Namugongo Martyrs Shrine
Single day | tour extension | Uganda
Namugongo Martyres Shrine
Namugongo is approximately 16 kilometers north-east of Uganda’s capital Kampala. On 3 June 1886, 32 young men, pages of the court of King Mwanga ll of Buganda were burned to death at Namugongo for their refusal to renounce Christianity. They were Anglican or Catholics.
The Namugongo Shrines were first recognized by Joshua Serufusa-Zake (1884–25 June 1985) when he was the Sabaddu of Kira Sub-County. He constructed a structure at the Namugongo site, where it appears shrines were built later for prayer. His interest in Christianity was enhanced by his father’s participation in the wars that brought Christianity to Uganda. His father, Semei Musoke Seruma Katiginya, had earned a name for brevity “Ngubu” from the wars.
Annually on 3 June, Christians from Uganda and other parts of the world congregate at Namugongo to commemorate the lives and religious beliefs of the Uganda Martyrs Crowds have been estimated in hundreds of thousands in some years.
Both Churches are built in areas were martyrs were killed, and they are also honored on churches’ murals and stain glasses. The most prominent shrine is Namugongo which is located where St. Charles Lwanga and his companions were burned.
The Ugandan tradition of honoring martyr’s is important because Ugandans are honoring their pre-Christian heritage of spirituality and ancestry. Many pilgrims come from Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, and all over Uganda to take part in the Ugandan Martyr’s Feast Day at Namugongo, and many others follow the celebration on national television. This facility opens at 8:00am and closes at 5:00pm.
We recommend at least 1 to 2 hours of experiential visit to this facility but depending on the time to your next activity you can be advised by your safari tour guide
Things To Do
- Guided Tour of the Catholic Shrine — This is usually in detail about the martyrs, visiting the church and for the catholic faith this would be a moment of joy for you will be praying to the saints. After the tour you can continue to your next destination or activity.
- It can be accessed by Road from Kampala
- Kampala city (16 km. 45 minutes to 1 hour drive)
- Ndere Center home to the cultural performances (10 km, 30 to 45 minute drive)
- Entebbe home to the International Airport, Zoo and Ngamba Island for chimpanzee experience (57 km or 2 hours’ drive)
Recommended duration of stay
The activity takes between 45 minutes to 1 hour depending on questions and answers as well as interest of the people in the group. The visit is not scheduled and can be done any time from 8:00 am to 5:00 Pm