Makola Market
December 6, 2003 3:20 AM   Subscribe

Makola Market. 'West Africa's markets are legendary and none more so than the famous Makola market in Ghana's capital, Accra. Run by powerful women traders who sell in the market, Makola is a place where you can buy anything you need - manufactured and imported foods, fresh produce, tools, medicines, shoes, pots and pans etc etc. It's also a place that's good for the soul; its humour and energy will recharge your batteries. If you aren't lucky enough to be in a West African city, you can still imagine you're there. Whether you are in New York, Paris or Sao Paolo, Johannesburg, Nairobi or Cairo, click on the link and join Ofeibea Quist Arcton on a stroll through Makola Market. It will do you good. '
Via's photo pages.
posted by plep (7 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Is "Yummy!" an inappropriate response, plep? I'm quite familiar with markets in Luanda and Maputo and I must say that all my appetites were sincere. A European supermarket, however sophisticated, is but a phantom. Cheers!
posted by MiguelCardoso at 3:38 AM on December 6, 2003

Not yummy (if only to my jaded WASPish sensibilites).
I'm so confused.
posted by nthdegx at 6:34 AM on December 6, 2003

Yes, Makola is huge, colorful, exciting, wonderful...and slightly intimidating to a 20-year old white girl from Maine visiting for the first time 5 years ago (that would be me). Another market sensation in Accra to check out is the "dead white man's market," where rows and rows of stalls feature some traditional market goods, but mostly western clothing and other western items.

One of my favorite "market" experiences in Ghana was when I was squished into a bus (tro tro) packed *full* of people in 95 degree weather. The bus stopped, and sellers appeared all around the bus, hawking water, popcorn, gum, sweets, oranges, groundnuts etc. All you have to do is ride around the city in a bus and dinner can come to you!
posted by Dzolali at 8:14 AM on December 6, 2003

The sky looked a little soupy... is that what the monsoon looks like? The shito sounds like African marmite...delicious! I wonder if you can get some in NYC?
posted by DenOfSizer at 8:18 AM on December 6, 2003

Well, I've never been to West Africa, but I've been to 41 countries and seen many fascinating markets all over the world. The ones in Asia have been the most fascinating to my eye, but the ones in the South Pacific and Carribean are quite entertaining too. Oh, really, they're all fantastic. I really love going to market whenever I'm in a strange country.

Actually, the most fascinating markets are the ones in very developed countries. For instance, Singapore has a higher per-capita income than many first-world countries and a fantastic standard of living, but they still have open markets like this where you can buy almost anything from street vendors.

Marrakesh has a world-famous night market where every night at around 5pm, hundreds of mini-restaurant stalls pop up and you can eat anything imaginable cooked right in front of you. Steam wafts up into the air so that it seems the entire marketplace is shrouded in fog. (If only I had my pics online...)
posted by PigAlien at 8:33 AM on December 6, 2003

I spent a month going around to various parts of Ghana a few years ago studying local drumming styles with my undergraduate West African drum/dance ensemble. It was a blast, but often stressful. The markets were lots of fun if I was in the mood for them, but if I was having an "I need personal space" kind of day, it could be hell.

Dzolali: When/why did you go to Ghana? What parts?
posted by UKnowForKids at 11:11 AM on December 6, 2003

I went on my university's junior year abroad program. We spent most of our time in Legon and Accra, with a little bit of time near Ho, with a couple of trips to Cape Coast, Kumasi and Tamale. I wish I'd gotten out more and spent more time away from the city.
posted by Dzolali at 1:13 PM on December 7, 2003

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