Ugandan markets are an all-year-round source of fresh farm produce, old things, new things and free entertainment. If you’re looking to experience an authentic African market feel, here’s where you should go.
Kikuubo Shopping Zone
Kikuubo Shopping Zone in the heart of downtown Kampala is the most thriving market of them all. Here, you will find everything from cosmetics to hair products, weaves and wigs, food stuffs, home equipment, scholastic material and clothing. It also has branches of major banks, in case you run out of cash. It’s full of buzz, energy and activity. Like most African markets, it’s chaotic. Where to find particular items isn’t really streamlined – you just look around, and what an experience it is! Kikuubo Shopping Zone will put your haggling prowess to the test, as the prices aren’t fixed.
Owino Market is famous for its secondhand clothing, ranging from winter jackets and winter boots – even though the only place you will find snow in the country is on the Rwenzori Mountains – to ballgowns, swimsuits and wedding gowns – you name it, it will be there. You will find herbs, vegetables, fruits, a wide range of spices, home appliances, shoes, bags and so much more. As in Kikuubo Shopping Zone, Owino Market will test your bargaining skills. Brace yourself for some tug of war as vendors tug at your limbs for your attention – they mean well! It’s quite a maze of a market and unless you’re dead set on what you’re going to buy, vendors just might succeed in coercing you into buying something you didn’t need!
Nakasero Market is well known for its fresh farm produce. Located just at the edge of the central business district, here you will find everything from eggs to chicken, halal meats, fish, all kinds of vegetables, tubers and fruits. This is where most restaurants in Kampala city buy their ingredients. The prices are lower at dawn, when the produce is delivered fresh from the farms, and they increase as the day goes on. Get them while they’re fresh!
Wandegeya Market is located in the school district and has a youthful vibe. This market is home to boutiques, salons, offices and vendors of fresh produce. It’s also home to the legendary ‘rolex’ and ‘TV chicken’ – Kampala’s popular street foods, which are respectively an omelette with raw tomatoes and grilled chicken mixed together with fries, and an assortment of vegetables such as cabbages, tomatoes, carrots and green pepper.