Welcome to the Sahaya Rafiki guesthouse, at the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest in Uganda! This guesthouse, of which construction was supported by Sahaya International USA, is part of the programs of the Rafiki Memorial Wildlife Conservation Initiative. All proceeds of your stay will stay locally and be used to support our programs and that of our various partner organizations that are active at Bwindi. This guesthouse is located at Buhoma Town Council (Kanungu District), adjacent to the National Park.
But note that this lodge has been built on farm land, with timber wood that comes from that farm land (in other words, no native forest was cut). We are in the process of replanting the rest of the plot of land (which was previously used as farm land) with native trees and plants as part of our efforts for reforestation. Even now, wildlife (including gorillas) occasionally ventures out of the forest onto the land. Be prepared to hear a lot of sounds coming from the forest in the morning as nature awakens.
The guesthouse is about 10 minutes walking from the entrance of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest.
The guesthouse has 2 rooms; one room has a large bed for 2 people; the 2nd room has 2 single beds.
Click here or on the picture below to download our brochure.
Click here to download an information sheet with practical information about staying at the guesthouse.
Rates for full-board (3 meals*) are:
- $80 for 1 person in a room
- $120 for 2 people who share one room
- $150 for 3 people in one room (one person needs to sleep on an inflatable mattress).
(*Additional meals can be arranged at $10 per person per meal; this also includes if you like to invite, for example, one of your friends who is staying at another lodge in the area to come over to the guesthouse and join a meal)
Rates for room only (no meals) are:
- $40 for 1 or 2 persons in a room
- $50 for 3 people in one room (one person needs to sleep on an inflatable mattress).
Contact us for prices for half-board, or if you plan to stay for a more prolonged time, as we can provide a discount.
To make a reservation, contact us, via Whatsapp at +256 788 300909; or e-mail us at
How to reach us:
To reach Bwindi from Kampala, it takes approximately 9 hours by car. You can also fly from Kampala to Kihihi, and from there, it is about 80 minutes by car to reach the guesthouse. The estimated cost for a tourist vehicle between the airport of Kihihi and Bwindi is approximately $100 (one way). We can help you with making arrangements for this car transport. We are located about 1 km before you reach the park entrance, on the main road, and are near the Ruhondeza lodge. Look for our big sign along the main road, and then take the road down to the Ruhondeza lodge. We are just across the river of the Ruhondeza lodge. Please do not follow the sign for Rafiki Safari lodge, as that is different from ours).
Other activities to do:
Because we are closely collaborating with a number of local partner organizations, we will be happy to help arrange for your community walks, and visits to many of them, including Batwa communities, local artists (baskets, woodcarvings, paintings), bird-watching, and other local community programs. You can easily spend a week at Bwindi without getting bored!
Here are a few examples:
- Batwa experience: Visit a nearby Batwa community, organized by the Batwa Development Program. There are 2 options: a 4 hour forest walk and hike for the price of $70 per person, or a 2 hour walk for $30 per person. Both end up at a Batwa community where you will learn about the traditions of the Batwa tribe, including their hunting techniques, how they make fire, and will see some of their traditional dances.
- Bird-watching and forest tour. This guided walk can be half a day or a full day, depending on your interest. The cost is $100 per person ($30 is for the bird watching guide; $40 park entrance fee and $30 activity fee go to Ugandan Wildlife Authority). This hike through the forest does not only involve watching birds, but also includes observing mammals (several monkey species, baboons; on lucky days, chimps and gorilllas). Besides the wildlife, there is also the amazing lush scenery of the rain forest with many waterfalls.
- Visit local artisans and/or take a workshop: You can visit local artists who make beautiful paintings, baskets, woodcarvings, necklaces and other items. Visits to these programs are free, but we can arrange for someone to guide you. If you like to take a class in any of these arts, prices start at $20 for a 2-hour necklace beading class, and start at $40 for a half-day class in painting, basket-weaving or woodcarving class. Please click here to see some of the art work, or contact us for more details.
- Visit the Bwindi Buhoma United Reformed Poachers Initiative, meet with the members about the history of their members, learn about their income-generating activities (including mushroom farming, honey), watch a demonstration and enjoy a full meal, including delicious mushroom soup made from their own mushroom farm. This costs $40 per person, and is approximately 3 hours (including the meal).
All pictures below were taken around or in the Sahaya Rafiki Guesthouse. Click on each picture for a larger view
History of the construction – click on each picture to see a larger version