From elegant cafes at the hillside to colorful markets full of crafts, Kigali is one of these cities that quickly grows on you the more you spend time here.
Risen from the ashes at the beginning of the 90s, Kigali has evolved since then and is now a place like no other in Africa. The war is over, and Kigali is now full of trendy cafes, exciting art galleries, and great nightlife.
Need some help in planning your trip to the Rwandan capital? These are the best things to do in Kigali.
Explore the Muslim Quarter
Take your time for a long walk through the Muslim Quarter, about 3km from the center of Kigali. There is a lot to discover here, and there is always a lot going on; it is hectic but full of energy, diversity, and joie de vivre.
Visit the local market where you can buy fresh groceries for little money. You will find delicious food in the Nyamirambo area. There are mainly local specialties that you can enjoy outside when the weather is nice.
After this refreshment, visit the Nyamirambo Women’s Center, which offers many great souvenirs, some of which are handmade. The mosque, with its green and white painting, is also worth a visit. Here you will learn many interesting facts about the religion and the local people.
Hike to Rebero for city views
For incredible views of the city, a hike is the best option. You can hike to Rebero on your own, but if you prefer the safer option, then the WAKA Gym Walk is for you.
This walk takes place every first Saturday of the month and leads you in a group to the top. You don’t have to be a member to join the walk. Simply drop by and go for it. While hiking the path, enjoy the views of Rwanda’s fascinating hilly landscape.
Enjoy the multicultural vibe of Kigali
There is always something going on in Kigali. From unforgettable parties to delicious food, you’ll find everything here. Every Thursday, a salsa party takes place in the Chillax Lounge. Here the service is excellent, the drinks are not expensive, and the atmosphere will blow you away. Perfect for a long night of dancing and meeting people.
For Asian cuisine, Tung is the place to be. The staff will treat you like family while you eat through Asian delights. Even though Africa is not the place to go when it comes to Asian cuisine, Tung can be the surprise you have been waiting for.
Additionally, If you really want to party, the Mamba Club should not be missed during your stay in Kigali. There are regular disco and reggae parties here, where the atmosphere is guaranteed to sweep you away. You can even find a bowling alley here.
To meet many travelers worldwide, a visit to 1000 Hills Distillery is a must. Enjoy local drinks and delicious food here. If you are interested in how the spirits are made, here is an exciting tour you should take part in. Great expat parties take place regularly, and the vibe is worth visiting.
Party with locals
Enough of places where expats hang out. To party like the locals, you should visit Kisimenti. This place is perfect for bar hopping and meeting new acquaintances. Here you will find one bar next to the other, all of which impress with their fresh drinks and great atmosphere. The area is also known as the car-free zone because no vehicles are driving around, and people can party carefree until the early hours.
Looking for a club? Cocobean is one of the best places to party. You shouldn’t miss a subsequent after party in the Envy Club.
Be sure to watch for your valuables when partying, as pickpockets are more common at night.
See Rwanda’s new art
Rwanda is known for its many young East African artists who conjure up great works of art with their unique style. The Kunda Eco-Art Space is perfect for admiring their work and hanging out with them. Kunda Eco-Art Space is open every Thursday and Sunday. In addition to the exhibitions, fun events such as silent parties and sporting events often occur on Saturdays. Keep your eyes peeled because these events are not to be missed.
The Imema Art Center also includes a large gallery, in which workshops are offered in addition to food and art.
The famous Art Museum of Rwanda displays contemporary art from Rwanda and abroad – a must when in Kigali. Local souvenirs are also sold here.
Learn about the coffee culture in Rwanda
Rwanda is probably the country with the best coffee culture I’ve seen – Sorry Ethiopia! The number of great cafes is excellent, and for someone who enjoys a cup of coffee early in the morning, Kigali is paradise.
Do you already know the typical African coffee? It is served with ginger and milk. Sounds unusual at first, but tastes surprisingly good.
Walk around the city center
To get a more personal perspective of Kigali’s life, take a closer look at the city center. It’s super safe here at night, and during the day, so you can drop by any time. It is easy to reach on foot and has a metropolitan but relaxed atmosphere.
While you stroll through, go to the many restaurants where you can grab a quick bite or a little refreshment. There is a lot to see here, so you are guaranteed to get your 10,000 steps.
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Visit the Kimironko market
The largest market in Kigali is a must-do and a perfect way to see what life in the city is like. In addition to delicious fruit and vegetables, many fabrics and even sewists will sew you a unique piece of clothing. You will also discover souvenirs, pottery, hygiene items, and building materials. Plan a few hours for this market visit, because the atmosphere and the many offers will enchant you.
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Learn about Kigali’s past
Rwanda’s past is marked by terrible acts of violence. In 1994, a four-month genocide was the most horrific crime committed in Rwanda.
It is estimated that up to 1,000,000 people lost their lives here. About 75 percent of the Tutsi minority living in Rwanda were brutally killed by the Hutu majority, the military, and the police. Learn about this atrocious time at Camp Kigali Memorial, Campaign Against Genocide Museum, and Kigali Genocide Memorial. Prepare to learn horrifying facts and see images that will cloud your mood. Expect to feel sad after this visit and want to avoid going out in the evenings. However, visiting these places is a must in Kigali.
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Where to stay in Kigali
With accommodation in all price ranges, finding something that suits your budget and taste is not difficult. From simple guesthouses to luxury hotels, Kigali offers variety.
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Where to go next?
Are you planning to stay longer in Rwanda Check out which tours Viator is offering. They have not only the best quality of service worldwide, but they also offer the most secure payment methods, as well as organization service.
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How do I find cheap flights to Rwanda?
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