Kigali, the capital city of Rwanda

Kigali, the capital city of Rwanda

Kigali, the capital city of Rwanda

As Rwanda’s capital and geographic center, Kigali City is the ideal site to begin or end any trip within the country. The city has excellent food and cultural alternatives and is safe and clean.

Kigali, formerly the site of genocide and civil conflict, is an intriguing example of an African city focused on the future. In the two decades since the genocide, the city has developed into a model for urban development, and exiles have returned to it with a wealth of knowledge, capital, and business ideas. Foreigners have started a co-working space for startups, bakeries, specialty coffee shops, sushi restaurants, and yoga studios. There are live music performances, dancing clubs, and sports pubs in the city, which is seeing a rise in nightlife.

Kigali City serves as the nation’s economic and governmental center. With its immaculately maintained medians, smooth roadways, LED lighting, and litter-free boulevards, it resembles a cross between East Africa and Europe. The nation is eager to project this image further.

The brand-new, ultra-modern Kigali Convention Center, numerous new hotels, the master plan’s clever design plans for an expansion of urban housing, and a revamp of the business area have all attracted a surge of international conventions and meetings.

Even without any shiny new construction, Kigali City is impressive. Beautiful red-roofed homes, terraced farm plots, and vibrant green greenery make up the undulating skyline.

Kigali is safe as well; violent crime is uncommon, especially against foreigners, and the police are always on duty and fulfill their duties, which include issuing speeding tickets.

The largest challenge you will face is navigating the traffic. Some foreigners claim that they feel safer raising their children in Kigali than in American cities. You won’t often be bothered.

*The city where you will begin and end your Rwanda Safari is a vibrant, energetic, and forward-thinking metropolis that is delightfully laid-back, with immaculate streets that are a source of pride for every neighborhood in the nation.
*Visitors are usually left on their own in the city’s broad, tree-lined boulevards and unspoiled squares, where they can stroll safely and expect kind greetings from the inhabitants if they require assistance.
*Rwanda’s developing arts, culture, and cuisine scenes will keep any visitor occupied. A great place to see and experience the work of local craftsmen and street food vendors is the Kigali Cultural Village.
*Excellent malls in Kigali City offer top-notch international brand shopping, and a cutting-edge convention center styled after an old King’s Palace lights up the city’s night sky.
*Travelers who wish to relive the horrific days may pay a visit to the Kigali Genocide Memorial, which honors the memory of the more than one million Rwandans slaughtered in the genocide that occurred in 1994.
*The trail surrounding Lake Nyarutarama, which is close to the 18-hole golf course, is exceptionally serene and offers a great opportunity for an urban natural walk while providing a chance to witness some of Rwanda’s amazing birdlife.

Around & To Kigali

Motorbikes and taxis, sometimes known as “motos,” are a common and affordable form of transportation; a trip from the airport to the city center costs less than $3. Kigali City is reasonably easy to traverse.

Please take note that motorcycle fares are variable and that their safety record is dubious.

Taxis operated by professionals are usually the most costly alternative, although they are also marked and have meters. Up to $15 can be spent on an airport transfer to the town; unmarked private taxis are also an option, but be ready to haggle over the fee in advance. For roughly US$65 per day, you might choose to rent a car if you intend to stay in Kigali for a few days. Although Kigali’s roads are normally in excellent condition, be advised that driving in African towns can be stressful due to numerous drivers, pedestrians, and motorcyclists.


Genocide Memorial Center in Kigali

The Kigali Genocide Memorial Center honors those who perished in the genocide of 1994, which claimed the lives of an estimated 1 million people in just 100 days. About 250,000 people are interred in a graded system of mass graves outside. Inside, a thought-provoking display takes viewers on a historical tour of the events leading up to the genocide in Rwanda and the hapless international response.

An exhibition of bones and skulls next to personal items humanizes the catastrophe, while a display of global genocides illustrates how cruel humanity can be in the second portion. The show closes with enlarged black-and-white images of young victims of genocide, ages 8 months to 17 years. Each image is paired with a plaque that details the victim’s favorite foods, pastimes, and last moments. Donations are accepted in lieu of admission fees, and the $15 audio guide is well worth it.

The 1994 genocide’s characters and settings can be intimately observed in the former president of Rwanda, Juvenal Habyarimana’s, home. It is believed that the president’s assassination ignited the killing rampage. Outside the museum walls are still the remnants of his private spot, that was shot down above his residence. The original carpet and furniture may still be found in the sunrooms where the president’s wife and her notorious group, the Akuzu, planned the genocide.

There are artifacts related to the president’s paranoia, censors on the stairs, a hidden escape route, and a bathroom safe that was previously filled with cash that a tour guide will point out. A Rwanda-shaped pool for the president’s 8-meter (26-foot) pet python and a witchcraft consultation room adjacent to the home’s Catholic Chapel are two more noteworthy features of the museum. During the genocide, a large portion of the furniture was taken. Nonetheless, items like the commanding desk of Habyariman, the elephant-foot table, and the functional German refrigerator demonstrate the leader’s ostentatious preferences.

The complete tour costs $12 USD and lasts for one hour.

Additional Attractions in Kigali City

The Kigali Cultural Village

Is a typical marketplace with street food sellers and indigenous artwork. The location holds concerts, festivals, workshops, and cultural activities.

Rwanda Art Museum:

Previously known as the Presidential Palace Museum, this recently opened museum features modern Rwandan and international art. The museum investigates Rwanda’s art history and offers visitors a glimpse into the ingenuity of the country’s creatives.

The best ethnographic collections in Africa are on display at the Ethnographic Museum.

The museum offers visitors a comprehensive understanding of Rwandan culture through its seven galleries, which feature historical, anthropological, artistic, and archaeological artifacts complemented by visual aids.



The American couple Alissa and Josh Ruxin founded this gourmet food haven, which is a top choice for both wealthy Rwandans and out-of-town visitors for weekend brunch, nighttime cocktails, and special occasion meals. Magnificent views of the hillside can be enjoyed from the wooden terrace with thatched roof and recessed lighting, and the brick walls are adorned with artwork from the next gallery.

Noir Poivre

This cozy and serene location in Kimihurura, one of Kigali’s most well-known areas for dining options and entertainment, is a refreshing change of pace. Poivre Noir, a restaurant renowned for its sophisticated food and cozy atmosphere, expertly prepares some of Kigali’s greatest meals with a concentration on French and Belgian cuisine.

Pub Lounge

This hilltop African fusion restaurant has been a fixture of Kigali’s volatile social scene for over ten years, which is quite an accomplishment for this city. Republ Lounge, managed by a brother and sister team, is a popular destination for happy hour, late-night beverages, and a delectable meal that draws in Europeans, Americans, and Kigali’s elite.


Although there aren’t many sushi restaurants in Kigali City, Kiseki has eliminated the demand for sushi in the area. Situated in Kigali’s Kimihurura area, Kiseki serves up creative rolls, expertly sliced nigari, and even sushi burritos for the midday crowd.

Serena Hotel in Kigali

One of the few five-star hotels in the city, the Kigali Serena Hotel draws a posh audience with its outdoor dining options, pool surrounded by heliconia and palm trees, modern business center, and fully functional gym. Serena is a well-liked alternative for business travelers because of its convenient location, extensive amenities, and top-notch on-site eating options.

Turambe Store

The Turambe Shoppe is well-known for its freshly made salad and sandwich selections, which are ideal for health-conscious individuals or vegetarians. Try the delectable Asian chopped salad, roasted garlic hummus, or crunchy organic lettuce.


In addition to great little snacks, this chic tapas restaurant has a nice garden area and well-thought-out interior décor. Enjoy their house salad and eggplant fries drenched in can honey. Don’t miss their Spanish classes and themed gastronomic nights. The salad is grown in their adorable and colorful garden.


Guests at Filini are welcomed to this tastefully appointed dining area and terrace, which is situated next to the Kigali Convention Center inside the Radisson Blu Hotel. Aside from the interior decor, the restaurant serves some of the best Italian food in the city. Try the fresh salads, pizzas, and gnocchi; everything at Filini is prepared with premium ingredients.


The best Korean food in Kigali City can be found at Monmartse, which also makes perfectly prepared bibimbap, soups, and banchan (small side dishes that are typically vegetable-focused). Take advantage of their generous quantities, tables, and delicious DIY Korean cuisine by going there with a large party.

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