Kigali, Capital and Biggest City Rwanda

Experience the tranquil atmosphere in and around Kigali city. Kigali is situated in the heart of Rwanda hence makes it very convenient for travelers to start and end any adventure Safari in Rwanda.

The city was once known for the dark 1994 genocide but over the years has been transformed into a safe and clean home for many, it is now a business center endowed with amazing buildings, educational centers, historical sites, and cultural heritages.

The people who live and work in Kigali are very hospitable, they speak French, Kinyarwanda, Kiswahili and English however French is commonly used by most Rwandans. The currency used in the city is the Rwanda Francs and the US dollars, but for any other currencies there are Forex bureaus around the city for Forex exchange. Kigali’s time zone is GMT+2 Central African Time.

The main transport means used in Kigali are taxis, and individual cars. If you are coming from another country to Kigali, you have to fly into the City’s International airport and then transfer by road to your destination.

The country also has an International Airline known as Rwanda Air, it operates in Europe, Southern Africa, Central Africa, East Africa, West Africa, Asia and Middle East.

So as you plan your safari to Rwanda, you should add Kigali on your list as it has a lot to offer to you such as amazing craft shopping centers, hangout spots, cultural sites, historic and memorial sites, restaurants, museums, events, night clubs and many other sites.

What to see in Kigali

Kigali Genocide Memorial

A visit to this memorial site is regarded as a tribute to those who lost their lives during the 1994 Rwanda genocide. Outside the site, there are mass graves of around 250,000 victims that were killed brutally during the genocide.

A walk through this site is emotional but rewarding, where by the visitors are led through a very educative exhibition to see the bones and skulls of the victims. You will also see black and white photographs of children aged 8months to 17years who also lost their lives and on each photo is a placard with a list of the child’s last moments and favorite foods.

Presidential Palace Museum

This site hosts the remains of President Habyarimana’s plane. He was also Rwanda’s president who died in a plane crash, his death is said to be among the reasons that sparked the 1994 Genocide, because his death triggered the hatred between the Ttusi and Hutu people of Rwanda.

So your tour guide will take through this museum and will show you the President’s paranoia remains, the president’s wife’s sunroom, a secret escape route, censors along the stairs, original carpets and furniture and many more things.

Kigali Cultural Village

Many tourists visit this village to have a feel about the country's culture and traditions. A number of workshops, cultural events and festivals are held at this site. It is regarded as a traditional market where one can find street food sellers and local art.

Hotel Mille des Collines

Tourists interested in historical events usually visit this Hotel, it is popularly known as Hotel Rwanda that inspired the making of the movie entitled Hotel Rwanda. You could visit for more information about how the Tutsi were hidden for safety during the genocide.

Sainte—Famille Church

During the genocide, most Tutsi and Hutus took refuge from this church but later murdered. This is a catholic church and one of the oldest buildings in Kigali located on a hill in Kiyovu.

Ethnographic Museum

The Belgian government which ruled Rwanda at that time helped Rwandans to build this Museum and its first opening was in 1989. It has amazing geological, geographical, historical, archeological and agricultural displays accompanied with visual aids which give the tourist the best insight into Rwanda’s culture.

Kandt House

It is also a museum, is Richard Kandt first home; he was the first Rwanda’s first colonial governor from the Belgian Government. It has a lot to exhibit including the evolution of plants, animals and the ground plus the interdependency between man and the environment.

Other places to visit include; Nyanza Genocide Memorial, Belgian soldiers’ memorial, Nyaturama Lake, the Gorilla Statue, Kacyiru Hill and Nyarugenge Hill

Places to Dine in Kigali

Repub Lounge, Heaven, Piovre Noir, Kigali Serena Hotel, Kiseki, Filini, Turambe shoppe, Casakeza, Monmartse and manymore.