Kampala is the capital city of Uganda. With a population of 1,208,544 (2002) it is the largest city in Uganda. It is coterminous with the district of Kampala. The city is divided into five boroughs that oversee local planning: Central, Kawempe, Makindye, Nakawa and Rubaga.
The city grew as the capital of the Buganda kingdom, from which several buildings survive, including the Kasubi Tombs (built in 1881), the Buganda Parliament, the Buganda Court of Justice and the Naggalabi Buddo Coronation Site. Severely damaged in the Uganda-Tanzania War, the city has since then been rebuilt, with constructions of new buildings including hotels, banks, shopping malls, educational institutions, hospitals and improvement of war torn buildings and infrastructure. Traditionally, Kampala was a city of seven hills, but overtime it has come to have a lot more.
The main campus of Makerere University, one of East and Central Africa's premier institutes of higher learning, can be found in the Makerere Hill area of the City. Kampala is also home to the headquarters of the East African Development Bank.
Like many cities, Kampala is said to be built on seven hills, although this isn't quite accurate.
The City spread to Nakasero Hill where the administrative centre and the wealthiest residential area is. There is also Tank Hill, where there is a water tank. Mulago Hill is the site of Mulago Hospital, which is the largest hospital in Uganda. Makerere Hill, where Makerere University is situated. The city is now rapidly expanding along both sides of the Makindye Hill and Konge Hill. Makindye Division incorporating Kibuli, Tank Hill and Makindye now has 300,000 residents. Medical provision in this part of town, being more recently developed, is limited. Hospitals include Kibuli Hospital, St Francis Nsambya and the International Hospital (IHK). Philanthropic health services are provided by Hope Clinic Lukuli situated between Makindye/ Konge and Tank Hills.
Suburbs include Kololo in the East on Kololo Hill the highest hill, home to the Uganda Museum; Namirembe; Kibuli; Kabalagala; Rubaga; Ntinda; Najjera; Kisassi; Nateete; Kireka; Namugongo; Najjanakumbi among others.
Other features of the city include the Ssezibwa Falls, Ugandan National Theatre, St. Balikuddembe Market (formerly Owino Market) and Nakasero Market. Kampala is also known for its nightlife, which includes a casino. Entebbe International Airport is located at Entebbe, 35 km (22 miles) away, while Port Bell on the shore of Lake Victoria is 10 km (7 miles) away.
Also to note is that Kampala hosts one of only seven Bahá'í Houses of Worship in the world. It is known as the Mother Temple of Africa and is situated on Kikaya Hill on the outskirts of the city. Its foundation stone was laid in January 1958, and was dedicated on January 13, 1961. See Bahá'í Faith in Uganda.
In early 2007, it was announced that Kampala would remove commuter taxis from its streets and replace them with a comprehensive city bus service, which will also cover the greater Kampala metropolitan area including Mukono, Mpigi, Bombo, Entebbe, Wakiso and Gayaza. The decision is yet to be implemented. Boda-bodas -local motorcycle transportation are a popular mode of transport that gives access to many areas with in and outside the city. Standard fees for these range from UGX 500 to 1000 or more. They are quite handy for those who do not want to be stuck in traffic for long. Passengers always need to ask the rider to slow down or rather take it slow so as to avert any accidents.
New traffic planning calls for directing heavy vehicles away from the city and opening bus and taxi terminals outside the city.
The Kampala City Council will introduce a congestion fee of sh30,000 per vehicle per day when the bus network is implemented. This decision is also yet to be implemented.
The mismanagement of Uganda's economy during the 1970s and 1980's meant that there were fewer employment opportunities outside Kampala. This encouraged many people from around the country to move into the city, and most have not moved back to their home districts after the revitalization of the economy in the 1990s.
Inter-tribal marriage in Uganda is still rare, and although many Kampala residents have been born and bred in the city they still define themselves by their tribal roots. This is more evident in the suburbs of the city, where local languages are spoken widely alongside English, Swahili and Luganda. Apart from the Baganda and Banyankole, other large ethic groups include the Basoga, Bafumbira, Batoro, Bakiga, Alur, Banyoro, Iteso and Acholi.