The viability of the use of constructed wetlands planted with indigenous Cyperus papyrus and Phragmites mauritianus plants for the purification of pre-settled municipal wastewater in tropical environments was investigated in concrete lined constructed wetlands for a period of 11 months. BOD and total suspended solids concentrations in the effluents from both systems were below 20 mg/l and 25 mg/l, respectively. In the C. papyrus systems, the removal rates for COD, NH4+ and o-PO4 averaged to 3.75, 1.01 and 0.05 (g/m2.day), respectively. In P. mauritianus units, the rates were 1.52, 0.97 and 0.068 (g/m2.day), respectively. A high degree of faecal coliform removal was attained at longer retention times in the two systems.