of 2019, I had the pleasure of volunteering with rhinos in Uganda, Eastern Africa. It was an incredible experience and I learnt so much about the Rhino Fund of Uganda and the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary where I stayed. Together, they run a conservation program for the only rhinos in the whole of Uganda. There are so many amazing places to go horse riding close to this reserve too, which I will be telling you more about in this blog post.
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Main image: photo by Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary
Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary is located near the town Masindi where, if you are planning on making a stop before heading over to the sanctuary, I highly recommend spending the night at New Court View. I did my volunteer placement with The Rhino Fund Uganda. I met inspiring people here who fight for the conservation of these beautiful animals day after day. I had the pleasure of working together with biologists as we researched the most important grasses and shrubs for rhinos to thrive on. And, most of the day I spent in the bush, with rangers that taught me so much about each individual rhino as we monitored them for days on end, to keep them safe. Unfortunately they are currently not offering the volunteer program anymore, but don't worry! You are still able to visit this rhino sanctuary, and I will be telling you more about Ziwa below. The Rhino Fund Uganda is currently busy restructuring and rebranding after Covid. They also have some incredible projects in the works as they are creating a new rhino sanctuary in Uganda and identifying the best habitats for rhino relocation. You can help them in this amazing effort by donating.
Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary offers several activities, each of which contribute to their efforts in wildlife conservation. Here, you have the opportunity to do on-foot rhino trekking which is a fantastic experience for anyone who loves these animals. You can also do a Shoebill trek and canoe ride. The Shoebill stork is a very impressive bird! Last but not least, you can do birding and nature walks.
Ziwa also has a fantastic lodge, where I had the pleasure of staying in room Malaika during my time on the sanctuary. They also have a campsite. Staying at the lodge is a great experience, as the forests around you are kept completely wild. The sounds and absolute darkness in the night are amazing. The staff is friendly and helpful, and the food is fantastic. Their hearty breakfasts are just what you need for a long day out in the bush.
The Serengeti Migration horse riding safari in the Ngorongoro conservation area of Tanzania. This once in a lifetime horse riding holiday is a point to point trail that follows the great migration of the wildebeest and zebra of the Serengeti, which happens once a year. You can book this ride only in January, February and March to witness this spectacle. In one of my previous posts I also spoke about how these horse safaris are incredibly important for wildlife conservation in these areas, which is another bonus to a very special experience. The same horse safari company also organises an amazing Kilimanjaro Elephant safari on horseback
Next year January, one of my lifelong dreams will finally come true. I will be joining a horseback riding safari in the Masai Mara of Kenya. I have had the pleasure of visiting this national park once before and have always dreamt about riding horses through the Lion King-esque area. At this time, I can't tell you all that much about the safari as I haven't been yet, however do stay tuned if you're interested in riding horses here in the future. I will be riding with Safaris Unlimited, and you are free to contact me to book your safari here too!
If you are looking for another place to volunteer with rhinos, check out this blog post about one of my favourite places on the planet: Imire!
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