Frequently Asked Questions

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What is there to buy in Africa?

Cape Town is a shopper's paradise with African arts and crafts being at the top of most shoppers' lists. Kloof, Bree, Loop and Long streets in the City Bowl, De Waterkant in Greenpoint and the Woodstock and Claremont suburbs are home to one-of-a-kind designer clothing and furniture shops and galleries. The Victoria & Alfred Waterfront is a favorite shopping destination which has over 100 retail establishments selling a wide range of goods. For the more intrepid shopper, the city has many street markets where one can bargain for and purchase goods from all over the African continent.

Cape Town also has a thriving art scene with many art galleries lining the streets of the downtown area. Franschhoek and Stellenbosch in the Cape Winelands are home to one-of-a-kind shops and galleries. Lastly, Cape Town's weekend markets in Woodstock, Stellenbosch, Hout Bay and Kirstenbosch, to name a few, are an excellent way to purchase artisan goods from local Capetonians.

Sandton City, Melrose and Rosebank in Johannesburg boast world-class shopping malls (comparable to those in Hong Kong, Singapore and Tokyo) with a wide selection of clothing, furniture, home accessories, books and electronics.

Nairobi in Kenya and increasingly Arusha in Tanzania are home to a host of one-of-a-kind boutiques, furniture shops and art galleries.

At airports and in larger towns such as Livingstone, Victoria Falls, Arusha and along the Great Rift Valley in Kenya you will find African curio markets and roadside stalls where you can buy all sorts of carvings, masks, drums, jewelry etc. In general souvenirs and curios are inexpensive and Asian-style price haggling is recommended.

Most reputable shops in larger cities will be able to arrange shipping of your purchase to Asia at extra cost.

Shopping while on safari is limited. Often lodges and camps have small curio shops where you can buy postcards, local goods such as carvings or books, clothing (hats, shirts), and film. However, some are increasingly stocking some wonderful local handicrafts made by local women's groups.