To make it easier for the traveler to find and explore Ruboni village and the Rwenzori mountains destination, Ruboni Community Conservation and Development Program (RCCDP) will map all the active and potential tourist attractions in this village. The village is located in the buffer of Rwenzori Mountains National Park.

Ruboni Community Conservation and Development Program (RCCDP) is a community-based organization whose mission is to encourage local community participation in environment conservation to benefit the local community through sustainable development. RCCDP was started in 1998 and has a membership of 50 people (35 women and 15 men)

Population increase directly leads to reducing the natural resource base. Likewise, in the 1990s Ruboni village’s population started increasing rapidly. When this happened, the local people started experiencing increasing poverty. This inspired the creation of RCCDP, by mobilizing community households through tree planting, skills training, communal work, soil and water conservation, and alternative household income enhancement.

Until now, RCCDP is engaged in tourism and using it as a vehicle for generating resources to support conservation and local community development, by innovating sustainable livelihoods aimed at empowering the local population.

It is under this spirit of sustainable livelihoods enhancement that RCCDP has partnered with stakeholders to add Ruboni tourism attractions to the Open Street Map. In return, this mapping initiative is aimed to improve the Ruboni village tourism enterprise’s performance that will in return, economically empower the residents of Ruboni village.

This mapping project will run for one year ending in May 2023. At the end of the project, it will be easy for the tourists to find and explore Ruboni village. as a result of the project, we will have a digital interactive map of the village, a map uploaded to at least ten different tourism online platforms, hard copies of printed maps, and a team of local Mappers with the skill and knowledge to continuously contribute by mapping and updating the content on Open Street Map.

RCCDP activities serve the local people beyond Ruboni village, covering Ibanda-Kyanya Town Council, Bugoye, and Maliba Sub counties. The project is being supported by Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT) and is being implemented with local tourism partners.

The implementing partners include; the Uganda community tourism Association (UCOT), Ibanda-Kyanya Town council, and the Kasese district local government. The UNWTO best tourism villages program is the owner and moderator of the upgrade program that inspires and is directly linked to this mapping activity.

To share the excitement with us, you can follow us on our social media handles to learn about the status of the project and possibly know how you can grab a copy of our map whenever it is ready.

Ruboni Community Camp is a project of Ruboni Community Conservation and Development Program (RCCDP). RCCDP was started in 1998, to encourage local community participation in environment conservation with an aim of benefiting the entire community through sustainable development.

Ruboni Community Camp is a community-owned and runs enterprise under the RCCDP. It is run alongside other tourism activities and the whole enterprise is called Ruboni community tourism project.

All the profits generated by the Ruboni community tourism project are reinvested back into the community, to support local community development and environmental conservation initiatives. These initiatives are aimed to benefit the entire community either directly or indirectly.

Development Initiatives being supported

The key community development initiatives that receive direct support from Ruboni community tourism project are;

Child sponsorship project – 0ver 50 children being sponsored every term, on top of the many that have gone through the sponsorship program now having decent jobs.

Forest conservation – 100 acres of indigenous forest saved and tens of thousands of trees planted by the community on their household lands.

Local community infrastructure development – where there is a lack, we help the communities go through the challenges. We have constructed temporary emergency bridges during and after the river floods, road repairs, hillside public footpath maintenance, and water infrastructure for the community.

Bridge over river Mubuku

Skills training – Many youth and women are taking training sessions in hospitality, guiding, and crafts development. We take interns from different colleges and universities to give them practical knowledge of what we do in this community.

Women and child empowerment – through education, skills, income enhancement, and job creation, women and children are brought closer to the economic welfare table in the local economy

Sustainable agriculture project – Farming is the leading economic activity practiced by 100% of all community members. RCCDP provides training on soils and water conservation, improved agriculture, the market for the agro produce, agriculture produce value addition. All this enhances the income generated by the households, especially during this time when land is not very productive due to the impacts of climate change and the high human population.

Household income diversion from tourism – tourism provides financial capital to the households. this is earned through the sale of goods and services from the local household. This rare opportunity to the local households is further boosted by guidance on household investment using the village saving and credit schemes  

Community development partnerships creation – We have created many development partnerships and helped to guide more within the community. These include; child sponsorship, sales, and marketing for local produce, vendors, and suppliers to the tourism project, agro production, and value-added partnerships, forest/ environment conservation partnerships, and resource mobilization partnership. 

The challenges associated with climate change

In the Rwenzori region, Climate change has taken a very high toll. Due to this high rate of poverty, population increase, and climate change, Ruboni community is overwhelmed by the level of need in the community. COVID-19 made the situation even worse when from the year 2020 to 2022, we hardly received any visitors or income from the community tourism business

Thank God, tourism is a good counter for the impacts of climate change if the right resources are employed. The RCCDP community’s inability to mobilize resources is a big challenge to the local people who look up to Ruboni community tourism for help. Many children are starting to drop out of school due to lack of fees, households are selling their property to meet the basic needs as if the right to their land is luxury, the markets and produce from their farms are lowering due to the falling incomes from the buyers, the rivers are drying and the women are starting to carry water on their backs long distances away

This is what you can do?

No one can do everything, but everyone can do something about helping Ruboni support her community members. even the smallest drops of help will add up in changing someone’s life. Specifically, we are looking for both donors and volunteers who can partner with Ruboni community on the different community development and conservation initiatives. Volunteers are required for proposal writing and project development. This will help to improve the concepts that are fronted by the community to address their related challenges.

Visiting Ruboni during your trip to Ruboni to buy some of our community tourism services and products is an easy way to help. As said earlier, all the profits generated go back to the local community. The key services and activities you can buy during your trip include; accommodation in our guestrooms, meals, village guided tours, Rwenzori trekking tours, and handicrafts made by local women. Every coin you spend on these goods and services gives hope to someone in the village.

We are doing our best to market our tourism products. However, we have a lot of room for improvement as we are limited by minimum machinery and expertise in modern marketing. If you have some time at hand, a connection, or an opportunity, you will be appreciated for the marketing support you can provide

If you don’t have a plan to travel to Uganda, to visit the Ruboni community, but feel you want to do something, you can find more about our community development and conservation work, by contacting us or sending us an email with questions.

At Ruboni community camp, we have two categories of rooms. The self-contained and non-self-contained. Our bed settings are single twin or double basis.

Our self-contained rooms are spacious with a private bathroom and toilet per room. These rooms can be easily fitted with double beds on request. In the non-self-contained rooms, guests use shared bathrooms and toilets in a ratio of one toilet and bathroom per two rooms.

The non-self-contained rooms are slightly smaller, and we have no chance to create double rooms out of them.

Our rooms are furnished with beds, beddings, seating furniture, bathing soap, towel, bathroom sandals, mosquito netting, electricity with charging outlets, and running water. Currently, we have hot water in some rooms and the other we refill the hot water tanks. However, in a short while, we are working on water heaters for all rooms to be implemented within the year 2022.

All our facilities including the rooms and restaurant have a balcony facing the mountains. This is a great feature that most guests like as they have an opportunity to view these beautiful mountains all the time of their stay at the lodge.

Dining area

Our prices for the rooms are charged per occupancy. Each of the two guests pays a full rate that we charge per person on bed and breakfast. You can refer to our current prices here. We don’t join guests who are not from the same group in one room. If one guest takes the twin room, we lock the second bed but the guest still pays for only one bed taken,

Other spaces of interest at the lodge are; the restaurant, bar, and parking area. The restaurant serves all meals on order starting from 7:00 am to 8:00 pm. Meals can be served earlier or later on request. our parking area is private and secure through the night. It can take 5-7 cars at a time. In most cases, it is available to all our guests and has never been full.

If you have any other specific questions about our rooms, please contact us

About contactless check-in at Ruboni Community camp

At Ruboni Community Camp, we encourage all our guests to check in before arrival. This is to minimize the chances of contact with the staff at arrival, to reduce chances of transferring covid-19 infections. We have attached a draft form here for you to see. However, a new tailored form will be sent to each guest.

Requirements for contactless check-in

How to check-in before arrival, using the contactless form

How to fill and send the contactless check-in form

If you have any other questions, please contact us before you fill out the contactless check-in form.

The impacts of climate change and rapid population increase in the Rwenzori region have considerably increased the level of need on the households. In this rural community, tourism is being used as a sustainable way of facilitating education and other alternative livelihoods. We use some of the tourism income and partnerships to sponsor the local children.  As the pioneer for sponsoring local children in school, the Ruboni child sponsorship project has seen hundreds of children being able to go to school. This has resulted in facilitating alternative livelihoods in their households when they have completed and got decent jobs. The main goal is to eventually reduce household poverty, suffering, and over-dependence on the local natural resources.

Ruboni Community Conservation and Development Program (RCCDP) was established in 1998, to encourage local community participation in environment conservation with an aim of benefiting the entire community through sustainable development.  This is achieved through using tourism as the main vehicle for income generation and conservation. Education and skills empowerment was then seen as the most sustainable way the local people can be empowered to quickly increase their productivity and be able to change their economic destiny at a minimum cost by sustainably using the natural and cultural capital. In 2009, the community was organized by RCCDP to come up with an education support program. This was the birth of the Ruboni Child Sponsorship project (CSP).

Some beneficiaries of the child sponsorship project have managed to go through college and have got decent jobs of their dream. This has set a pilot to prove that tourism resources and partnerships focused on education and skilling of the population, especially the young people, will quickly address poverty and the environmental degradation crisis that we are currently facing in the Rwenzori region.

Besides the level of success, the child sponsorship project is facing a number of challenges which we feel if addressed will increase the level of success by close to 100%. The key challenges faced include;

Ruboni child sponsorship is considering a drive of aggressive resource mobilization and partnerships to address the above challenges. We are currently looking for sponsorship to support the project from all angles to see that we increase the amount of support available to the project. This support will be put towards different areas of development to sustainably raise resources for the child sponsorship project. The identified areas of focus include;

We appeal to our guests, friends, and other well-wishers to help RCCDP support child sponsorship through the above three approaches. For more information please contact us and talk to our project director to discuss any opportunities. If you plan to visit the Ruboni community, please ask to have a brief meeting with our director on appointment.

How the child sponsorship project works

A child sponsorship committee has been selected from the community. This is also a subcommittee on the Ruboni Community Conservation and Development Program (RCCDP) board. This committee is headed by a child sponsorship coordinator as the secretary.

The project has a separate bank account that receives all education funds from the donors and the tourism projects. All money is transferred directly to the school and about 8% is used on administration costs.

An MOU has been signed with the local secondary and primary schools where the children study, to regulate the provision of education services to the beneficiary children. Other children go to schools outside the Kasese district, including those going to college and universities. In this case, no MOUs have been signed but the project representative timely visits these learning institutions to monitor the performance of the beneficiary children.

Customized payment arrangements can be made according to each sponsor. In Uganda, we have three terms for primary and secondary schools and two semesters for the universities and colleges. Generally, the sponsors are expected to send money to the CSP account to be used every term. However, some sponsors may choose to make one annual payment while others pay monthly or quarterly.

Children are being sponsored in all levels of education, though the highest percentage of beneficiaries is the secondary and tertiary/ college levels. The majority of the children are sponsored in secondary school and a smaller number in college due to limited resources. The Child CSP has a local committee and policy that guides the selection and enrolment of the beneficiaries. Upon acquisition of a new sponsor, the beneficiary is allocated and his/ her details shared with the sponsor. Every term, a report is made by the child sponsorship coordinator and shared with the project stakeholders.

How you can help or be part of the Ruboni child sponsorship project

These are the four levels of partnership with the Ruboni Community Child sponsorship initiative;

1). Sponsoring a child of your choice

2). Make a monthly contribution to the CSP.

3). One-time contribution to the project.

4). Donating scholastics

Sponsoring a child of your choice: This level of sponsorship involves raising a given amount per term. The monthly amount can be determined by the sponsor.  Each term is equivalent to three months. This support is provided three times a year. The amount to be contributed every term depends on the school the child is going to.

Making a monthly contribution to the Child sponsorship project: This contribution goes to the entire child sponsorship project. It is given to any child that has been approved to benefit from the project. This monthly contribution is used to subsidize the contribution from the local sources to cover the gaps due to the increased number of needy children and costs of education.

One-time contribution to the project:  This is a contribution that can be made at one time to support the activities of the project. The donor can choose to dictate which child or activity this money should be used, with the approved activities of the CSP

Provision of scholastics: The children being sponsored and other village children often need supplies of items such as pens, books, footballs, mosquito nets, and other reading materials that they require for a smooth learning environment. If you find availability or space for the scholastics, this will help reduce the economic burden on the parents that have to create a budget for these essentials.

As we look forward to welcoming you onboard, you may be having any questions. For any other information, please contact us

Eight remarkable tours organised by Ruboni community camp.

Besides the improvement of the camp infrastructure, we have applied a number of improvements to the services and tour activities. From now on, guests will find a wider range of activities to participate in during their stay at Ruboni Community Camp. With some activities added, the list of available experiences includes a total of eight different tours and activities. All activities showcase the beauty of Rwenzori natural and cultural heritage in the local social setting. they include;

Village cultural walk. This is for guests who want to learn or participate in the local cultural life while learning how the Rwenzori nature and culture integrate into the local life setting.

Forest walk. A visit to the community forest neighboring Rwenzori Mountains National Park. While here, trekkers enjoy nature as in any tropical rain forest or inside the park itself. The forest is rich with plants, trees, waterfalls and glacier rivers, birds, insects, chameleons, and other wildlife unique to the area. On a lucky day, you may encounter primates having crossed from the park.

Hill climb walk Trekking to 2400m on the highest hill in the village. This gives guests the possibility to scan the surrounding natural features and the Rwenzori Mountains from one point. On a clear day, Margarita peak is also visible. Coming atop with a binocular gives an added advantage of a panoramic view across the Rwenzori ranges landscape.

Overnight hill trek: Spending a night outdoors camping on the hilltop. In the evenings and mornings, campers look for margarita peak and see Lake George in Queen Elizabeth national park. Again, a pair of binoculars is handy during this overnight trek.

The traditional hunting experience: This is done with the guidance of the ex-poachers as they show guests how they used to hunt in and around the park. The activity promotes the conservation of wildlife through community sensitization, research, and education. the ex poachers are used as conservation educators. This creat an alternative income for the reformed poachers when they get payment from guiding guests and educating locals about wildlife. The tour takes a minimum of seven hours in the wild outside the park.

Guests doing a drumming lesson during the cultural event

The cultural events: This is a cultural event conducted on certain days of the week. It is a show within the village where community members get together to celebrate culture. They participate in cultural activities including dances, songs, local beer, demo cooking, and crafts making. Guests are given tickets to join the festival and they are required to book directly in advance.

Rwenzori trekking on Mahoma trail: The three days and two nights of trekking up to 3500m in the lower peaks of Rwenzori Mountains. This wilderness, camping trail goes through the bamboo zone following Elephant tracks. Trekkers stay in exclusively beautiful spots on ridges and lakesides. The trail is a true paradise of Rwenzori. It is an alternative for trekking on the central circuit and Margarita peak.  

Trekking on the central circuit and Margarita peak: Ruboni Community Camp is prepared to guide you inside the park on the central circuit trail. The 6-8 day trail takes guests up to the highest point Margarita at 5109 meters above sea level.

With a variety of natural, social, and cultural activities to participate in, visiting Ruboni is worthy of our guests’ time. From now on, a visit to this village will leave every guest in full excitement, satisfaction, and full knowledge of Rwenzori and the Bakonzo people. All activity prices and duration of time have not changed. We continue to offer the smallest budget and the shortest time that you will have at hand.

Now that you have started planning to visit Rwenzori Mountains, you may be wondering what specific activities you can do during your visit. There are allot of activities to do in the Rwenzori area. Unlike other destinations, Rwenzori mountain is a unique destination. Here you mainly meet the people to show you their heritage; the wildlife and culture.

You will be able to find activities that last one day, giving you an overview of Rwenzori mountain off the beaten path.  Despite the diversity of Rwenzori, you will be impressed to learn that three hours can be enough to do a complete experience that will give you good knowledge of the entire landscape. these are the short one-day activities you can select from;

For those who want to stay long or do multiday tours, there is great opportunities too. The area has lodges, campsites and homestays where you will comfortably spend all nights of your choice. The most popular lodge in the area is Ruboni Community Camp. You can also choose to spend multiple nights in the mountains on multiday treks ranging from 2 to 10 days; that lead you to margarita peak. Besides going to margarita, multiple trails have been opened up on the mountains giving trekkers a change to scale the lower peaks of this beautiful mountain. Theas are some of the longer experiences you can participate in;

Rwenzori is not a stand alone. It is in the middle of other attractions. A visit to Rwenzori can be well integrated with going to other National parks in the western Uganda. The nearby parks include;

If you’re already planning to visit western Uganda you will find adding Ruboni community camp, ideal. If you have already decided on this trip or still conteplate if you should take it, please find important information you must know about the lodge location and attractions you can visit on your journey.

Ruboni is accessed from the sole highway that connects all other attractions of western Uganda. This road connects from Mugahinga/ Bwindi, up to Murchison falls National Park. It is therefore ideal to have a day or night break at Ruboni Community Camp to relax in the Rwenzori foothills as you explore western uganda region from south to north.

From the location of this lodge, you have a pool of attractions to explore in the surrounding villages. these include, the village forest trail, the hill trekking tour, the village culture walk, the nature walk inside rwenzori mountains national park, the village community center where you meet the local life, Rwenzori coffee experince and th multiday treks inside the Rwenzori mountains or overnight treks in the village.

To the south, you have Queen Elizabeth National park (48km south). Guests are able to set off early morning to take a morning game drive in this park and or return for dinner at Ruboni community camp, after the safaris. If you’re on public transport, the camp can arrange a guide that can make this transfer and safari. To the far south, you find several National Parks and attractions. These include; Queen Elizabeth national park (50km)  Bwindi gorilla forest (4 hours 196km), Mgahinga Gorilla National Park (341km), other attarctions in the way include, Kalinzu forest, Kyambura gorge, Rwenzori founders, Kilembe mines

The beautiful hill trek

To the north, you have Kibale and Semuliki National Parks around Fortportal (100-140km north). The other four National Parks are just one day’s journey from Ruboni. These include;  Murchison Falls National Park, and Lake Mburo National Park. T

Some people like to explore the local communities around Kasese and fort portal districts. In this area you will find; Toro amabere cultural tour, Tooro botanical gardens, Rubona baskets workshop, Bunyangabu beekeeper community, the crater lakes area, and other interesting local areas visiting the farmer communities on the hills.

You can contact us today, to arrange your stay at Ruboni community camp, participation in the village tours or to arrange the treks into the Rwenzori Mountains. You can also request for transfers and we will be happy to link you to reliable tour guides.

Those who want to go inside the park, should know that, it is very easy to arrange the trek from Ruboni Community Camp. The camp is strategically located at the park gate. This gate next to Ruboni camp is the prime entry point to several trails including;

  • 1- Day nature walks,
  • 2- Days Mahoma trail or
  • 7- Days central circuit trail.
  • 8- Days margarita peat trek

Unlike other East African high mountains, Rwenzori is a block mountain. This accounts for the existence of a chain of shorter peaks enhancing the beauty. The ranges are spread all over this landscape. This Mountain range extends approximately 120km long and 65km wide.

Up to six main peaks can be found over the Rwenzori ranges, some of which are permanently snow-capped. These six include; Stanley, Speak, Baker, Emin, Gessi and Luigi di Savoia. Their height ranges between 4627 – 5109 meters above sea level where mount Stanley with Margherita peak is the highest. Scaling the lower peaks, you will be able to find very many other short peaks offering great scenery through the ranges. These shorter peaks include Kameli peak the recently discovered on the newly opened, Bughalitsa trail.

The scenery on all peaks is breathtaking. During the trek, most experienced climbers are able to confirm that this mountain offers the best scenery in Africa. Those looking to climb the high peaks should be well prepared and know that specialized equipment and high alpine insurance are required to ascend to the peaks.

Rwenzori is a cross border habitat that crosses to the democratic republic of Congo, connected to the Virunga National Park in Congo. On her five distinct vegetation zones, Rwenzori Mountains is home to unique habitat to other mountain ranges of the region.

Climbing experience is required to trek to the high peaks. Special equipment which can be easily hired at the base camp will be worn on the trek to margarita. This requires that, a parking list has to be provided to the trekkers as they plan the trip.

Ruboni community camp is privileged with the opportunity and capacity of organizing all treks to the Rwenzori communities and mountains. Being the most popular accommodation in the area, and the location at the park gate, makes it easy for you to arrange your trek at the same time with accommodation. You can also arrange your trek in the comfort of the lodge if you want to do the logistics after arrival. Please note that; though treks can be easily arranged after arrival at the camp, they require a bunch of logistics that may need to be purchased in advance. This puts whoever arranges the trek before arrival at an advantage of avoiding any inconveniences. Contact us any time, to arrange your trek today.

This lodge is located in the Rwenzori foothills, giving an opportunity to live a purely natural moment in life while you stay here. The location offers one of the best Mountain views in the area. You will be emotionally energized in nature full of color, silence, scenery and surrounded with wildlife sounds. From the balcony overlooking the Mountains, you will be sure to have the best moment as you sip your cup of locally grown herbal tea or coffee.  Being in this location is the best moment to reach out for the book you have always wanted to complete.

Local guided tours

At Ruboni Community Camp, you will be introduced to the local guides who offer to take you around the village. The staff and guides provide timely and accurate information through the entire period from the first contact. The rural household members show you the local way of life as it is lived in the Rwenzori Mountains. The walks through the local villages give you a true feeling of being like one of the community members yourself. The community has created its own nature reserve in the border of Rwenzori Mountains National Park. Walking in this forest feels like walking in the National Park itself.

In the community forest, you will be looking to spot the elusive three-horned chameleons, looking for the primates and birds or the waterfalls in the jungle. All this is seen outside the park without paying any park entry fees.

When you visit the local farmer, the traditional storyteller, the blacksmith or the basket weaver, you have opportunities of participating in their work as much as you may wish. This experience is an opportunity to connect to what you may have always dreamt about, being in Africa. Other thrilling experiences include; the hill climb walk, the traditional dance performance, the coffee farming tour and the social life or the evening cultural festivals. Using her same experienced local guides, Ruboni community camp is also able to take you on longer experiences of trekking Rwenzori Mountains.

Other local benefit

It is also such an inspiring initiative that will leave you impressed by how a rural community has put up such an amazing project. Besides, the camp is an ideal venue for small conferences, retreats, family outings and study visits with other rural communities wanting to sustainably change their livelihoods.

Generally, the project is greatly contributing to conservation and community development to transform lives in this remote area. Staying at Ruboni community camp or doing one of their activities, directly contributes to their conservation and community development effort. As the tagline states; “All profits going back to the local community”.