Kigali!

Kigali is the capital of Rwanda, and most likely the city you will start your adventure! 


Kigali is built over the ‘thousand hills’ of Rwanda, which means that almost no matter where you look, you will find yourself with incredible views. The city has changed dramatically over the last 20 years; and now boasts delicious restaurants, modern office blocks and lively nightlife. In general, Kigali is renowned for being organised, clean, safe, and fun (if you know where to look!). We hope you enjoy it as much as we do...

Getting around Kigali

Getting around the city is easy - once you wrap your head around the hills! Closer to the time, we'll update this section with all the info you'll need on car-hire, taxis, buses, and motos!

Where to Stay in Kigali

Kigali is a small city that is easy to navigate. There aren’t any ‘no-go’ neighbourhoods, so take a look online and decide what is best for you. We live in Kacyiru, which is quite central. Some pleasant neighbourhoods nearby that we would recommend as well as Kacyiru are Kimihurura, Nyarutarama and Kiyovu. The city has accommodation options to suit all budgets, from local hostels to 5* boutique hotels and everything in between. The below options have been recommended to us, but this is by no means an exhaustive list. We also recommend checking out Air BnB as more options are becoming available in Kigali all the time.

Budget

10-30 per night

 Hostels or local guesthouses

High-End

80 and above...

4* hotels and beyond...

Eating & Drinking in Kigali

Kigali has loads of great and affordable restaurants, cafés and bars to enjoy. Below are some of our favourites:

Cafés/Breakfast/Lunch

Inzora - tucked behind Kigali's best bookshop, and if you head up to the roof you will find one of the best views of the city! Really good selection of coffees and teas, and a limited food menu.
Question Coffee - probably the best coffee in Kigali, but no food here.
Turambe Shoppe - a very healthy option with excellent salads, soups & smoothies! This is a good spot to grab food on the go, especially before a road-trip. 
Shokola Café - located on the top floor of Kigali Public Library, this quiet spot is a good place to get some work/reading done and has a nice menu of sandwiches etc.
Now Now Rolex -  offers a twist on the classic Ugandan street food “rolex” (or “rolled eggs”) – this is also a great place to grab food on the go – they open early and close late! 
Casa Keza - a spanish-influenced spot with a nice garden and space for kids to run around.
• Baso Patisserie - excellent pastries, good coffee and the burgers get good reviews too!
• Bwok Café Bistro - this korean-owned place is one of our favourite spots any time of day - the lunch buffet is delicious!

Dinner

• Heaven & Fusion Restaurants – Heaven and its more expensive sister restaurant Fusion are right next door to each other. Both offer delicious and original Rwandan fusion food in beautiful settings
• Poivre Noir – one of Kigali’s most "foodie" restaurants – nice combination of Rwandan-Belgian offerings
• Repub Lounge – great atmosphere, book ahead to get a seat on the terrasse, it can get busy at weekends. Rwandan and swahili style dishes, often with live music.
• Habesha – Elly’s very favourite Ethiopian spot in town. Go hungry and try to finish a whole veggie beyenetu if you can!
• Sol E Luna – a long-time favourite, with a huge range of wood fired pizzas in a nice setting with an italian feel and great views of the Kigali skyline
• Car Wash – Car wash by day, bar &grill by night. You won’t see many tourists in one of Kigali’s favourite meat spots. Also good place to watch football.
• Soy Asian Table – Really nice asian fusion food around a gorgeous garden setting.
• Green Corner - if you’re craving giant grilled fish and want an authentic Kigali experience, this very local joint is a huge favourite.



Kigali Genocide Memorial

• The Genocide Memorial Centre focuses on the most tragic part of Rwanda’s history in 1994, when estimates of one million Rwandans were killed in the Genocide against the Tutsi.
• No visit to Rwanda is complete without spending some time here.
• The memorial contains a museum, and is also the final resting place of over 250,000 victims of the genocide, including Patrick's father and other relatives.
• The visit usually takes anywhere between 2-4 hours depending on each person.

Tours & Organised Activities

Nyamirambo’s Women Centre offers affordable walking tours of Kigali’s most vibrant neighbourhood and gives an interesting insight into urban life in Rwanda. The centre also has a cute shop with crafts/clothing. NWC also offer half-day cooking classes and basket-weaving classes which are definitely worth checking out! 
Azizi Life organise a number of “experiences” that aim to give an insight into daily life in rural Rwanda as well as craft classes.
Talking Through Art is a social enterprise aimed at improving the lives of people with disabilities. They offer a variety of very affordable walking tours through the Kigali neighbourhood of Gikondo.
Go Kigali is the original Kigali tour company, covering a large array of neighborhoods and activities in Kigali. This very professional tour can either be a full day (85 USD/person) or half-day (55 USD/person).
Question Coffee serves the best coffee in the city, and they also offer a tour to show how their coffee is produced by smallholder female farmers, as well as offering a variety of coffee "masterclasses".

SPORTS IN KIGALI

• Go swimming! There are plenty of outdoor pools across the city to enjoy on a sunny day. Our favourite is Hôtel des Mille Collines (“Hotel Rwanda”) which charges 7,000rwf for non guests. The pools at Marriott and Serena are also popular.
• You can hike up Mount Kigali to get an incredible view of the city. You can go horseback riding, and also do archery at the top of Mount Kigali. There is also a zip-line circuit but Elly almost died here so we recommend avoiding that.
• Head to the gym for a workout, dance or yoga class, at Kigali's best gym: Waka Fitness (8,000rwf drop-ins).
• Go for a run in Kimihurura on the KG1 round-about. You will see other runners and athletes making use of this space as well. If you’re in good shape – challenge your calf muscles with a run anywhere on Kigali’s hills.
• The Kigali Golf Course is set to re-open with an 18-hole golf course in June. 
• If tennis is your thing, check out these options. The page is old but all courts bar Novotel are still active.