Bujumbura is the former capital and largest city in the Republic of Burundi. The city may not be as popular as other cities in Africa, but don’t let that fool you. Bujumbura is a smaller but beautiful upcoming tourist destination that is worth a visit. You will be surprised by some of the unique things to do and places you can explore at this hidden destination. The city’s industry specializes in textiles, leather, paper, chemicals, and agricultural products. Bujumbura also serves as the country’s main port on Lake Tanganyika; most of Burundi’s foreign trade is shipped between the Bujumbura and Kigoma, Tanzania.
Transportation Bujumbura international airport is the main airport for entering and exiting the city. There are direct flights to kigali, (Rwanda), Nairobi (Kenya), Dar es salaam (Tanzania), Entebbe (Uganda), Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) and Brussels (Belgium). Buses are mostly accessible in the vicinity of the central market. The Belvedere bus company has regular services to Kigali and several Burundian destinations.
Boat ferries may be used to travel around Lake Tanganyika, although they do not run on a regular basis
Where to stay? From top luxury hotels to budget boutique hotels, you can book your hotel room in Bujumbura online or upon arrival but not recommended especially if its peak season. There are many hotels each with a distinctive atmosphere, that are just waiting to be discovered across the city. There are so many things to do and see, you may want to stay an extra week or so.
Healthcare If you become ill during or immediately after travelling to the Bujumbura, seek medical advice immediately. Kira Hospital, Hopital Militaire de Kamenge or Medecin sans frontieres and other private hospitals are able to provide appropriate medical care for most serious accidents within Bujumbura. Outside Bujumbura, there is a lack of adequate medical care.
Attractions in Bujumbura
According to lonelyplanet Bujumbura’s Lake Tanganyika beaches are some of the best urban beaches of any landlocked country in Africa. The sand, though not exactly pristine white and clean, is still an inviting place to drop a towel, the swimming is safe and the water warm
Musée Vivant The Living Museum of Bujumbura is a zoo and museum in Burundi. The museum is located in Bujumbura, the country’s largest city and former capital, and is one of the country’s two public museums. It is dedicated to the wildlife and art of Burundi.
The Livingstone–Stanley Monument at Mugere marks a location where explorer and missionary Dr David Livingstone and journalist and explorer Henry Morton Stanley visited and spent two nights on 25–27 November 1871 in Burundi. It is 12 km south of the largest city and former capital Bujumbura, overlooking Lake Tanganyika
The southern source of the Nile, which is located in Rutovu district, in southern Burundi and around 120km (74.5 miles) from Bujumbura. A pyramid has been built there and attracts many visitors. It is located in a place with lower temperatures and it is amazing to watch how the long Nile flows from a well-built pyramid and makes its way towards the Mediterranean Sea.
What to eat in Bujumbura
Matura and Mahu This special kind of Burundian sausage called matura and mahu is one of the locals’ favorite foods. It is prepared with onions, garlic, meat, normally beef, chili pepper, salt, pepper, etc. Blood is also a mandatory ingredient in it.
Ndagala This typical Burundian food ndagala is a dish made of small local fish. It is usually used whole for cooking. The ingredients for making this cuisine are red palm oil, tomatoes, onions, habanero, and fish. You can also add parsley to enhance its flavor.
Visas and Vaccinations.
Depending on your passport one must get a visa to enter. This can be done through any Burundian embassy. Visitors can also obtain business or tourist visas on arrival at Bujumbura airport, and any land or maritime entry points. A month-long visa costs $90 and a 3 day-long visa costs $40.
Yellow fever vaccination is required for arriving travelers from all countries if traveler is above nine months of age.
Malaria travelers going to Burundi must take prescription medicine to prevent malaria. Talk to your doctor about which malaria medication you should take.
- Languages spoken Bujumbura are English, French, Kirundi and Kiswahili.
- Burundi has several telecommunication companies which comprise of Leo U-com, Econet, Lacell su, Africell, ONAMOB. For sim cards and data connection.
- For exchange rates 1 US dollar = 2030.7 Burundian francs