Whether you are a traveler or expat, knowing where to shop for souvenirs, gifts, local food, or the emergency item is important. This guide will let you know where to go to satisfy all your shopping needs in the Dar es Salaam area of Tanzania. Much to see and even more to buy!
Mwenge Woodcarvers Market: This open air market is more of a cultural experience than anything. It’s located on Bagamoyo Road at the Mwenge bus station, which is a terminal for daladalas coming in and out of the city. There are loads of stands selling clothing, vegetables, and paintings. The most famous items are wooden carvings, figurines and furniture.
Kariakoo Market: This expansive market place is the most famous one in the city. It’s located near the city center and takes over several blocks of condensed shops, street side stands, warehouses, hawkers, and any kind of sales venue you can imagine. It’s open seven days a week, and each day is bustling with locals and foreigners alike. You can buy pots and pans, radios, gardening supplies, tools, soccer balls, suitcases – basically anything you could possibly want, and all prices are negotiable. This is also a great place to buy kitenges and khangas. It’s more or less broken up in to navigable sections, but do mindful of getting lost in the labyrinth of shops. I wouldn’t bring a purse to the market, and keep your wallet close.
Slipway: The shops at Slipway, located on the Masaki peninsula right along the ocean, are definitely geared to the more wealthy clientele. There are some fixed price high end boutiques filled with great clothes and accessories, a bookstore, some novelty souvenir shops, and great waterfront restaurants. If these stores are too expensive, there is another small open air market just a two minute walk down the coast. You can walk through the stalls looking for wooden dishes, beaded flip flips, Tanzania soccer jerseys, and more. Don’t forget to bargain!
Mlimani City Mall: This shopping center is farther away from the city center, but offers a collection of stores that carry new products. You can find cell phone stores, clothing stores, restaurants and a movie theater. Unlike the markets, you won’t be able to negotiate prices. A daladala can take you here, but be mindful of going when there isn’t much traffic, like in the middle of the day.
Where do you enjoy shopping in Dar es Salaam?