Bushpig Backpackers Hostel – Home Away from Home in Kampala, Uganda [A Review]

The Bushpig Backpackers Hostel Concept

Bushpig Backpackers is my home away from home in Uganda. This colorful hostel offers a fantastic location in Kampala, Uganda’s capitol, with affordable prices, great food, and a super fun atmosphere that makes it easy to meet fellow travelers and locals alike.

If you’re looking for a place where you can feel safe, have easy access to some of the top Kampala attractions and restaurants, and not break the bank – look no further! As of April 2022, I’ve spent about four months in total living at Bushpig. My partner has spent almost 7!

Read on for why it’s our preferred place to stay when we’re in Uganda.

What is a Bushpig?

A bushpig is a wild pig found throughout East & South Africa. It makes a cute logo too! These piggies are social creatures and are usually found in groups of up to 12, called “sonders”. Super fitting for a hostel that makes it easy to find friends!

The Property

The property includes some 35 rooms, plus a long-stay mini apartment which has two rooms for guests staying one week or more, including a kitchen, little dining table, and share bathroom. There are suites with spacious living area, queen beds, and beautiful stone showers. There are private room options which are pretty basic but provide some solitude. And there’s the classic dorm room setup for the budget traveler. 

You’ll also find a bar and dining area with indoor and outdoor seating, and a patio area out back where you can read a book or soak up some sun. It’s a beautiful property with wooden picnic tables, chalk board signs advertising the different events and drinks specials, and colorful murals that make it a super enjoyable place to stay. 

Accessibility:

This is taken from the Bushpig website: “We are not a very accessible hostel for wheelchairs and other disability aids. This is down to the design of the building, which was built with no consideration of this. However our staff will do their best to be helpful to all guests at all times, and generally it works well.”

As you can see from the photo below, there are a few steps to get up to the reception or restaurant. However, the longstay rooms to the left of this building pictured do not have steps and would be a more accessible option.

Photo credit to Bushpig Backpackers. To the right is the dining area, and to the left is the garden space.

The Rooms

Each bed comes with a mosquito net which is a must-have in Uganda. In the long stay, there’s a shared shower and bathroom that are fairly straightforward but very clean. There are also a few bathrooms in the common area that are very nice and well kept, if you don’t want to trek back to your third-story room in the middle of trivia. 

We’ve stayed in the long stay and in the ensuite, both of which had very comfortable beds. One suite was tastefully decorated with African baskets and photography that the manager took himself. Most (if not all) of the suites have a balcony and a bookshelf or two for storage.

It’s generally very warm and humid in Uganda, but fortunately most rooms are equipped with a fan.

Photo of one of the suites. Bathroom not pictured. Photo credit: Bushpig Backpackers

Wifi:

There’s wifi on every floor too so this is a great hostel for digital nomads! Every now and then the power will go out and the wifi can be a bit finicky, but that’s not unique to Bushpig Backpackers Hostel. That’s just life in Uganda. 

Bushpig Backpackers Pub & Food

The Bushpig Food is amazing! Having tried nearly everything on the menu, or watching my partner eat the meat-eater options I’ve skipped, I can attest that there’s nothing you should avoid. That said, we definitely have some favorites. 

Food:

The pizzas are delicious and cooked in a big stone fire pit, served with sides of minced garlic & jalapenos for toppings. The veggie is a personal favorite – delicious and loaded with a lot of produce. The crust is on the thin and crispy side which is just how I like it. You can get a medium or large for a fuller meal, but a lunch slice is only 12,000 UGX and is really more the size of 2 or 3 pieces. 

The burgers are great – my partner gets the Fireball Beef & Bacon Burger and the Chicken Breast burger often. Other favorites include the chicken salad, the mac & cheese with bacon, the avocado tomato salad, and the ribs.

Breakfast: 

You get your choice of several free breakfast options with a stay at the Bushpig Backpackers Hostel. You can get either pancakes, eggs and toast with avocado or bacon, or yogurt and muesli and every meal comes with a small fruit plate (banana, pineapple, watermelon) and a drink (coffee or tea).

If you want a full English Breakfast, it’s available for 23,000UGX (about $6). The BP breakfast are better than any other hostel in Kampala and most hostels I’ve seen around the world. 

Drinks:

As far as drinks go, they have the typical Ugandan beers, three Banange Brewery craft beers on draft, a great list of specialty cocktails like the Espresso Martini, plus a couple wine selections. If your tummy is feeling a little off, you can’t go wrong with a pot of lemon ginger tea!

Arnol, one of our friends and a bartender at Bushpig since at least 2019!

Events at Bushpig

Monday nights there are two-for-one cocktails at the bar.

Tuesday is trivia night – not to be taken lightly. Sometimes nearly 100 people show up! It typically starts at 6:30 and goes 6-8 rounds until 8:30/9pm. Each round has ten questions, and teams will score after each round. After each round, the winning team gets a round of shots. The winner of the entire game wins a pizza! We’ve joined in on probably 12 or more trivia nights and it’s really the only place I’ve truly enjoyed trivia.

There’s also a chalkboard highlighting lots of other tours and goings on throughout the week. Basically, you’ll never be bored here at the Bushpig Backpackers Hostel.


Ready to travel? Get in touch

I’m a travel agent who helps busy, eco-conscious people plan once-in-a-lifetime adventures in breathtaking locations like Norway, Scotland, the British Virgin Islands, and Uganda. I handle everything from daydreaming to departure and only work with tour companies who respect the planet and locals, so you can enjoy your getaway knowing you’re having a positive impact.

Schedule a complimentary vacation planning session and let’s talk about your next trip.


Bushpig Backpackers Amenities

Need laundry done? You can get a basket of laundry washed and dried for 10,000 shillings per basket. This is one of the only places we’ve done laundry in Kampala but we’ve heard from others that this is a great price, as many places charge by the item rather than a basket. Drop off your clothes clothes in the morning (before 11am) and pick them up the same day. 

The reception area has a ton of fliers and information about different tours around the city that are fun to explore. You can purchase bottled waters, snacks, and some basic toiletries at the front desk.

Need something to read? Check out the bookshelf in the lobby for one to borrow or trade.

Pretty much anything you need, the staff can tell you where to find it or help you get it done. They are so, so friendly and we have loved getting to know them over the months we’ve stayed here in total!

The reception area. Photo credit: Bushpig Backpackers.

Hostel Costs

Room prices:

This is wonderful spot for budget travelers. It’s not the cheapest place you’ll find in Kampala, but it’s worth the extra few dollars you’ll spend for all of the wonderful offerings it has. My partner spent his first trip to Kampala exploring the other hostels in the area and after his experiment, decided he’s never staying anywhere else when he returns.

Bed in 4-bed dorm: $14 (Mixed or Female Only)
Triple Room: $54 – total price for 3 people
Twin room: $34 – total price for 2 people
Single room: $20
Standard Double: $40 (one double bed + includes balcony)

Ensuite Double: $55 (includes private bathroom + balcony)

Food & Drink Costs

Breakfast is included, but coffee drinks are between $2-3, beers and sodas are around the same. The have cocktails from 10,000 to 20,000 UGX with a bottle of wine running 55,000. 

A medium pizza is between 25,000 UGX and 30,000 UGX. Most of the sandwiches and mains are around the same cost. It’s a middle of the road price point for the dining but the food is great and you won’t find the same quality much cheaper anywhere in Kampala. 

The dining area. Photo credit: Bushpig Backpackers.

Where is Bushpig Located?

Bushpig Backpackers Hostel is located in the Kololo district of Kampala, on Acacia Avenue. It’s one of the safest neighborhoods and within walking distance of countless dining options and other attractions. 

A ten-minute walk from the Acacia Mall, several great coffee shops and cafes if you need to work, a movie theater and gym in the mall, a salon with great and affordable services, and so many yummy restaurants. There are even some top clubs for night life within a five-minute walk (or less) which is great for those late nights when you drank a little too much to feel comfortable on a boda boda. 

It’s also a drop-off and pickup stop for the Pineapple Express, a shuttle which goes between Entebbe, Kampala, and Jinja. This is super convenient if you’re coming here straight from the airport or doing day trips to Jinja for other adventures, which you absolutely should. 

Final Thoughts

I’ve stayed at a lot of hostels around the world and have never seen a place where so many locals come to hang out alongside the guests. The staff are incredible for us, Bushpig truly feels like a little home away from home. 

Come and stay for a few days, and you might find yourself booking an extra couple nights like so many people I’ve met here. It’s really doesn’t get much better than this!

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Ready to travel? Get in touch

I’m a travel agent who helps busy, eco-conscious people plan once-in-a-lifetime adventures in breathtaking locations like Norway, Scotland, the British Virgin Islands, and Uganda. I handle everything from daydreaming to departure and only work with tour companies who respect the planet and locals, so you can enjoy your getaway knowing you’re having a positive impact.

Schedule a complimentary vacation planning session and let’s talk about your next trip.


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Bushpig Backpackers Hostel - Home Away from Home in Kampala, Uganda [A Review]