Positioned on top of Kasubi Hill over 5 Km from the city center of Kampala, Kasubi tombs stand as the ancestral burial grounds for the Kings of the Kingdom of Buganda and no wonder it is recognized as a world heritage site by the UNESCO. The story of this site stretch far back to 1882, when Kabaka Mutesa shifted relocated his palace to the hill of Nabulagala like his predecessor Suuna II some 30 years earlier and renamed it Kasubi Hill after his birth place some 50 Km towards the East. A large palace was built on the top of the hill called Muziba Azala Mpanga in which he stayed till his demise in 1884 after a long spell of sickness. Kasubi hill was deserted after the Kabaka’s death to follow suit of the local custom. The successor Kabaka Mwanga settled at Mengo hill – just overlooking Kasubi hill. After the death of Mwanga in 1910, he was also buried seven years after his death at Kasubi hill adding significance to this contemporary famous place. The site also contains the body of Kabaka Daudi Chwa II who reigned from 1897 to 1939 and the last King to be buried there is Sir Edward Mutesa II in 1971 when his body was returned after it had stayed two years abroad where he was in exile.
These tombs are housed within the former palace that Mutesa had constructed which appears in a fanciful doom building of reeds, thatch and poles, which apart from incorporating sliding glass doors and concrete base in 1938 has altered less in appearance over 130 years of existence. The site also contains amazing assemblage of royal artifacts including; weapons, fetishes, shields, musical instruments and alien gifts from Queen Victoria not forgetting leopard that is stuffed which was owned by Mutesa I as his pet. The 52 Baganda clans are demonstrated by giant rings in the hut roof. The ancestral tombs are limited to the direct interface with public by use of a red bark cloth veil and it mandatory to remove shoes before entering. The tombs are maintained by the wives of the various kings – or more accurately by female descendants of their long deceased wives – some whom live on the property, while others do a one month shift twice a year. Many of the Kings wives, sisters and other female relations are also laid in Kasubi, in the sequence of smaller buildings that flank the drive way. The complex is entered via a large traditional reception hut known as bujjabukula. This is tended by agate man known as Mulamba (hereditary title) who customarily dresses in a brilliant yellow bark cloth robe as do his assistants.
The can be described as the center of administration of the Kingdom of Buganda. Positioned on the hill of Mengo overlooking Bulange-the parliament of Buganda, Kabaka’s palace is a historic place that is worthy of visiting on Uganda safari. It is a vast land scape with magnificent building and other historic structures with in its environs such as Amin’s torture chambers. The Amin’s torture chambers were the slaughtering ground for the then dictator Idi Amin who ruled Uganda from 1971 to 1979. There is a lot of history attached to the palace that will make your encounter memorable.
Ndere Troupe centre
Started in 1986 by Mr. Stephen Rwangyenzi, Ndere troupe has a quite extended and yet challenging path until its eventual settlement at its apparent home in Ntinda, Kampala. The great offer of Ndere troupe center is not only blended in its awesome cuisine but also splendid dance performances that renders every attendant into the state of amazement. The center is an assemblage of all Dance Music, and Drama hailing from different regions of Uganda and beyond. Remarkable presentations from Lugbar, Acholi, Karamajong, Baganda, Bagisu, Banyoro, Banyankole, Batooro, Bakiga and the tribes beyond boarders like Banyarwanda and Barundi all conglomerate to deliver a faultless precipitate of the indigenous tribes of the great lakes region.
The troupes are dressed in indigenous outfit throwing their legs, arms, bending their necks, twisting their waist and demonstrating all sorts of dances marching along the drum beats sounds of flute among other instrumental sounds generating a typical African experience. Ndere center experience stretches beyond pleasure to informative and educative pieces that are aired out during the performance breaks most of which are directed at closing cross cultural differences.
Katereke prison ditch:
This is a historical ditch that was used as a maximum prison during the reign of King Kalema in 1880. It is found in Kateleke and came into existence when Kalema took over the Kingship amidst the religious unrest that had characterized Buganda during that period. These religious unrests led Kabaka Mwanga into exile and Kalema assumed the Kingship. However, Kalema felt insecure due to resistance from the fellow brothers who were interested in the throne. In return, he captured them and held them in captivity at Kateleke prison ditch along with other prisoners. Unfortunately the captives were later slaughtered in a cold blood. Nowadays the place is an attractive shaded and peaceful site containing a circular ditch of about 70m in diameter. Today it is an attractive peaceful and shaded site comprising a circular ditch enclosing an area of about 70 meter in diameter. A drive on Masaka road for 30 minutes leads one to Nsangi from which you branch off on a dirt road for over 1 Km drive to the ditch.
This is one of the long surviving manmade lakes in Africa. Dug on orders of Kabaka Mwanga in the 1880s, the Kabaka’s lake is a stunning feature one can identify in the city of Kampala. Though the past of Kabaka Mwanga has only been identified with the bad, this ancient king left something of wonder that brings out the other side of him. The five acre lake is a wonderful feature sprinkled with birds on its shore and a green lush amidst it.
The main motivation for the construction of the lake is described as the Kabaka Mwanga’s interest to create a link between his palace and Lake Victoria that would in the end serve as an escape corridor; others include the desires for fishing and swimming. The Lake is a couple of Kilometers from the city center in Rubaga area overseeing the palace, St. Lawrence University and Rubaga Miracle center.
The project for the establishment of the Lake was first headed by Musoke who proved incompetent and was relieved of the duty and then Kamya Ndikumulaga assumed the position. He mobilized enough and the work of this lake was being carried out zealously for over eleven months until it was hampered by the by the religious revolutions that forced Kabaka Mwanga into exile
What is unique about the Kabaka’s Lake is that it has no inlet and yet its waters have never gone down, partly because of the springs that serve it.
Naggalabi Budo Coronation Site
Located at Naggalabi Buddo Hill top in the historic heart of the Kingdom of Buganda, Naggalabi Buddo Coronation site came up at the beginning of the 14th Century and has formed the center for the coronation of the Kings of Buganda up to present.
The site which has been a coronation site for Buganda Kingdom for the 700 years past is recognized as one of the great heritage sites in the Kingdom of Buganda that are worth exploring. The site gained its current status following the killing of Bemba Musota by Kintu after which he declared himself a King. The site enjoys sole existence regarding the role of coronation in the Kingdom of Buganda. The current King Ssabasajja Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II was also crowned at this site on 31st July 1993 and his coronation was attended by countless number of people including the Baganda and people from other foreign lands.
Naggalabi Budo Site is located in Busiro County of Buganda and lies along Kampala – Masaka Road. To connect to Naggalabi, one drive for 11km from Kampala through the trading center of Kyengera before turning left at Nakasozi for 2km to the site on a murram road. The Naggalabi Buddo Coronation site borders the prestigious Kings College Buddo which is a mixed secondary school.
The Naggalabi Budo Coronation Site offers a rich traditional encounter by visiting the coronation ground, the anti-hill where Bemba fell after he got speared by Kintu, the Buganda house where the King is kept for three days following his coronation, other traditional houses whose role in central to the coronation and the an ancient tree that was used as a court during the pre-colonial Buganda. An impressive storytelling, traditional Kiganda Music dance and drama and impressive local handicrafts are also available at the site and thus worthy of visiting while on a safari in Uganda.