Burundi - visa, border and miscellaneous info - May 2011
As more overlanders make it to Burundi, this update may be useful.
3 day visa at the border – $40
Entry point: Kayanza Haut GPS: S 2.792342, E 29.669169
Time taken: 30mins
None except visa
None needed at border.
Immigration is just before the boon on the right hand side. Give passport (no forms needed), and get a slip of paper for visa which you take to the customs window just past the boon on the same side. Pay visa fee, and collect receipt (which should be retained as it is checked on exit from the country). Carnet is done at the same customs window. Return to first counter and collect passport stamp.
Exit point: Kayanza Haut
Time taken: 15mins
USD 1 = BIF 1220 in May 2011. Hotels paid in USD. Cash from VISA cards available at the Dimitri ATM at GPS: S 3.385013, E 29.368382 for a charge of BIF5000. It may also be possible at Interbank Burundi opposite the Aroma Cafe (GPS below). A local told us that these were the only two ATMs in town where foreign cards are accepted.
Diesel: BIF2050/litre, Petrol: BIF2080/litre in Bujumbura (around $1.70/litre)
We did not find any in Bujumbura.
Toyata Burundi at GPS:S 3.376907, E 29.348697. Note that this is incorrectly marked in T4A (version 10.05)
None of our UK or Rwandan SIMs in roaming mode worked. Local SIMs (Leo widely used) available from U-com on the main roundabout at GPS: S 3.381502, E 29.361906. Free wi-fi available at hotels & cafe/bars such as Aroma, Bora Bora, and Havana.
Aroma cafe: on Google Maps, but not T4A at GPS: S 3.380347, E 29.363256 has free wi-fi
Hotel Emeraude at GPS: S 3.379714, E 29.372989 is cheaper than Botanika with good rooms, and close to the action on Boulevard de L’Uprona (Havana, Toxic, Aroma etc).
Great info, I head there tomorrow (from Rwanda) - thanks for posting.
A good guide to Bujumbura is
Morgan In Africa: Things To Do In Bujumbura, Burundi
and was better than the guide books we looked at.
Great info, thanks.
I am in SA now and hoping to take the Lake Tanganyika ferry north, from Zam to Burundi. I have been getting mixed messages here about the stability/safety of traveling in Burundi. Sounds like your experience has been all good?
Did you happen to hear of any information regarding the ferry while you were in the area?
When I was there in June, both routes into Bujumbura from the Rwandan borders at Kayanza Haut and Gasenyi were fine, as we the route along Lake Tanganyika to Kigoma in Tanzania. The info I gathered on the ground in Bujumbura would suggest that, in the current situation, foreigners are not targets. Buj itself was fine with the usual big city precautions.
Unfortunately, I have no recent info on the ferry.
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