Considering a Journey to Burundi? You Should Know This! An ultimate travel blog, updates, and tips for your next trip to Burundi
This article discusses frequently asked questions about Burundi from the geographical position, the culture and history, way of life, visa requirements, safety, and less known tourist attractions like Agasumo ka Mwaro or Intore dancers.
We have tried to gather a piece of information for anyone considering a trip to Burundi, be it a tourist, a traveler blogger would need to ask. If your question is not among these, feel free to email us at the email address found at the bottom of this article, and we shall be happy to exchange notes.
This travel guide to Burundi shall be updated on a regular basis as we get new insights. Here are the different questions that usually don’t find (or find hard) answers on Burundi travel blogs.
Where is Burundi on the map?
Is Burundi safe for tourists?
Burundi visa requirements? Burundi visa on arrival? Burundi visa application online?
How to apply for a Burundi visa?
What languages do they speak in Burundi?
Things to do in Burundi: tours or safaris?
What is Burundi known for?
How densely populated is Burundi?
Is Burundi a developing country?
What is happening in Burundi?
Where is Burundi & what is Burundi known for?
The country lies in the great lakes’ region of Africa. It shares borders with Rwanda, DR Congo, and Tanzania. Burundi has an amazing multitude of happy and friendly people who are proud of their country.
They will make sure you enjoy your visit. Greetings in Burundi are full of expressions of peace and love for individuals and the whole community.
Therefore, they share both a common language and collective cultural elements which are admirable. It is openly passed to all visitors with a warm handshake or a hug accompanied by a beautiful smile. Christianity remains to be the most-followed religion in here.
Families or friends enjoy a meal together in a social moment accompanied by a drink.
Burundi traditional clothing consists of African Vitenge (wrappers). Young girls and women wear this type of clothing very popular during ceremonies and social gatherings. Mostly, people in rural areas do not go for the western style of clothing. Instead, they settle for a traditional way of dressing. Burundi clothing is simple and uniquely designed. It is important that the person wearing the garment feel comfortable. And, they are able to perform various duties and work.
In this country, the value of music has proven to be significant to the culture. And, one of the most celebrated cultures is the playing of historical drums. The drums were much more than simple musical instruments. During the royal times, the drums were announcing major events for the king. Those are like a royal coronation, funeral, and weddings.
Locals play the drums at major events, particularly during national and international events. They still respect drums just as their ancestors did.
Welcoming everyone with warm smiles is the way of life here in Burundi.
Burundi ultimate travel blog: facts, tips, and things to do.
If you’re considering a journey to Burundi, realize you’re entering territory very much undervalued. This country is positively blooming with divergent and lush greenery. The assemblage makes up a sundry of creatures to match. It’s of no wonder to catch a smile while you journey to Burundi.
What may bewilder you is the uncertain nature of reports about the security conditions in this region. Most of them will suggest that you will need to maintain a certain security consciousness and observe your surroundings intently.
Tune in to the media and local sources for ongoing developments related to travel there as Burundi was once reported to be a questionable destination for tourism. No less, reflecting these general guidelines, will further grant you peace of mind during your planning and your vacation in Burundi.
These guidelines apply both on tailor-made or fixed departure packages including all-inclusive tours takes you from Burundi, Rwanda, and Uganda or vice-versa.
How to apply for a visa to Burundi-Safety and travel requirements
All visitors arriving in Burundi, unless coming from visa-exempt countries, must obtain a visa from one of the Burundian diplomatic missions before entering the country.
Any citizen entering Burundi through Bujumbura International Airport could apply for a visa when landing, that is until 30 April 2015. Before then, authorities mandated travelers have a visa in advance.
It was declared October 2015 that a Burundi visa would be accessible again to foreign visitors upon arrival for 3 months at Bujumbura airport. Travelers must be coming from countries where Burundi doesn’t have an embassy.
Visitors now must have a passport, proof of yellow fever immunization, and an official Entry Authorization letter to obtain a tourist visa on arrival by the authorities in Burundi.
Residents of the EU can apply for a visa in the nearest Burundi diplomatic mission, while other countries refer to their home countries. If you should need more information concerning visas, you should telephone the Burundi Embassy in your country of residence or ask your travel agent.
When applying for the visa, requirements call for travelers to comply with requests from the government: the purpose of the visit, letter of invitation, hotel reservation.
Without necessarily being an important piece of information, keep your passport safe and bring color photos or any forms of identification. The rule of thumb to remember is when in doubt, don’t, but talk to your tour guide. In most occasions, you may not take pictures of locals or military spaces or officials without permission.
It is recommended to get travel insurance before arriving in the country. Get comprehensive medical insurance, adding coverage for hospitalization and medical evacuation. Talk to your insurance provider about the details of your policy before you travel.
Where is Burundi and what is the country known for?
Burundi is a modest heart-shaped country in the bosom of East Africa between Rwanda, Democratic Republic of Congo and Tanzania. If you are hoping to relax, slip away to the sandy shores, but if you’re seeking adventure, go hiking. Regardless of which you prefer, you’ll certainly have the ultimate vacation experience.
Actually, Burundi compacts its raw charm, but it has an abundance of details to offer. Burundi owns some of the most fascinating cultural legacies from a prodigious bunch of loyal locals to its spectacular landscape.
The country might not be flushed with wildlife compared to adjoining lands, but Burundi evens out with their stake of scarce fowl, parks, plains, and reservoirs.
Is Burundi a safe travel destination?
When sketching out your bucket list, Burundi is undeniably a destination to include among the world-class countries known for responsible tourism. If you choose to soak up the culture, the countryside will impress you.
Burundi lies at the core of East Africa, so when it comes to generosity, wisdom, and folklore, you won’t encounter another destination so welcoming. For this reason, we recommend you apply for a visa to enter this travel destination.
Things to do in Burundi- beyond a stopover tour
When considering a journey to Burundi realize it is one of the smallest countries you’ll ever come across. Nevertheless, the densely populated communities in Africa is home to around 10 million natives. Since the country is compact, virtually all of it is reachable by its trails.
Tourist can explore the vast selection of geographical details in Burundi including riverbeds, cliffs, and highlands from a distance. Although the leading natural attractions are undervalued, Burundi has the power to grow into a tourist hot spot. Let’s take a peek at some of the finest places to call on in Burundi.
Bururi – Natural Reserve of Bururi & Natural Reserve of Kigwena
According to the editorial, Bururi: the link between heaven and earth, “The ancient Burundians attached considerable attention to forest conservation, notably mountain parks. Several mountain forests were preserved and adopted as a place of worship, while other forests served as a necropolis for Queen Mothers.”
The natural flora is unusually distinct. The forest is home to a few of the endemic species. Most abundant are the plant species belonging to the families of the Asteraceae, Euphorbiaceae, Fabaceae, Lamiaceae, Poaceae, and Rubiaceae. There are also 205 species of birds squatting in Burundi.
Kirundo: Intore dancers in Burundi
Kirundo is where visitors discover such reservoirs as Cohoha and the Bird Lake by kayak, making it perfect for tourists seeking seclusion and tranquility. The lakes are ideal for individuals who prefer watching Africa’s birds taking in their old ways.
You’ll appreciate the fascinating types of world-famous dance sets and Intore’s ancestral rhythms of the dancers and drummers. It’s rare because the dancers set the beat for the performers and not the other way around.
Gitega: Royal Drummers- Songa Mount Hiking – Ancient houses (Architecture)
Since you and your family are taking a journey to Burundi, you can’t leave without visiting the city of Gitega. It’s a tranquil place with particular charm and exquisite appeal. Batimbo are the classical dancers who perform to the echoes of tambourines. The performers have toured Washington, Montreal, Munich, Berlin, and Tokyo just to name a few, as an instrumental part of the acclaimed international festivals.
Mugamba: Heha Mount Hiking- Traditional houses- Cattle in traditional Burundi
This country is made of plateau mainly. Mount Heha, set in the Bujumbura Rural province of Burundi, is the loftiest mountain in Burundi and the steepest point in the Burundi Highlands mountain territory. It stretches to the east of Lake Tanganyika approximately 30 km.
The straw-roofed rugo or traditional Burundian thatched houses are enveloped by a fence built with bamboo hedges. This empowers the residents with shelter against the icy weather, specifically night. These red and kaolin family residences are sprinkled across the region along with African Ankole Longhorn cattle breed.
That is the exploitation of local materials in the building. The houses found in this region are quite different from the Burundian traditional dwellings. With modernity, these houses have changed their format. This kind of dwellings resembles much the constructions met in Ethiopia around the Lake Wenchi.
The most interesting part of this dwelling zone is along the national road no.7, after the urban center of Ijenda. The tourist will find it difficult to choose between taking views either near the road or on the large vista covering all the hills that endlessly stretch out. This route also leads to the source of the Nile, Karera waterfalls and Nyakazu rift. A guided tour in Burundi usually includes a trip to this amazing region.
Bujumbura: Architectural tour – Lake Tanganyika and Fishing opportunities
The journey to Burundi will lead you to Tanganyika’s silky waters. The lake features warm, salt-free water that changes from clear stillness to overflowing waves excellent for surfing. Lake Tanganyika is the longest freshwater lake in the world and after lake Baikal, it ranks as the second deepest.
The waters host more than 350 different species of fish and are well known for aquarium fish exports and excellent angling. Sport fishing is prevalent at the lake and the fisherman returns home with catches such as the goliath tigerfish and Nile perch.
Muramvya: Kibira National Park – Tea plantations- Treaty of Kiganda
Kibira National Park sits northwest of Burundi, and the whole area is only 400 square kilometers. The forest is home to the white colobus monkeys, and it possesses over 250 species of birds covering the turtle dove. This where you will see amazing tea plantations and a visit to Teza tea factory makes your day worthwhile on all levels.
Kiganda Royal Grounds: Kiganda is where the King Mwezi accepted the invitation to sign a treaty with the Germans in 1903 which marked the beginning of the colonial era. It is not only a historical place about colonization, but also a significant cultural site.
One of the sites is a beautiful park which is a historical sanctuary containing all details about signing the Treaty between Germans and King Mwezi Gisabo who was the traditional ruler during that colonial era. The other site is the royal inauguration grounds where the Kings Mutaga Mbikije, Mwezi Gisabo, and many other ancient political kings were inaugurated. Touring this site is an incredible chance for one to enjoy the Burundian ancient royal walk on elegant, well-kept royal grounds.
Mwaro – Mwaro Falls/ Agasumo ka Mwaro
Mwaro Falls is a natural ecosystem with trails along the Kayokwe River. Offering a compelling display, the pathways lead to a sequence of steep cascades which gave the name to this site Agasumo which means “falls.”
Agasumo ka Mwaro serves as one of the significant abodes of God: “I Wabo w’Imana”. Burundi considers “Agasumo ka Mwaro” as a memorable place that served as the center of worship for the devotees of this faith that has confronted the ages.
Burundi tea company – Tora (Bururi)
As the second cash crop in Burundi, tea brings foreign currencies to the East African community. Burundi Tea Company is exceedingly important to the nation as it generates employment. They formed the first tea plantation in 1963 Burundi has five tea factories in five other territories.
Burundi Coffee company – Gitega
Burundi’s volcanic soil produces an exceptional environment for growing big body coffee. Volcanic soil is plentiful in nutrients such as nitrogen. Burundian coffee passes through a special processing technique to make its sweet citrus taste
Palm Oil Company -Rumonge
In Burundi, palm oil is mainly harvested in the villages of Rumonge and Nyanza lac in Bururi province. Farmers can yield palm oil only after waiting a minimum of six years of being planted. The vegetable oil, derived from the mesocarp, is edible vegetable oil.