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Kinshasa Nightlife, Zaire

In Kinshasa, there are two neighborhoods that are popular for their hopping nightlife, Gombe and Matonge.  Gombe tends to have a more upscale and trendier atmosphere; however, it also closes a little earlier than Matonge.

Travelers, particularly of the female gender, should be aware that much of the Kinshasa nightlife is more illicit than you would expect.  There are prostitutes found frequently at the clubs, which includes the smaller ones and the larger ones alike.

One of Kinshasa’s most popular clubs, Ca Va Nana, is known for having problems with prostitutes, but it is also known as one of the safer sections of Kinshasa.  This club has a nice atmosphere, but the drinks cost a little more than you would anticipate.  It is also located very close to the Memling Hotel, at only about 200 meters away.

Hotels are a very good place to go in order to enjoy Kinshasa’s nightlife.  Most of them have bars, giving travelers a safer choice to experience Kinshasa at night other than going to a nightclub.

Matonge is one of the neighborhoods in Kinshasa that is filled with nightclubs, dancing bars, and restaurants.  Many of the residents head to this section of the city at night for fun, where they enjoy dancing to Congolese rhythms.  One of Matonge's bars is Ibiza Bar, which is a place for jazz and live music, and around midnight the dancing begins.  This is a small bar with a smoky atmosphere, but is a very proper old-fashioned bar.

Chez Ntemba is also a great place where you can enjoy some hopping nightlife after midnight, as well as the Standings, which is a small bar and disco in western-style.  Standings is open on Tuesday and Wednesday from 9:30pm until sometime in the morning.  VIP Bar is another western-style disco bar, but it is bigger than Standings and has mirrors and a disco ball on its ceiling.

If nightclubs and bars are not the scene that you are looking for, that is no problem, because there are plenty of restaurants in Kinshasa where you can enjoy your evening out.  One of these is the Chez Nicolas Italian food restaurant.  This restaurant has been serving savory Italian food for over 25 years now, and it is not too heavy on a traveler's budget.

Another great restaurant that is worth trying is Le Mandarin, which serves Chinese food.  This is a large restaurant that has a big terrace, and it is impossible to miss it since it is located right in front of Kinshasa’s Central station.

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