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N’Djili International Airport (Airport code – FIH) is 30km east of the city. Taxis are available at stands outside the arrivals area. Haggling with local cabbies can be daunting, but hold firm and try to negotiate a fare into town for about $30 (€23).


The recently renovated 5* Pullman Kinshasa Grand Hotel (4 Avenue Batetela, Gombe district, 815553001, grandhotelkinshasa@gh.cd) receives good reviews all round. Other choices include the Royal Hotel (3 Avenua Kitona, 815555666, hotelroyaldrc.com), or – if you are on a slightly lower budget – Guest House de Macampagne
(23 Boulevard Lumumba, 999915415).


Limoncello (20 Avenue Tombalbaye, Gombe district, 815141111) is known for good Italian food. Al’Dar (Boulevard du 30 Juin, opposite Kinmart supermarket) has Lebanese cooking and shawarmas. Try Hunga Busta (Boulevard du 30 Juin, near corner with Avenue Mpolo, 998239796) for hamburgers, fast food and sandwiches.


At Grand Marché (just off Avenue Ruakadingi in the city centre) you’ll find fresh produce.

Kinkole Fish Market (32km from Kinshasa on the airport road) has fresh seafood.


Options include Garamba National Park (district of Haut-Uélé in the Orientale Province, african-parks.org) or Salonga National Park, in the central basin of the Congo River (unesco.org)


The Botanical Garden in Kisantu, a short drive southwest of Kinshasa, is well worth a visit with its collection of 100-year-old trees from around the world as well as an arboretum of indigenous trees. Visitors are welcome to swim in the river. Don’t miss Kisantu’s large cathedral while you are there.