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“Impressive...” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Nyamata Church

Nyamata Church
Kigali, Rwanda
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Ranked #3 of 14 Attractions in Kigali
Type: Religious Sites, Cultural
Attraction details
Groningen, The Netherlands
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 attraction reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Impressive...”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 20, 2013

One of Rwanda's most impressive memorials. The clothes of the victims are kept in the church which brings the events scarily close. Also, there are open tombs with thousands of skulls. A terrible place, but a good and impressive memorial site.

Visited July 2013
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Date | Rating
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English first
Australia
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Genocide memorial”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 16, 2013

We had a fantastic guide who explained the history of the site, as well as information on the memorial itself. Offers great insight into the role of the church in the Rwandan genocide

Visited July 2013
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Sydney, Australia
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Brings life to those who died”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 24, 2013

The sight on first entering the church is very humbling.

Piles of clothes cover the small pews. You can still see marks in the walls from stray bullets. These stand as a reminder of the death of thousands of ordinary, everyday people whose only crime was that they had been labelled a Tutsie on their identity card. I recommend visiting the memorial centre in Kigali first as this gives an excellent history of the genocide. Nyamata Church gives it a harsh reality.

I went on public transport to both Nyamata and Ntarama as follows:
- From Nyabugogo bus terminal in Kigali catch a Nyamata bound matatu to the last stop Fr600
- I then walked 15 mins to the site but you could also get a bike taxi. To walk continue along the main road in the same direction of travel. There is a slightly dilapidated sign saying something like Genocide Memorial Site (it doesn't mention the word church) about 10 mins down the road on your right. The church is about 150m ahead.
- From main road, I got a motorbike to Ntarama memorial site for Fr1000 (bargained down from 1500). There are no matatus directly to Ntarama site*.
- From the site I walked the 2-3km back to the main road (I'm sure the bike taxi would wait for you for a fee) and caught a matatu to Kigali for Fr600. There is a "bus stop" on the main road where someone will sell you a ticket for the return matatu.

There are a few different matatu companies plying this route. I used Stella and Excel. They are all the same.

* If you are on a very tight you could get a matatu from Nyamata heading towards Kigali and ask them to drop you off by the road that heads to Ntarama. You can walk the 2-3km along the dirt road to the memorial. The access road is on the left side if heading from Nyamata. A fairly easy walk and I'm sure the locals could point you in the right direction if you want clarification.

Visited June 2013
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Salt Lake City, Utah
Top Contributor
56 reviews 56 reviews
23 attraction reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
“Powerful”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 23, 2013

Even after having been there, it's impossible to grasp the scale and violence that took place there. I'm glad I did the church tour - it's worthwhile to go to both Nyamata and Ntarama because they are so close together. This church has what looks like a baptistry inside that now hold a collection of bones. I didn't know about the catacombs behind the church until arriving there. Hundreds of skulls, other bones, caskets covered with drapes. It is impossible to describe the emotions in words. The most touching experience to me was seeing locals visiting the sites by the busloads on a weekend during the 100 days of remembrance. The genocide is a living reality for locals.

Visited May 2013
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Chicago, Illinois
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Must See”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 26, 2013

A must see memorial site in Rwanda. There are personal effects still present at the site for vistors' to view. A powerful experience and one worth having while visiting Rwanda!

Visited May 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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