The Ajai game reserve is situated on the western bank of the magnificent White Nile in Arua districtofnorthern part of Uganda, characterized by Savannah grasslands, forests, woodlands, swamps and highlands. Ajai game reserve is on an elevation of 658 meters above sea level.
Ajai game reserve was mainly established to conserve the white rhinocerus which are now extinct in the country due to heavy poaching, the reserve was under private protection by an influential chief in the year 1937, Ajai game reserve had 60 of 80 Ugandan rhinocerus in 1965.
Ajai game reserve derives its name from the local leader who used to protect the reserve he was called Ajai, there are now plans by the Ugandan government with the rhino fund to reintroduce the white rhinocerus in the reserve. The reserve covers an area of 148 kilometers squared.
In the year 2002 12 kilometers of Ajai game reserve were cut off for human settlements and in the year 2008 the Uganda Wildlife Authority that used to take charge of Ajai game reserve privatized the operation the concessionwent to a tour operating company known as Uganda Wild Safaris Limited. This company specializes in tours, photography and hunting.
In 1962, the anti poaching project t was carried out at the reserve with support from the World Wildlife Fund but this did stop the poaching until the rhinos became extinct. The reserve is one of the most not visited places by tourists but it’s being conserved for future use by the generations to come.
A part from being renowned for its large population of rhinos, Ajai game reserve boasts with other animals to be seen such as; Oribis, Bushbucks, warthogs,Lewel HartebeestsUgandan kob, lions, leopards, Sitatunga antelopes, zebras, duikers and many other primates like the vervet monkey, Olive baboon, black colobus monkeys, white colobus monkey and reptiles like Pythons.
The communities surrounding Ajai game reserve have very rich cultural values that tourists would love to explore for example they can get entertained with the arakaraka dance that involves women carrying over eight pots on the head without hand support and many more things to learn about the School and Lugar people. Tourist can also visit the villages and acquire handmade crafts to take home for remembrance.
Ajai game reserve is also a birdersparadisewith various woodland birds to be seen all year round some of the birds are endemic to this area.
The Ajai game reserve trip can be combined with that of Murchison falls, the reserve receives heavy rainfall most times of the year due to it’s tropical climate. Combining Murchison falls and Ajai will give you a more thrilling safari experience.
There are no accommodation units at Ajai game reserve at the moment but tourits can do camping at the reserve with meals and basic camp facilities provided. Other accommodation units outside the park include; Wall vile suits, The Pagoda, Hotel Nok Continental and Royal in among the rest.
Ajai game reserve is 4 hours but road from Gulu town and 40 minutes drive from Arua town, it’s six to eight hours drive from Kampala and one hour using a standard chartered flight to Arua airstrip where you can then access by road.