The capital of Burundi, Bujumbura known locally as Buja, lies on the north eastern
shore of Lake Tanganyika. Originally called Usumbura, it was
founded as a small colonial town, however by independence from
Belgium in 1962 it had developed into city and port and changed
its name to Bujumbura.
During this development the city absorbed
outlying villages and even recently the neighbourhoods of Gisenyi, Gihosha, Mutakura and Buterere Gikungu have become
part of the city's administration. When the last census was taken in 1990
the population was noted to be 235,440, however with the
absorption of these other areas, it is estimated that
Bujumbura's population is now probably closer to 550,000.
Although a city, Bujumbura is reported to have a small
village feel with a keen sense of disorder. Some of its
architecture dates from its colonial past, including the
'Postmaster's House' and its also home to the University of
Burundi as well as museums and the Islamic Cultural Centre,
together with a vibrant market and of course the docks on Lake
When visiting Bujumbura check out the Musee Vivant in the Quartier Asiatique and the craft market with its abundance of African art. Bujumbura is also well situated for trips to the hot springs at Rutovu, the Karera Falls, Kibira National Park and the tea plantations at Mount Teza. Bujumbura International Airport is a short distance
Check out our interactive map of Bujumbura below and zoom in on areas of interest then watch the video above or the slideshow bottom right to get a good look and feel of the city.
Bujumbura City is the capital of Burundi and has grown from a small market town in 1889 to now have a population of some 250,000 people then explore Lake Tanganyika and make a virtual landing at the city airport!