Bissau is a country full of people who seriously know how to have after dark fun. In the capital you can find a bar on every corner but as far as nightclubs go you really only have two options.
Balafon is a small club that is situated on the bottom floor of the Kalliste Hotel. It is open every night of the week but it really fires up from Thursday through till Sunday. On the weekends it is very difficult to find a place to sit but the music is good and the staff are efficient. Fernando, the owner of Kalliste is quite often there to oversee things and he speaks Portuguese, French and English, so if you get the chance to have a chat to him he is a fountain of knowledge.
For a mini beer you can be guaranteed it will be served ice cold and it will cost you 1000 CFA. If you feel like playing a little harder then a bottle of spirits will set you back 30 000 CFA and you will get some mixers with that. It will also help you to get a table as most of the tables are reserved for people drinking from a bottle.
When you want to really go large then Discoteca Tabanka is the big hitter in town and most certainly this is where the night can get crazy. The music is loud and the dance floor is usually packed. People don’t start coming in there till after midnight but once you reach the 1 o’clock mark then the place really gets jumping.
Beers are the same price as Balafon but you can expect to pay a little more for a bottle. You can write your name on the bottle and come back for more later in the week if you don’t manage to finish it on your first time round. You will also struggle to get a table on the weekends, but if you get there early then the helpful staff will probably try and find a place for you to set up your base for the night.
Of course, you can always skip the clubs for a low-key bar, of which there are plenty, or even a caipirinha stand on the street. Rest assured, it’s not difficult to find a place to grab a beverage after the sun goes down.