Lomé, capital city of Togo
Once known as the Paris of West Africa, Lomé is one of the continent's most charming cities. Attractive and safe, the capital of Togo is loved for its craft markets, broad boulevards, vibrant nightlife and palm-fringed beaches.
There are few traditional tourist attractions in the city, but the Musée National provides a decent background to the country's culture and history. Visitors enter the small museum through the back of the Congressional Palace in the Place de l'Independance, and the collection features costumes, artifacts, musical instruments, pottery, traditional medicines, woodcarvings and other relics from Togo's history. There is also a large collection of cowrie shells and thunderstones, enormous egg-shaped rocks, that were both once used as legal tender.
The Marché des Féticheurs is the only other tourist sight in the city, and it is a must-see for every visitor. Located about four kilometers outside the city center, the market easily accessible by taxi-moto or taxi. There, visitors can shop for traditional tonics and bizarre items like serpent heads, parakeet tails, warthog teeth, porcupine skins, chameleons, thunderstones, horse hairs, donkey skulls and more. There is also a wide selection of ready-made charms from all over Africa.
Lomé is home to a number of serene beaches. One of the best is Lomé Beach, where cool ocean breezes offer respite from the heat, fishermen drag in the daily catch and vendors sell snacks, souvenirs and chilled fruity drinks from seaside stalls.
Just east of the city is Robinson-Plage beach, a favorite with both locals and visitors. Although the waves are still strong, the beach is one of the best for swimming in the region.
Aneho Beach, near the eastern border of Togo, is also worth a visit. Rocky outcroppings outline the beach and the waves are strong, but the coastline is marked with colonial-era houses and colorful flora.
Street foods are delicious and plentiful in Lomé, and it is possible to get a large plate of pate or rice for just a handful of change. There are also a number of excellent eateries throughout the capital. Lebanese restaurants are common, especially around the Boulevard, and there are also Chinese, German and French eateries peppered throughout the city.
The city really flourishes once the sun goes down. Locals dress in their best and spend the evenings at discotheques and bars, many of which offer western-style dancing in the downtown district. For a more relaxed evening, head to the beaches near the border with Ghana. The atmosphere is friendly, the beers are cold and the tropical beats do not stop until the early morning. Locals love Tchouk, a millet beer brewed right in the city. Palm wine and Togolese bathtub hooch are also popular libations.
About an hour and a half drive outside the city near the border with Ghana is the village of Kpalimé, known for its cocoa plantations and weaving industry. Visitors to the village can explore the Roman Catholic church, constructed in 1913, hike Mount Agou, Togo's highest point and enjoy distant but incredible views of Lake Volta.
Atakpamé, the country's fifth largest city, is about two hours by care from Togo. The industrial city is on the main highway and is a major commercial center for cloth and produce.
Lomé Geographical Location
Lomé is located on the southwestern tip of Togo on the Gulf of Guinea and the border of Ghana.
The approximate population of Lomé is 740,000 making it the largest city in Togo.
French is the official language of Togo. Ewe and Mina are the two major languages of the south and Kabye and Dagomba are the two major languages of the north.
Lomé Predominant Religion
- 51% Indigenous Beliefs
- 29% Christian
- 20% Muslim
Those who practice indigenous beliefs mainly practice Voodo which is believed to have originated in the Togo region.
The West African CFA Franc is the official currency of Togo.
It is consistently hot throughout the year in Lomé with a sea breeze that keeps the perceived temperature pleasant.
Lomé Main Attractions
- Grande Marche
- Togo National Museum
- Palais du Congrés
Other Attraction in Lomé
- Fetish Market
- Lome Beach
- Place de l’Independence
- Coco Beach