Rwanda: Switzerland of Africa

Kigali feels like an African city would be if it were dreamed up by the editors of Monocle magazine . Located at an altitude of 1600m, it has a pleasant temperate climate.

With dozens of hills dotted around the city, parks and wide, tree-lined avenues, it is an attractive and scenic city. The roads are perfectly asphalted and well lit at night. Colonial Belgian bungalows rub shoulders with modern skyscrapers. The streets are so clean that one could sit down and have a kaiseki dinner on the ground. It is full of intriguing little restaurants and cafes.

Kigali is probably the safest city in Africa. The only one where I would walk a kilometre back to my hotel late at night. Surrounded by chaotic cities in an unstable region, Kigali is a safe haven for us to catch our breaths before we continue our Odyssey. Compared to the exciting, colourful chaos of other African cities, Kigali is almost boring – something we do not mind after over three months of “excitement” in Africa !

view of Kigali city center
the leafy and upmarket Nyarutarama district in Kigali
the busy Nyarugenge district, in central Kigali
Hotel Rwanda

a Kigali institution