Central African Republic Food and Drink

Western food is only available in the capital, Bangui. Most of the top-class hotels have good restaurants. The standard of these restaurants is high, but they do tend to be expensive. Otherwise travellers must call at local villages and barter for provisions. Local food is basic. Many dishes contain gombo (okra), although other popular ingredients include rice, bananas and cassava.

Bars are numerous in Bangui with both table and counter service. Drinking and smoking are not encouraged in Muslim society; in Muslim areas, drinking is best done in private. Elsewhere, there are numerous beer halls offering beverages of a high standard.


Muamba de Galinha (chicken with palm oil and okra).
• Chicken and cumin stew.
• Palm butter soup.
• Shrimps eaten with boiled yams or sweet potatoes.
• Spinach stew, which might also include tomatoes, peppers, chillies, onions and peanut butter.


10% is appropriate in expensive hotels and restaurants. Bargaining is normal.

Regional drinks

Two of the most popular brews are ginger beer, palm wine and banana wine.

Drinking age