Experiencing Kampala’s unique blend of attractions, architecture, cultures, and landscapes is a must-do for any visitor to East Africa. And with two days in the Ugandan capital, you can see a lot of both the city itself and the stunning natural beauty beyond. Here are our top tips for making the most of 48 hours in Kampala.
Day 1: Discover the City of Seven Hills
Morning: Book a full-day city sightseeing tour to tick off a number of attractions, benefiting from a comprehensive itinerary and included round-trip hotel transfer. Alternatively, explore the capital according to your interests, opting to cruise lakeshores by bike, discover cultural traditions, or learn about development projects on a focused tour.
Afternoon: Full-day tours continue into the afternoon, often with lunch included. Otherwise, broaden your perspective with a visit to Makerere University, a prestigious academic institution noted for its alumni, or hop on a boda boda (bike or motorcycle taxi) to discover striking architecture and sweeping panoramas from the peaks of Kampala’s many hills.
Night: For a uniquely Ugandan dinner, try a “rolex” from a street food stall, or unwind with a sit-down meal in one of the Kololo district’s up-market restaurants. You can catch dance shows three evenings a week at the Ndere Centre, while the Industrial Area’s clubs are lively every night—and often well into the next day.
Day 2: Journey into the Pearl of Africa
Day: Start your day early, taking advantage of the many full-day tours available to explore beyond Kampala, according to your interests. Uganda, renowned for its natural scenery and diverse wildlife, hosts a number of breathtaking destinations to choose from. Look for endangered rainforest species in the Mabira Forest Reserve, search for savannah natives at Lake Mburo National Park, track chimps in the Budongo Central Forest Reserve, or discover diverse species in Kibale National Park. Alternatively, visit traditional towns, such as Fort Portal, to learn more about the country’s cultural heritage with new recipes and craft skills. Day tours typically include hassle-free round-trip transfer from your hotel, and some also include lunch.
Night: After an active day, the elegant lodges nestled in the Kampalan hills provide a perfect setting for views and victuals. Alternatively, Lake Victoria’s winding shores are dotted with high-end resorts all the way to Entebbe, where international visitors often spend the night before their outbound flights to avoid the hassle of transfer.