Need to wait out one of Kampala’s infamous evening traffic jams? Virgin Island is the place to be if you are looking for fun. Until recently, the venue has been overlooked but now young professionals leave their offices and daily weave through the back roads to reach this oasis. It offers everything you are looking for after a hard day at the office: loud music, spacious dance floor and plenty of booze.
Virgin Island is at 78 Port Bell Road in Bugolobi and there’s no entrance fee. From town, you can jump in a matatu for the 15-minutes ride which takes you via the Electoral Commission, Airtel offices, through to Bugolobi near the Mbuya Army Barracks. If traffic is heavy it might take you 30 minutes so using a boda boda is better. A ride to the venue should cost only 3,000 UGX.
The bar’s design is simple and convenient being a big hut with grass thatch roof on a round wall. The stone floor provides a continuation of the pavement all around the site. The low wooden chairs with soft brown cushions would be inviting if the place weren’t usually too full to capacity to notice them.
The drinks are reasonably priced by Ugandan standards with a beer going for an average of 2,500 – 3,000 UGX but there are lots of other drink varieties for those who want to indulge.
The bar is wide with plenty of space for patrons who want to sit next to the action and there is plenty of action! The biggest draw is the UG Night on Saturdays. Only Ugandan music is played and Ugandan local brew is served up from all parts of Uganda. Do not be surprised to see traditional dance troupes thrown into the mix.
On Wednesdays there’s Mid-week Madness on Wednesday which is popular with university students. For those who like living on the edge, the second Saturday of the month is, ‘Good Girls Gone Bad’ where you’re sure to have dancing on table and other wild entertainment not for the faint of heart. There are also live comedy nights with local stand-up comedians whose use of risqué language is decidedly adult – but the customers keep coming back for more.
Virgin Island comes alive in the evenings so lunch is a quiet affair. The menu is standard a la carte with patrons ordering simple meals like fries or roasted pork, or chicken. Local dishes like matooke and rice are also on the menu. Special orders can be accommodated. Service is not fast so be prepared to wait for your food.
The bar service is cordial but the barman keeps his head despite the hordes who come in every weekend. The managers are friendly, mingling with patrons, taking orders.
To find them on Facebook go here: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Virgin-Island-Bar/182367808482848 Phone: +256 (0)701 441 441.