Top things to do

Top Choice Bar in Cotonou

Buvette

This place with no name is brilliant for sundowners. Tables spill out of nowhere as soon as darkness falls and there is often live music.
Top Choice French in Cotonou

L'Atelier

Considered by some connoisseurs to be one of the most refined restaurants in town, with excellent French and fusion cuisine, and an ambience that's as optimal for business lunches as it is for a romantic evening out…
Top Choice French in Cotonou

Chez Clarisse

This small French restaurant, in a pretty residential area next to the US embassy, is a perennial favourite that churns out excellent French and local specialties, such as fish with moyo sauce, as well as pancakes a…
Top Choice Bar in Cotonou

Le Livingstone

One of the most atmospheric spots for a drink is the terrace of this pub in Haie Vive, which serves as one of the biggest expat hangouts in town.
Top Choice Beninese in Cotonou

Maman Aimé

This is a super atmospheric Beninese maquis (rustic open-air restaurant) with little more than a few wooden benches and tables under a corrugated iron roof. Here you'll get a blob of pâte (starch staple, often made …
Market in Cotonou

Grand Marché de Dantokpa

The seemingly endless Grand Marché du Dantokpa is Cotonou's throbbing heart, bordered by the lagoon and Blvd St Michel. Everything under the sun can be purchased in its labyrinthine lanes, from fish to soap, plastic…
Gallery in Cotonou

Fondation Zinsou

Named after the family that started it, this fantastic exhibition space seeks to promote contemporary African art among Beninese people through photography, paintings and sculptures. The chic boutique sells beautifu…
Church in Cotonou

Cathedral de Notre Dame

With its vibrant red and white stripes, this Catholic cathedral is not just a place of worship but also home to a small bookshop selling titles by regional writers as well as a handful of academic texts. The stripes…
Arts & Crafts in Cotonou

Centre de Promotion de l'Artisanat

Here you'll find woodcarvings, bronzes, batiks, leather goods, jewellery and appliqué banners.
Market in Cotonou

Fetish Market

This market sells anything associated with voodoo, including varieties of tree barks and dried plants (both used in traditional medicine) and stalwarts for voodoo rites, such as dried animal parts, particularly skin…