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Kigali overview

Overview Of Kigali

Kigali is a city, and capital, of Rwanda. Having a population of over 1 million people, it is the largest city in the country. The city was founded in 1907 under the German colonial rule by Dr. Richard Kandt. Kigali is famously known for suffering one of the most brutal Genocides – the Rwandan Genocide – that saw the death of more than one million people, mostly Tutsi. However, since 1994 when the massacre ended, the city has undergone a restructuring, moving on from its awful past. Due to the city’s elevation, Kigali is cooler than most cities in the same region, making it a favorable spot for tourists. Exciting places to visit in the city include the Kigali Genocide Memorial Centre, Ishyo Art Centre, Goethe Institut, Kigali City Tower, and the Mamba Club.

Annual Festivals and Events In Kigali

Kigali Up Festival

The Kigali Up Festival is an annual music event that brings both the locals and tourists together. Taking place at the Amahoro stadium, the festival gives an insight into the city, including its cultural cuisines and the African arts and culture. It features musical performances by Rwandan singers from all over the world in different genres: blues, jazz, pop, reggae, etc.

Rwanda Film Festival

The Rwandan film industry, known as Hollywood, celebrates movies across the world in different venues across Kigali city. The festival holds for a week, screening major movies on the international scene. Movie-loving tourists would find this event very exciting and the fact that if is often free to the audience. They can also get to see indigenous movies made by local film makers.

Mutzig Beer Fest

Mutzig Beer Fest is a smaller replication of the popular German Oktoberfest that holds every year in Kigali. It is a two-day event of drinks, food, and dance. Mutzig Beer Fest is definitely the favorite event for beer lovers. The feast happens in different locations in the city every year but there are always free buses to take participants to the event location.
Other popular festivals in the capital city include Jamafest and Hobe Rwanda.

Best time to book a flight to Kigali

Major airlines operating flights in and out of Kigali include Brussels Airlines, Ethiopian Airlines, KLM, Kenya Airways, Qatar Airways, RwandAir, and Turkish Airlines. The best time to book flights on these airlines should be at least three months before departure. There is always a demand for reservations on flights into Kigali as it is one of the most visited cities in Africa. Travelers should always be on the lookout, too, for the best deals by comparing the fares of each airline.

Best time to visit Kigali

Peak Season

Over The Years, Kigali Has Become One Of The African Cities That Attract A Lot Of Tourists And Expatriates Every Year. Everyone Visits This Wonderful City For Different Reasons; For Its History; For Its Culture; And For Its Tourist Attractions. All These Factors, Coupled With The Very Cool Ambiance, Make Kigali A Highly Visited Place When It Comes To Touring Africa. The Visits Occur All Through The Year, Especially From May To October, When The City Is Agog With A Variety Of Festivals And Events Including The International Food Fair, The Kigali Up Festival, And The Popular Mutzig Beer Fest. As A Result, It Is Not Unusual To Find That The Costs Of Flight Tickets May Increase During These Periods.

Off Season

It Is Very Hard To Find An Off Season For Travels Into The Beautiful City Of Kigali. The Weather There Is So Friendly That Most Travelers Do Not Schedule Their Tours Because Of The Weather But For The Events They Do Not Want To Miss. However, There Is A Little Window For When The Flights Into Kigali Are A Little Lower. This Varies Between November And March, Especially In March When The Rains Are More Frequent And Heavier. Coincidentally There Are Hardly Any Annual Events That Hold During This Period. And As A Result, A Good Number Of Tourists Would Not Be Found In The City During This Season.

Airlines operating flights to Kigali

Kigali International Airport is a civil aviation airport and the primary airport serving the city of Kigali. The airport is the major base for air travels in Rwanda. Kigali International Airport is the primary hub for RwandAir, the biggest airline in the country. The airport is the 7th best regional airport in Africa. The airport is referred to by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) using the airport code KGL. The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) uses HRYR when referring to Kigali International Airport.

 

Flights From London, United Kingdom To Kigali International Airport

Airline

Duration

Average Fare

Air France

17 hours 10 minutes

542, 658 naira

Brussels Airlines

12 hours 45 minutes

244, 621 naira

Egyptair

20 hours 40 minutes

462, 077 naira

Ethiopian Airlines

26 hours 45 minutes

262, 674 naira

Etihad Airways

21 hours 14 minutes

407, 488 naira

Kenya Airways

48 hours 40 minutes

416, 714 naira

KLM

15 hours 10 minnutes

413, 574 naira

 

Flights From Brussels, Belgium To Kigali International Airport

Lufthansa

29 hours 40 minutes

426, 866 naira

Ethiopian Airlines

15 hours 40 minutes

320, 637 naira

Brussels Airlines

10 hours 30 minutes

342, 328 naira

Egyptair

22 hours 45 minutes

542, 071 naira

Etihad Airways

32 hours 5 minutes

525, 490 naira

Kenya Airways

25 hours 40 minutes

417, 219 naira

KLM

11 hours 45 minnutes

413, 574 naira

South African Airways

31 hours 25 minutes

648, 208 naira

Turkish Airlinnes

28 hours 40 minutes

396, 369 naira

 

How long is a flight to Kigali

Airline

Duration

Average Fare

Air France

20 hours 50 minutes

645, 753 naira

Brussels Airlines

20 hours 20 minutes

435, 040 naira

Egyptair

36 hours 10 minutes

1, 067, 942 naira

Qatar Airways

22 hours 15 minnutes

1, 614, 849 naira

United Airlines

20 hours 20 minutes

694, 310 naira

South African Airways

27 hours 30 minutes

816, 251 naira

KLM

27 hours 35 minutes

552, 794 naira

 

Flights From Lagos, Nigeria To Kigali International Airport

Airline

Duration

Average Fare

Kenya Airways

12 hours 45 minutes

168, 348 naira

Lufthansa

20 hours 50 minutes

3, 169, 348 naira

Rwandair

4 hours 30 minutes

179, 670 naira

South African Airways

21 hours 25 minutes

420, 996 naira

Turkish Airlines

26 hours 20 minutes

605, 820 naira

It should be noted that majority of these airlines are not non-stop flights, as some may have more than 2 stops at other airports.

Kigali airport

Kigali International Airport located 5 km from the city center. Kigali is a 5-minute drive from the airport. There are taxis available outside the airport and can be chartered for around 10,000 Rwf. Pre-arrangements can be made for shuttle services from the airport to any destination in the city by contacting any of the Kigali taxi operators including Kigali Airport Taxis and Kigali Taxi Service. Travelers with less luggage can get around from the airport using motorbikes. Travels from the airport to most destinations in the city cost an average of 1500 RFr and 2000 RFr.

Getting from Kigali airport to city centre

Staying in Kigali

Kigali is a city, and capital, of Rwanda. Having a population of over 1 million people, it is the largest city in the country. The city was founded in 1907 under the German colonial rule by Dr. Richard Kandt. Kigali is famously known for suffering one of the most brutal Genocides – the Rwandan Genocide – that saw the death of more than one million people, mostly Tutsi. However, since 1994 when the massacre ended, the city has undergone a restructuring, moving on from its awful past. Due to the city’s elevation, Kigali is cooler than most cities in the same region, making it a favorable spot for tourists. Exciting places to visit in the city include the Kigali Genocide Memorial Centre, Ishyo Art Centre, Goethe Institut, Kigali City Tower, and the Mamba Club.

 

Great places to visit Kigali

Annual Festivals and Events In Kigali

Kigali Up Festival

The Kigali Up Festival is an annual music event that brings both the locals and tourists together. Taking place at the Amahoro stadium, the festival gives an insight into the city, including its cultural cuisines and the African arts and culture. It features musical performances by Rwandan singers from all over the world in different genres: blues, jazz, pop, reggae, etc.

Rwanda Film Festival

The Rwandan film industry, known as Hollywood, celebrates movies across the world in different venues across Kigali city. The festival holds for a week, screening major movies on the international scene. Movie-loving tourists would find this event very exciting and the fact that if is often free to the audience. They can also get to see indigenous movies made by local film makers.

Mutzig Beer Fest

Mutzig Beer Fest is a smaller replication of the popular German Oktoberfest that holds every year in Kigali. It is a two-day event of drinks, food, and dance. Mutzig Beer Fest is definitely the favorite event for beer lovers. The feast happens in different locations in the city every year but there are always free buses to take participants to the event location.
Other popular festivals in the capital city include Jamafest and Hobe Rwanda.

Cost of things in Kigali

 

 Item  Price (RFr.) 

  Meal, Inexpensive Restaurant

 5000 RFr.

  Meal for 2 at Fast Food restaurant

   12000 RFr.

  Beer

 1750 RFr.

  Bread

   2000 Rfr.

 Toothpaste

   4000 RFr.

 Suya and Fura De Nono  

   4000 RFr.

  1 kg of Tomatoes

   4500 Rfr.

  1 Kg of Potatoes

   6000 RFr.

Kigali tips/advice

Traditions and Customs To respect In Kigali
People in Kigali, and the rest of Rwanda do not exactly like to discuss their ethnic groups with outsiders. Travelers should know not to bring conversations about ethnic groups with indigenes.

Flight from local city to Kigali

Domestic Flights To Kigali

RwandAir Express operates scheduled flights from Kamembe International Airport to Kigali. There are about nine different flights per week to and from the capital city. Some airports like Bugesera International Airport is still undergoing construction and are yet to begin domestic flights from the airport. While the airport will become the largest airport in Rwanda, it will operate flights from Bugesera to Kigali.

People who like Kigali also like

Johannesburg

Johannesburg is the most visited city in Africa, attracting millions of tourists every year. The reason for this isn’t far-fetched; it is home to over 40 art galleries, cultural festivals, beaches, and national parks. Western visitors would definitely love the restaurants in the city as they offer both local cuisines and foreign dishes including French and Italian cuisines. While it is very suitable for pleasure, Johannesburg is also good for business. It is one of the most developed commercial cities in Africa, and the biggest city in Africa. The cheapest flight from the USA to Johannesburg costs 600 dollars. The prices however, depend on the airline flying to the city.

Accra

Accra is the capital city of Ghana and one of the more developing cities of Africa. The city makes up over 10% of the whole population, about 2,277,000 people. Accra is enriched with beaches, most notable Labadi Beach, which is also home to the Academy of African Music and Arts. The largest man-made harbor in Africa is also situated in GGhana'scapital city. In 2013, MasterCard's African Cities Growth Index Ranked Accra as Africa's top city, regarding its economic potential over the next five years.

Lagos

Visitors would enjoy traveling to Lagos for its entertainment factor; the city is always awash with activities almost every hour of the day. From beaches to art galleries, intercontinental restaurants, museums, theatres, and parks and musical concerts, visitors can never be bored on their trip to the city. Lagos is as well the commercial center of not just Nigeria but for all of Africa. It is, therefore, an ideal location for people looking for business opportunities.