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Honeymoon in Burundi

The "Eden" in the heart of Africa

The geographical position of Burundi in the heart of Africa and its wonderful landscapes are making the country a real paradise which is sometimes called "The Switzerland of Africa." The mild and temperate climate in Burundi as well as the variety of its geographical structure are making the country the best place for holidays and relaxation.

But the relaxation would be more thrilling in Burundi, a country which is very well known for its legendary hospitality, if you can visit the whole of it. Then, you may discover that "Garden of Eden," like the explorers of the last century in the very middle of the African continent.

It is necessary to know the kind of harmonious patchwork which is made by the climate as it varies from one region to another. So, the area of the peak Congo Nile, which is covered with the big Kibira forest has got a pleasant climate, mild and temperate. A delicious tropical climate is found within the region of the Central plateau and the thousands of surrounding hills, as well as the depressions in the Eastern and North-Eastern part of Burundi.

The capital Bujumbura

The foundation of Bujumbura is dated back in 1876. Initially, Bujumbura was only a port on the shore of Lake Tanganika. But it soon developed into an important business city which would finally become the Capital of Burundi. Bujumbura is on the shore of Lake Tanganika which is geographically the western border of the country.The Tanganyka lake

All year long, Lake Tanganika remains attractive for all kind of sports fans: waterskiing, sailing, fishing and many other activities which usually imply strolls along the lake. And beside the private swimming pools in some hotels or at the "Entente Sportive Restaurant'" there are many beautiful places along the lake which are convenient for swimming, especially the public beach of KAJAGA, near the Hotel "Club du Lac Tanganika."

But for the guests who are not fond of water, Bujumbura offers you: golf, tennis, volley-ball, horse riding, bowling and even a flying-club.

In addition to sports activities, Bujumbura may be considered as a select place for gastronomy.

In fact, because of the large number of restaurants ("Entente Sportive", "Monastère", Cercle Hellenique", "Cremaillère"...) Bujumbura has rather become a place of competition between the owners of restaurants. They are struggling to improve by all means the quality of their food in order to satisfy their guests.

Most of the hotels have international class restaurants.

Bujumbura has plenty to offer in the way of entertainment. The tourist can dine beside Lake Tanganyika perhaps savoring a delicious local fish called the “Sangala,” and then spend the evening in a night club, relaxing in a friendly atmosphere.

Lake Tanganika, full of fish, is the deepest in the world just after Lake Baikal in the former USSR.

Lake Tanganyika:

  • Length: 800 km
  • Width: 50km
  • Surface area: 32,000 square kilometers
  • Altitude: 771m

Beautiful Landscapes

From the top to the mountains which constitute the peak Congo Nile, you have a beautiful view of the central plains and Gitega which is the second town of Burundi. The city of Gitega ia a peaceful place with peculiar beauty and exquisite charm.

The route Bujumbura-Gitega goes via Muramvya (50 km from Bujumbura) through wonderful green landscapes. At 12 kilometers from Gitega, the road reaches Giheta, an artistic center for different works in leather, ceramic, ivory, wood-carvings.... This is the opportunity to remember a trip in the area by purchasing some art works at the centre.

Fauna and Flora

The geographical structure of Burundi and the micro-climates within the country involve a diversity of vegetation. Thus, from the savanna to the steppes, through ombrophilous mountain forest, Burundi is a delightful blooming country. The fauna is quite rich and comprises different type of animals: antelopes, hares, buffalos, baboons.

There are crocodiles and hippopotomus in Lake Tanganika where they can sometimes be seen form the shore.

Beauty, variety and scientific value of Lake Tanganika, Ruvubu and Kibira are worthy of great interest of ecologists.

The Northern Round Trip

(Bujumbura - Bugarama - Teza - Kayanza - Ngozi - Kirundo - Gitega - Bujumbura)

Attractive Locations

From Bujumbura to Bugarama, the road is going up a steep hillside before to reach the peak of Congo-Nile. If you happen to look behind at about 10 kilometers from Bujumbura you will have a very nice view of the Bujumbura Capital, with its Lake Tanganika reflecting the sky as a mirror and also the large plain of Imbo which borders the Democratic Republic of Congo.

So, after, Bugarama, there are important tea plantations and the big factory of Teza which is at about 2,666 meters of height. Coffee is grown in Kayanza and Ngozi provinces. Kirundo is the next province after Ngozi.

Kirundo is fantastic place because of its nice lakes COHOHA and RWERU and especially the lake RWIHINDA which is now called, as a surname, the "Birds Lake." In fact, there are many birds which are coming over there from different parts of the world just for a season. The trip in the North leads also to Gitega, the second city in Burundi where drummers and dancers entertain visitors. Gitega is a center of different important cultural and scientific institutes: the National Museum, and the School of Arts.

On the way back to Bujumbura, there is a break at Muranvya which is the former residence place for the kings taught in the history of Burundi.

The Southern Round Trip

(Bujumbura - Livingstone and Stanley Place - Resha Center - Bururi - Nile Source - Thermal Sources of Muhweza - Gihofi - Nyakazu - Gitega - Gihofi - Nyakazu - Gitega - Bujumbura).

Attractive Locations

The southern round trip goes from Bujumbura by the road leading to Rumonge. At a few kilometers from Bujumbura, the tourist will stop at the place where Livingston met with Stanley in 1871. This is not far from Bujumbura. At 60 kilometers further from Bujumbura, there is a lodging place whtih they call "Resha Center," the former Mauss castle. That lodging is managed by the "Source du Nil Hotel" in Bujumbura. There is a good restaurant and it is a nice place for swimming, sky diving or camping.

The trip continues to Bururi province after having crossed a big forest with monkeys. This is a good opportunity to visit the southern Nile Source at Rutovu where a symbolic pyramid had been built by the authorities.

To visit this source, discovered in 1934 by the German explorer Burckhard Waldecker, one first has to travel to the commune of Rutovu, perched at the summit of Mount Kikizi, (2,145 meters). Starting out as a tiny trickle of water, the stream will change its name successively to Kasenyi, Kasumo, Kigira, Ruvyironza, Ruvubu, Kagera, Lake Victoria, Victoria Nile, Lake Kyoga, and Lake Albert, before finally becoming the mighty Nile, traveling for 6,700 km and almost tickling the feet of Egypt’s famous pyramids on its way to meet the Mediterranean. A symbolic pyramid has been build at Rutovu.

After Rutovu, a short visit is paid to Muhweza hot springs and the "German Falls," in the Mosso area.

The way back to Bujumbura stops at Gitega and Bugarama.

Gitega and vicinity

The principal sights are the National Museum and the craftwares village. The national Museum contains a rich collection of exhibits depicting the Burundi of yesterday and today; its customs and traditions. Located at the intersection of the Ngozi-Gitega and Muyinga-Gitega roads, the craftwares village attracts many visitors who come to see the craftsmen producing their wares.

Also in Gitega is the Gitega Art School where ceramics, paintings and sculptures are produced. Not far away, at Giheta, similar items are produced by a team of artists. Drummery performances, unique of their kind, are also put on in Gitega. Here too are to be found wickerwork and beads which are much sought-after. Giheta is an artistic center for different works in leather, ceramic ivory, wood-carvings.

Kirundo and the bird Lakes

200 kilometers from Bujumbura, in the North-East of Burundi, is a region of extensive depressions dotted with many lakes and abounding in bird life. It is an area of great scenic beauty where the visitor may discover, by canoe, such lakes as Cohoha, the bird Lake, renowed for its ornithological reserve; and other lakes like Kacamirinda and Kanzigiri.

Many and varied are the tourist attractions of the North-East, among them the Intore dancers and other groups of performers.

Forests and National Parks

  • National park of Rusizi
  • Forests of Congo-Nile Ridge (Kibira)
  • Forests of Kigwena-Rumonge
  • National park of Ruvubu
  • Forest of Nyakazu and Mwishanga
  • National Park of Kibira

Source: Burundi National Office for Tourism

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