Travel to Kasubi Tombs – Tombs of Buganda Kings
Situated on a 30 ha hillside within Kampala district, the world heritage site of the Tombs of Buganda Kings at Kasubi is an active religious place in the Buganda kingdom. Its place, as the burial ground for the previous four Kabakas, makes it a very important religious centre for the royal family, a place where the Kabaka and his representatives frequently carry out important rituals related to Ganda culture.
Most of the site is agricultural, farmed by traditional methods. At its core on the hilltop is the former palace of the Kabakas of Buganda, built in 1882 and converted into the royal burial ground in 1884. Four royal tombs now lie within the Muzibu Azaala Mpanga, the main building, which is circular and surmounted by a dome. It is a major example of an architectural achievement in organic materials, principally wood, thatch, reed, wattle and daub. The site’s main significance lies, however, in its intangible values of belief, spirituality, continuity and identity.
The Kasubi tombs hill is divided into three main areas:
• the main tombs area located at the western end of the site
• an area containing buildings and graveyards located behind the tombs
• a large area on the eastern side of the site which was used primarily for agricultural purposes.
The tombs and the entire site environment carry strong spiritual and social significance while the architecture itself carries meanings related to Ganda traditions. The rich decorative features, invested with spiritual values, reflect the interaction between nature and culture, between the spirits and the living people. There are fine examples of unique thatched roofing and bark cloth making.
The Kasubi Tombs are located on Kasubi Hill, 5 km from Kampala city centre, on the Kampala-Hoima Road. From Kampala city centre, pass Makerere University and drive down to Nakulabye. At the Nakulabye roundabout, turn right onto Hoima Road, drive for 1 km then turn left and head up Kasubi Hill.
- Discover the artefacts of the kings including spears and drums
- See the typical architectural style of a Ganda dwelling – domed with a thatched roof
- Experience the Buganda Kingdom’s most active religious place