There is no place to learn about coffee production like Rwanda. The country is small in size, but produces coffee in nearly every sector of the country. During this course we will split our time between visiting and working with smallholder farmers, cooperative washing stations, private estates, and in labs cupping fresh coffees and learning from local experts about coffee production, processing, milling, and exporting.
Participants will spend time traversing the scenic countryside, visiting coffee farms and cooperatives, and working alongside farmers and agronomists learning about coffee quality from hands on experiences. In the city we will be in some of the country’s best coffee labs and mills. At each step students will learn what makes Rwandan coffee so special historically, and connect with Rwandan coffee experts.
We will also visit Question Coffee – an innovative roaster and cafe in Kigali that connects directly with coffee producers in the countryside, sharing profits, exchanging information, and linking Kigali’s coffee consumers to the amazing stories and coffees of the Twongere Umusaruro, Nyampinga, and other women’s coffee cooperatives.
The course gives students a chance to access and taste a number of lots being prepared and finished, emphasises harvesting, processing, and cupping. Each day will include a tasting session and discussion featuring fresh-crop coffees; it’s an in-depth class for coffee professionals looking to truly understand the quality parameters of green coffee.
Students will spend time in Kigali, Huye in the south, and Kayonza in the East. Students are responsible for their own airfare and housing accommodations (which will range from urban hotels in Kigali to modest local motels and tent lodges in the countryside). Boot Coffee will recommend moderate priced lodging one month prior to the course. Local transportation is covered in the cost of the course.
Students are responsible for arranging their flights into and out of Kigali Rwanda. Many international airlines offer daily flights.
Welcome to Rwanda, the Land of a Thousand Hills. We will be traveling throughout the country, spending time in the capital of Kigali and in the Southern and Eastern Provinces visiting cooperatives, producers, labs, and mills.
International flights arrive from Europe at the international airport in Kigali each evening. From Kigali it is a short taxi ride to the city center and our hotel for the first night. We strongly recommend that you arrive in Kigali a day or two prior to the start of the course to recover from jet lag.
After the course, it is recommended to spend some extra time in Rwanda visiting other coffee producers, trekking to visit Mountain Gorillas, or taking in other sites. We can help you make arrangements.
We will meet you in the breakfast room at the main course hotel (we will provide this information in advance of your departure to Rwanda) at 8:30am on Monday morning.
The Rwanda course is an intensive course with a good amount of physical exercise. The days start with a breakfast at 8:30am and we usually finish the course days between 6pm and 6:30pm. We will spend at least one night in Butare/Huye and another in the Eastern Province near Kayonza. We will arrange accommodations for these nights away from the capital of Kigali.
For your stay in Kigali we will provide recommendations regarding lodging and meals in the weeks prior to the course. Most hotels in Kigali cost between $75 and $200 per night. We will transport you on Friday afternoon to the Kigali Airport in time for the flights that depart each evening.
Our Kigali base of operations is at one of the hotels located in a convenient part of the city (we are looking for bulk discounts to recommend our students). This will be a modest hotel with clean rooms and good access to coffee facilities, restaurants, and taxis. Kigali has many hotels that can be booked online. The city’s top hotels are the Serena and the Marriott Hotel.
• sleeping bags
• head lamps
• water bottle
• mosquito spray
• hiking boots
• light rain jacket and/or fleece jacket
• warm clothing (nights are cold)
• sun hat
• sun lotion
• travel insurance with emergency (medical) coverage
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