Ugandans enjoy going out and going out they do. The Bars stay open until morning and the party continues all over Kampala. There is a party somewhere in Kampala and I am sure you will find it, just follow the music. Nightlife is relatively safe because of bouncers in the bars and clubs and Ugandans for the most part are simply friendly and hospitable. A body search takes place when entering most night spots. Take a special for hire taxi from your hotel. Do not take a Boda-boda, motorcycle late at night. Below are some places where foreigners frequent when going out at night. Coming home, take a special hire taxi. In town you can use Yellow Taxi which is metered, the rest of the time negotiate and bargain. Start at half the price, and go up from there, laugh and smile a lot.
Located on Bombo Road after Bat valley which is also place with amusement from different comedian shows like “Embaga ye Mbaata” and “Akandolindoli”. This is where on the weekend you find Uganda’s best live Band, the Afrigo Band. A must see group. You will love them.
Located across the street from Capital Pub’s rear entrance on Gabba Road. It is a huge place with lots of space for outside dancing. The music is great, my neighbor a Kenyan is a DJ day a few days a week, interesting place to say the least. The night I watched my neighbor doing DJ duties the place was packed to the gills and a line at the entrance to get in. Lots of students from KIU not doing their homework but out playing and dancing.
Club Silk and Ange Noir
Located in the industrial area on the way to Bugolobi. These two places are where people go who are serious about dancing. Packed with University Students.
Al’s Bar in Kansanga
This landmark place used to be the busiest place in town at night, but with the closing of Half-London and music that is no longer the Rock n Roll of the past, ex-pats have been shifting to other venues and Al’s Bar has sold – the new owner closes just around 1 am – earlier than many watering spots in the West – the food that was a nice addition is gone – the staff was sacked – you can drive by past midnight and the place is locked – it is still on Google maps – but in reality – no more.
A transplanted Irish Pub, literally speaking, this is an authentic pub…well not quite, there is nothing on tap. Popular with Ex-Pats, the place plays good music, has pub-grub and stays open until early in the morning. A bit of Ireland in Kampala. Located in Kololo area. My Dutch neighbor vouches for it and says it is a great place to go for an evening.
It is a Japanese Restaurant with some great Japanese steaks. It is said that it is the happening place to rock out in Kampala and is filled with Ex-Pats and those mosquito girls who seem to buzz around wherever the action is. It is now located at Centenary Park.
A lot of people, calm and nice, not too many ex-pats, but then you are visiting Uganda. The music is nice, maybe I am prejudiced due to my neighbor being a DJ there…well they don’t play Bob Dylan but then who does in Uganda. Food is available, nice wait-staff and some pool tables.
After midnight you cannot find a seat or a place at the bar, and most foreigners new to Uganda go through culture shock of some kind while visiting Capitol Pub. The music is loud enough to make the fabric of your shirt vibrate, the place is filled with women and men looking for women, the booze flows freely, the sodas are nice and cold, because they have been in the frig long enough until you come along and everywhere people are dancing the night away. The music is a blend of African and mostly American Hip Hop and some oldies thrown in. There are quite a few pool tables at which you can play a game or two for a reasonable price if you are not dancing. Capital Pub is part of the Kabalagala Night scene where parking is impossibility after nine pm. (Parking in back for 4000 UG Shillings-way overpriced, park on street. They also show live English Premier League Football Matches on a big screen which attracts large crowds.
Rock Garden at the Speke Hotel
A mixture of Afro-Rock, Hip-Hop both African and Indian style with a few American songs tossed in. Just plan on standing. Another place to dance in Kampala. A stage where people dance to strobe lights, you can get a pizza at Mamma Mias next door and enjoy meeting people from every continent. Lots of ladies of the evening, you can also find lots of them stand on the adjoining waiting for customers, be wise – beware – AIDS is real here in Uganda and so are countless of STD’s.