Kasubi Tombs in Kampala – Uganda, World Heritage Site by UNESCO
Kasubi Tombs site is situated on Kasubi Hill- Nabulagala, it is strategically located 5kms from Kampala city center, along the Kampala-Hoima Road. From kampala city center, pass Makerere University (the oldest and the first University in Uganda), head to Nakulabye town. When you reach Nakulabye round about, go right onto Hoima Road, drive 1 kilometer and turn left to go up the Kasubi Hill.
At the top of the hill, turn left onto Masiro Road and follow it to the entrance of Kasubi Tombs, which is marked by a thatched hut. The trip is approximately 15 minutes drive from Kampala city centre when the road is free from traffic jam.
The Kasubi tombs site is an active religious place in the Buganda kingdom. Its place, as the burial ground for the previous four Kabakas, locally known as the “sekabakas” of Buganda. The graves makes this place 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. It should also be noted that, the tombs fetch a lot of foreign exchange to Buganda kingdom and to the country at large.
It is now four and half years since fire reduced Kasubi tombs to ashes. It was painful to see the tomb flaming, this not only affected the Buganda kingdom but also to the entire country because it resulted into the reduction of the number of tourists who used to visit this world heritage site.
The coronation of the new prime minister of Buganda – Charles peter Mayiga washed the tears of many Baganda since he initiated the reconstruction of the tombs through his project known as collecting “ Etofaali” meaning soliciting funds for the restoration of the tombs.
Mayiga started the fundraising campaign for the reconstruction of Kasubi Tombs in many regions of Buganda and those out side Buganda but wishing the best to Buganda like Ankole and Busoga. He also went a head to move abroad to states like Arab emirates – Dubai and so on to meet the Ugandan in Diaspora. All in all, the Katikkiro has been successful and the reconstruction is soon to be accomplished.
From Kasubi tombs, its 8 hours drive to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park therefore, it is wise to visit the tombs for cultural experience and on the same safari, experience gorilla tracking event in Bwindi N.P. It is on record that Bwindi impenetrable National Park hosts almost half of the world’s mountain Gorillas. Ten Gorilla families are habituated here and they include Mubare, Habinyanja, Rushegura, Bitakura, Oruzogo, Kyaguriro, Nshongi, Mishare, Kahunje and Bushenje group.
The kasubi tombs at Galace:
Four Buganda Kings (Bassekabaka) are buried at Kasubi tombs and they include:
Muteesa I was the first Kabaka to be buried in Kasubi Tomb, the 35th King of Buganda. The dates of the reigns of the Kabakas are only precisely known from Ssekabaka Suuna II, who ruled from 1836 to 1856.
Daudi Chwa II, a Kabaka buried at the tombs, Muteesa I (1835-1884), Basamula Mwanga II (1867-1903)
Daudi Chwa II (1896-1939), Fredrick Walugembe Muteesa II (1924-1969)
The Baganda belong to the Bantu speaking people and date their political civilization back to the 13th century A.D. According to oral traditions, the first Kabaka of Buganda was Kintu. He is said to have come with his wife Nambi, whose hand he won by performing heroic deeds at the command of her father Ggulu, the god of the sky.