The Republic of Burundi, a tiny country with both soaring mountains and lovely lakeside beaches, has been plagued for many years by a gruesome civil war. Though the country’s current peace is fragile, things are looking up for Burundians. Recent years have brought advances in health care, a spike in coffee and tea exports, and other important economic developments. For the first time in years, a visit to Burundi is a viable and alluring prospect for tourists. Whether you prefer lounging on the beaches of the enormous Lake Tanganyika or bird watching in one of the country's many national parks, Burundi just might be your ideal vacation spot.


1. Chutes de la Kagera: Near Rutana, in the southeastern part of the country, you’ll find some spectacular waterfalls, which are especially breathtaking from October to January. There’s no public transportation to the area, so charter a private taxi for the day.

2. Saga Beach: This remote beach along Lake Tanganyika boasts miles of powdery, white sand and clear, turquoise waters. It’s thought to be one of the best beaches in East Africa.

3. Source du Nil: It may look unimpressive, but to Burundians this little spring, high on the slopes of Mount Kikizi, is known as the southernmost source of the Nile. (Ugandans dispute that claim, insisting that the source is on their land.) At Bujumbura hotels, ask about arranging a trip to the sight.

4. Musée Vivant: One of the few still-operating museums in Burundi, the Musée Vivant, in Bujumbura, is both a reconstructed traditional Burundian village and a small zoo stocked with local fish, birds, and snakes.

5. Rusizi National Park: Animals of all kinds, including hippos, antelope, and monkeys, roam this park near Bujumbura, but it’s probably best known as the place where Gustave, the world’s largest man-eating Nile crocodile, can often be found.

6. Bujumbura: Burundi’s capital city, lined with palm trees and Art Déco buildings, has long been a place where Burundians could go to forget their troubles, and that tradition remains strong. Sample the French- and Belgian-inspired fare at the city’s many excellent restaurants, and boogie down at the famously late nightclubs.

7. Kibira National Park: Just south of the Rwanda border, this idyllic park is home to chimpanzees, baboons, rare golden monkeys, and other animals.

8. La Pierre de Livingstone et Stanley: This large rock, about three miles south of Bujumbura, allegedly marks the spot where the New York reporter Henry Morton Stanley met the missionary and explorer David Livingstone and uttered the words “Dr. Livingstone, I presume?”

9. Les Tambourinaires de Burundi: Seek out a performance of the country’s most famous, high-energy drumming troupe, which has traveled to places as distant as New York and Berlin.

10. Rurubu National Park: Stretching from the Tanzanian border, in northeastern Burundi, to the center of the country, Burundi’s largest park is an excellent place for bird watching. More than 200 species of birds, including many endangered breeds, have been spotted here. 


12th September 2014
Burundi, East Africa’s smallest economy and hardly explored by tourists so far, hopes for a major boost in popularity translating in greater visitor numbers, now that FlyDubai has put the country on the map when launching flights twice a week via Entebbe later in September.
Hitherto connected to the world by Brussels Airlines, and to the region and beyond by Kenya Airways, Ethiopian Airlines and RwandAir, has Burundi’s main airport in Bujumbura not exactly seen a great deal of action and the arrival of the Gulf’s leading low cost carrier is bound to raise interest and drive up numbers.
In 2011 did 43.164 passengers arrive at the airport on flights from abroad with Burundians returning from their foreign travel making the bulk of those passengers. In 2012 did that number slightly reduce to 42.147 arriving passengers before rising again in 2013 to more than double that number when 89.104 arriving passengers were counted.
In addition to the airport arrivals do visitors, mainly from the region, also arrive across the land borders, from Rwanda, Tanzania and Congo, helping to fill local hotels.
Burundi’s tourism office has been attending major regional and international trade shows and tourism exhibitions in recent years and has under a new leadership started to make waves, showcasing the country through events and festivals, giving hope that the long wait to become part of a wider East African safari itinerary may at last been fulfilled. For more information about Destination Burundi click on



Burundi’s tourism team at this year’s ITB had reason to smile as they bagged the runner-up spot as second Best Exhibitor from Africa behind neighbors Rwanda. One of the five member states of the East African Community, precious little was known so far about the country as their tourism industry lived in apparent isolation and made little concerted and coordinated effort in past years to become more visible and claim their rightful share in tourism arrivals.

There is hope though that things have changed to the better with the appointment of a new team in Bujumbura, cognizant of the fact that the tourism industry has the capacity to create jobs faster than any other economic sector; attract foreign investment in hotels, resorts, and safari lodges; and can vastly improve the foreign exchange earnings for the country.

Ms. Carmen Nigibira, the new Director General of the Burundi Tourism Office, used the run-up to ITB 2014 and the presence of the Burundian team in Berlin to make a series of announcements which set a new tone and revealed a new trend for the country, when she said: “I am humbled by the new opportunity given to me and the new team at the National Tourism Office of Burundi. It is my belief that with sustained efforts towards achieving a common goal and working harmoniously as a team that we will be able to achieve more for Burundi; to attract more tourists, more investments; and change the image of the country locally, regionally, and internationally. Our commitment is to work with both the public and private sector in Burundi to first and foremost help re-brand our country as a favorable tourism and investment destination that should be the pride of all Burundians.”

Carmen then went on to elaborate on a number of key areas, spelling out her agenda vis-a-vis regional cooperation, and most notably about the just-launched regional tourist visa which now applies for visitors to Kenya, Uganda, and Rwanda. In her communication she went on to state:

“We also seek to learn and work closely with our counterparts within the East African region and our message to them is simple. Burundi is part and parcel of the East African Community. We remain committed to working together with our counterparts in the region to ensure that tourism in East Africa is continually developing.

“Come and make your unique experience in Burundi and share it, adding value to the regional economies and improving the lives of our people while at the same time giving visitors to this region a whole new experience. It is in this spirit of regional cooperation that saw Burundi take part in last year’s Magical Kenya Travel Expo in Nairobi, Kenya, and we reiterate our commitment to continue working with regional tourism bodies to better our tourism offering across the region. We want to complement the existing tourism offerings from the region and in the process, develop a product that is unique to this destination.”

Related to the single tourist visa, Burundi has taken the following position:

“We laud our Kenyan, Ugandan, and Rwandan counterparts for the recently-launched single tourism visa for East Africa. We think that this is a huge first step towards joint marketing campaigns for East Africa and will go a long way into helping market East Africa as a single tourism destination. Burundi is committed to making this happen, and we will be joining the single tourism regime as soon as we are able to meet some set guidelines and requirements. Looking ahead into 2014, we want this to be the year that Burundi fully embraces itself and walks out of the dark shadows of the past.

“We have seen an increased investment in the tourism sector in Burundi that has mainly been driven by local investors who have shown a strong sense of belief in the tourism prospects for Burundi. We do not take this for granted, and that is why we are currently embarking on a tourism inventory process that will see us identify and develop our tourism product so that it first attracts the Burundian people and the expatriate community residents in Burundi, and then going further to attract the regional and international community to Burundi. But that should not stop you from coming to Burundi; we welcome you with open arms and hope you get to share with your friends, family, and the entire world your own unique Burundian experience.”

At the same time Burundi launched a new magazine, aptly titled “Beautiful Burundi 2014” which over the space of 88 pages gives the hitherto most comprehensive information and updates about tourism attractions and opportunities in the country, again a sharp contrast from past days when Burundi kept her sunny sides hidden in almost obscurity. Anything from culture to art, from music to fashion, from adventures to natural attractions are covered, with the general economy and other country specific topics also receiving ample exposure.

A good start for sure for the new team in Bujumbura which will have their work cut out in coming months to raise the country’s profile in the region and beyond and finally put Burundi on the map so that visitors can see what they missed in the past when coming to East Africa and giving this little gem a miss. The country’s only national park of Ruvubu and the nature reserve of Rusizi near the capital of Bujumbura will be just two of the many places tourists can visit, besides exploring the shores of Lake Tanganyika or the south of the country where the Karera Falls are located inside the Nyakazu-Nkoma national monument, playing a round of golf, or shopping for the unique arts and crafts.


You’ve probably never considered Burundi as your African destination for next gateway, reasons are here provided to help you get there and have a memorable experience with your travel. In the very heart of Africa lies Burundi a country of green hills and white sandy beaches with friendly, welcoming people and a warm climate, with its different landscapes, cultures and colours, all offers to the visitor a distinct experience in each of its 17 provinces.

Beside some of the tourist attractions you may know as well as Livingstone and Stanley monument ,Source of Nile you will fall in love with this small and lovely country rich of historical Burundi has an incredibly beautiful landscape and a rich and varied flora and fauna. From the shores of Tanganyika, the deepest lake in Africa, the land rises abruptly to create dramatic rocks formations, gorges with waterfalls, and hot springs.

For animals lovers you haven’t been forgotten ,Burundi is your place too. The northwest is a haven for primates, while Rusizi delta is an oasis of tranquility and a paradise for birdwatchers. The hospitality and friendliness of Burundian people is unparalleled and the country has plenty to offer the tourist.

Its cultural heritage is distinctive and boasts not only a diversity of traditional dances and music but also the world famous drummers of Gitega . The country has long been known for its handicrafts which include painting, basket weaving and wood carving ,making it difficult for tourists to choose which souvenirs to buy.

Burundi’s capital Bujumbura is a welcoming, vibrant city growing business centre. Its well equipped hotels offering the latest technological facilities .tourists can spend the day exploring the city’s museum, monuments and craft centre, then sample the exciting nightlife, with live entertainment in clubs and lakeside bars, and restaurants offering a wealth of international cuisine.

What will you have to know with our safaris? 1. historical and cultural safaris 2. photos safaris 3. agricultural and business safari's -palm oil, tea and coffee factory - brewery/Heineken. With above safaris, you will have the feeling of discovering a hidden haven set in Africa!
by Augustin Ndikuriyo



As mentioned a few weeks ago, when the appointment of Ms. Carmen Nibigira to the position of Director General of the Burundi National Tourism Office was announced here as breaking news, Burundi is in the process of turning her attention to the active promotion of tourism and appears finally ready to claim her place among the East African tourism power houses like Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, and Rwanda.

For long one of the best kept secrets has Burundi, which owns a stretch of Lake Tanganyika and shares a major trans-boundary forest system with neighboring Rwanda – on their side of the border with the Nyungwe Forest National Park – began to turn up the heat and offer glimpses into the range of attractions tourists can expect to find when adding Burundi to their East African itinerary.

Sources from the tourism public sector of Kenya and Ugandan expressed their hope that Burundi will soon join the common East African visitor Visa launched for Uganda, Rwanda and Uganda, which makes travel across the region easier and more cost effective while individuals from the tourism private sectors showed some excitement last week at the Hotel Summit East Africa 2014 when raising the prospect of Burundi coming on line and adding a new dimension to the existing safari circuits.

A series of sporting and social events have taken place in Bujumbura and across Burundi in recent months and more are planned for the rest of the year, the difference now being that Burundi’s Tourism Office will spread the news into the region to make a wider participation possible.

Said Carmen recently in Bujumbura: “With these events, we are placing Burundi on a local and regional map. We want to change the brand of Burundi as a fun and wonderful place. We want people to bring their families, friends or colleagues out to Bujumbura as this is where the action will be in the coming weeks and months.

“Our goal is for people to have quality time in Bujumbura while at the same time getting to sample the warmth of our people and the wonderful weather and attractions that we have. We also have a delightful culinary experience with our very own mukeke from the Lake Tanganyika.”

According to Carmen, Bujumbura will in the next few weeks be hosting the annual Bujumbura Fashion Week and will have a week-long music festival that is set to attract some of the top-performing musicians from the region. The event will take place on the sandy beaches of the Lake Tanganyika. The Bujumbura Fashion Week will not only profile the very best of unique fashion trends from Burundi, but will also attract up and coming fashion designers from across the African continent in a celebration of African talent and culture.

Added Carmen by saying: “Aside from these exciting events, Bujumbura will also be hosting Festicab this year. Festicab is an annual film festival. This year’s Festicab will also highlight talents from the East African region. Already, Bujumbura is now hosting themed Jazz Nights once every month. So, the message from the business and tourism community from Burundi is crystal clear - Don’t go anywhere else, Burundi is the country to be and Buja is THE weekend city for East Africans, Africans and all citizens of the world keen on having a good time. Be it a social event, corporate event, family event, Bujumbura is the place to be. We welcome you all to this our city and country. Our Beautiful Burundi.”

With this newfound focus is Burundi tapping into a niche in East Africa and with daily connections by Kenya Airways and RwandAir, and Air Uganda and Air Tanzania now also flying to Burundi’s capital city, there is no shortage of flights any longer to hop across to Burundi and sample the new menu the tourism gurus in Bujumbura have been busy cooking up in recent months. For more information about the destination and its attractions visit


H.E. Celestin Niyongabo Ambassador of Republic of Burundi to the USA. Meeting in Washington, DC with Edward Bergman at the New York Times Travel Show and ATA Sports Seminar. The Ambassador and ATA Executive Director Edward Bergman are discussing Burundi's role as a member of the ATA family of nations. Photos by Ogo Sow

Ambassador's Email address:
Further information: and

ATA Executive Director, Edward J. Bergman's Invitation to to President of Burundi to attend ATA Presidential Forum 2008 and ATA 33nd Annual Congress in Tanzania.

Burundi President was invited in Atlanta by an O.N.G. Medshare International

Mr Africa Ogo Sow special adviser represent ATA at the Meeting on behafl of ATA Executive Director.