Country Nr 31 – Rwanda – visiting Kigali, one of the cleanest and most peaceful cities in Africa

Country 31/196: Rwanda
Destinations: Kigali

We were afraid that we won’t be able to see why Rwanda is called ‘the land of thousand hills’ if we only visit its capital, but we were wrong. Kigali is one of the most diverse, green, clean, and beautiful cities we have ever been to and it sure has a lot of hills. 😉

Other attractions in Rwanda include Volcanoes National Park, home five volcanoes and a large population of mountain gorillas, Nyungwe Forest National Park, Mount Karisimbi, and Mount Bisoke.

In Kigali, the Kigali Genocide Memorial, which commemorates the 1994 Rwandan genocide is considered one of the city’s main landmarks. Over 250,000 victims of the genocide against the Tutsi are buried there. In one hundred days an estimated 500,000 to 1,000,000 Rwandans were killed.

Dearest Rwanda, we wish you an abundance of love and peace! ♥

Environmental issues

On one hand, Rwanda is facing several environmental challenges, like deforestation caused by uncontrolled cutting of trees for fuel, overgrazing, which is causing soil exhaustion and erosion, and widespread animal poaching, threatening the country’s biodiversity. Threatened species include the chimpanzee, African elephant, black rhinoceros, and even the mountain gorilla, despite their recent population growth. The war in Rwanda, beginning in 1990, has also damaged the environment.

On the other hand, Rwanda has Umuganda. Umuganda is Rwanda’s community work day. It can be translated as “coming together in common purpose to achieve an outcome”. This practice has long existed in Rwandan culture but has only recently become mandatory. On the last Saturday of every month, from 8 AM to 11 AM, all able-bodied citizens between the ages of 18 and 65 come together to make their country a better place. Projects range from road maintenance, repairing public buildings, cutting grass, to building schools and housing for people in need, planting trees, and performing public clean-ups. Thanks to Umuganda, Kigali became the cleanest city in Africa and Rwanda experienced an overall environmental improvement. Travelers are welcome to roll up their sleeves and join the efforts.

In addition, plastic bags have been banned in Rwanda for more than a decade, which is also a big step toward a better future. Way to go, Rwanda!

Found lots of LOVE in Rwanda. 😉 ♥

Honeymoon rating of the visited destinations: ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♡♡♡

Despite their sad history, Kigali is a stunning, modern, and clean city. Besides, it is a great starting point to see wild mountain gorillas. 😉 A honeymoon in Rwanda sounds like a great idea! 🙂

* Note: This is NOT a general rating of the country, it is merely our personal opinion of the mentioned site(s) as honeymoon destinations, based on the level of tourism development, the number and quality of romantic and adventurous activities and sites it offers, and safety. We strongly believe that every country is beautiful in its own way, they may simply be more or less honeymoon oriented/friendly.

*Are you planning a trip to Kigali? Here you can get a room with a 10% discount! 🙂

** Follow the journey on Instagram. 😉 There you can see our clean-up stories and check out our peace and sustainable tourism promo photos/videos. 😉

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