I was recently asked what the best thing about Brazzaville is, like what is a good “selling point” for people considering moving here. I had to actually think for a minute. Living here isn’t easy; the rainy season is destroying the already crappy roads, food is expensive, it can be hot, there are scary bugs that carry malaria and Zika, everyone speaks French, our roof leaks, the direct flight to South Africa was just canceled, and it’s expensive to fly anywhere. I think about the bad/annoying things all the time because they are, well, annoying!
So when I was asked about the best things, my mind went blank. I was forced to think, and remembered that there are some awesome things about living here. The best thing, I think, are the bakeries. One of the expat favorites is La Mandarine, which has amazing cappuccinos and nutella crepes. That’s right, freshly cooked crepes with nutella. It’s all Ben orders.
My new favorite bakery is Pain du Sucre. It’s right across the street from the Nabemba Tower, which is a giant ugly building you can’t miss:
Pain du Sucre often has fresh macarons, it has the best baguettes, and almost always has olive bread, olive oil bread, whole wheat or multigrain bread, and the best croissants. They also have ice cream but I haven’t tried it yet.
And, it’s cheap. A loaf of bread is 300 CFA, which is less than a dollar. The beautiful pain du chocolat (chocolate croissants) are 500 CFA, I think, which is a little less than a dollar. The photo above is actually from the Pain Du Sucre in Pointe Noire, but they look exactly the same.
Other good things I thought of about Brazzaville? Plethora of pools, it’s never cold, tons of awesome Lebanese food, the Congo River, cheap flights to the beach (we still haven’t been, though!), Congolese music, and Congolese people are very fun to be around.