Guinea is not big on department stores, but the country has a very colorful market scene where you will find a lot of interesting trinkets to purchase. Aside from fresh produce, these local markets sell all kinds of products such as colorful Guinean clothing, masks, djembes or drums, wooden statues, and handmade bags. These items can also be found for sale on the roadside or outside major hotels. Conakry’s shopping mecca is the bustling Madina Market, where you can find almost anything from food to souvenirs and even electronics at bargain prices.
Bartering is a common practice and encouraged, especially if you feel like you are being charged more than you should be paying. Be vigilant when shopping in crowded and hectic markets, as pickpockets are often relentless. Hiring a local boy to help you carry your purchases around or to take them back to where you are staying is advisable.
There are many other places to buy local goods, especially traditional clothing. Kindia is one of the most popular producers of Guinean cloth that are hand-woven and dyed. You will also find carved goods and many other interesting crafts. Gueckedou also has a large market catering to travelers where local artisans produce quality leather rugs, skins, jewelry, as well as musical records, which would make for a unique souviner.