Astrida and the former colonial capital of Rwanda -Huye
Visit Butare the former first capital of Rwanda

The tradition of Butare as an academic centre dates back to 1900 when it hosted the first Catholic mission in present-day Rwanda. As prominent intellectuals and religious figures were drawn to the area, Butare grew in favour among the Belgian occupiers. Following the death of Queen Astrid, the Swedish wife of King Leopold III, the town was renamed Astrida in 1935.

After independence in 1962, the town’s name was changed back to Butare as it launched a strong bid to serve as the capital of Rwanda. Although Kigali was eventually chosen, due to its central location, Butare was selected to host the country’s first university, which opened its doors to students in 1963.

The Former National University of Rwanda(NUR)
Huye Cathedral is a huge red-brick edifice built in the late 1930s
Ibis Hotel is located in downtown Butare

You will see many places to visit and have a dinner such as Ibis Hotel is located in downtown Butare in the South-East of Rwanda. It is probably among the best hotels in the area. The City of Butare possesses many attractive places like: The National University, the Museum, the arboretum and the Murambi Genocide Memorial.

Why to visit Huye

Kibeho: Tourist attraction and place of pilgrimage
Nyanza ya Butare: cultural hub,Land of beer and milk

In Huye you can find till today the National University of Rwanda, the National Institute of Scientific Research and the excellent Ethnographic Museum, we can not forget

Royal Palace at Nyanza

The cultural significance of Butare is further underlined by a visit to nearby Nyabisinu, formerly known as Nyanza, the traditional seat of Rwanda’s feudal monarchy. The impressive Royal Palace at Nyanza, an enormous domed construction made entirely of traditional materials, has been painstakingly restored to its 19th century state and is now maintained as a museum.

Kibeho Holy Land

Kibeho is in district of Nyaruguru which is not too far of Huye and Kibeho is a small village in Nyaruguru District-Rwanda, which is known as a place of apparition where the Virgin Mary appeared. She is said to have appeared to three girls Alphonsine Mumureke, a nun in France, Marie Claire Mukangango, who was killed in the 1994 genocide, and Nathalie Mukamazimpaka, who stays at the Kibeho Shrine.


Maps and Transportation