Kigali ‘Hangs’: Where to Catch the Best Music – December 2018 Edition

Riders Lounge

Location: Kigali Heights, Kimihurura.
Music: Top 40’s, Hip-Hop, RnB, Classic hits, African Hits.
Best known for: Being a famous bar in the region, there is a line-up of in-house DJs to entertain every hour of the day. It is also a good place if you want to rub shoulders with Kigali’s crème de la crèmeAlso if you have the munchies, try their lollipop chicken — it makes for great bar food.
Pro-tip: Bring a healthy wallet. Great for groups, dates, & after-work drinks.

Contact: 0784 836 839.
Address: KG 7 Ave.


Location: Opposite Quiet Haven Hotel, Nyarutarama.
Best known for: Pass by on a weekend or a holiday, and you will see a range of cars lining the street outside. Another favorite of Kigalian’s young and old alike, Bougainvilla’s DJs – industry names like DJ Miller – are some of the best on the scene. We hear their Sunday BBQ’s are a proper slabs-of-sizzling-meats affair, for those seeking more than brochettes.
Pro-tip: A great place to dance, the crowd gets massive around midnight so get there early to secure a seat if you are not the type to dance all night, or are wearing heels!

Contact: 0783 202 777.
Address: 67 KK 9 Ave.


Location: Behind Haute Baso, Nyarutarama.
Best known for: The ambiance at Choma’d is reminiscent of a neighborhood picnic with an awesome playlist – from old school RnB to the golden age of hip-hop, to the live, global, afrofuturist vibes of DJ K’Ru on the weekends. Some international celebrity faces have been known to stop through here.  Don’t leave without trying out their cool ribs and cocktails.
Pro-tip: If you are the kind who loves sofas, too bad! There are only benches here, picnic-style. Once you experience the ambience and their popular 4,000 RwF bucket of beers, you’ll soon forget to notice it.

Contact: 0786 268 595.
Address: 39 KG 9 Ave.


Location: Next to Librairie Ikirezi, Kacyiru.
Best known for: Cocobean is frequented by expatriates and Kigali celebrities. It is good place to go to if you want to show-off some dance moves, enjoy the psychedelic LED tiles, or just people-watch sipping a cocktail next to their lighted pool. Make sure to come well-paid (don’t say we didn’t warn you).
Pro-tip: Cocobean recently weathered a couple of controversial storms on social media. Do come well-dressed: baseball caps, shorts or slippers (for men) are frowned upon at this establishment.

Contact: 0788 990 811.
Address: KG 5 Ave.


Location: Below Papyrus, Kimihurura.
Best known for: Party! One of the best places, especially on Thursdays, for a proper club scene, and it gets packed! The crowd is on average young, energetic and come in groups. Their DJs make sure you retire home after breaking some sweat on the dance floor. When leaving, don’t forget Issah’s famous meat and cheese-potato brochette.
Pro-tip: The establishment is not large and tends to get over-crowded on certain nights and you will find people spilling out to their outside patio. We would love to see a large dance-floor, and even some chairs or couches outside for those catching their breath.

Address: 1-17 KG 674 St.

514 Club

Location: Kisementi.
Best known for: Karaoke night on Wednesdays is a full-house affair, and the host, Carol ‘Karaoke’ as their loyal clientele fondly call her, is the life of the singing party. Great for amateurs and pros, it is a great way to catch Kigali’s unknown talents. They also have a live band playing on weekends. Once you feel like lounging, they have a nightclub you can retreat to.
Pro-tip: Being located in the middle of the busy Kisementi bar scene, there is limited parking space.

Contact: 0783 801 388
Address: KG 18 Ave.


Location: Behind Mobisol, Kimihurura.
Best known for: Built as an expansive, open-air stone terrace with multiple bars, Sundowner is one of Kigali’s busiest places on most evenings, with loud music and great DJs who play a selection of Top 40’s, African and American hits. Their kitchen is always open for any orders but nyama choma and pizza are their specialty.
Pro-tip: Get there early to book a place, and bring cash! It will save the wait on a busy night. Also the lighting outside is kept to the minimal to add to the ambience – so, it is not a place if you’d like make eye-contact.

Contact: 0788 303 522
Address: KG 625 St.

Dolce Bar (Kwa Yves)

Best known for: If you like Congolese music, this is your place. It is also close to the CBD making it easy for guys who work around ‘mu mujyi‘ (town center) to have some fun as they wait for traffic to clear. You are welcome.
Pro-tip: Limited parking — so look for spaces just a few streets away.

Contact: 0788 625 108
Address: KN 16 Ave.


Location: Below Brioche, Kacyiru.
Best known for: This club is open everyday of the week. Boasting a solid dance-floor and extensive bar, most Kigalians frequent the place for the night fun. They also have one of the best pool tables in town.
Pro-tip: There isn’t a restaurant where one can get a decent meal while partying.

Contact: 0788 650 014
Address: KG 543 St.


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