Welcoming people and fascinating old markets in Sudan
If you wish to live a real taste of local life, you shouldn’t miss the visit of the Sudanese local markets. They are authentic and always bustling, colourful and packed with people and any sort of goods. Walking among the many stalls where time seems to stand still is something unforgettable and fascinating. The thing that struck us most is the curiosity and kindness of people always ready to give us a smile and a handshake.
The Sudanese markets we visited
1. Khartoum – Omdurman market
Said to be the largest souk of East Africa, the antique Omdurman market covers an area of about 150,000 m2. With its thousands of small shops, it houses all types of goods, from everyday necessities to handicrafts, artefacts, souvenirs and various items.
2. Khartoum – Omdurman Camel market
Located in a dusty area at the western outskirt of Omdurman city, it is the largest camel market in Sudan. Most of the camels brought here are raised in Darfur and Kordofan regions and sold to the Egyptian market or the Gulf States. The area also features the cattle market, and along the road, you’ll see many groups of goats, donkeys and cows. Click here to read more.
3. Khartoum – Al Morada fish market
The market takes place in a small area in Omdurman on the western bank of the Nile river. It’s said to be one of the oldest in Sudan and well known for being the best place to buy fresh fish in town. The market is usually bustling early in the morning when the fishermen gather here to display the catch for sale. Click here to read more.
4. Al Dabbah market
It’s a small town on the west bank of the Nile river between Khartoum and Dongola. The main product of the local market is the tasty watermelon sold everywhere.
5. Karima market
Karima is the largest town between Atbara and Dongola. Surrounded by the desert, with its dusty and low old buildings, it’s the base to explore the remains of Napata Kingdom’s archaeological sites (Jebel Barkal, El-Kurru, Nuri, Sanam and Zuma) that are inscribed in the list of UNESCO since 2003. The bustling market takes place next to the Great Mosque of Karima, along the main street and alleys that line the railway tracks. There ‘s an area with many stalls on the right side of the railway too.
6. Shendi Market
Shendi is a big town along the busy Atbara – Khartoum highway and well known to be the birthplace of the former Sudan President Bashir. The vibrant market, with many shops and stalls selling from fruit to meat, cereals, vegetables, fresh food and everyday necessities, lies next to the Shendi Great Mosque.
Need to know about the Sudanese markets
|The best moment to visit the markets is early in the morning when they are bustling. In general, they open around 7.30 am and close around 4 pm (it depends on the town). Take in mind that most of them (excluding Khartoum) could be closed on Friday. Locals are very welcoming and ready to take a picture with you, but always ask permission before taking any shot of them. The only market where we found a very few people not so happy for taking pics was Shendi.|