Kampala is the capital and business center of Uganda found in the central part of the country. Kampala is believed to be one of the most amazing and interesting busy cities to visit in Africa. The city is blessed with a variety of attractions and cultural centers.

But before you start planning a visit to this amazing city in Africa, here are some of the things you should put in mind in order to enjoy your trip to the fullest

1. Fly to Entebbe

Any foreigner who would love to explore this amazing city has to start with booking a flight to Entebbe International Airport, which is found in Entebbe town on the shores of Lake Victoria in just 40km to Kampala city. Once in Entebbe, the direct way to reach Kampala is using an airport cab or a taxi which can cost something like 90,000UGX or 30$ and if you want to travel like locals, there is also matatus which are min buses carrying 14 passengers in Entebbe town which are even less expensive at 6000UGX equivalent to less than 2$. The journey to Kampala will take a couple of hours depending on how bad the traffic on the road is and even the time you travel. In most cases, during morning and evening hours always traffic is heavy. The most common way some tourists use to reach the city is by hiring a car to self-drive around Kampala and Uganda in general. At Entebbe International Airport there are several car rental companies offering good and reliable cars for self-drive hire, you can check online and book your vehicle before you land in the country.

2. Feel Free and Comfortable

Ugandans are really proud of their city and it’s believed that Ugandans are the friendliest people in Africa. Some tourists have the belief that most of the African countries are not safe the thing which makes them feel uncomfortable to the extent of thinking trice to travel to Africa. But the case in Kampala – Uganda is different, you will be shocked at how safe it’s to move around the city and you will have a story to tell when you get back home. Kampala is the most fun, friendly, comfortable, and affordable city to visit in East Africa with a variety of cultural attractions to visit in the city.

3. Learn some Luganda

Uganda has many tribes which means every tribe has its language, although English is the official language, Luganda is the most widely used language most especially in Kampala. Every Ugandan from different parts of the country who come to stay in the capital learn it to fit in and to earn enough to pay their bills. You can, as well. Here are a few expressions to get started— and get you a good starting point and bigger smiles: Oli otya means “how are you?” Respond with gyendi—”I’m fine.” Gyebale ko Nyabo (lady) or sebbo (man) is a typical greeting, webale is thank you.

4. Get Connected

When you manage to reach this amazing city, you will need to keep in touch with your relatives and friends back at home, so you will need to stay connected. The National Information Technology Authority in Uganda provides free Wi-Fi in some parts of the city and selected times. For instance, in the area of Kisimenti there is always free Wi-Fi and there are other areas around the city most of the hotels and restaurants in Kampala offer free Wi-Fi to their clients. But the most convenient and easy way to get internet access in Kampala is by buying a local sim card which costs less than 5000UGX and a data bundle in Kampala is relatively cheap whereby you can get 9GB valid for a month at 30000UGX which is less than 10USD and internet coverage around the city is good.

5. Boda Boda

The morning hours when the commuters are going for work and evening hours the time for returning home, make traffic jams in Kampala crazy and the easiest and best way to beat this crazy traffic jam is by using a Boda Boda. Using a Boda Boda in Kampala is not for faint-hearted because these riders sometimes can mean to be careless and it’s advisable to look in the eyes and of the rider to find out that he is in his clear sense and don’t smell any booze before you board. Be prepared for weaving through a heavy traffic jam, hair raising ride but also don’t forget to wear your helmet. There are several organized Boda Boda companies like Safe Boda, uber, bolt, and others who can offer safe rides around Kampala, and what you need is just downloading an app on your smartphone.

6. Asking for directions

Most roads have no names in Uganda, so you need to depend on the local people to direct you in case you are not sure about the right direction of where you going. Local people in Kampala will be eager to help, however, remember the way Ugandans give directions always involves things like a jack fruit tree, mango tree, and other types of trees because the city is so green, so trees are common landmarks. Another thing is always watching the mouth of the person directing you sometimes they use their mouth to point in the direction which you need.

7. Choose your hotel wisely

Uganda is known to be one of the cheapest destinations in East Africa, with accommodation starting from 5$. But before choosing where to stay in Kampala first find out about the security of the area and how safe the lodge or hotel is. It’s mostly recommended to not go for very cheap accommodation and choose to go deep in downtown. You can get an average, safe and clean accommodation at about 20$ with a secure parking space. You can go online and check for the variety of hotels in the city.

8. See the Kampala nightlife

A Kampala City tour is never complete without exploring the city’s nightlife, Kampala has a variety of nightclubs and bars and Kabalagala one of the Kampala suburbs is the most known place for those planning to enjoy Kampala nightlife. The place is full of bars, clubs, and restaurants, and a night out in Kabalagala won’t end before dawn. The streets in Kabalagala are lined with people grilling chicken and those flying chips on charcoal stoves, and ladies of the night in case you are interested in one feel free to ask the price.

9. Carry a small handbag and speak loudly

If you to enjoy Kampala nightlife to the fullest, remember to not carry a big handbag when you want to visit a club or a bar in Kampala. Most clubs in the city have restrictions on the size of the bag you enter with, for security purposes. The main reason why most clubs don’t allow big bags is that people use them to hide stolen phones and wallets. So, carry a small bag and also keep a keen eye on your wallet and phone. Most bars and nightclubs in the area play loud music so having a conversation with friends you will need at least to speak a bit louder.

10. Escape Kampala

When you hear people saying that they are going upcountry, it doesn’t mean that they are going in the north – it simply implies they are planning to leave the capital. If there is a chance, join them. Kampala is an amazing destination, but the country has much to offer. For example, whenever I feel like having a break and relaxation, I just drive over 400km southwest of Kampala to Lake Bunyonyi. Still in the western part of the country, you can visit Queen Elizabeth National Park the most loved and visited national park in the country, when you head northwest, you can’t miss visiting the mighty Murchison Falls and in the northeastern part of the country, there is Kidepo Valley National Park.

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