Rwanda formally known as the Republic of Rwanda is an Independent country in the East Africa and is among the smallest states on African Continent. It’s located south of the equator, bordering Uganda in the north, Burundi in the south, Tanzania in the East and DR. Congo in the west. The country is in African Great Lakes Region and its geography is dominated savanna in the east and mountains in the west and due to the rolling landscape the country earned it’s the name ‘land of thousand hills’
Numerous visitors come to Rwanda to trek mountain gorillas in Volcanoes National Park, which has spread the good news about the country as a peaceful and perfect tourist destination, changing the negative picture made by the 1994 Rwanda genocide. Other than the mountain gorillas, different attractions incorporate the golden monkeys in Volcanoes National Park, chimpanzees in Nyungwe Forest National Park, birds and wildlife in Akagera National Park and obviously, the Rwandan interesting culture.
The country is an amazing family tour destination with awesome places to visit, incorporating three national parks with stunning wildlife, Rift Valley lakes for swimming and unwinding, and the bustling capital city of Kigali, which is incredible for phenomenal family outing in and around the city.
Here are some of the best and interesting cities to visit with a family in Rwanda
Lake Kivu is situated in the western arm of the Great East African Rift Valley on the western borders of Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The lake is one of the highest altitude Rift Valley lakes found at 1,460 meters above sea level. The lake is huge, with shallow waters perfect for swimming, kayaking and boat cruise.
There are three lakeside tourist towns encompassing Lake Kivu. Gisenyi is the most famous one. Situated on the northern shores of the lake, it is blessed with white sandy shorelines and amazing views of the Rift Valley scenes and the Virunga Volcanoes.
Here, there are a lot of chances for trips and water sports on Lake Kivu itself. Gisenyi has variety of vacationer hotels on the lake shores, including Lake Kivu Serena Hotel, Waterfront Resort Lake Kivu and Gorillas Lake Kivu Hotel.
The other two lakeside towns are Karongi, which is effectively reached from Kigali with a good tarmac road and is clamoring with market and lodgings, and Rusizi on the remote southern shores of Lake Kivu.
The town of Butare otherwise called Huye, is found in the southern of the country. This once a colonial town offers tourists an insight into the way of life, history and modern day life of the people of Rwanda.
Your family can visit the Rwanda National Museum where you can learn about the pre and post colonial history of Rwanda and the traditional culture of Rwanda displayed through relics.
Another interesting destination to visit with family in Rwanda is the Gikongoro Genocide memorial found just outside the Butare Town. It is found in just a 15minutes drive from Butare Town. Local tour guides will clarify how one of the largest Tutsi massacres in history happened.
Huye market is a busy town with shops, bars and restaurants with local and international dishes to feast on. Tourists can appreciate everything from meat omelets, fish omelets, and boiled cassava, to sandwiches, pork, chicken and vegan dishes. Also the local market can be visited during the day, there are various hotels for overnight stays, including Motel da Munt Huye, Hotel Ibis and Shalom House.
Kigali is the capital and business center of Rwanda and also is home to International hotel chains, such as Radisson and Serena, in addition to a host of local casinos, shopping malls, bars and several craft shops with quality souvenirs. There are also good banks and forex bureaus in case you want to exchange, deposit or withdraw money.
In addition to the shop and local markets, a tour around Kigali City also offers tourists a visit to genocide memorial centers. This memorial center is a remembrance of the genocide incident that happened in the country in 1994 that claimed the lives of over 800,000 people with just 100 days.
The Gisozi, otherwise called the Kigali Genocide memorial, is a burial ground where 250,000 Rwandans where killed and buried. In this genocide memorial center there are three exhibitions including educational sections, children’s exhibitions, gardens and archives telling the story of the genocide.
Still on Kigali city tour, you can visit other genocide memorial centers like, Murambi, Ntarama and Nyamata churchs situated in the southern part of the city. These have melancholy displays including skeletal remains of the casualties of the genocide. A visit to these places is a lesson in building reconciliation.