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For other destinations and types of holiday, visit Kuoni
For other destinations and types of holiday, visit Kuoni 

Things to do in Rwanda

Walking with the locals in a vibrant Kigali neighbourhood

When you do our tour, you get to explore a fascinating area and find out how people live there…

By Marie Aimee Umugeni
Managing director of Umutima Cooperative at Nyamirambo Women’s Center

When you do our walking tour, you get to explore a fascinating area of Kigali – its oldest neighbourhood, in fact – and find out how people live there, and you’re also helping to support an important local community project. The tour starts at Nyamirambo Women’s Center, a Rwandan NGO launched in 2007, where we give a brief introduction to what we do. Then you have a Kinyarwanda lesson so that when you’re walking around you’ll know some important words, like how to greet people in our local language. It’s just a few words, and you get a hard copy to take away with you so you don’t forget. And then, after that, you tour the centre to meet some of the women who work here, producing products such as children’s clothes, handbags and homewares.

Then you head out to see what the people of Nyamirambo get up to in their everyday lives. You visit people who are selling milk. You also stop at a hair salon where they do braids, and you’re welcome to have one so you can see how it’s done. And you also visit women selling fruit and vegetables, and a family compound where the women pounding cassava leaves will be happy to let you help them. It’s their everyday business because the pounded leaves are used to make a very popular traditional dish called isombe, which is like a soup or a stew and is very healthy. You also pay a call at a local tailoring shop, where you just show them a picture of what you want and choose the fabric and they measure you and make a dress or shirt for you. And you also get to know something about the history of this neighbourhood, why it’s called what it is and so on, as you walk around.

You finish with lunch at the home of one of the ladies in our group who’s an excellent cook. It’s local food, and you get to taste almost everything we normally eat: cooked banana, beans, vegetables, sweet potato and cassava. No meat. No fish. After the cassava-leaf pounding, it’s the favourite part of the tour. People often say, ‘The lunch was amazing and much tastier than what we’ve had in any of our hotels.’

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  • Trips to take

Available in these itineraries…

Alfred & Marie Aimee Umugeni

Marie Aimee Umugeni is one of the co-founders of the Nyamirambo Women’s Centre in Kigali, which was set up in 2007 to provide support to local women. It offers literacy and computer classes and teaches tailoring, enabling participants to work at the centre producing items for its Umutima Cooperative, of which Marie Aimee is managing director.  

Alfred&

Your journey will start with one of our UK team – someone like Vicki, who's travelled extensively in Rwanda. They’ll shape your ideas into the trip of a lifetime. But they won't do it alone. They'll draw on the expertise of our contacts on the ground, connecting you to the people who'll make your holiday one you'll always remember - the guides who track mountain gorillas day and night to ensure you get the best sightings, the Kigalians who'll give you a real insight into their vibrant city and the coffee-growers who'll tutor you in the art of tasting.

Freephone an expert 01306 744 656