The Uganda National Museum
The Uganda National Museum is among Kampala’s top Attractions, If found you have a free Sunday in Kampala, decided to do something productive with your time and visit the Uganda National Museum (UM) with a view to learning more about the ‘Pearl of Africa’.
The visit is the biggest and the oldest Museum in Uganda which founded in 1908, the Uganda National Museum remarkable collection spans over two million years of human history. Enjoy African history cultures and treasures of Uganda under one roof.
The Uganda National Museum has different sections including Traditional music section with the traditional musical instruments and a live performance is available for the visitor’s Archaeology section with the parts of Stone Age and Iron Age where you will be able to see the stone tools which were used 1,000,000 years ago Independence pavilion of science and industry having transport (7th car in Uganda), communication (model of the 1st telephone in East Africa) Ethnology history with the things of recent history like the first printing press in Uganda Ethnography providing the visitors with the touch of cultures and peoples way of life Paleontology with the fossils aged about 20,000,000 years ago.
Also, discover the distinct species of mammals like Long-horned buffalo and the Indian Elephant Outside the Museum is the Living Museum (Cultural village) that exhibits the ways of lives of Ugandans as it represents the whole of Uganda.
You enter the museum and the hall splits in three directions leading to the different exhibits – stone-age room, traditional musical instruments, history, iron-age, traditional life, natural history and the palaeontology gallery). I opted to head straight for the history section – the information was concise and easy to follow. The further I travelled through the museum the more impressed I was by the collections on a view (spectacular head-dresses) and how these were displayed.
The various weapons (war, hunting and also instruments of punishment) will be a big hit with children; I know it would have been the first place I would have headed to when I was younger, and despite being a little older I was still hooked! In addition, I found the natural history section really interesting and especially the window highlighting the stealth-like attributes of some of Uganda’s insects.
After spending time soaking up all the information on offer, I felt the need to blow off some steam, and what better way to do it than ‘having a crack’ at the different Ugandan musical instruments that the museum holds. Despite not having a single musical bone in my body, Alice (who had enticed me over in the first place with her serene tube fiddle tunes) showed me the ropes and we ‘jammed’ for a while! This involved sporadic banging of drums by me, and true finger wizardry from Alice on a number of different instruments.
The traditional instruments on display are a far cry from the ones you see for sale in various craft shops and very special, and this comes from someone with no prior interest in musical instruments other than an iPod. Having taken one last quick tour around the museum to grab some shots of my favourite pieces, I left feeling my afternoon had truly enriched my understanding of Uganda by an unstressed wander through a fascinating place.
The museum is a great introduction to Uganda – it offers a variety of exhibits that display the many unique aspects of the country in a way that is far from boring. All ages will take something from their trip and it provides a great afternoon out – especially those wanting to get out of the hustle and bustle of Kampala and a little deeper into the rich history of Uganda.
Ugandan = Adult/Children 1000/500
Non-Uganda = Adult/Children 3000/1500
Still Camera = 5000
Video Camera = 20000
(Guides can be arranged upon arrival)
Monday to Saturday (10.00 am to 6.00 pm)
Sunday and Public Holidays (12 Noon to 6.00 pm)
Plot 5-7 Kira Road, Kampala.