Burundi in general has a tropical highland climate, with a considerable daily temperature range in many areas. Temperature also varies considerably from one region to another, chiefly as a result of differences in altitude. The central plateau enjoys pleasantly cool weather, with an average temperature of 20Â°C. The area around Lake Tanganyika is warmer, averaging 23Â°C; the highest mountain areas are cooler, averaging 16Â°C. Bujumburaâs average annual temperature is 23Â°C. Rain is irregular, falling most heavily in the north-west. Dry seasons vary in length, and there are sometimes long periods of drought. However, four seasons can be distinguished: the long dry season JuneâAugust, the short wet season SeptemberâNovember, the short dry season DecemberâJanuary, and the long wet season FebruaryâMay. Most of Burundi receives between 1,300 and 1,600 mm of rainfall a year. The Ruzizi Plain and the north-east receive between 750 and 1,000 mm.
The earliest known people to live in Burundi were the Twa, a short "pygmy" people who remain as a minority group there. The people currently known as Hutu and Tutsi moved into the region several hundred years ago, and dominated it. Like much of Africa, Burundi then went through a period of European colonial rule. At the beginning of the twentieth century, Germany and Belgium occupied the region, and Burundi and Rwanda together became a European colony known as Ruanda-Urundi.
This ended with its independence from Belgium in 1962. In the decades since then, Burundi has known civil wars between the Hutu and Tutsi populations much like the better-known genocide in Rwanda to the north, and a series of political assassinations. Peace and the reestablishment of civil democracy took place in 2005 with a cease-fire and the election of former Hutu rebel Pierre Nkurunziza as president.
Burundi covers 27,834 kmÂ² with an estimated population of almost 8.7 million. Although the country is landlocked, much of the south-western border is adjacent to Lake Tanganyika, one of the deepest lakes in the world.
Burundi is one of the ten least developed countries in the world and it has one of the lowest per capita GDP of any nation in the world. Burundi's low GDP rate is due primarily to civil wars, corruption, poor access to education, political instability and the consequences of HIV/AIDS. Cobalt and copper are among the nation's natural resources. Other resources include coffee, sugar and tea.
Burundi is not different from any other young nation and jealously keeps all the elements that constitute its very rich culture: dances, musical rhythms, and handicrafts. Its aim is to ensure the transmission of the inheritance from the forefathers and ancestors evidenced by belongings and objects they liked, the dances they composed.