Serekunda market is a traditional market where locals from the nearby communities meet to trade goods in a community-like atmosphere that offers a glimpse into Gambian culture.
Known for being one of the oldest markets in The Gambia, the Serekunda market has become a profound cultural destination that sits proudly at the top of the list of places to visit, making it a memorable stop for travellers.
The market continues to be home to an array of local produce and products such as fruits and vegetables, Gambian spices, nuts, herbs, oils, fisheries, as well as other goods such as clothing, footwear, household supplies, phones, and so much more.
The market is more than just a place to shop but also a place for the locals to meet. Women and men go to the market regularly as they can find there almost everything they need. And it is part of a daily routine for women who go to the market nearly every day to buy fresh ingredients for their daily lunch. If you are in The Gambia before any festive period, you will experience a big crowd in all the markets.
It is also a place where you can enjoy observing happening at the market. Vendors are using different strategies to sell their products and ways to display them. There is music playing in some shops behind stalls, people passing with megaphones inviting people to buy from them, vendors with wheelbarrows full of products rushing through the narrow streets, some are holding all their products in their hands or on their heads, trying to earn daily income. You can also find vendors displaying shoes, second-hand clothes or other goods on a piece of fabric on the floor.
Do not hesitate to spark conversation with the friendly locals; they are an absolute joy to deal with.
The Gambia has several street markets where you can find anything from food to clothes. If you really want to experience daily life, you should visit some. It can sometimes be an overwhelming experience, especially if you find yourself amongst a big crowd and you are looking for your last atoms of patience to find your way out of the place. We recommend taking a local guide or a Gambian friend along with you for a more carefree experience.
Apart from numerous tiny markets, there are some worth mentioning and exploring. First is the oldest market in The Gambia; Albert market in Banjul; next is the must-see Serekunda market, two of the most known fish markets at Bakau and Tanji, Craft Markets in Bakau, Senegambia, Cape Point, Fajara, Kotu and Brikama, livestock market in Brikama, Barra market, and Farafenni Lumo (country market).
Craft markets are places where you can find a good range of local crafts, including quality batik clothing, jewellery and beads, handmade leather shoes and bags.
Barging is a part of the Gambian trading culture. Vendors will not be surprised if you will start the game of barging, but you should always do it with respect and patience. If you give the person at the end a little more than they finally asked, they will feel happy. It would help if you also kept in mind that many vendors live from hand to mouth, which means that your purchase can directly impact the daily income of families.
Enjoy shopping, experience daily life and take home fabulous products from The Gambia.