Wildlife travel: What animals can I see in Uganda?

Head to East Africa to see such amazing wildlife as the endangered mountain gorilla, the wonderful white rhino, the tallest animal in the world and a truly spectacular sunflower.


Illustration by Dawn Cooper


1. White rhino, Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary

White rhino © Eye Ubiquitous / Getty

White rhinos were reintroduced to Ziwa in 2005 and it’s still the only location in Uganda where you can see them in the wild. The 7,000-hectare sanctuary is home to 17 individuals.

2. Rothschild’s giraffe, Murchison Falls National Park

Rothschild’s giraffe © Ariadne Van Zandbergen / Getty

One of the rarest subspecies, Rothschild’s is the tallest animal in the world and has five horns – other giraffes have two.

3. Shoebill, Mabamba Wetlands

Shoebill © Arterra / Getty

With its shoe-like bill ending in a ferocious hook, this is one of the most extraordinary birds in Africa, if not the world. The shoebill is frequently described as a stork, but it’s probably more closely related to pelicans.

4. Lion, Queen Elizabeth National Park

Lion © Rebecca Yale / Getty

Lions in the Ishasha sector of the park are famous for climbing and resting in trees, reputedly one of only two populations in the world that behave in such a way. Lolling about on a branch may offer the cats relief against the tetse flies or the heat.

5. Mountain gorilla, Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

Mountain gorilla © Danita Delimont / Getty

Mountain – as opposed to lowland – gorillas only became known to the western world in 1902, and are one of the most sought-after animals for wildlife lovers across the planet.

6. Giant groundsel, Rwenzori Mountains National Park

Giant groundsel © Stefan Auth

Despite the prosaic name, giant groundsel is a must-see. This member of the sunflower family can grow to 20m (65ft) high, creating candelabra-like structures in the process. 


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