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119, KG 9 Av, Kigali (Co-Located in Hotel Villa Portofino)
things to see and do in Kigali

Popular things to see and do in Kigali City

The majority of tourists mainly use the city as a set off point to visit the nation’s isolated national parks, where they can hike up a volcano or see wildlife like mountain gorillas and golden monkeys. With everything that Kigali has to offer, it shouldn’t be the case. While in Rwanda, there are quite many interesting and popular things to see and do in Kigali City. Rwanda is renowned for its breath-taking scenery and abundance of hills. With a population of over a million, Kigali is conveniently accessible by road from all of Rwanda’s neighbouring nations due to its central location. Kigali has established a reputation as one of Africa’s calmest, safest, cleanest, and most orderly cities. It serves as Rwanda’s hub for the arts, transportation, and culture.

Kigali Genocide Memorial

things to see and do in Kigali

Understanding the causes of the horrific 800,000 deaths in Rwanda during a mere 100 days, the majority of whom were members of the Tutsi ethnic minority, is essential to appreciating what Rwanda has become. The Kigali Genocide Memorial exposes the horrific realities that Rwandans had to endure in 1994 as well as the historical circumstances that preceded the genocide. The 1994 genocide against the Tutsi and moderate Hutus is the subject of the major exhibit. It describes how colonisation changed Rwandan society and brought about divisions between Hutus and Tutsis that didn’t exist before. After that, the exhibit tells the heart-breaking tales of survival and heroic rescues by both locals and foreigners, revealing the events leading up to the genocide, what transpired during those 100 horrific days, and powerful photo displays, artefacts, and audio-visual displays on dim, circular hallways. Stained glass windows and sculptures abound throughout the moving area, lending it a hallowed aura.

Visit Craft shops and Art Galleries

The people of Rwanda like utilising art to communicate their stories, just like people everywhere else. The majority of art objects are made with locally sourced materials. Among the merchandise are vibrant gowns, necklaces, bracelets, and beads. You can purchase these items to give as gifts to loved ones, as souvenirs, or to put on display in living rooms. Kigali Arts Centre, Abien Arts Centre, Inema Arts Centre, Ivuka Arts, and Indiba Art Space are some of the city’s art centres. Visit Sarah Day Design, GoKigali Boutique, Abraham Kongo collections, and Nyamirambo Women’s Centre for the best in fashion.

Kigali city tour Rwanda

The Kigali Convention Centre

One of Kigali’s newest and most striking architectural wonders is this centre. The architects created a fascinating design that resembles a beehive and is made of dazzling glass and a strong nighttime beam. The Kigali Convention Centre hosts the majority of well-known conventions. With the aid of the Kigali Convention Centre, Rwanda has become a popular destination for international conferences. The spacious Convention Centre is extended with the Radisson Blu Hotel.

Visit Local Markets

Visiting the local markets is the finest approach to gain an understanding of a country’s culture. You can learn about their interactions and favourite foods from the market. Perhaps Kigali’s biggest local market is Kimironko Market. It is the finest place to find fresh fruits, vegetables, flours, and species because it is situated away from the city centre. The market features a number of electronics, clothing, and other craft stores in addition to food vendors. Brightly coloured indigenous textiles from Rwanda are readily available for purchase and can be sewn into a skirt, top, or dress for a nominal cost. The Nyamirambo market is the other significant market. Because this market is larger, you can interact with the people while learning about their items. The majority of Rwandans speak French and Kinyarwanda. When visiting these markets, it’s crucial to travel with a guide who can assist you with translation as needed.

Nyamirambo Women’s Centre

The Nyamirambo Women’s Centre is located in a Kigali suburb. In 2007, a group of Rwandan women who had previously experienced gender-based violence founded this centre and workshop. The Nyamirambo Women’s Centre, a non-governmental organisation, offers computer literacy courses and English language trainings for victims in addition to fighting gender-based violence. Things to do when visiting Kigali The ladies use the center’s contemporary sewing machines to make bags, clothing, and other items using materials found in the area. The finished product is excellent, and their boutique sells some of the most vibrant Kitenge (a native fabric) at competitive prices to help the centre. To introduce tourists to Kigali’s rural lifestyle, the Nyamirambo Women’s Centre organises walking excursions. The two-hour walking excursions include stops at the State House Museum, the Natural History Museum, as well as neighbourhood stores, residences, hair salons, and marketplaces.

Visit Hotel des Mille Collines

Among the greatest hotels in Kigali is the Hotel des Mille Collines. The 2004 film “Hotel Rwanda” had a scene set in this hotel. The hotel served as a haven for many throughout the 2004 genocide. More than a thousand people were saved by the hotel administrators who concealed them in the rooms. With 112 rooms, Hotel des Mille Collines is a sizable, opulent establishment. It features an international cuisine restaurant, a fitness centre, and a swimming pool. You are welcome to stay at the hotel even if you are not one of its residents. There are no open displays that highlight its significance during the genocide, and no excursions are permitted.

Climb Mount Kigali

Climbing Mount Kigali can be the perfect thing for adventure seekers. At 6,000 feet, it is Kigali’s highest hill rather than a mountain in the traditional sense. The Sun City Hotel is close to the starting site in Nyamirambo. Because of the mountain’s mild slopes, trekking to the summit is generally simple. Aside from providing breathtaking city vistas, the summit of Mount Kigali provides excellent photo ops. You can visit the Fazenda Sengha horse ranch to go horse riding or pause for food and beer at the Mera Neza tavern when you’re at the summit of Mount Kigali. Barbeque is provided to guests on a platform in the ranch that offers a view of the lovely city.

Visit a Milk Bar

In Rwandan culture, cows are extremely significant and represent identity, prosperity, and riches. Even now, bride prices, or marriage dowries, are paid with cows. As a result, milk plays a significant cultural role. Kigali is known for its milk bars, which are little stores selling just milk. The best milk bars are usually found in Kigali’s Nyamirambo or Kimisagara neighbourhoods; these establishments are identified as such by a drawing of a cow on the door and the word “Amata Meza,” which translates to “fresh milk” in Kinyarwanda.

Taste Rwandan Coffee

When compared to other well-known coffee-producing nations, Rwandan coffee is still underappreciated, but it is becoming more and more well-known globally, particularly in specialty cafés. Rwanda’s topography and climate, which include plenty of mountains and lush rainforests, make it an ideal location for growing coffee. The nation is situated on a highland with an average height of 1,500 metres, making it the 13th highest-elevated nation in the world. It also has excellent volcanic soil and tropical highland temperatures.

Approximately 500,000 smallholder farmers cultivate premium aromatic coffee that has a rather high acidity level. You can take tours of coffee plantations or, if you’re in Kigali, stop by one of the many cafés that have fantastic city views and typically extremely attractive décor made with Rwandan fabric. Additionally, you may support worthy causes like the empowerment of Rwandan women farmers and sustainable coffee production across the coffee chain by visiting several of the cafés.

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