National Museum of Rwanda

If you wish to know the A-Z about Rwanda’s history but have limited time-concentrate on Ethnographic Museum of Rwanda found in the Southern District of Rwanda, Huye (Butare). It is a one stop point where you will be nourished with a presentation focused on the ancient way of life; how agriculture was practiced, how wildlife hunting was carried out, animal husbandry, weaving of baskets and mats, woodwork and pottery.

Among the things that make it stand out from the other museums in the East African region is its rich collection of ethnological and archaeological findings. You will find lots of tools used by early man in the Stone Age. Their displays are old-fashioned but who cares, they are fascinating and make historic photographs.

The exhibits in Ethnographic Museum of Rwanda are displayed in seven halls that were built by Belgium in 1989 to celebrate 25 years of Rwanda’s independence. The most fascinating spot to visit is a replica of a royal home. It is fully stocked with household items that were exclusive to kings and their families. You can walk in and see how they used to live.

The music room is also unmissable as it features different types of drums that were used to grace different cultural ceremonies like marriages, harvest festivals and celebrating the life of a fallen relative. You are free to play each drum and hear the different sounds they make. After this, you can gather at the open theater to witness energetic local dances as performed with colorful costumes.

If you want a souvenir, the museum has a gift shop where you can by traditional Rwandan dresses. They look like Indian sari. There are also varieties of wooden sculptures, wall hangings and baskets all of which are handmade beautifully. Alternatively-you could walk away with books on Rwanda as written in Kinyarwanda, French and English.