Exploring Tourism in Uganda
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Uganda Popular Places to Visit

Ngamba Island


Ngamba Island is a project of the Chimpanzees Sanctuary and Wildlife Conservation Trust (CSWCT), established in 1997 by the Born Free Foundation (UK), International Fund for Animal Welfare (USA), the Jane Goodall Institute (Germany and Uganda), The Uganda Wildlife Education Centre Trust (UWECT) and the Zoological Board of New South Wales (Australia) and it provides these orphaned chimpanzees with a secure home to live out their lives, since a return to their natural habitat is not possible, while educating visitors and local communities about their remarkable species and the importance of conserving their fragile forest habitat.

Ngamba Island consists of approximately 100 acres, 98 of which are forested and separated from the visitors area by an electric fence. Ngamba Island was officially opened to visitors in October 1999 and is currently home to 40 orphaned chimpanzees.


Kampala, Uganda

Ssese Islands – Uganda’s Hidden Islands

If you are looking for an island paradise in Uganda – amazingly you can find just such a place in landlocked Uganda – Uganda might not be along any ocean but shares the immense Lake Victoria with Kenya and Tanzania – and in this second largest lake in the world you will find the fabulous Ssese Islands.  An archipelago of 84 islands in the sun, lush tropical islands that await you with its sandy beaches, palm trees moving with the gentle breeze off of Lake Victoria, exotic plants, flowers and trees, friendly islanders and most amazingly many of these islands are undeveloped – these are tropical islands in Africa away from the crowds, off of the beaten tourist path – Islands in the sun – yet due to the elevation of Uganda – Holiday like weather all year long.

The Ssese Islands are the perfect place to unwind after spending days on safari, after tracking gorillas and chimpanzees, golden monkeys, climbing volcanoes, or trekking the foothills of the Rwenzori Mountains of the moon – the Ssese Islands are simply one of the best places to chill out and relax in Uganda – close to Entebbe International airport and convenient departure for your home country.

Just a few hours on a ferry and you reach the tropical Ssese Islands with not only sandy beaches, but tropical forest filled with monkeys, exotic birds (the Ssese Islands are a birder’s paradise), the elusive Sitatunga Antelopes. (You can also fly to the Ssese Islands)

Here on the Ssese Islands you can visit local Fishing Villages and meet Ugandans, learn their culture and ways. You can go boating here, paddling yourself or with a guide, motorboat to various islands, fish for the super-sized Nile Perch, or tasty Tilapia, feast on local fruit including, bananas, mangoes, papaya, water melons, jackfruit and pineapples with a taste, flavor, sweetness not found elsewhere in the world. The Ssese Islands give the perfect backdrop for many activities of which chilling out is foremost but there is so much more – these hidden and to most secret islands are a paradise largely undiscovered yet treasured by those who visit here as one of Pearls in the Pearl of Africa – Uganda.  Yes there  is an island in the Sun and in the case of Uganda it is Islands in the Sun – the Ssese Islands in Lake Victoria.

The sunrises and sunsets are simply amazing over Lake Victoria – the lightning over this vast lake provide spectacular pyrotechnic like displays of nature  a you sit by a beach camp fire along the lake enjoying the company of others.

Bugala Island is the island most visited by tourists – most hotel lodging accommodations are located along the lake giving you beachfront views of the lake and access to the lake.  Life here is much slower here than in Kampala – people here live at a slower pace – relationships and friendships are the focus, here you can enjoy some of the friendliest people in Africa – take a hike through the forests and villages or a relaxing bicycle ride across the island and you certainly will not encounter a lot of traffic here.

The Ssese Islands – are listed among the world’s best secret Islands by Lonely Planet and what makes them different from many other island destinations – they are not as developed for tourism – there are no large hotels, no Five Star Resorts – lovely accommodations from rustic to moderate for the most part  which does diminish the Ssese Islands – in the eyes of many that fact only enhances the Ssese Islands as the perfect place to chill out in the heart of Africa – in its largest lake – Lake Victoria on some of the secluded islands in Africa – the Ssese Islands ….enjoy Uganda –no wonder Lonely Planet picked it as the best country to visit in 2012… from Kampala…Jon

Kampala, Uganda

Amabere Ga Nyinamwiru (the Breasts Of Nyinamwiru)


The beautiful Nyinamwiru was, so the legend goes, the daughter of the local King Bukuku. She was pursued by so many admirers that the King cut off her breasts to reduce her beauty, though even this failed. The “breasts” you see today are an impressive stalactite formation in the Nyakasura Caves – filled with attractive natural rock pillars. The cave, located 9km from Fort Portal town off the Semliki Road, is also next to a refreshing waterfall.

Kampala, Uganda

Ndere Center, Kamapla


This cultural centre, set amid beautiful tropical gardens, houses a wealth of Ugandan culture in the middle of Kampala. In addition to a café and craft shop, there is an outdoor stage where regular performances take place by the brilliant Ndere Troupe – comprising dancers, singers and musicians from across the country.
Regular events include Famly Hour, World Music Night, Kids’ Corner, Food Feasts and Cultural Night.


Kampala, Uganda

Namugongo Martyr’s Shrine


On 3 June 1886, over 30 Ugandan Catholic and Protestant men were burned to death on the orders of the Kabak Mwanga for their refusal to renounce their faith. The Church of the Namugongo Martyrs has been constructed near the site, and is the focus of pilgrimages. Today, June 3rd is a public holiday in Uganda to commemorate the executions.

Kampala, Uganda

Naggalabi – Buddo Coronation Site


Just short of a 20 minutes drive from Kampala the panoramic hilltop at Naggalabi Buddo is the historic heart of Buganda. It was here that the Kingdom was birthed, at the dawn of the 14th century, and it is here that every Kabaka is still crowned. At Naggalabi Buddo you can visit the main sacred sites, and literally walk in the footsteps of past and present kings.

Kampala, Uganda

Kings Palace (bulange Mengo)


Lubiri, or Mengo is the palace of the King of Buganda. It was built in 1885 and measures in impressive 4 square miles. Opposite it is the spired Bulange, which is the Buganda parliament building. Entrance is free but you should tip your guide.

Kampala, Uganda

Katareke Prison Ditch


The prison tells the story of a violent and brutal episode in Buganda history. It speaks of a paranoid, power-hungry king who, in 1888, imprisoned his all his brothers and sisters – save for just one Mwanga – an exiled king he had replaced – and later brutally murdered them for fear that they might dethrone him! Today the prison is a quiet and shaded site, but the surviving earthworks are a vivid reminder of warring times when the fate of the kingdom hung in the balance.

Kampala, Uganda

Kasubi Royal Tombs


This UNESCO World Heritage Site is the burial site for the Kings of Buganda. The Buganda people hold great respect for this cultural site, and several ancient rituals are still performed here. The large, dome-shaped hut which protects the site is beautifully crafted from natural materials and also houses cultural treasures of the Buganda Kingdom.

The Kasubi Tombs are located on Kasubi Hill, 5km from the center of Kampala.

Fort Portal, Uganda

Buganda Kabaka’s Lake


This is the Buganda Kabaka’s Lake, near Mengo Hill. This five acre lake on the outskirts of Kampala was created during the reign of Kabaka Mwanga in the 1880s for his personal enjoyment, as he enjoyed swimming and fishing.  More importantly, he wished to link it to Lake Victoria through a channel that would serve as an escape corridor, though this was never achieved. Today, the lake is home to many bird species, and is recognized as an important conservation site.

Fort Portal, Uganda