Navigating Burundi: What to Know Before You Go

Burundi, officially known as the Republic of Burundi, is a small landlocked country located in the Great Lakes region of East Africa. While it may not be as popular as its neighboring countries, Burundi offers an impressive array of attractions and a unique cultural experience for travelers. If you are planning a trip to this beautiful nation, here are a few things you need to know before you go:

Visa Requirements

Before traveling to Burundi, it is essential to check the visa requirements for your nationality. Many nationalities can obtain a visa on arrival, while others may need to apply in advance. It’s always best to confirm the latest visa regulations with the Burundian embassy or consulate in your home country.

Navigating Burundi: What to Know Before You Go

Safety and Security

While Burundi is generally considered safe for tourists, it is important to stay informed about the current security situation before you travel. Some areas, particularly near the borders, may have travel advisories due to political unrest or tensions. Stay updated with your country’s travel advisory and consider registering with the local embassy or consulate upon arrival.

Navigating Burundi: What to Know Before You Go

Currency and Banking

The official currency in Burundi is the Burundian franc (BIF). Credit cards are not widely accepted, so it’s advisable to carry sufficient cash with you, preferably in smaller denominations. Limited international ATMs are available in major cities like Bujumbura, the capital, but it’s always better to have cash on hand to avoid any inconvenience.

Navigating Burundi: What to Know Before You Go

Language and Communication

Kirundi and French are the official languages of Burundi. While French is widely spoken, especially in urban areas and by government officials, English is not commonly understood. It’s beneficial to learn a few basic phrases in French or hire a local guide for ease of communication during your trip.

Navigating Burundi: What to Know Before You Go


Getting around in Burundi can be quite challenging, as the country lacks an extensive public transportation system. Taxis and motorcycle taxis, locally known as “moto-taxi,” are the most common forms of transportation. Negotiate fares upfront, especially for longer journeys, as meters are rarely used. It’s important to note that road conditions can be poor outside major cities and caution should be exercised while traveling.

Navigating Burundi: What to Know Before You Go

Cultural Etiquette

Burundians are known for their warm hospitality and respect for traditions. It is important to be sensitive to local customs and traditions. Dress modestly, particularly when visiting religious sites or more conservative areas. Burundians appreciate greetings and polite gestures, so taking the time to learn a few customary phrases such as “Murakoze” (thank you) can go a long way in showing respect.

Navigating Burundi: What to Know Before You Go

Attractions and Activities

Despite its small size, Burundi boasts natural beauty and cultural heritage that is worth exploring. Lake Tanganyika, one of the largest freshwater lakes in the world, offers opportunities for swimming, fishing, and boat trips. The Kibira National Park is another highlight, home to lush forests and diverse wildlife. Don’t miss the chance to visit traditional drum makers, explore local markets, and immerse yourself in Burundi’s vibrant music and dance scene.

Navigating Burundi: What to Know Before You Go

Use eSIM to access the internet anytime, anywhere

Using an eSIM for internet access when traveling offers a multitude of benefits, including convenience, cost savings, global connectivity, and flexibility. Its ease of activation, security features, and compatibility with modern devices make it a compelling choice for travelers seeking a seamless and efficient way to stay connected while exploring the world.

Read more: 10 Reasons Why you should use an eSIM when Traveling

If you are planning a trip to Burundi, buy a Burundi eSIM now.

Traveling to Burundi can be a rewarding and enriching experience. By being prepared and staying informed, you can make the most of your journey, discovering the natural wonders and cultural treasures that this often-overlooked gem of East Africa has to offer.

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