Kigali is the largest and capital city of Rwanda; it is the main commercial city of Rwanda as well as the center of transport to all destinations in the country. It has a population of approximately 2.5 million people. Putting the challenges faced during the genocide in 1994, Kigali has proved to the world that it can start from almost nothing in 1994 to one of the cleanest, organized, and fast-growing cities in Africa. It is actually the cleanest city in Africa. Kigali is now the main conference hub for regional and international conferences. Most people use Kigali city as a transit center while going to the country’s remote National Parks or to other destinations outside Rwanda. This should not be the case because Kigali has a lot to offer as the city is growing year by year.
Visit the Kigali genocide memorial;
The Kigali genocide memorial is the biggest memorial in Rwanda.it is the final resting place to about 250000 victims of the 1994 genocide in Rwanda. the memorial was built to work as a learning center. It has three parts, the children center which shows the children who died during the genocide, what they liked and the cause of their death, the exhibition part which explains the history of genocide in Rwanda and other countries, and finally the gardens which has mass graves of the victims.
Visit the largest local market in Kigali, Kimirinko market located in the neighborhood of Remera has a variety of items ranging from vegetables, fruits, dry produce, second-hand clothes, hair salons, crafts, African fabrics, etc. if you have enough time buy fabric and the tailors will make for you a skirt or trouser or shirt of any design of your own choice.
Inema art center;
This center was opened in 2012 by two brothers Emmanuel Nkuranga and Innocent Nkurunziza. They display work of contemporary art in Rwanda and also a collection of other 14 Rwandan artist work is displayed here. Inema art Centre also has Yoga classes and live music on Thursdays. You can visit the center and buy art pieces of your choice or participate in the design and paintings of the work.
Hotel des Mille colline;
This is the hotel that was featured in the 2004 movie called Hotel Rwanda. actually, this is not the actual hotel in the movie, the movie was filmed from a hotel in South Africa. The most significant part about this hotel is that it protected more than 1000 people during the genocide. The hotel manager Paul Rusesabagina managed to give shelter and protection to these people and even gave them food. whenever the perpetrators would come to kill the people, he would bribe them with money and alcohol in the hotel. You can as well visit the hotel to have fun eat or drink and swim in the hotel swimming pool. Mille colline hotel is one of the best hotels in Kigali.
Belgian Peacekeepers memorial;
Also known as camp Kigali is the place where the 10 Belgium UN peacekeepers were brutally murdered on 7th April 1994. They had been sent by General Dallaire to protect the prime minister Madam Agathe Uwiringiyimana. While on their way to the prime minister’s house, they were ambushed by the Rwandan army and deceived them that they were being taken to a safe place. On reaching the camp, the Rwandan army soldiers attached the Belgian soldiers, they fought hard until they ran out of ammunition and were all killed. Inside the camp is a small house with three rooms that still shows the bullet holes that were fired during the attack. There are also 10 stone pillars built in remembrance of the commandos. They also have horizontal cuts carved in each column representing the age of each soldier. The tops of the pillars are broken to represent the soldiers’ brutal end.
Visit Amahoro stadium;
Amahoro Stadium is the national and biggest stadium of Rwanda, it the center of culture and entertainment in Kigali. In Africa the most liked sport is soccer. Pay a visit to the Amahoro stadium and watch a football match between two of the local football clubs. In Rwanda, the clubs with the biggest number of fans are Armee Patriotiquee Rwandese(APR) and Police FC. You will see how the fans paint their faces with the colors of their favorite clubs while blowing vuvuzelas.
Visit Parliament of Rwanda;
While in Kigali, you can as well visit the parliament of Rwanda learn about the political history of Rwanda and even you will be able to see the bullet spots on the wall of the parliament. these bullet marks were left as a sign of remembrance for the 1994 Rwanda genocide.
Take a hike to the top of Mount Kigali. Mount Kigali is not an actual mountain but just because it’s very high that’s why its called so. A hike to the top of the hill will reward you with fascinating views of Kigali city. The hike starts in the neighborhood of Nyamirambo. You can stop for a cold drink and roasted brochette at Mera Neza bar on your way to the summit of Mount Kigali.
Nyamirambo women center;
This women’s center was opened in 2007 to fight gender imbalance and create jobs for women. At the center, the women learn different skills such as tailoring, knighting, weaving among other skills. The products made here are sold at the center’s souvenir shop to create income for the organization. On top of the skills, the women center organize community walks in the neighborhood. The guide will take you to a 2-3 hour walk and you will get a chance to visit people’s homes, interact with the local people and even participate in cooking in some of the local people’s homes.
Museum of Art;
Formally known as the presidential palace museum, the Museum of Art was opened in 2018. It displays different types of artwork done in Rwanda. the remains of the presidential jet that was shot down while approaching the airport are also seen in the compound of the museum.
Rwanda is a country that has suffered the effects of genocide has a lot of things to do in as far as charity is concerned. Take part in helping the communities by helping sick people at the hospital, teach English to children at school, help in building houses for the orphans, teach children how to play football, help to build a website for a local NGO.
Dancing and clubbing;
Enjoy Kigali nightlife by going to a night club and freely mix with the Rwandans as you dance. You will enjoy local beers such as Mutzig, Primus, Skol, Amstel, and also goat brochette and Akabenz( fried pork).
Wildlife; Akagera national park is 2 hours northeast of Kigali, has a day outside Kigali, and enjoy the wildlife of Rwanda. You will be able to see animals like Zebras, Giraffe, lion, antelopes, buffalo, birds, elephants, hippos to mention but a few. Safari Vacations & Travel Services Ltd do organize 1-day safaris to Akagera national park. Contact us for all your inquiries including gorilla safaris in Uganda and Rwanda.