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Bowling has come to Kigali! I heard a rumour (ok, maybe I started the rumour…) that a bowling alley was going to be a part of Kigali City Tower and it’s come true! Well, sort of. It’s not at KCT, but instead tucked under a custom-built shed next to the pool at Mamba Club.

I guess Mamba with all of its sporty options (volleyball, table tennis, swimming, pool tables) is a logical location for Kigali’s first and only bowling alley – and they’ve done it right. It’s the real deal, folks. Six lanes of ball-rolling fury complete with the TV screen keeping score, ball returners, shoe rental, and slidy, polished alleys. It’s great! My favourite (and more terrifying) part is the pin collection… it’s done by hand which means random arms thrusting out into the lane. It adds a whole new element of horror to bowling when you think the pin collection guy is done, but an arm appears as your ball is careening down the lane.
I’m not sure why they put the set of new pins before they’re finished collecting the ones that are knocked over. Maybe this is extreme bowling? Well, extreme for the pin collector, anyways. I hope they get danger pay. Your first game costs Rwf 3,000 per person and the second is Rwf 2,500 each. I think there’s space on the scoreboard for six players per lane. We got two lanes without a problem on a Thursday night but if you have your heart set on bowling, it might be smart to reserve by calling 0782 208 824. The lanes are open from noon until midnight (although they’ll stay open later if there are people still playing). Mamba Club has food and, as I mentioned, a pool and other sporty activities. It makes a great place to spend a day, especially for families. Or come at night where everything is quiet and the focus is on the bowling action. It’s something different for a night out in Kigali and I had a lot of fun.

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