Your Guide to Kolwezi

Capital of Lualaba province, Kolwezi is a fast-growing mining city in Democratic Republic of Congo. It is a perfect destination to discover something out of the beaten path. This part of DRC is extremely safe, though you should be careful of corrupt officials. Always carry your passport with you, ask for authorisation before taking a picture, and keep your cool if any policeman questions you.

To Go There

Kolwezi is around five hours drive from Lubumbashi, which ahs an international airport. If you do not have the budget to hire a private car, Mullycap offers bus services which are incredibly comfortable compared for exemple to Greyhound in the US. You can expect smiling service, a comfortable waiting room and a clean AC bus which even has toilets inside. Quite the opposite from the cliche of the typical third world buses.

Where to Stay

Kampi Ya Boma is a safari-style hotel with bungalow rooms. The restaurant has a terrace on the swimming pool, with a choice of African, European, and… Nepalese cuisine. Two Nepalese chefs work there.

To Do

1) The Railway Station

The Railway Station is one of the most remarkable landmarks of the city. It was built under the Belgian colonization. You will notice multiple pine trees around it. These were cultivated to protect from the wind and control the level of dust.

Kolwezi Railway Station
Kolwezi Railway Station (back side)

2) The Hindu Temple

Finding a Hindu Temple in the heart of Africa might seems strange, until one remembers that there is now an enormous Indian community in DRC who is omnipresent in many sectors.

3) Belgian Era Architecture

The best way to identify houses from the Belgian time is that they almost all have fireplaces. One easily discovers the reason : in the winter, nights can get extremely cold. Forget the cliche that all Central Africa is a warm place. You can find those scattered all around the city.

In front of the modern Raw Bank building, you can observe a few historic administrative buildings.

The Raw Bank Office
Historic Administrative Buildings in front of the Raw Bank Office

4) Observe the Lualaba Lake

The Lualaba Lake is around 30 minute drive from the city center. To have the best view of it, go to eat or have a drink at the restaurant King and Crab.

Where to eat

Managed by Lebanese, Kream is by far the trendiest coffee shop/restaurant in the city. It would look probably more appropriate in New-York City than in Kolwezi. Decent selection of international food and excellent pastries by DRC standards.

Kream

Where to have a drink

Hotel Antoine Bel has cozzy african-style cottages adjacent to the swimming pool where one can have a drink along with some local Congolese cheese from Goma.

Hotel Antoine Bel

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