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Burundi - The Gem of East Africa  

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Reviewed by: Chuck
Location: Bujumbura
Duration: 4 days
Departure date: from 29/01/2011 to
Travelers: 2
Name of travelers: Chuck, Mary


We recently returned from a trip to the 5 countries of East Africa, ending our journey in Burundi. Uganda, Rwanda, Kenya and Tanzania were all wilth a tour group, but we planned Burundi on our own. We were only there a short while, but it was an absolutely beautiful country and we found the hotel to be a great ending to our journey - relazing with great food and pampered service.


We arrived on January 29th and were taken to our hotel that afternoon - the Hotel Club Du Lac Tanganyika. We selected this one because it was away from the main town area and on the beach of Lake Tanganyika.
It was a great place to relax by the beautiful pool and the various food venues were excellent. We had what was called the "half boat" plan, rather than the full boat. It was a 3 night plan with breakfast and dinner included. Total cost was $860. Two of the days we never left the pool, just lounged and had our lunch served to us - great pizzas!!
We took a tour our first full day there and the tour operator and driver were great. They had some ready-made tours, but we planned one specifically for us and visited the source of the Nile, a beautiful waterfall, local villages and colorful costumes and saw the stone marking the meeting of Stanley and Livingstone. A real treat was to visit our guide's school in the town where he was raised. Singing and dancing were on the agenda the day we were there.
Another real plus of the hotel was the entertainment every night. From several types of bands, to the local drumming and dancing of Burundi, we were entertained during our dinner hour.
One trip we had wanted to take we were unable to arrange. Augustin, our tour guide, was able to arrange such a tour, but we needed one more day. We wanted to see the Mountain Gorillas from the Congo side, having seen them in Uganda and Rwanda. We arrived late on a Friday and were leaving Monday afternoon, so we needed an additional day for the embassy to be open to get a visa. A shame, but it was worth just relaxing by the pool.
Our tour guide was Augustin Ndikurlyo and he can arrange any type of tour you would like: Cultural, Nature, Bird Watching, etc. He is a recommended tour operator of the hotel, also located in Bujumbura, and they are able to contact him at any time. If you are on the hotel grounds and want to see him - he will find you - at the pool, at the lake, at the restaurants.
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