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Kampala Travel Guide - Travel S Helper


travel guide

Kampala, The City of Seven Hills is the capital metropolis of Uganda and, by far, the country’s biggest conurbation and sole genuine city. It is located in the South Central region, close Lake Victoria.

Kampala, Uganda’s capital and biggest city, with a population of around 2.5 million people. Although it is a smaller metropolis with less suburban expansion than Nairobi or Lagos, traffic congestion and pollution may be just as terrible. Plan your days carefully if you are traveling around the city to avoid spending several hours stuck in traffic.

Uganda, being a beneficiary of significant sums of Western assistance, is home to a great number of Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs). Because the majority of those NGOs are situated in Kampala, the city has a well-established expat community.

The people of Kampala, and Ugandans in general, are highly warm, accessible, and kind. Even at night, Kampala seems secure to wander about, which is a nice relief for many a high-strung guest coming from Nairobi.

On a Sunday morning, when the streets are largely empty in stark contrast to other days, to cruise around the city on a boda-boda, get a feel for the different parts of the city, and see a lot of stuff in a short amount of time, such as the docks, beaches, and fish markets at Ggaba or Port Bell, all the wonderful hills with great views and nice buildings on top, and the extreme contrasts between different neighbourhoods. Use a driver that is familiar with the area where you are staying and have them arrange you an additional helmet.

Because significant portions of Uganda are ideal for agricultural, Kampala offers a plethora of big and diversified food and farm markets. Traditional handcrafted tools, as well as arts and crafts, are popular. There are, nevertheless, some huge western-style malls and supermarkets (e.g. Shoprite from South Africa., Tuskys from Kenya, and Nakumatt from Kenya). If you’re looking for gifts, visit the Exposure Africa Crafts Village on Buganda Road or the somewhat bigger Uganda Arts & Crafts Village behind the National Theatre, close to the Garden City complex. If you need garments stitched, there are a number of tailors on Buganda Road, across the street from the artisan market. If you’re bored of shopping, the (upscale) café 1000 Cups of Coffee is a popular Mzungu hangout.

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Kampala | Introduction

Kampala – Info Card

POPULATION :  1,659,600
LANGUAGE :  English (official), Ganda or Luganda
RELIGION :  Roman Catholic 41.9%, Protestant 42%(Anglican 35.9%, Pentecostal 4.6%, Seventh Day Adventist 1.5%), Muslim 12.1%, other 4%,
AREA :  189 km2 (73 sq mi)
ELEVATION :  1,190 m (3,900 ft)
COORDINATES :  00°18′49″N 32°34′52″E
SEX RATIO :  Male: 50.14%
 Female: 49.86%
ETHNIC :  Baganda 60%, Other( Banyankole , Basoga , Bakiga,Iteso) 40%
DIALING CODE :  +256 42

Climate of Kampala

The climate in Kampala is tropical rainforest.

Another aspect of Kampala’s weather is that it has two wet seasons every year. From August to December, there is a long rainy season, and from February to June, there is a short wet season. The shorter rainy season, on the other hand, sees much greater rainfall each month, with April often receiving the most precipitation, with an average of roughly 169 millimetres (6.7 in) of rain.

Economy of Kampala

Heavy industry is being relocated to the Kampala Business and Industrial Park, which is situated in Namanve, Mukono Center, roughly 14 kilometers (8.7 miles) east of the city’s central business district, reducing city traffic congestion.

All 25 commercial banks licensed in Uganda, the New Vision Group, the dominant news media conglomerate and mainly controlled by the government, and the Daily Monitor periodical, a part of the Kenya-based Nation Media Group, all have their offices in the city center.

How To Travel To Kampala

Get In - By plane

When flying into Kampala, you will land in Entebbe, 35 kilometers (22 miles) southwest of the city.

To go from Entebbe airport to Kampala, take the following route:

  • via Private Hire taxi (approx UGX75,000 one way)
  • Via the Pineapple Express – Via Kampala and Jinja – (10-22$) -
  • via the Airport express bus. Ugx 30.000.has ten trips per day both ways.
  • via Boda-Boda/shared taxi (matuta) (approx UGX7000 one way), this requires you to get the short distance (4km) from the airport to Entebbe city on a Boda-Boda =Ugx 3500. you will need to walk from the airport to the airport gate to get a Boda-Boda. then Matuta from Entebbe to Kampala =Ugx 3500.
  • via hotel shuttle (e.g. if you have a reservation with Sheraton ask for their shuttle – 39,000 USh added to your hotel bill, for one way trip if shared -chances are very high there are other hotel guests arriving on your flight).

How To Get Around In Kampala

Get Around - By Boda-Boda

The boda-boda, or motorbike taxi, is the quickest and most hazardous mode of transportation. You won’t be in Kampala long before a boda driver approaches you. A simple ‘no’ will get them to leave you alone if you’re not interested. For UGX3000-5000, you can get almost anywhere on the back of one, but make sure you agree on the cost before the journey begins. Men normally ride front, whereas women are required to ride side saddle, which is extremely dangerous. Female tourists can get away with riding up front, although they may be accused of riding “like a guy,” though the locals are generally tolerant.

Boda-bodas are particularly dangerous since their riders would do whatever to get you to your destination as soon as possible. When required, expect to dart in front of and against vehicles, as well as through groups of people. The majority of hospital visits and road deaths in Kampala are caused by boda-boda accidents; you have been warned!

The bicycle taxis that operated at some of the busier border crossing places gave the boda-bodas their name. Bus passengers were required to disembark at the exit border control and then walk to the entry border control. At certain boundaries, the distance over no man’s land can be large. As a result, the weary travelers would hear “boda-boda” (a corruption of the English “border to border”) from the bicycle taxis. Bicycle taxis may still be found in most smaller Ugandan communities, but motorbikes have taken their place in Kampala. For travels inside Kampala, boda-bodas charge UGX3000-5000 (foreigner price; correct at July 2011). It’s very hard to travel for less than UGX2000, and longer journeys can cost up to UGX7000.

Get Around - By Matatu

Matatus are a type of minibus that travels across the city and throughout the nation on somewhat pre-determined routes. In Uganda, they are referred to as taxis, which is a bit confusing. It might be a little tricky at first to figure out how to utilize the matatus to get where you want to go effectively, but it’s not that tough.

The majority of their routes run between the city center and a suburb. The bulk of matatus to and from the suburbs depart from/arrive in the old taxi park. editThose traveling along Ggaba Road to Kabalagala, Kansanga, Bbunga, Ggaba, and Munyonyo, for example, leave from the Cooper Complex. edit Because it is located within a retail mall, it may be difficult to locate. Some matatus depart from the new taxi park, while others leave from the streets near the old taxi park or farther up Kampala road. edit However, that park is mostly used by matatus and bigger buses traveling to remote areas of Uganda and neighboring countries.

Matatus will wait in the park until they are completely full, which usually takes less than 15 minutes but can take up to half an hour (or even over one hour late at night or on Sundays). Matatus that leave the park area are so overcrowded, making it difficult to get a matatu to other parts of the city. To get out of the city center, you’ll have to go to where the matatus begin, unless you’re really lucky.

Each matatu has a conductor and a driver. If you don’t comprehend what they’re saying, don’t be alarmed. If you ask one of them about your destination, you’ll get a yes or no answer. Expect to feel squished as you enter. Each vehicle is certified to hold 14 passengers, but they will cram as many as they can into it (and their belongings). If you don’t like it, seat in the back of the car because the squeezing is generally restricted to the first two rows. Once the matatu is going, passengers can exit at any moment. Tell your conductor “Stage” when you arrive at your location, and the van will come to a halt.

When a matatu driver sees an empty spot, he slows down and honks frequently. If you want to hop aboard, just make a motion and it will slow down even more. Then, simply yell your destination as a response, and they will pick you up if you are on the way. There are frequently a number of additional staging stations along the route where the driver will stop and wait until the truck can be filled. Be patient; this might take a few seconds or several minutes. Some drivers will refuse to pick you up if you’re only going a short distance since they’ll lose money if they can’t fill your spot promptly after you’ve been dumped. Although some individuals give the conductor money while the car is driving so that he may make change ahead of time, you pay the conductor when you disembark. When traveling into the city, the typical fee is UGX 500-1500 per person (Nov 2015).

Taking a matatu is often inexpensive, safe, leisurely, and pleasant. Ugandans are frequently eager to strike up a conversation or assist you, and if the conductor attempts to overcharge you or force you to take an inefficient route, passengers will likely call it out and chastise him. People also complain if a driver takes too long to pick up passengers or drives dangerously, and they will collectively leave the van in protest if a driver drives too badly.

Get Around - By Special Hire

If you don’t want to risk the bodas or wait for a matatu, taxis, sometimes known as special rentals, are easily accessible in most key spots. Only a few cabs have meters, but the majority do not. If you don’t agree on the fare before getting in the car, you can be in for a rude awakening. Also, don’t be scared to bargain; most places are reachable for UGX15,000 or 20,000.

Yellow cab firm is dependable, with set prices: UGX10,000 for travels inside Kampala; 60,000UGX for trips to/from the airport (phone +256 713 133 331). Prices are current as of December 2010. Outside of Nakumat, they have a designated single taxi rank.

Get Around - By City Bus

The government has recently adopted bigger city buses that follow set routes. Although this means of transportation is currently restricted, several buses operate along Jinja Road, which has dedicated bus stops. On Kampala Road, all city buses begin from Constitutional Square. Ugx 1000 is the fare. Acacia mall is served by a city bus that runs between Constitutional Square and Acacia mall. One bus passes through Lugogo Mall on its way to and from Constitutional Square.

Prices In Kampala

Tourist (Backpacker) – 41 $ per day. Estimated cost per 1 day including:meals in cheap restaurant, public transport, cheap hotel.

Tourist (regular) – 132 $ per day. Estimated cost per 1 day including:mid-range meals and drinks,transportation, hotel.


Milk 1 liter $ 0.95
Tomatoes 1 kg $ 1.40
Cheese 0.5 kg $ 10.00
Apples 1 kg $ 2.90
Oranges 1 kg $ 2.75
Beer (domestic) 0.5 l $ 0.95
Bottle of Wine 1 bottle $ 9.00
Coca-Cola 2 liters $ 1.25
Bread 1 piece $ 0.75
Water 1.5 l $ 0.50


Dinner (Low-range) for 2 $ 14.00
Dinner (Mid-range) for 2 $ 22.00
Dinner (High-range) for 2 $ 35.00
Mac Meal or similar 1 meal $ 5.80
Water 0.33 l $ 0.30
Cappuccino 1 cup $ 2.10
Beer (Imported) 0.33 l $ 1.20
Beer (domestic) 0.5 l $ 1.05
Coca-Cola 0.33 l $ 0.60
Coctail drink 1 drink $ 4.00


Cinema 2 tickets $ 10.00
Gym 1 month $ 60.00
Men’s Haircut 1 haircut $ 6.00
Theatar 2 tickets $ 26.00
Mobile (prepaid) 1 min. $ 0.15
Pack of Marlboro 1 pack $ 2.50


Antibiotics 1 pack $ 5.80
Tampons 32 pieces $
Deodorant 50 ml. $ 3.20
Shampoo 400 ml. $ 4.00
Toilet paper 4 rolls $ 1.55
Toothpaste 1 tube $ 1.35


Gasoline 1 liter $ 1.05
Taxi Start $
Taxi 1 km $
Local Transport 1 ticket $ 0.45

Beaches In Kampala

The beautiful Kampala Beaches of Lake Victoria, the world’s second biggest freshwater lake, attract numerous people from all over the world. If you take a trip from Kampala to Entebbe, you may sunbathe on one of the following beaches:

Munyonyo Beach

The Munyonyo Commonwealth Resort maintains Munyonyo Beach, which is about 12 kilometers from Kampala. Here, you may engage in a variety of recreational activities. Take a vacation to the adjacent islands of Bullago and Chimp, for example. You may also rent a speedboat or a canoe, go horseback riding, play paintball, or go fishing—the options are unlimited. A nearby resort also offers helicopter rides, as well as a massive Olympic-sized swimming pool.

Serena Resort Beach

The Serena Resort Beach is located in the Kigo District, 15 kilometers from Kampala. It is part of the Lake Victoria Serena Resort, and only its guests have access. The beach is surrounded by lush vegetation and is ideal for a variety of water sports. In addition, you may play golf or dock your private boat right here.

Lutembe Beach

Lutembe Beach will be reached when you go farther out from Kampala. Unlike the other beaches, this one is not owned by an expensive resort and is open to the public. Camping is also an option. Furthermore, the Lutembe Beach is an essential site for the protection of Uganda’s White-winged Terns, making it a must-see for all bird watchers.

Nabinonya Beach

The Nabinonya Beach, around 30 kilometers from Kampala, is closer to Entebbe. It is mostly utilized by adolescents and families, and the Uganda youth soccer team uses it as a camping on occasion. Nabinonya is a lovely beach with a campground nearby. The numerous cold drink and food booths on this beach are a plus, since they keep you cool throughout the hot summer days.

Imperial Beaches

Finally, at Entebbe, 37 kilometers southwest of Kampala, there are two excellent beaches, Imperial Resort Beach and Imperial Botanical Beach, which are extremely near to one other. On the latter beach, don’t miss the Botanical Garden. Inside, you’ll be able to witness a variety of uncommon birds, as well as unusual trees and flora. Both beaches are ideal for sunbathing and participating in water sports.

Sights & Landmarks In Kampala

  • National Theatre (Uganda National Cultural Centre), De Winton St (next to Parliament),  +256 414 254 567, e-mail: [email protected]. A large cultural center featuring a theater that accommodates dance performances, lessons, and events, as well as comedy, movies, concerts, jam sessions, improv, and debate evenings. The current program is available at the entry or on the internet. There’s also a library, a café, and a vast African Crafts Village with hundreds of stores offering souvenirs, crafts, and some unique items that aren’t available anywhere else. It is worthwhile to pay a visit.
  • Nommo Gallery, Victoria Ave (next to State Lodge, 400m north-northwest from Sheraton Hotel),  +256 414 254 567, e-mail: [email protected]’s National Art Gallery. Calm, large, green haven in the heart of the city with art displays (for sale paintings and sculptures) and two eateries popular with government workers.
  • Uganda Museum (Uganda National Museum), Kira Rd (4km north of city centre, to the west of Kololo hill behind the golf course),  +256 414 267 538.Daily 10:00-18:00. A natural history museum with some static exhibits dating back to the Stone Age and on through Ugandan traditional life. UGX3000 is the code for the entry.
  • Uganda National Mosque (Gaddafi National Mosque), Old Kampala Hill(on top of the hill next to the new taxi park). Muammar Gaddafi, the ex-Libyan ruler, commissioned and constructed a large, stunning new mosque as a present to Uganda in 2007. It is said to be the second-largest country in Sub-Saharan Africa. From the top of the minaret/tower, you can get a great, reasonably close-up bird’s-eye perspective of Kampala. UGX10,000 for a guided tour inside and up the minaret.
  • Bahai Temple (Bahá’í House of Worship), Kikaya Hill (8km north of city centre, probably best to take a boda-boda or taxi),  +256 312 262 680, e-mail: [email protected]. Daily 09:00-17:00. This is a stunning and wonderfully serene location. It’s also a nice view.
  • Kasubi tombs (Ssekabaka’s Tombs), Kasubi Hill (5km north-west of city centre along Hoima Rd), +256 412 736 00, e-mail:[email protected]. Four Kabakas (Kings) of Buganda are buried here, and it is a significant site for the Baganda people. The site is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. A fire in 2010 nearly damaged the building, but it was partially rebuilt with foreign funding.
  • Wamala tombs (14km (30min) north-west of city centre along Hoima Rd, take matatu to Nansana, then boda-boda),  +256 414 501 866, e-mail:[email protected]. Tombs where the bones of some of the early Buganda rulers, such as Kabaka Ssuuna 11, were interred (1836-1856). He had 148 spouses and 218 children over his lifetime! In 2012, a fire entirely destroyed the solitary tomb structure, which has since been rebuilt. In other words, there are no original tombs in the city. There is no set admittance cost. Security has been charged 20,000 UGX. It’s possible that something can be worked out.
  • Buwama (Masaka rd), Namirembe Hill (on hill 1km west of Gaddafi Mosque), e-mail: [email protected]. A tiny Anglican cathedral by European standards. It’s not really noteworthy in and of itself, but it provides an excellent perspective of the city.
  • St. Mary’s Cathedral (Rubaga Cathedral), Lubaga Hill (1 km west of Mengo Hill). Another cathedral, this time a catholic one.
  • Lubiri (Mengo Palace), Mengo Hill (large empty hill 1km south of the city centre, seen from most places). The Kabaka’s/royal king’s complex. The location is historically noteworthy, although there isn’t much to see. When Milton Obote came to power in 1966, the ancient Lubiri was demolished, and the Kabaka departed the nation.
  • Parliament of Uganda, Parliament avenue (from the taxi parks walk east along Kampala/Entebbe Rd until you reach Parliament Ave). Look at the entrance with the insignia of Uganda’s numerous tribes or the massive carved wood art covering the foyer walls; both were designed to symbolize the entire country and with visitors/tourists in mind.
  • Independence Monument, Speke Rd / Nile Ave (between Grand Imperial and Sheraton hotels). It’s a small memorial, but it holds a lot of symbolic weight.

Things To Do In Kampala

  • Sunday boda boda tour around town. Go for a boda-boda ride around the city on a Sunday morning, when the streets are largely empty in contrast to other days, to get a feel for the different parts of the city and see a lot of stuff in a short amount of time: like the docks, beaches, and fish markets at Ggaba or Port Bell, all the wonderful hills with great views and nice buildings on top, and the extreme contrasts between different neighbourhoods. Use a driver that is connected to the hotel you are staying at and have them arrange for an extra helmet. UGX20,000-30,000 can keep you going for a few hours.
  • Speke resort Munyonyo (Munyonyo Commonwealth Resort) (11 km south-east of city center along Ggaba road and right before reaching Ggaba beach. Matatus go there from the Cooper Complex.),  +256 414 227 111,+256 417 716 000, e-mail: [email protected]. Speke is a fairly luxury resort where the wealthy visit, but it also serves as a weekend hangout for Kampala’s striving middle class (especially the younger generation). There’s plenty of room to play volleyball or football, and there’s a huge, well-kept pool (big enough to swim in) with a gym and squash courts nearby. The park is also a great area to go for romantic nighttime walks along the shores of Africa’s biggest lake, which are quite private yet completely safe. It costs 10.000 UGX to enter the pool area and gym (if you are not staying at the resort).
  • Book safari directly with Uganda Wildlife Authority, Kira Road (use phone, normally no need to go to there physically), +256 414 355000, +256 312 355000, e-mail: [email protected]. Make direct arrangements with the Uganda Wildlife Authority for park admission, gorilla trekking, and other trips. It offers some of its own safari packages and can aid anyone who wish to plan a safari on their own (information, guides, cars, etc.).
  • Book safari through a tour operator. Although most transactions are completed over the internet, phone, or email, it is occasionally more convenient to visit the operator’s offices to finalize information or make payments.
  • Hakuna Matata Safaris, Bugolobi,  +256782997991, e-mail:[email protected]. Hakuna Matata Safaris is a unique East African firm that runs to all national parks, game reserves, mountains, and island locations in Rwanda, Uganda, Congo, Burundi, Kenya, and Tanzania, offering both budget and luxury vacation choices. From Kampala, Uganda. It also offers tours to Jinja to see the Nil River’s source.

Food & Restaurants In Kampala

In Kampala, there are a variety of food alternatives ranging from inexpensive to upscale (and very expensive).


You’ll notice signs advertising small hole-in-the-wall restaurants everywhere (including some called “pork joints”). You’ll have to inquire what’s available because most of these restaurants don’t have menus. Meat (typically beef), rice, beans, and Matoke are all popular choices (steamed green bananas, served mashed). Fish and chips and chicken and chips are two popular meals that can be found in most metropolitan restaurants and in the countryside. These meals come in a variety of serving sizes and range in price from UGX4500 to UGX9000. Make sure to inquire about the pricing ahead of time so you aren’t caught off guard afterwards. The average price per item is UGX500, however this might vary. Sodas and bottled water will be more expensive as well. Matoke with a groundnut sauce is delectable!

The well-known “Rolex” makes a great street snack. A chapati (similar to a pancake) is wrapped around an omelet and topped with cabbage and tomatoes. Expect to pay between UGX700 and UGX1000. Roast chicken, goat, and beef are among the other street foods available. This dish is typically served with chips, salad, or both. The price is UGX2000-4500 each piece. If you want something healthy but yet want to enjoy the pleasure of roadside dining, roasted corn or maize is the greatest deal. The white maize is grilled slowly over a charcoal barbecue and costs UGX500-600 per cob. Maize is a common plant found across Uganda, thus freshness is ensured. Typically, the merchants will set up shop near a maize plantation supply.

  • Great Wall (Chinese Restaurant), Plot 21 Kampala Rd,  +256 712 937 148. Daily 12:00-22:30. This clean and cheerful restaurant, owned by Chinese from Beijing, delivers large amounts of good, classic cuisine. The menu is written in both English and simplified Chinese (with strange character mistakes – I suppose 15 years away is a long time). There is a ceiling fan, and by Ugandan standards, service is attentive, pleasant, and quick. Bring a cushion if you have a boney bottom. Fried chicken rice costs UGX8000, while sweet and sour pork costs UGX13,000.
  • Bhagwatt Restaurant, ovolacto vegetarian, small eatery, overlooking Nakasero Market Square. Open 8AM to 8PM. 7000 UGX for a good quality plentiful thali. Vegans will be catered for if requested.
  • Govindas, ovolacto vegetarian, in Dewinton Road near Nakumat, offers thali at 15000 UGX at lunchtime, and a full menu of Indian dishes. Popular among the Indian community in the area. Vegetarian Pizzas and Sandwiches are also available. There’s also a good selection of Indian sweets.


Jinja Road offers a wide range of cuisines.

  • Garden City. This retail center’s food court serves a wide range of cuisines, including Lebanese, Italian, Indian, and more. The masala dosas served in the food court are extremely tasty. You order from a menu and a waiter serves the meal to your table, unlike a regular food court. On the roof of Garden City, there is a nice Indian restaurant called Nawab, as well as a good steak restaurant.
  • Cafe Javas, Oasis Shopping Plaza (next to Garden City) Expats and locals alike congregate here. Excellent service. Breakfasts are excellent, and the coffee is exceptionally rich. There is no charge for using the internet. Opens at 6 a.m. and closes at midnight.
  • New York Kitchen, Garden City Basement (next to Stanbic bank parking garage). Has a variety of real New York-style meals.
  • Fang Fang (Chinese Restaurant), Roof Terrace, Communication House, Plot 1, Colville St (Enter the Communications Tower government office block and, after passing throudh the security check, take the steps to the first floor.), +256 414 344 806, fax: +256 414 250 422, e-mail:[email protected]. There are several private side and conference rooms in this large, comfortable, well-furnished space. The bar is well supplied. Menu and food are authentic.6 piece per plate starter, vegetable UGX16,800, meat UGX19,800, prawns UGX29,800; crab in ginger & garlic sauce UGX65,800.
  • Just Kicking, Kisementi Shopping Centre has an excellent selection of pub food and continental meals, as well as a BBQ on weekends.
  • Pizza or BBQ night at the Red Chilli Hideaway, Butabika (10km east of city centre along Port Bell road and then left, at lake 500m from Butabika Hospital), +256 772 509 150. 18:00-21:00. Even if you aren’t staying there, spending an evening at this backpacker hotspot and getting some useful travel ideas from fellow travellers or listening to stories from some experienced backpackers and cross-Africa (motor)bike/car drivers could be intriguing.


  • The Lawns Restaurant & Lounge Bar,  +256 414 250337, e-mail:[email protected]. Plot 34, Impala Avenue, Upper Kololo Terrace, Kololo, Kampala. The menu includes a wide range of fusion treats from throughout the continent. Only restaurant in Uganda that serves a complete menu of game meats. The first course costs between 14,000 and 25,000 UGX, while the main course costs between 18,000 and 40,000 UGX. The wines range in price from 30,000 to 150,000UGX and include South African and European varieties. This restaurant offers a beautiful ambience and delicious cuisine.
  • Paradise, Sheraton Kampala. A wide range of Indian and continental meals are available. The main courses cost between 20,000 and 40,000UGX. The wines range in price from 40,000 to 150,000UGX and include South African and European varieties.
  • Serena Hotel, just down the hill from the Sheraton. A wide range of South Asian and African foods are made with panache. A two-person supper will cost around 200,000UGX, excluding booze.
  • Khana Khazana, One of the greatest (and most costly) Indian restaurants is: It’s on Acacia Avenue in Kololo, just before the Protea Hotel.
  • Mamba Point, This is one of the greatest (and most costly) Italian restaurants in the city. The address is 22 Akil Bua Road-Nakasero: 031-256-3000. Be sure to go to the Italian Restaurant on Akil Bua Road, not the Pizzeria on Lumumba Ave—-although the Pizzeria is one of the best in town.
  • The Pyramids Casino, When someone else is paying, this is the place to go. Except for the Serena, it is more pricey than almost anyplace. It serves decent pasta and beef, and its continental/fusion cuisine is a little more intriguing than that of large hotels like the Sheraton or Serena. It’s across the street from the Golf Course on Yusef Lule Road.
  • Fang Fang Chinese Restaurant, One of the greatest Chinese restaurants in the area. There are two in Kampala, one with an associated hotel (closer to the Sheraton) and the other open to the outside (so bring insect spray). They have two white bunnies who jump around on the grass in the main patio area and will tolerate youngsters caressing them as long as they are fed a carrot or cucumber. The second Fang Fang is located in Communications House in Kampala’s downtown district, with indoor seating and a roof patio.

Coffee & Drinks In Kampala

Only drink bottled water or tap water that has been properly boiled or treated (spring water brands like Rwenzori and Blue Wave can be trusted).

  • Bancafe, Nakumat (Oasis). They sell beans and ground coffee, as well as some of the greatest coffee and espresso.
  • Cafe Javas. This is a good chain with multiple sites across the city. There is internet access. The price range is in the middle.
  • Good African Coffee, Lugogo (next to Shoprite). Offers a wide variety of coffee combinations as well as a nice menu of cuisine. It appears to be a coffee shop/café with outside seating, but it actually has a full breakfast, lunch, and dinner menu that includes burgers, steaks, fish, roasted chicken, pitas, salads, and more.
  • Juice, Dewinton Road. A fantastic juice café with a large assortment of juices, including herbal cures.
  • 1000 Cups Coffee House, Buganda Road (across the road from the craft market),  +256 772 505 619, +256 782 544 313. Muzungus frequent this upscale coffee shop. Serving a variety of regional coffees in an American manner.

Shopping In Kampala

Because extensive areas of Uganda are ideal for agricultural, Kampala boasts a plethora of large and different food and agriculture markets. Traditional handcrafted tools, as well as arts and crafts, are popular. There are, however, a number of huge western-style malls and supermarkets (e.g. Shoprite from South Africa., Tuskys from Kenya, and Nakumatt from Kenya). Check out the Exposure Africa Crafts Village on Buganda Road or the somewhat bigger Uganda Arts & Crafts Village behind the National Theatre, in the Garden City complex, if you’re looking for souvenirs. If you need garments stitched, there are a number of tailors on Buganda Road, across the street from the artisan market. If you’re weary of shopping, 1000 Cups of Coffee, an expensive cafe, is a peaceful Mzungu hangout.

  • Owino market (in city center close to the taxi parks, just south of the Nakivubo Stadium). The market at Owino is one of the largest in this part of Africa. The numerous stalls that line Owino’s chaotic alleyways provide a mind-boggling selection of anything from handcrafted irons to American hand-me-down clothes with Goodwill price tags still attached, to an incredible array of African cuisines, to anything else under the sun. Everything at Owinio is inexpensive to begin with and becomes cheaper as you negotiate. Mid-February 2009, a fire entirely destroyed Owino, however it has since reopened. Any Boda or taxi driver would know how to transport you to Owino, which is near the center of Kampala. Prepare to go through a tangle of things and people.
  • Nakasero market (between Old Taxi Park, Kampala Road and Entebbe road). It’s much smaller and more pleasant than Owino, and it’s great for fruit and vegetables. It’s easier to get there from Kampala Road, and it’s nicer for a (relaxed) stroll.
  • Exposure Africa Crafts Village, Buganda Road. Hundreds of kiosks in an African arts and crafts village.
  • Uganda Arts & Crafts Village, National Theatre (behind National theatre).Hundreds of kiosks in an African arts and crafts village.
  • Garden City. Garden City is on the polar other end of the spectrum from Owino. Garden City is the place to go if you want an Internet café, a Forex bureau, a coffee shop, an expensive pair of shoes, a travel agent, a movie, and more all under one roof. Garden City may be a nice respite from the rush and bustle of Kampala’s city center. Similarly, Nakumatt Oasis is located near Garden City and is a little more upscale.
  • Game, Lugugo Mall (next to Shoprite). Owned by Walmart USA. Another large contemporary store selling DIY supplies, camping chairs, flashlights, batteries, and other items. A chicken and chips diner, a souvenir shop, a couple of banks, a phone shop, and other businesses are also located here.
  • Uganda Crafts 2000 Ltd., Plot 32-36 Bombo Road (Heading towards Wandegeya from City Square, Uganda Crafts is in the basement shop of the DLCO-EA building, between Teacher’s House and Bible House.), 256 414 250 077. 9AM – 6PM. Since 1983, Uganda Crafts, Uganda’s oldest fair trade craft business, has worked with marginalized craftsmen. They are known for their baskets, but they also carry a wide range of traditional Ugandan handicrafts, such as musical instruments, jewelry, batiks, sculptures, and bark cloth. They also sell items from Kenya, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The International Fair Trade Association has recognized them as fair trade, which means they pay their craftspeople on time and fairly.
  • Kasumba Square Mall. Kasumba Square Mall is located on the outskirts of Kampala, between the Busega Roundabout and the Northern Bypass Highway. It was built to relieve traffic congestion and provide products and services to the community, since Kampala is getting increasingly crowded owing to fast population expansion.
  • Acacia Mall, Acacia Avenue. (next to the British Embassy). Kampala’s best retail mall. On Mondays, there is a Century Cinema with a ticket price of Ugx 10.000. There is also a large Nakumatt Hypermaket.


  • Nakumatt. In Kampala, Nakumatt has eight locations. With 60 locations, Nakumatt is Uganda’s and East Africa’s largest grocery chain.
  • Tuskys Supermarkets. In Kampala, there are six branches. Tuskys is East Africa’s second-largest grocery chain.
  • Shoprite Supermarkets., Lugugo Mall. In Kampala, Shoprite has two locations. Outside of South Africa, it operates in 14 African nations.
  • Capital Shoppers. In Kampala, Capital Shoppers has four supermarkets.
  • Quality Supermarkets. Has 4 branches in Kampala.
  • Mega Standard Supermarket, Burton Street. (Near Old taxi Park in down town Kampala). 8am-8pm. has six floors. It sells 60% of produce grown locally.

Nightlife In Kampala

If you feel like going out, go ahead and do so; you should be safe as long as you use common sense. Ugandans are extremely gregarious people. The nightlife in Kampala revolves on the areas of Bukoto and Kabalagala. Several clubs may also be found in the Industrial sector (for example, along 1st/6th Street) as well as along Kampala Road and Acacia Avenue. Club Silk, Venom Club, Club Amnesia, Casablanca, Cayenne Restaurant and Lounge, the Mask Lounge Club, and Ange Noir are all popular nightclubs. Going out to a nightclub in Kampala might be rather costly.

  • Evening out in Kabalagala (3 km south-west from city center along Ggaba road, many matatus go there). Kabalagala is a nightlife hotspot with a plethora of pubs and restaurants that appeals to both locals and foreigners. Go there, have some fun, and meet some locals, but bear in mind that some (but not all) of the females are there to work. From dingy waragi shacks to posh places like Club Venom at the top of Tirupati Mazima Mall, Kabalagala has it everything.
  • Evening out in Bukoto (around Bukoto-Kira Road, north of Kololo hill).Originally a mainly residential area, it has since sprung a slew of notable nightlife establishments. It’s a good option to Kabalagala and has less muzungus than Acacia Avenue further down.
  • Expat night at Bubbles O’Leary’s (across the golf course away from city center, left on Acacia Avenue),  +256 31 2263815. Bubbles is an Irish pub in Kampala that is a popular hangout for expats (along with several other places along Acacia Avenue). Go there for some (scary) insights into Uganda’s colossal sector of NGOs, assistance, and volunteerism.
  • Clubbing in the Industrial Area. Some really nice bars with high rates, some more typical, plenty of bravado, students having a good time, dance floors readily filling, good dancing, some old mzungu guys, hookers,… partially odd, but in the end the same as anywhere else in the world. On First Street, you’ll find the popular Club Silk, Ange Noir, and T1. On 6th Street, there are a number of additional clubs.
  • Just Kicking sports bar, Kisementi (at end of Acacia Avenue). It’s a good place to meet people from all over the world for a leisurely drink. It is highly crowded on weekends and when a major football event is shown.
  • The Lawns Restaurant & Lounge Bar, Impala Avenue, Kololo (on south-eastern slope of Kololo hill, close to where airstrip ends). If you desire peace and quiet, here is the place to be. The Lawns features a lovely outdoor lounge bar. Try one of their many drinks or wines, which come with delectable appetizers.

Festivals & Events In Kampala

Although there are other one-time Kampala Festivals hosted throughout the year, the Amukala International Film Festival is the only major yearly event. The inaugural event took place in 2004 and was a big success. The festival focuses on African cinema and honors East African filmmakers with the famous Golden Impala short film prize.

Amukala International Film Festival

The Amukala International Film Festival has yet to find a permanent home. It may be found at a variety of locations across the city. Each year, the locations are different. The major reason for this is the festival’s organisers’ desire to expand the festival’s appeal among individuals of all ages and interests.

The festival’s screening schedule is organized into four sections: modern cinema, film landmarks, African Panorama, and East Africa Focus. The first two categories feature the most recent worldwide film hits as well as timeless film masterpieces. The African panorama is a genre that includes both current and vintage African films that are high-quality productions. The East Africa Focus category focuses on various East African filmmakers’ local productions and is further separated into country-specific categories.

Parallel to the screening schedule, a number of workshops and seminars are offered. Their goal is to provide a discussion platform for the African filmmaking community, where directors may share their experiences and vital filmmaking knowledge.

Stay Safe & Healthy In Kampala

Kampala is a city that is quite safe. Walking or taking a matatu in various locations at night is rather safe, but don’t take excessive risks.

Motorcycle taxis, also known as boda-bodas, are notoriously hazardous, yet they can be so convenient that it’s tough not to utilize them. If you do decide to use them on a regular basis, you should consider purchasing a helmet (they are not provided by the driver). You might want to try riding a boda-boda with a driver who does not wear a helmet, despite the fact that it violates sense at first look. Drivers who do not wear helmets drive slower, and because they never have helmets for their passengers, you are a little safer.

Don’t expect to be able to use your credit card. If it is approved, there is a strong probability that it will be used fraudulently. Withdrawing money from ATMs with your Mastercard or VISA card is safer. Many ATMs accept Mastercard and Visa. Stanbic is a bank that accepts MasterCard credit cards.



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