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Africa > West Africa > Togo > Maritime Togo > Lomé

Lomé

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Lomé is the capital and largest city of Togo.

Understand[edit]

In 1897 Lomé became capital of the German colony Togo.

In 1975 the Lomé Convention was signed between the European Economic Community and 46 African, Caribbean and Pacific states.

Get in[edit]

Lomé-Tokoin Airport
Map of Lomé

The main border crossing from Ghana is Aflao, less then two kilometers from the city centre. Visa on arrival is available at both airport and land border from Ghana for CFA 10,000 - 15,000 depending on your nationality and is good for one week. It can be extended for a month for no extra charge. As of january 2019, you can get a 3 month visa at the border for Ghana for 705 Ghana Cedis (145 USD) if you didn’t manage to get one in your home country.

By plane[edit]

Get around[edit]

Motos are plentiful throughout the capital, and a good distance on a moto will cost you CFA 300. Taxis can be rented from around CFA 500, with CFA 2000 getting you basically anywhere in town. There are route taxis, costing normally CFA 200-400, but if you are visiting they are difficult to figure out and only ever really used by local folks.

There are rental car agencies downtown, but if you are just coming for a few days motos are your best option.

The beach road runs directly beside the ocean from Ghana to Benin. The Boulevard Circulaire (le 13 Janvier) acts as a main artery through downtown Lomé, a hemisphere that encloses the Marche and Government buildings. It starts at the beach in Kodjoviakope and wraps around to the beach in Bea.

For an english speaking driver or guide during your stay in Lomé, call Joseph at tel: +22890074020.

See[edit]

  • 1 Togo National Museum (Musee National). Housed in the Palais du Congrès (National Assembly) complex, this museum contains collections, jewellery, musical instruments, dolls, pottery, weapons and many other objects showing the arts and traditions of Togo. CFA 1500.
  • Musée International du Golfe de Guinée (African historical item museum), Boulevard du Mono. This small museum houses a quite large collection of authentic mainly West African historical items, such as maskes, wooden chairs, funeral ceremonial items such as stretchers and chests and similar. A bit off the city centre, right on the beach but worth a detour if you have the time. CFA 3000.

Do[edit]

Afternoon near the harbour of Lomé in 2013

Buy[edit]

Lomé's biggest attractions are its markets. The Grand Market with a large 3-storey hall, sells everything from red peppers, green lemons, and dried fish, to combs, travel bags, and traditional medicinal remedies. On the first floor is the Nana Benz, which is noted for its clothing. The smaller and more specialized Fetish Market, CFA 3000 entrance fee and CFA 2000 if taking photos, sells voodoo fetishes, gongons, and gris-gris. There is also a souvenir market Centre Artisinale, selling wooden carvings, clay pots, authentic fabrics, local paintings and african clothing. Most of them are made on spot and of great value. As always make sure to bargain.

Eat[edit]

Local street food is plentiful, and a large plate of rice or pate will cost you 200CFA.

Lebanese restaurants are peppered throughout Lomé, with the best being in Kodjoviakope and wrapping around with the Boulevard. Recommended are Al Mohatas by the Route de Kpalime and Al Sultan's in Kodjoviakope. Most plates run CFA 1000-2000.

There are two Chinese restaurants, one in Kodjoviakope, the other in Asigame, down the street from the Togocel main offices.

  • La Belle Époque, Rue Homma. French Restaurant on the backside of the German embassy. Menu of the day from CFA 6500. Hamburgers from CFA 1500.
  • Le Galion, Rue Camomille. French-owned hotel near the beach in Kodjoviakope which has an excellent restaurant serving omelettes, steaks, spaghetti, salads, deserts, etc. Mains run CFA 3000-5000 and they have a set three course menu for CFA 6500.
  • 1 Marox Bena Grill, 24 Rue du Lac Togo, +228 22 224138. Official name is "Bena Grill", but no one uses this. German-style Schnitzel from CFA 3300, fries start at CFA 900, and a liter of beer will cost you CFA 2200.
  • 2 Alt München, Boulevard Du Mono (Near the roundabout at the freeport.), +228 22 276321. Munich cuisine, but a little bit expensive.
  • La Bella Luna, Rue Camomilles, +228 22 21 74 48. Excellent Frenbch cuisine, nice AC inside, right on the beach next to the German embassy. A bit pricy, but the food is exquisite, if you are up for a treat. CFA 6-12000.
  • Hamburger du Togo, Avenue Pompidou, +228 22 64 78 94.

Drink[edit]

Lomé really comes alive at night, the local Loméians dressing to the nines and going out to the numerous bars and discothèques. There are many western style dance clubs downtown. Two of the best (and most expensive) are Privilege, attached to the hotel Palm Beach and 7Clash, in Dekon on the Boulevard.

For a more relaxed time, check out the beach close to the border with Ghana - seating is plentiful and, if you're lucky, the Castle Milk Stouts are pretty cold. Be sure to get off of the beach soon after nightfall, as it is easily the most dangerous part of the city.

Local drinks can be found if you dig a little deeper. The local brew of choice is Tchouk, locally brewed millet beer. A calabash full at a tchouk-stand costs CFA 100 in the city. Other drinks are Deha - palm wine, and Sodabe - Togolese bathtub hooch - grain liquor that burns going down and coming back up. Be wary, it is only for the truly initiated.

Sleep[edit]

Decent hotels (as in there is a bed, sink, and shower) are in northern Lomé and cost about CFA 15,000 - 16,000 (about $30). Hotels are a dime a dozen the closer you get to the beach, the most expensive being the 2 Fevrier and Hotel Sarakawa, on the beach road. Amenities are very accommodating, but they are incredibly expensive for Lomé - from CFA 100,000 per night.

There are a few nice hotels with fan/AC in Kodjoviakope and surrounding areas that will run you CFA 7000-15000. Check out My Diana's, and for the budget traveller, ask for Mammy's, down the road from the Angolan Embassy (CFA 3500 per room, rooms fit 2-3).

Budget[edit]

  • Auberge Le Galion. Double rooms with ensuite bathroom. Walking distance to the Aflao border crossing. Safe neighbourhood, nice relaxed atmosphere with occational live music. Popular with expats. CFA 7000-15000 (fan/AC).

Mid-range[edit]

  • 1 Hotel Bellevue (Behind German embassy), +228 22 202240. Has wireless internet access, and a lovely atmosphere with a waterfall running into a small swimming pool. The food is delicious, and it's a pleasant nice place to stay. The owners are French, and very welcoming.
  • 2 Hôtel Résidence Océane, 42-44, Rue de la Gare, +228 90 05 71 29.
  • 3 Hotel Le Benin, Avenue du Général de Gaulle, +228 22 212485. French run and the food is excellent.

Splurge[edit]

  • 4 Hotel 2 Fevrier, Place De Independence Bp 131, +228 22238600. With its 36 floors this is Togo's tallest building, and is visible from anywhere in the city. Built in 1980 and refurbished. There is a skybar and restaurant on the top floor offering great views. You can use their swimming pool even if you don’t stay at the hotel for CFA 9,000 including 2 virgin cocktails. Prices from €150.

Stay safe[edit]

The beaches and surrounding areas are known for frequent muggings, especially at night. Don’t wander around on your own at night on the beach unless there are plenty of people around.

Connect[edit]

Lomé has Internet cafés, and they are cheap. You buy time by the hour (something like a couple dollars an hour), but most of the cafés feature very slow computers and Internet connection speeds.

If you ar staying in Kodjoviakope you can use your Ghana cell card, it will work perfectly.

Note that Togo's telephone numbering plan changed in 2011; see Togo#Connect for details.

Cope[edit]

Embassies[edit]

  • France France, Rue de la Marina Quartier Administratif - BP 337. Lomé, +22822234640.
  • Germany Germany, Boulevard de la République, Lomé, +22822233232. Mondays-Fridays: 9AM to noon
  • United Kingdom British Honorary Consulate, Rue de Canaris, Be Château, Lomé, +22822222714, fax: +228274207.
  • United States United States, Boulevard Eyadema B.P. 852, Lomé, +22822615470, fax: +2282615501. Mondays-Thursdays: 7:30AM to 5PM, Fridays: 7:30AM to 12:30PM.
  • Egypt Egypt, مدينة الاتحاد الأفريقى بجوار رئاسة الوزراء , Lomé, +22822262443, fax: +2282261012.

Go next[edit]

This city travel guide to Lomé is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.