|District||Kampala Capital City Authority|
|Elevation||3,710 ft (1,130 m)|
Port Bell is a small industrial centre in the greater metropolitan Kampala area, in Uganda. Port Bell has a rail link and a rail/road ferry wharf used for International traffic across Lake Victoria to Tanzania and Kenya.
It is located at the end of a narrow inlet of Lake Victoria, approximately 7 miles (11 km), by road, southeast of the central business district of Kampala. The coordinates of Port Bell are:00 17 24N, 32 39 15E (Latitude:0.2900; Longitude:32.6540).
The port is named after Sir Hesketh Bell, a British commissioner, who took over administration of Britain's interests in Uganda in 1906. Its rail link is a branch line from the Kampala-Jinja main line.
Lake Victoria ferries operate from Port Bell linking Kampala to other railhead ports on Lake Victoria including Jinja, Kisumu and Mwanza. The Port Bell ferry wharf is visible on high-resolution Google Earth photos at latitude 0.2885° longitude 32.653°. A ferry is shown loading truck and rail coaches while another waits.
When the first stage of the Uganda Railway was completed in 1901, the railhead was at Kisumu, 12 hours journey from Port Bell by ship. Ferries brought goods by lake between Port Bell and Kisumu. It was not until 1931 that a branch line of the railway from Nakuru reached Kampala and then Port Bell.
At present, Uganda Breweries has its main brewery at Port Bell. In the 1960s one of the first instant tea factories was located at Port Bell as was a factory distilling Waragi, a distilled alcoholic beverage.
The landmarks in or near Port Bell include:
- Luzira Maximum Security Prison - Has a capacity of 20,000 inmates including about 500 on death row
- Quality Chemical Industries Limited ARV Factory - The US$40 million factory is the only one in sub-Saharan Africa that manufactures triple ARV therapy medication.
- Uganda Breweries Limited - A division of East African Breweries and maker of Uganda Waragi, a triple-distilled gin.
- Port Bell - The port, located on the shores of Lake Nalubaale, handles both passenger and cargo traffic destined for Kisumu, Kenya and Mwanza and Musoma in Tanzania.
Before the jet airline era, Port Bell was a landing point on the Imperial Airways flying boat passenger and mail route from Southampton to Johannesburg's Vaal Dam. Port Bell linked Khartoum and Kisumu. The nearby Silver Springs hotel was originally built by BOAC as a rest stop for passengers between long flights.