Day trips from Kampala or Entebbe

Find day trip from Kampala or Entebbe

Find day trips from Kampala and Entebbe the most prominent cities in Uganda. The following day trip ideas are suitable for people who will be in one of the city for a meeting or work and want to get out the room for excursions.

Kampala is the commercial and administrative capital while Entebbe has the main international airport. Both of these cities are on the northern shores of Africa’s largest Lake Victoria, central Uganda. Which rounds off a great day of fantastic excursions. For example boat ride on the Lake to Ngamba islands.

In addition, there’s so much to learn about the culture of Buganda region from which the name “Uganda??? was derived???. All worth exploring for day trips from Kampala or Entebbe.

Our day trips recommendations are off-the-beaten path, simple, safe and rewarding in a number of ways.

Day trips from Kampala capital city

What blows you most in Kampala city is the traffic jam and chaos. It’s a city that welcomes over 1.6 million people during day resulting into active nightlife experience.

You might need to start your day trips early in the mornings or at around 10am when congestion has subsided. Certainly, prepare for delays when getting out of the city center. But, the city has lots of sites within that are worth visiting.

Explore Kampala by its historical seven hills

Founded on seven hills and swampy valleys that were a habitat for Impala, Kampala is best explored by its hills. Most significantly, Mengo, Kasubi and Old Kampala hills offer much to do without having to get out of the city.

For example, Mengo Hill is giving you the best Kampala cultural walking tour. The royal Mile walk from Bulange the (parliamentary building) to (Lubiri) main royal palace of Kabaka of Buganda kingdom. The road presents 46 clan totem sculptures to explore.Also, the Ugandan civil war sites such as Idi Amin’s torture chambers. Further, a demonstration on how banana beer is made is available. Furthermore, visit the Kabaka’s lake – the largest man-made lake dug-out in 1880 by Kabaka Mwanga II.

Kasubi Royal Tombs

On Kasubi hill which is set in a suburb adhering to its traditional values, are the tombs of 4 former Kabaka’s of Buganda kingdom. Originally a palace, Kasubi was turned into a burial ground by Kabaka Mwanga II in 1884 and is a holy place among the Baganda people. The royal tombs became a UNESCO world heritage site in 2001. They are sheltered by the long-lost traditional architecture of Ganda people which is the most spectacular site. Kasubi is giving you a traditional touch of Buganda. Devastatingly, Kasubi tombs were burnt down in 2010 and later rebuilt.

Old Kampala hill

At some point rather in the year 1890, the British East African Company dispatched Captain Frederick Lugard, his little Army and a maxim old gun to visit the Kingdom of Buganda. The French and British missionaries were already operating in Buganda leading to some concern that the French might try make a move on Buganda. Then, there were the Germans and the German explorer and colonial agent Carl Peters also happened to be visiting Mwanga and had already persuaded the Kabaka to sign a treaty in favor of the Germans. However, the kabaka turned down the French and Germans and the 1900 Buganda Agreement was signed which brought Uganda under the British protectorate in 1894.

Consequently, Lugard set up a camp and built a fort on old Kampala hill that you can still visit. Besides, the hill is now home to the national mosque of Uganda – Gadaffi Mosque built in 2010. Uganda’s biggest mosque has a tall minaret providing panoramic view of Kampala now stretching across 21 hills. So, prepare to climb 304 stairs to the top of the minaret. In addition, the Uganda National Museum along Kira Road is 5 from the mosque. In between, there are places where food is served the local way such as 2K restaurant and Baguma restaurant.

Find day trips from Kampala or Entebbe
Gaddafi Mosque

Religious tourism sites in Uganda

Day trip to the Uganda Martyrs Shrine and Bahai Temple
During the reign of Kabaka Mwanga II, most people including some of his chiefs begun to accept Christianity. This came after French and British missionaries had built churches on Namirembe and Rubaga hills just next to Mengo. Ruthlessly, Mwanga opposed new religion and killed those who failed to denounce their christian faith.

Dig more about the persecution of 45 Christian Martyr’s. Visit the Roman catholic shrine at Namugongo hill. The Uganda martyrs day celebrated 3rd June annually attracted 4.5 million people in 2016. It’s the high-spirited and fun-filled masses that are remembered most than the place itself. The Christian pilgrimage destination has attracted three Roman Catholic Pops including Pope Benedict XV on 6th June 1920.

Bahai Temple

Another faith based site is Bahai temple located on Kikaya hill 10 (18-minute drive) from Namugongo. The one and only temple for the Bahai faith in Africa, gives you a quiet and safe bird-filled gardens to breathe, reflect and connect your senses.

Find day trips from Kampala or Entebbe
Bahai Temple

Other ways to Explore Kampala

  • Kampala walking tour
  • Buganda Cultural sites tour
  • Kampala by nightlife Experience

Day trips out of Kampala city

Buganda Traditional Food and cultural Adventure
If you intend to explore the food cultures of Uganda. Eat food that’s grown right there. Plan a full or half day Entanda Cultural village tour. Easy to reach by car, Entanda is in Sekanyonyi Mityana district about 65 (1 hour 30 min drive) west of Kampala via Kampala-Hoima Road. Activities differ depending on type of package selected. They range from hands on food classes including harvesting, preparation and dinning with wine, village walks, music and dance to interactive talks about marriage and family.

Whizz down to Jinja and look at the Source of the Nile River

Put on the world map in 1895 by Scottish explorer John Speke, the source of the Nile River is found in Jinja city just 80 to the east of Kampala. So, Jinja should take around two hours once you have escaped traffic in Kampala. Thus, early start required and get back to Entebbe or Kampala for dinner. Try, to get along before it gets too hot.

Known as “Adventure capital of East Africa???, Jinja is the ultimate destination for adrenaline seekers. Enjoy white water rafting or bungee jumping, kayaking, river tubing of all grades, quad bike riding.

So much to pack in a day trip? You can extend your trip in Jinja and resort to relaxation on secluded pet-friendly Tongolo and Samkula island resorts.

In addition, when going to or from Jinja, plan your road trip to include stopovers. For example, at Mabira Forest Reserve for nature walks, bird watching, zip-lining plus roadside food markets. Another stopover site, Sezibwa waterfalls offers good place to refresh and continue exploring.

Equator photo-shoot and Lake Mburo walking safari
Lake Mburo National Park is 234 (4-hour drive) south-west of Kampala capital city. A day trip to Lake Mburo opens possibilities for safari game drives and launch trip. But, requires a early start. Once you get there early on time, you will do game drives, a walking safari and boat cruise on Lake starting at 11am or 2pm. There’s equator crossing and experimentation along the way. Lake Mburo N.P. is home to 67 mammal species including giraffe, buffalo and eland. There are no elephants, but it’s the only park in western Uganda with zebras and Impalas.

On-foot Ziwa rhino trekking
Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary is 178 (2-hour drive) north-west of Kampala capital city. The sanctuary is home to 32 southern white rhinos. A well-trained ranger will guide on foot through the bush with a guarantee to spot a crash of 3 to 6 rhinos. Ziwa Rhino sanctuary day trip needs you to pack sunscreen, insect repellant, hiking boots and drinking water. Though, the sanctuary has restaurants where you can settle for lunch after tracking rhinos.

Day trips from Entebbe town

Entebbe town other than being the main entry point into Uganda, shouldn’t be skipped. Surrounded by Lake Victoria waters, Entebbe’s laid-back pace of life makes for a perfect escape of chaos in Kampala which is well known for its nightlife.

By contrast, Entebbe provides secluded beaches, national botanical gardens and Wildlife Education Center. Day trips from Entebbe to most attractions involve short drive times compared to Kampala.

Visit Mabamba Bay wetland if you bird watch
Mabamba swamp stretches for 16500 hectares in Mpigi district on the northern shores of Lake Victoria. It’s a 40-minute drive thus easy to reach for day trip from Entebbe. The papyrus wetland is well known for the Shoebill stork that is also found in Murchison Falls National Park. But it has 260 species of birds including Lake Victoria Biome endemics and 4 globally threatened birds namely; blue swallow, Pallid Harrier, Papyrus Gonolek and white winged warbler.
The birding experience is carried out by rowing traditional canoes with a guide. In particular, the shoebill tour is best done in the morning hours when the bird is often seen preying on lung fish. Locally known as Mmamba, the fish is a totem for the Mmamba clan which you learn about at the royal mile walk Mengo hill.

Botanic gardens and Uganda Wildlife Education Center

Visit the Botanical Gardens even if birds are not your thing. Go to the Wildlife Center, it is quite good introduction to Uganda wildlife diversity.

The Chimp Sanctuary on Ngamba Island
Stretching for 100 acres, Ngamba island is 45-50 minute by speed boat ride off Entebbe town. Also, it can be reached by motorized canoes which takes 90 minutes. The largest Chimpanzee Sanctuary in East Africa with a community of 50 chimpanzees. Most of the chimps that cannot survive in the wild are taken care of at the sanctuary were rescued across east and central Africa forests from hunters.

A visit to Ngamba island offers you a chance to feed and view the chimps from a raised platform. You can even for a walk in the forest. Further, the sanctuary is open for volunteer opportunities for those interested in care and welfare of chimps ranging from 1 to 4 weeks.

Spot fishing
Lake Victoria offers a selective advantage with spot and traditional fishing day trips Fishing spots are determined by local experts and the tour can be full or half day. The fish mostly caught is Nile Perch and Tilapia. Both of these can grow up to 90kg thus strong reels are needed.

Trips that last overnight out of Kampala

  • Gorilla trekking in Bwindi
  • Murchison Falls safari tour
  • Kibale Forest National Park
  • Queen Elizabeth National Park

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