Sights & Landmarks In Kinshasa
- National Museum of Kinshasa, +243 12 61494. The museum, which opened in 1970, has a huge collection of anthropological artifacts.
- Lola ya Bonobo, +243 818 141492. The only orphaned bonobo shelter in the world. The sanctuary has existed in Les Petites Chutes de la Lukaya, just outside of Kinshasa, since 2002.
- Bombo-Lumene Game Reserve (130 km towards Kikwit).
- Don’t forget to pick up some artworks at Le marché des valeurs, affectionately known asmarché des voleurs… the first term refers to the market of values, while the second, by altering one letter, refers to the market of thieves. Prepare to bargain and avoid paying the first asking price, which is likely to be at least 60% to 75% more than the final amount, if not more. For more upscale art, visit the Academie des Beaux Arts on Avenue Pierre Mulele (formerly Avenue 24 Novembre) or Symphonie des Arts: on the Boulevard du 30 Juin, heading towards Kintambo, turn right after the elephant when you see the barrier on your right… it’s on your left hand across from the large colonial villa. A more time-consuming but far more intriguing and intimate approach to meet the country’s artists would be to visit their private studios. Even then, prices for paintings like Lema Kusa, Henri Kalama, or Nshole are costly, but well worth it given the quality of their work and worldwide reputation.
- A more comfortable and enjoyable method to purchase street art is to have a drink at Surcouf, which is located off the avenue 30 Juin, just across from the INSS building. Sit at a table and get a drink (Primus is advised), and the artists will constantly arrive and exhibit a variety of artworks. The same bargaining rules apply as they do at Marché des valeurs.
- Kinkole is a tiny town located in the city’s rural area’s eastern section. It is located on the RN1 (Boulevard Lumumba), a short distance from the airport. It features a wonderful restaurant area with a patio where you can eat all the local delicacies. Because so many people come here to unwind, there are several individuals attempting to entice you into their company. Closer to the river, there is a fishermen market where river cuisine is sold. Take caution if you want to photograph; you will almost certainly be required to pay someone first since this is considered the international boundary.
- Jardin d’Eden is a restaurant and music bar located on the banks of the Nsele river in the city’s rural eastern section. After the airport, it is farther than Kinkole. There is a very peaceful vibe at the establishment. You may dine, listen to a live band perform Congolese favorites, or even enjoy a river cruise on the Nsele. The meals and beverages are reasonably priced for the middle class.
- If you want to go out of town, the Chutes de Zongo waterfalls in Bas Congo are magnificent, but they are 130 kilometers from Kinshasa, making them unsuitable for a day excursion. You may stay near the falls at the Seli Safari Resort.