Abidjan is West Africa’s shining star in every way. For quite a long time, the city has been a commercial and economical hub and the capital city of one of the most successful African countries. Today, despite being stripped off its capital status and awarded to Yamoussoukro, the city is still one of the brightest stars in Africa. Needless to say, Abidjan has experienced a range of problems for the past couple of years characterized by economic downturn, sporadic fighting, and increased levels of crime. With its well-developed transport infrastructure featuring smooth built highways which makes the city a hot spot for business and tourism activities. Abidjan is also the national cultural capital and the vibrant cosmopolitan always has something to keep the tourists busy and occupied.
Before you plan your trip to Abidjan, you need to be very careful as the city has been experienced a series of religious clashes between the Christians and Muslims. As such, before you pack your luggage to leave, you should check the situation of the city’s domestic security. Also, the city is not safe especially after dark and you will need to be at your hotel room before nightfall to be safe. Ivory Coast also has a history of Yellow Fever and Malaria and for this reason; you must get vaccinated and consult your doctor to get appropriate medical advice. Even after the many happenings that have taken place in the city, it still has some of the best restaurants, attraction sites, and other facilities in the nation.
Despite the city flourishing during the reign of Felix Boigny, civil wars and political instability have stolen the glory of Abidjan. As such, even the previously great buildings have been neglected and suffered from poor maintenance. Also, the number of foreigners to the city has significantly reduced over the past decade which has completely overturned its glory.
However, the well known Hotel Ivoire is still an oasis in the desert in Abidjan. Modern development has not led to any significant changes and its furniture and interior still have the sixties atmosphere. The city’s public zoo is a nice place to visit and it is amazingly beautiful and home to many interesting animals. Also, it would be worthwhile to visit Bassam, the best beach in Abidjan for some relaxation.
The National Library of Coit d’Ivoire is also worthy of a visit including the National Museum, Cocody Municipal Stadium where you can find contemporary art exhibits and Par du Banco which is a famous rainforest. Ivorian food is served in many restaurants and other sidewalk eateries that you can get a bite during your visit. However, it is advisable that before you order food, discuss the price first as you might get overcharged after eating.
Ivorian staple food consists of cassava, bread, rice, and some bread. Wealthier neighborhoods also serve European styled cuisine like Cocody, Plateau, Zone 4, and Deaux Plateaux. While Abidjan is a relatively good place to visit, the numerous security points can feel quite maddening but are harmless.