Located on Kampala Hill, the Uganda National Mosque caters to the country’s significant Muslim population and has a capacity of 35,000 worshippers. Completed in 2006, the temple was originally known as the Gaddafi National Mosque and serves as the headquarters for Islam in Uganda. Its 166-foot (65-meter) minaret provides panoramic views of the city.
Several Kampala city tours include the cultural landmark as part of a wider sightseeing itinerary that features Nakasero Market and the Independence Monument; take advantage of excursions that offer round-trip transfers to travel between dispersed city attractions with ease. Explore the mosque with a guide for deeper insight into its unique history. An admission ticket to the mosque includes access to its towering minaret, which offers impressive views of the cityscape and beyond.Things to Know Before You Go
- Be prepared for a lot of climbing as the minaret has over 300 steps.
- As with all mosques, modest clothing and female head covering is a must; scarves can be borrowed at the entrance.
- Many tours include admission in the price; otherwise, there is a small fee for non-Muslims to enter, which includes a tour and access to the tower.
- At present, the mosque is not fully wheelchair accessible.
How to Get There
A convenient location on Old Kampala Road means that the mosque is easily accessible by matatu
(public minibus), boda boda
(taxi motorbike), or private transfer. If you’re travelling by public transport, head for the New Taxi Park station, which is just a few minutes’ walk away.When to Get There
On Islamic holidays such as Eid and Ramadan, the mosque is known to fill to its full capacity, so it’s best to avoid sightseeing then. Call to prayer times differ throughout the year, though it’s well worth coinciding your visit to hear the atmospheric adhan.
The Gaddafi Connection
The first attempt to build a national mosque was begun under Amin in 1972, but construction was abandoned four years later. In 2002, building work began again, funded by the Libyan government. Gaddafi himself opened the completed temple in 2008, just three years before his death. In 2013, the mosque was renamed in recognition of the new Libyan government.