Cities & places to visit in Rwanda

KIGALI CITY

Kigali is the capital and largest city of Rwanda, located geographically at the heart of the Country and one of Africa's / World's cleanest cities. The history of Rwanda dates back centuries, Kigali has been a part of it for 100 years. Founded in 1907 as a German settlement, Kigali did not become the capital until Rwanda’s independence in 1962 when it replaced the colonial seat of power in Butare. Today, the city offers a remarkable mix of rural and urban town overflowing on contrasting hilly terrain and is home to about one million dwellers. The capital is the starting point for most holiday tours to Rwanda. Among the various tourist attractions in the capital are Kigali Memorial Centre (a well known grave sight and one of the most reputed destinations in the city), The Muslim Quarter, and the crafts market (which displays a variety of local art and crafts depicting the local and cultural heritage Rwanda).

GENOCIDE MEMORIAL CENTRES

The Genocide Memorial site is a grim reminder of the senseless massacre of innocent’s lives in 1994. During the genocide in Rwanda in 1994, over a million people were murdered. Some 250,000 perished on the streets and in the houses, churches and hospitals of the capital alone. After the 1994 unspeakable awfulness, several burial places in the country were established as memorial sites. They include Murambi Genocide Memorial Centre located 2km north of Gikongoro and the Gisozi Genocide Memorial Centre (Kigali Genocide Memorial) where 250,000 genocide victims were buried. Learn about Rwanda’s history from pre-colonial times to the 1994 genocide; learn about other genocides in the world and how this country has dealt with that past. Tour more and see the new developments in Rwanda; the recovery has been incredible, a testament to humankind’s resilience.


Kigali Memorial Centre

Historical Musanze Cave

The Musanze Cave is located situated in Ruhengeri 2km off Gisenyi road, Musanze cave is a legendary cave with size of a cathedral and houses an amazing bat colony. The huge ditch out of which the cave opens is marked black volcanic rubble creating a touristic impression, and at the other end there is a natural bridge which was created by a lava flow from one of the Virunga volcanoes. Musanze is said to have been constructed by a former local king and has on several occasions been used as a refuge.


Historical Musanze Cave

RUSUMO FALLS

Rusumo Falls is a waterfall located on the Kagera River on the border between Rwanda and Tanzania, part of the most distant headwaters of the river Nile. The falls gained international fame during the 1994 Rwandan genocide, as thousands of dead bodies flowed underneath the bridge while a simultaneous stream of refugees crossed over it, fleeing into Tanzania to escape the genocide. .


Rapid Rusumo Falls


BUTARE CITY

Butare is located about 135 Km south of Kigali. It is an attractively compact and peaceful town with a reputation of being the intellectual and cultural centre of the country. Butare was the largest and most important city in Rwanda prior to 1965, when it lost out to the more centrally located Kigali as the capital of the country.  The town hosts several academic institutions including the National University, as well as the famous National Museum which houses one of the finest collections in East Africa and displays the rich cultural history of the Rwandan people. Other Attractions in Butare include the largest Cathedral in Rwanda and the National University of Rwanda.


Butare Catholic Cathedral

NATIONAL MUSEUM OF RWANDA

The National museum of Rwanda is located in the town of Butare approximately 135 km from the capital city of Kigali and occupies an area space of 2,500 square meters. The museum is considered to be one of the finest ethnographic museums and man made wonders of Rwanda and East-Africa. The structure of the museum is artistically designed with expressions to symbolize the way of life in Rwanda. It reflects well the time spirit at the end of 19th Century when the East-African Kingdoms came in contact with the first Europeans.


Rwanda National Museum


NYANZA ROYAL PALACE

Nyanza Royal Palace is an impressive and enormous domed structure created entirely with standard materials. This ancient Royal Palace of the Rwanda monarchy is situated within the town of Nyanza approximately 35km north from Butare inside the Southern Province with the nation. The palace sits on top of a hillock with commanding views. The palace is really a basic art-deco 1950s Italianate bungalow residence splashed in pale green. The interior is really sparse with some grand fire-places. The most interesting rooms are the sleeping quarters and inside of bathroom which must happen to be splendid regalia on this component from the continent in its glory days.