Top Things To Do In Kigali

Kigali City tour

Founded in 1907 as a small administrative outpost with limited linkage to the outside world, Kigali is today Rwanda’s rapidly growing vibrant capital city and a modern metropolis, being voted as the cleanest city in Africa with a lot of very nice looking public roads, colored with beautiful flower gardens and trees. The city is green everywhere no matter the dark side of its history, but Kigali, today shines and attracts number of travelers, conference and standing out as one of the best destination in Africa for MICE events.

Kigali offers a range of three to five star accommodation options. One of the best things about Kigali city is that it is safe to wander the streets and explore the city by foot or motor and public transport. Immerse yourself in the local art, fashion and culture scene as you shop for souvenirs, sip some of the best coffee on the continent grown right here in Rwanda or taste our excellent local cuisine at a rooftop restaurant with breathtaking views of the city. If you are looking for nightlife there are many options in clubs and bars with great music, beer, good food and happy crowds to explore.

It’s a city where you can move freely and know you’re safe, no need to worry, however, stay safe as you enjoy the evening on Kigali streets, colored with a number of walk ways for pedestrians.

Today Rwanda is a peaceful, vibrant and forward-looking country. No longer divided through tribal affiliation, Rwandans are now one working together in rebuilding the Nation. The country has advanced enormously in terms of improved   education,   health, social security and encouraging individual entrepreneurship. It is the second easiest place to do business in Africa according to the 2016 Doing Business Report.

When visiting Rwanda you will be pleasantly surprised by many little things such as the cleanliness of the streets and the standards of many of the roads … but most of all, you will fall in love with the warm smiling and hospitable people. The ‘Land of a Thousand Hills’ compact size is no secret; this means minimized travel time that allows visitors to explore our natural and cultural attractions, one hill at a time!

Kigali being named the cleaning town, and with it rich dark historical past, it has become one of the top tourist destination in Africa. Kigali has become one of the most interesting city to spend an evening, with the good road, and assured security, your mind is at peace. Below are some of the top places to visit in Kigali and top things to do in Kigali

  1. Art Crafts Souvenirs

Are busy looking for basic African fabric to take back home as you gift from visiting Rwanda to your family, friends and to display in your office or home, a visit to one of these places is worth your take away.

  1. COOTRAC

COOTRAC (Cooperative for Trade and Promotion of Rwandan Arts, Crafts & Culture) is an association of 22 stalls selling handicrafts from Rwanda and the greater region. Located in Kigali Rwanda,   along Ave de la Paix Cootrac can be found in this old warehouse almost right in the centre of the city.

This is my favourite place for banging out some cheap souvenir buys in a short amount of time and with zero hassle. The items you’ll find here aren’t all that unique but the appeal is that they’re all corralled in one place and the prices they charge are fair from the start. I’ll only bother to wrangle over the price if I’m buying a lot of items from one vendor which usually means they’ll be up for a little bit of negotiation. Your bargaining power will set the price for the product; it is quite an amazing experience, as you will run out of luck of choice. Everything seems beautiful, but you cannot puck it all.

Inquire with us to book a day tour so as to take a visit to this amazing unique place or let us know to include it on your tour package.

  1. CAPLAKI

What happens when a number of artists and sellers form a cooperative and build colorful wooden huts” The answer is Caplaki, an association offering a surprising variety of local handicrafts for every taste and budget. This is Kigali’s largest souvenir-specific market and they’ve got tonnes of items spread across dozens of individual stalls. From traditional masks and musical instruments to lovely paintings and jewelry, there is no doubt that this small village within the city is one of the best places to stroll around and get some souvenirs for your loved ones.

The most amazing experience here is the bargaining part of it. Since it is a stopover for most tourists, they always set their prices so high, and it’s up now to you to play and run the figures down, it is amazing, as you smile both trying to come to a common price. However, the prices are not as high as you may think, because these products are away cheaper compared to Europe. These products are so much stunning that you may wish to shop everything. Get yourself some African fabric for a great safari in Rwanda.

  1. Azizi Life Boutique

Every destination has always got something unique to offer to its population. Here comes a crazy place to shot all your African finest crafts. Here you can get the chance to meet the real arcticians themselves and order something you might need of your choice, after your safari, you find it ready as you agreed.

Azizi Life’s flagship social enterprise is focused on maximizing economic opportunity for rural artisans through the development and promotion of crafts. Environment is put into use, watch banana fibers turned into beautiful baskets. Their line of baskets highlights some of the best of Rwandan traditional and modern design.

Quite a number of lessons can be taken here as well on your visit, depending on an early arrangement. Some of the lessons include candle making, bee hive making, basket weaving lessons, traditional juice making, traditional pottery experience, traditional cooking day experience, home stay experience and art craft lessons.

Azizi Life Experiences is a social enterprise offering visitors to Rwanda the unique opportunity to really connect and gain insight into the life of rural Rwandans and their families. Through a range of different cultural Experience Days, you get to not only see something of the beauty and rigor of daily life, but also experience it. It’s a truly interactive way to learn about Rwandan culture!

Inquire with our reservation team, to book yourself a tour to this amazing cultural place filled with great activities that may shoot your choice.

  1. Inema Arts

The brothers founded Inema in 2012 in an effort to share their creative passion with Rwandans and visitors alike. Rwanda has very little art in schools and no professional or post-secondary art training. The visual arts aren’t yet a very valued thing in Rwandan society and Emma and Innocent are striving to provide exposure to the country’s creative community and to change this attitude, shedding light not only on the talents within the country, but also by using “creative expression to bring the community and country alive.”

Inema Arts makes a great stop both for paintings (both from their main gallery in Kacyiru or their smaller one at Heaven Restaurant) and for jewellery, ties, pottery, and other crafts from their small gift shop at their Kacyiru location. There are about a dozen resident artists at Inema and you’ll get a nice range of different styles to choose from. Plus you can even pop back to see them at work in the studio behind the gallery. Would you wish to take an art lesson for a day, just join this crazy people with amazing art work? You can even meet then live, busy with their art pieces, doing a great job of wonders. Would you wish a design of your choice, they have answers to all your worries, and to make it perfect beyond your expectations.

If you don’t find what you’re looking for at Inema, be sure to pay a visit to Ivuka, Uburanga, Yego, or Niyo art galleries, the nawers are hidden within these great areas.

Inema Dance helps to develop musical and artistic talent in over 40 kids from the Kacyiru area through a rigorous, positive and productive training program. The dancers perform all around Rwanda or you can pop into one of their training sessions on Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday between 4:30 and 6 pm.

Inema provides space for 10 artists, each producing their own style of contemporary African art. They paint, they sculpt, the work with mixed medium, they dance! Ok, maybe they don’t dance, but they’re pretty versatile and you just need to take a stroll around Inema’s grounds to get an idea of the kinds of creativity that is oozing out of these artists. That sounds kind of gross, but it’s not. It’s colourful and imaginative and inspiring.

Inquire with our reservation team, to get yourself there, and get doing great art work, with some of the most amazing people around you. You can visit this place before or after your safari to spend some great time as you wait for your next day safari or flight.

  1. Inzuki Designs

Inzuki is the best place in Kigali to come for chunky, colorful, bold jewelries. They have a style all their own and their showroom in town (the entrance is through a gate on the right, behind the building) is filled with their designs. Plus they have a good selection of accessories and creative things for your house, all Rwandan made, primarily for local materials. Inzuki is the creation of Teta Isibo who started the business in 2010 and has watched it grow from there. It’s a great place to come for something a little more unique than you’ll find in the regular tourist shops.

The way the jewelries are display, gives you a sense of love and passion for the job. So much amazing and romantic to see something from natural material in an African setting design. Quite a number of other materials such as craft shoes, clothing’s as well as pillows can be purchased from here.

Are you looking for a romantic, beautiful art piece of jewelries, just book a tour with our team, and we get you a round to this wonderful place that will leave you will great shopping life of jewelries to carry along with you after your wonderful gorilla safari in Rwanda.

  1. Kimironko Market

Being a market of fresh food staffs, thus tomatoes, onions, carrots etc does not stop it from having Souvenirs as well. You can still get the African finest your logging for here. It is a bit crowd and noisy over here, but that is the environment of an African market, filled up with busy people, all logging around in search of their interest. This does not mean you should not join the hustle. In case you do not want to deep yourself into the crowd, bookers are there to get you the art piece you may be looking for, but as well you can sneak and get yourself some art work of your choice. The prices are not fixed, you’re bargaining power sets, the price.

For any tour request, get in touch with our sales team to get this included on your safari to Rwanda, as well explore the land of a 1000 hills together.

  1. Nyamirambo Women’s Center

Splinted with a number of activities where you would derive joy from is found in this unique center. Owned by a group of 10 widows, who made up their minds and started out something to support themselves as a way too to ripe from tourism, has made this place not only an amazing place to visit, but very famous and unique.  This small shop is known for making some unique items with kitenge fabric. They produce some pretty cool children’s items like dresses and pants in small sizes, kid’s hats, baby blankets, and even cute fabric balls to kick around. If you’re shopping for kids, this should be your first stop. They also offer your usual bags and things like that but they seem to make them in different styles than you’ll find around town. Nyamirambo is my favourite area of Kigali and you can combine a stop here with one of their walking tours.

Are as well interested in the walking safari, where you visit the area on foot, go to the market and shop some food and spices and get yourself cooking local dish, which you turn into your day meal. The experience is only found here, with great amazing people around you. Let’s explore this area with you, get in touch with our reservation team to get this included in your tour and safari with us.

  1. Kigali Walking Tours.

The walking tour begins with a short walk and a traditional snack, a quick Kinyarwanda language lesson that will take you briefly on some key words in Kinyarwanda, such as greeting, and saying thanks, and an introduction to the Women’s Center and its activities, and other various project they do participate in such as art gallery, weaving, candle making and much more. It then weaves through the streets of Nyamirambo, where your guide will introduce you many friendly locals around as you proceed. You’ll visit a women’s hairdressing salon where the adventurous type can get a free braid; go into a family compound to pound cassava leaves; stroll by two mosques and a lookout view over Kigali; and into a tailor shop to feel the fabrics you’ll otherwise see styled on the streets. The tour concludes with a traditional lunch made and served in the home of Aminatha, Nyamirambo Women Center’s best cook.

This walk can go as far as half day, for you to explore this area.

You can as well decide to do a cooking lesson of the local food, where you go to the market, bargain and shop some spices and some food materials, and after you head home, chop, prepare fire and start of the cooking process, guided by a local chef. In few hours, food ready and you serve yourself and eat you own self-made local food. The taste is your own self best chef. So no complain on the salt level. This sound crazy right?, Join us for the adventure, by writing to our sales team and book yourself a tour, whether alone or in a group, we make all arrangement.

  1. Kandt House Museum

The Kandt House Museum previously known as the Kandt House Museum of Natural History, is one of the eight museums that make up the Institute of National Museums of Rwanda, formerly known as the Kandt Residence, it was once the home of German physician and explorer Dr. Richard Kandt. It was Dr. Kandt who founded Kigali around 1908 to be a center of administration for German East Africa. The Institute of National Museums of Rwanda converted the historic residence into a museum in 2008 in order to increase Rwandans’ exposure to the natural sciences as well as to educate visitors from around the world about Rwanda’s biological and geological diversity.

The museum strives to show the evolution of life, description of Flora and Fauna of Rwandan Natural Parks (Nyungwe, Akagera and Volcanoes), geological background of Rwanda, German and Rwanda shared history and exhibition of live reptiles (snakes) with the aim to explain the interrelation between nature and history as result of natural history museum. It is also the best view of three mountains (Mt Kigali, Mt Jali and Mt Shyorongi) and best view of old kigali city. The first part presents Rwandan life in all its aspects – social, economic, and political – before the colonial period.

The north wing of the museum features Rwanda’s biology exhibits. Here you will find beautiful specimens of indigenous species ranging from beautifully colored birds to strange and exotic reptiles. You can also see several of Rwanda’s mammalian occupants, from small rodents you’ve never heard of, to skulls of ever popular mountain gorillas. The rear of the museum is dedicated to volcanism – not to be confused with Vulcanism, or the study of space people with pointy ears. Here you will learn about the Great Rift Valley and all its tectonic and volcanic might. You’ll learn how the great volcanoes in Rwanda’s northwest were created, what makes them pop and how people have learned to survive and thrive in their imposing shadows for countless generations. Sadly, however, this exhibit is mostly in German, but you can still learn a lot from the numerous diagrams and visual models displayed.

The second part traces the experience of the Rwandan people during the colonial period. Following the Berlin Conference in 1884, the Germans ruled Rwanda until 1916, when the Belgians took over under the League of Nations Mandate after World War I. Richard Kandt’s life and deeds in Rwanda are covered here. The third part covers the history of Kigali, before, during and after the colonial era. Kigali was made the capital upon independence in 1962

The south wing of the museum is mostly dedicated to Rwanda’s natural resources and the history of how those resources were mined from the countless hills. On display are numerous gems and minerals along with maps showing where they are distributed around the country. Be warned though, most of the signage in this exhibit is in French. There is also a room dedicated to hydrology, or the study of the movement and distribution of water (lakes, rivers, etc).

There isn’t really much else to see besides that. The museum is currently working on adding a couple of new exhibits which I believe will really grab visitors’ interest once they are on display. First is a complete skeleton of an African elephant that was recently discovered buried near Nyungwe Rainforest. The second is a massive crocodile that was recently killed at Lake Muhaze – by a man with a hammer I’m told – that will be stuffed and put on display. Both will be welcomed highlights to a museum that lacks any sort of must-see attractions. The museum claims that both specimens should be ready for exhibition by the end of the summer, but as things go in Rwanda, I wouldn’t hold my breath.

So while the Natural History Museum of Rwanda may be a bit on the small and unimpressive side, it is encouraging to see the country trying to promote interest in science and history. I would encourage anyone who might enjoy a more intimate knowledge of Rwanda, or even those just looking for something to do on a slow day, to pay the Natural History Museum a visit and support one of Kigali’s few cultural institutions

Entrance Fee

Entrance to the museum isn’t cheap for expats: Non-residents have to pay 6,000 francs which is roughly $8 for entry and those with resident visas or pass ports, and any form of identification pays relatively a lesser fee of 5,000 francs which is roughly $6.

How long to visit.

Exploring the museum does not need you much time as in an hour or two to walk through, depending on how much you choose (or are able) to stop and read can make you get through your visit. Unfortunately for us English-only speakers many of the exhibits are in German or French. This detracts from the experience a bit as you may miss out on some of the in-depth information, but for the most part the exhibits are simple enough to understand by sight alone.

Opening Times

  • Open daily from 8am to 6pm
  • Closed on 7th April
  • Closed 11am to 6pm on Umuganda days (the last Saturday of the month)

Operations

The museum is kept open for visitors from Monday through Friday from 9am to 5pm, and you don’t have to worry about any large crowds who also come with the same intention to tour and get firsthand information about the museum, just join the group and get yourself going.

Location

Kandt House Museum, the former Natural History Museum is located at KN 90 St, around one kilimiter from downtown.

  1. Kigali Convention Centre

The Kigali Convention Centre is a convention centre in Kigali, the capital and largest city in Rwanda, opened in 2009, located on Highway KN5, adjacent to the KG2 Roundabout, about 6 kilometres (4 mi) west of Kigali International Airport. This is about 7 kilometres (4 mi) east of the neighborhood of Kigali called Nyabugogo.

The Kigali convention center has become a premium venue for meetings, incentives, conferences and events attract thousands of travelers coming to Rwanda for conference tourism. It is widely known as a first stop center for conferences hence the best MICE destination in Africa and the whole globe. “With a net floor area of 32,200 square metres, the Convention Centre, can host more than 5,000 delegates at a time and contains facilities for business, leisure and events. The multifaceted design reflects a true Rwandan homestead,” reads a statement from Radisson Blu. Spanning over 80,000 sqm, the Radisson Blu Hotel & Convention Centre, Kigali features exclusive hospitality facilities with functional technology and clear reference to the culture and traditions of Africa.

Not only boosting MICE activities within the regions, the conference center had greatly boosted the country’s Rwanda’s economic potential through a strong boost on Rwanda’s tourism as many visitors who come for the conference end up with doing of to the tourism activities like gorilla tours, golden monkey trekking, volcano climbing and game viewing safaris in the national parks in the republic of Rwanda, since its opening in 2016. This has boosted on many travel agencies to open up in the country to meet the market demand.

The complex’s egg-shaped dome and ribbon-striped hotel are a familiar sight to Kigali residents and a point of pride for the city. Still, many don’t know what inspired the convention center’s unique shape and bright colors. Is one of the most attractive tourism sites in Kigali, looking so beautiful at night with wonderful colors of light.

Roland Dieterle, the complex’s principal architect, came up with the concept some 10 years ago. The resulting vision merges Rwanda’s traditional past with its focus on the future. Dieterle says the scope and complexity of the project carries an important message: “It says, ‘We are a modern country, we can deal with complexity, we can show the world that Africa is a continent and Rwanda is a country where modern life can take place,’” he says. Here are six of our favorite little-known facts about the Kigali Convention Center Complex, published Lauren Everitt, Editor-in-Chief of MindSky.

  1. It uses state-of-the-art technology

The builders used 3-D design methods and a computerized manufacturing system to build the convention center dome. The dome’s frame is so complex that each steel piece had to be designed and manufactured separately — there are only two of each piece in the entire building. “Never before has a building of a similar size and complexity been built in the region,” Dieterle points out.

  1. A king’s palace and traditional Rwandan homes inspired the shape.

Dieterle traveled around the country and visited the King’s Palace in Nyanza during the planning phases. He was so inspired by the king’s bee hive-shaped residence that he used it as the basis for the convention center dome.

The spiral motif found in Rwandan baskets and other art, such as imigongo paintings, was also incorporated in the building’s structure. Viewers can see the spiral construction in the walkways that encircle the dome and by looking up at the dome’s ceiling from the inside. The Kigali Convention Center’s spiral dome was inspired by traditional Rwandan architecture and art.

  1. It follows sustainable practices.

Sustainability was a major consideration for the project designers. “We wanted whatever we did to be a role model for sustainable development,” Dieterle says. The dome uses window shades and a special coating to help regulate the inside temperature and to conserve energy use. The complex was also designed to use “gray water” (wastewater from homes or office buildings) for irrigation and toilet flushing. Even the dome’s bright lights are energy-efficient LEDs.

  1. The hotel’s colorful ribbons represent Rwanda’s rich weaving tradition.

The brightly colored metal ribbons that run down the length of the complex’s Radisson Blu Hotel were inspired by the strips used to make Rwandan baskets, according to Dieterle.

Rather than using the browns, grays, and whites of most new construction projects, Dieterle and his team opted for the vibrant colors of local fabrics. The result is a “fresh and friendly” look that sets the building apart from others in the region, he says.

  1. It’s already won awards.

While the convention center hasn’t officially opened, it’s already garnering praise for its novel design. In 2009, the International Property Awards recognized the center with its Architecture Award for Africa. In 2013, the complex received one of the internationally recognized Iconic Awards in the Concept category, and in 2014, it was a nominee for the German Design Awards.

  1. It’s transparent for a reason.

Dieterle says the convention center’s dome is purposefully transparent to show openness. The idea is that all Rwandans should be able to enjoy the building, whether watching the exterior lights or observing the hustle and bustle of big events inside.

The design is also meant to speak to everyone. “It’s a building that doesn’t need much explanation … even people without much knowledge about art or culture would understand this design. It’s a building for them, not just for some elite people,” Dieterle says.

Overview

In 2007, three Rwandan corporate investors pooled resources to build the real estate complex. They formed a company called Ultimate Concept Limited, to develop and own the centre. The centre has four major components:

  1. A 5-star hotel, Radisson Blu Hotel Kigali, with 292 rooms on six floors
  2. Conference center with seating capacity of 2,600
  3. Kigali Information Technology Park, with 32,200 square metres (346,598 sq ft) of rentable office and retail space, and
  4. A museum on the bottom floor of the IT office park.

Construction began in 2009 and was completed in 2016. In case you’re planning a visit to Kigali, let this not miss out on your shopping list, as you can do it before you head for you gorilla trekking, golden monkey trekking, hiking safari or wildlife safari or even you can visit the place after your safari. You can reach to our reservation team; will work with you through your booking with us and to see you visit the conference center

Kigali Genocide Memorial Ground

The memorial is the final resting place for more than 250,000 victims of the Genocide against the Tutsi. The memorial ground was open up for tourism and other visitors to visit the museum after its completion in 2004, a process that began in 1999 when the City of Kigali provided land where a place of remembrance could be built and where victims of the Genocide against the Tutsi could receive a dignified burial. Construction of the Kigali Genocide Memorial began in the same year and the process of burying victims began in 2001. This was supported the following organization that played a major role in the set-up of the museum.

  1. The City of Kigali
  1. Aegis Trust
  2. Rwanda’s National Commission for the Fight against Genocide
  3. Ministry of Sports and Culture
  4. Various governments and international non-government organisations

Tourism

Today, what was a mass burial ground of the victim of the genocide incident, has turned up to be one of the great museum in the world, known as the world’s largest collection of archival material and testimonies, the museum has become a big part of Rwanda’s major tourism attraction, attracting number of tourist to the country who does come to visit and get to know the history of the genocide and how Rwanda has coped up with it.

Indeed its part of major gorilla safaris and other wildlife safaris whereby the city tour to visit the Kigali Genocide memorial is always included before the safari as one head for his safari or after safari before one is dropped at the airport. The Genocide Archive of Rwanda is the world’s largest collection of archival material and testimonies related to the Genocide against the Tutsi, this has greatly attracted many tourist to visit the museum. Number of school going students also do visit the memorial ground to have firsthand information about the genocide which happened years back and also witness its impact.

Location

Its central location and nearness to the city center and airport has made its access quite easy.

Management

Today the memorial is funded and managed by Aegis Trust on behalf of the National Commission for the Fight against the Genocide. Also the donation by the tourist upon their visit has greatly supported the well maintenance of the museum as the funds generated are used in the today daily management of the museum activities and staffing.

About Kigali Genocide Memorial

The Kigali Genocide Memorial includes three permanent exhibitions, the largest of which documents the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi. There is also a children’s memorial and an exhibition on the history of genocidal violence around the world. The education centre, gardens, and Genocide Archive of Rwanda contribute to a meaningful tribute to those who perished, and provide a powerful educational experience for visitors.

Genocide Archive Of Rwanda

The Genocide Archive of Rwanda is a collaborative project of the Kigali Genocide Memorial, Aegis Trust, and Rwanda’s National Commission for the Fight against Genocide. The objective of the archive is to document the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi. The archive has a physical repository as well as website accessible around the world. The interactive online digital archive contains materials that document the causes, lived experiences, and aftermath of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

The site features video testimonies from genocide survivors and rescuers, perpetrator testimonies from the Gacaca court proceedings, footage from annual remembrance ceremonies (Kwibuka), archival photographs, colonial documents, identification records, maps, foreign serials and propaganda publications.

This is the only project of its kind in Rwanda and allows previously inaccessible material to be consulted for personal, educational, and research purposes. The physical materials that make up the archives have been contributed by survivors and partner organisations. The physical collection of the Genocide Archive Rwanda is accessible at the Kigali Genocide Memorial.

The memorial has five primary objectives:

  1. To provide a dignified place of burial for victims of the Genocide against the Tutsi
  2. To inform and educate visitors about the causes, implementation and consequences of the genocide, and other genocides throughout history.
  3. To teach visitors about what we can do to prevent future genocides.
  4. To provide a documentation centre to record evidence of the genocide, testimonies of genocide survivors and details of genocide victims.
  5. To provide support for survivors, in particular orphans and widows.

The Mission

The Kigali Genocide Memorial is the final resting place for more than 250,000 victims of the Genocide against the Tutsi. It is an important place of remembrance and learning and receives visitors from all around the world. The memorial has five primary objectives:

  1. To provide a dignified place of burial for victims of the Genocide against the Tutsi
  2. To inform and educate visitors about the causes, implementation and consequences of the genocide, and other genocides in history.
  3. To teach visitors about what we can do to prevent future genocides.
  4. To provide a documentation centre to record evidence of the genocide, testimonies of genocide survivors and details of genocide victims.
  5. To provide support for survivors, in particular orphans and widows.

Collections

The Genocide Archive of Rwanda’s collection contains over 8,000 photographs, videos and documents related to the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi. Materials about pre-genocide history and post-genocide reconciliation and recovery initiatives in Rwanda are also included. Browse through and search to find specific content that may be of interest to you.

Students

Every year, thousands of Rwandan and international students visit the Kigali Genocide Memorial. The students are guided through the memorial to learn about the causes, reality and consequences of the Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda. They are also taught about the importance of remembering genocide so that it can never happen again.

The education programmes run at the memorial share an important message of remembrance, peace, and personal responsibility. Visiting students learn about the unique efforts Rwanda has undertaken to overcome the challenges since 1994 and to foster a sense of shared national identity.

A typical education programme at the memorial includes the following components:

  1. Rwandan History: A group discussion on the economic, political and social factors that lead to conflict and violence.
  2. Genocide: An interactive session that asks questions including, ‘What is genocide?’, ‘How can it happen?’ and ‘How do ordinary people become perpetrators?’
  3. Understanding the ‘Continuum of Violence:’ A set of interactive discussions on analysing violence and decision making to comprehend how it happens.
  4. The Consequences of Genocide: A question and answer session on the challenges faced by individuals and society after genocide and how to overcome them.
  5. The Road to Peace: An interactive session that asks the question, ‘How is it possible to have sustainable peace after genocide?’ and tells the stories of peacemakers helping to rebuild their communities.

All education sessions at the Kigali Genocide Memorial are participatory to ensure students get the most out of their experience and take the lessons home with them. The memorial’s education programme is currently undergoing an expansion thanks to the construction of four new classrooms that were opened in April 2014 at the 10th anniversary of the memorial. Each year, the memorial receives thousands of students.

Visitor Information

A tour of the entire memorial takes approximately one hour and thirty minutes. The visit could take longer, depending on the size of your group. The Kigali Genocide Memorial welcomes visitors 365 days a year. However, there may be circumstances that require the memorial to be closed temporarily (e.g security reasons for VIP visitors). In the case of unexpected closures, all bookings are reviewed and visitors or tourism companies are contacted ahead of time to make alternative arrangements.

The memorial is open seven days a week, however on the last Saturday of every month, the memorial is open from 1:00pm to 5:00pm due to Umuganda, when all Rwandans meet to undertake community work. Refreshments are available from the Memorial Cafe. The cafe has a wide range of food and drinks on offer and proceeds go towards supporting the work of the memorial. You can view the cafe menu here.

Cafe

‘Café du Memorial’ and the souvenir shop at the Kigali Genocide Memorial are small-scale social enterprises. They were been developed by young Rwandans wanting to change their livelihoods, support others and give meaning to their work. The income generated from these social enterprises is invested back into the memorial to support the preservation of archives and to run education programmes the memorial.

Souvenir Shop

The products sold at the souvenir shop have been custom made for the Kigali Genocide Memorial by a local cooperative made up of widows of the Genocide against the Tutsi. The cooperative was founded in 2006 and makes a range of high quality arts and crafts for local and international customers. Called, ‘Ubumwe’, meaning unity in Kinyarwanda, the cooperative works to preserve the memory of the Genocide and support Rwandan togetherness. By purchasing something from the souvenir shop, you are supporting survivors of the Genocide to build dignified and prosperous lives

Guided Experience

The Kigali Genocide Memorial is a guided experience. Visitors can choose to be guided by one of the staff witnesses or tour around alone on self-guide or purchase the KGM digital guide which provides an audio-visual tour of the memorial.

Age limit

Children below age of 12 years are not allowed to access the museum as this is looked at as may not be good for their health. People above 12 years are allowed to access the museum.

Opening Hours

The museum is open for the visitors from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm (last entrance is at 4:00pm) 7 days a week except the last Saturday of each month. On the last Saturday of each month, the memorial is open from 1:00pm to 5:00pm due to Umuganda community work (last entrance is at 4:00pm). The Umuganda community work, is a kinyarwanda term, this is when the community is involved in the cleaning up of their environment.

Getting There

The Kigali Genocide Memorial is located in Gisozi, ten minutes’ drive from the center of town. The easiest way to reach the memorial is by car or through making arrangement with our company reservation team, who will include this as part of the city tour. For any safari tour, or visit to Kigali Memorial ground as part of your Kigali city tour or gorilla safari in Rwanda feel free to contact our reservation team, they will sarrange something prefect for your interest.

To experience a wonderful city tour and exploring Kigali attractions, feel free to write to us, and we see how to make sure we arrange a suitable package for you.