"Bujumbura - Capital of the Heart of Africa" Bujumbura by MikeAtSea

Bujumbura Travel Guide: 8 reviews and 42 photos

Bujumbura was known formerly as Usumbura, and is situated in western Burundi. Today it is the capital of the country and of Bujumbura Province located at the north-eastern end of Lake Tanganyika. Bujumbura is a trade and communications centre, with ferry service to Kigoma, Tanzania, from which there are rail links to Dar es Salaam. An international airport is located 11 km northwest of Bujumbura. The city is in a cotton-growing region, and lake fishing is also an important occupation. Plants in Bujumbura process cotton, fish, and coffee; and factories produce beer, cement, and pharmaceuticals. Bujumbura is the seat of the University of Burundi which was founded in 1960.

The explorers David Livingstone and Henry Morton Stanley visited Usumbura in 1871. The settlement subsequently became an important army camp in German East Africa. In 1923 Usumbura became the capital of the Belgian mandate to be changed after 1946 to a trust territory of Ruanda-Urundi. The city?s name was changed to Bujumbura when it became the capital of independent Burundi in 1962. Ethnic violence between Tutsi and Hutu groups in Bujumbura erupted in 1962, 1972, 1988, and 1991. After Burundian president Melchior Ndadaye was killed in a 1993 coup attempt, Hutu-Tutsi violence flared again. Thousands of Hutu fled the capital, which became a stronghold for the Tutsi-dominated army. The violence continued through 2003, and repeated clashes caused many deaths in and around Bujumbura.

Today the capital of Burundi is a bustling city and one can see at every corner the rejuvenation that takes place by its busy inhabitants. An awesome gateway to explore the Heart of Africa, Burundi, Rwanda, the DRC and Western Tanzania! After my first visit I am sure that there is a lot of potential in this area - make sure to revisit this page soon, since a few trips up to the Heart of Africa are planned in the next few weeks.

  • Last visit to Bujumbura: Sep 2008
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (6)

Comments (4)

  • pollon's Profile Photo
    Apr 8, 2010 at 12:45 AM

    I heard about this palce since when I was a kid because my mom knows some missionaries who were there before the last fights... but to see it with your eyes is something else and very pleasant!!!! :-)

  • yurxlnc's Profile Photo
    Mar 31, 2010 at 2:01 AM

    I'm off to Bujumbura for a few days, so your page has helped a little.

  • SLLiew's Profile Photo
    Aug 3, 2009 at 3:01 PM

    Burundi ....A less travelled country. SL :)

  • b1bob's Profile Photo
    Sep 21, 2008 at 9:08 PM

    It seems strange how a country that beautiful can be so tragic at the same time.

    • angiebabe's Profile Photo
      Jul 18, 2013 at 7:53 AM

      hi sorry Bob world history - Uganda, Rwanda, Zimbabwe, Serbia, Albania, Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, Russia, Poland, Germany, Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Sudan, Australia. Burma, East Timor, Northern Ireland and Ireland, England, Scotland....the list goes on and on of beautiful countries with tragic histories actually in all parts of the world probably every part of the world - not strange just human nature is also sadly tragic.


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