Whatever you want to buy in Nairobi, Nairobi markets cater for almost every tradeable item. Whether you want to shop artwork, antiques, foodstuffs, clothes, furniture, mention anything; you will most likely find it here. Just ask the right questions to the right person.
Today, allow me to cover the most popular Nairobi Markets that cover the below categories.
- Artwork and Antiques ( Hand Made Goods) Nairobi Markets-Curio Shops
- Secondhand Goods popularly known as Mtumba (Mitumba) markets
- Foodstuffs Nairobi markets
Artwork, Collectables and Antiques Nairobi Markets-Curio Shops
Yes, there are there and in plenty dealing with a wide range of products that below this category.
The most popular goods are African traditional goods such as clothes, shoes, jewellery, carvings, masks, bags (Kiondo among others), drawings and collectibles.
African traditional fashion is rich here and most popular rich cultures are well represented. Don’t think you will look odd when you wear those clothes or that traditional jewellery. Actually, you will look great.
You will find a wide variety of those goods. Their making is precise and is well decorated with perfect colours. Whether it is a handbag or a pair of shoe, you will definitely shine.
Markets that fall under this category include:
The City Market
City Market is along Muindi Mbingu Street opposite Tuskys Chap Chap supermarket and Market Stalls.
It is one of the oldest markets in Kenya since the old days of Nairobi City. The building that hosts the City Market was built by the Britons during the colonization era and the building of the railway line past Nairobi.
This market has a wide variety of artwork, antiques and collectibles. Carvings here are great and represent Kenya wildlife and culture. You will find, say a giraffe carving that can fit in your trouser pocket or as big as you.
Drawings are great too and African traditional fashion is well represented.
Flowers, foodstuffs and meat (chicken, beef and fish) are here in plenty.
City Market is open all week from Monday to Sunday and traders here are open to taking any currency that has value here.
The Maasai Market
The Maasai Market is similar to City Market maybe now the location.
It keeps shifting location. Currently, it is located along Nairobi River off University way where Globe Roundabout is. It is seasonal and you will find it vibrant on Tuesdays.
Kariokor market is similar to the Maasai and City market. They have similar products.
Kariokor Market, however, is unique in a way that it is always there and has no specific day. It is the source of almost all the goods available in these there markets.
On Saturday and Sunday, all the three markets -Maasai Market, the City Market and the Kariokor market share space at the Court of Appeal Parking behind Hilton Hotel in the Nairobi Central Business District.
It is also important also to note that these three Nairobi Maasai markets have popup markets in the following areas at different weekdays.
Shifting Maasai Markets-Nairobi Maasai Markets Days
Galleria Shopping mall
Here there is a dedicated curio shop but on Monday, they open doors for other curio shops
The Galleria shopping Mall is in the leafy suburb of Karen at the junction of Langata Road and Magadi Road.
Prestige Plaza Shopping Mall and the Westgate Shopping Mall
These markets happen here on Tuesdays at the rooftop of Prestige Plaza Shopping Mall and upper Parking of Westgate Shopping Mall.
Capital Centre is along Mombasa Road and the Maasai Markets happen on Wednesday.
Garden City Mall and The Junction
The Maasai Market happens here every Thursday.
Garden City is a long Thika Super Highway opposite Homeland.
The Junction is along Ngong Road opposite Kenya Science Campus in Dagoretti Corner.
The Maasai Market takes place on the rooftop of the malls or open-air parking area.
The Village market
The Village Market is in Gigiri and the Maasai Market is open on Fridays.
Adam’s Arcade and the Parking behind Hilton Hotel
The Maasai Market takes place on Saturday in the two locations.
Adam’s Arcade is along Ngong Road past Prestige Shopping Mall.
These markets take place on Sunday.
Yaya Centre is in Kilimani along Argwings Kodhek Road.
Secondhand Goods Nairobi Markets (Mtumba Markets)
Secondhand goods are popularly known in Kenya as Mtumba. Here, I will dwell mostly on non-expensive products especially the clothes and shoes.
This is the biggest of all and the source of all most all non-expensive secondhand goods (shoes, clothes, toys, etc.)
Good are cheapest here (this applies early in the morning).
Gikomba market is highly congested and the market is active between 5-7am with fewer activities during the weekends.
Weekends, you will just find expensive items that capture the retail market waiting for the market to open officially on Monday.
Adam’s and Toi Market
Adam’s and Toi Market are close. You get to Adam’s market first from Ngong Road. This is where less tainted secondhand goods find rest and as such, they are a little expensive. Don’t hate the player, hate the game.
Toi Market is after Adam’s market and is less expensive but lower quality goods. Toi Market is near Kibera slums near Olympic Primary but very safe to do your transactions there.
Foodstuffs Nairobi Market
Ngara Market has two faces. One part of the market deals with foodstuffs (Vegetables, grains, and fruits and the other side is like Gikomba or Toi Market.
The foodstuffs side is the popular one and is very vibrant offering fresh and quality farm produce.
You may look everywhere else but here, you will find the best of farm produce.
Furthermore, Ngara market is calm and very safe.
The two sides are divided by the Thika Super Highway. The market is close to Globe Roundabout
Muthurwa Market is similar to Ngara market in that they both have two market segments.
This market is popular than Ngara market on the side of non-expensive secondhand and new goods (Clothes, clothes etc.), but cannot equate to Ngara foodstuff market.
It is at the junction of Jogoo Road and Haile Selassie Avenue. It is very congested and noisy.
And know, you know!