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Maasai Market: Yaya Center vs Downtown CBD?

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Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
1,082 posts
44 reviews
Maasai Market: Yaya Center vs Downtown CBD?

if i understood correctly, i think the Maasai Market happens in 2 locations above on a Sunday.

is there a pro/con of the market at one place vs the other? i only have time to go to one.

i heard the Yaya Center one is much smaller - perhaps better organized - but more expensive prices?

Newcastle upon...
Level Contributor
1,423 posts
41 reviews
1. Re: Maasai Market: Yaya Center vs Downtown CBD?

They both sell all the same goods and as you stated the Yaya centre one is smaller. As for prices it is up to you to barter. Won't matter which you go to, not much difference.

Nairobi, Kenya
Level Contributor
1,023 posts
192 reviews
2. Re: Maasai Market: Yaya Center vs Downtown CBD?

I live in Nairobi for 10 months of the year and try to avoid going to the CBD as much as possible. The air pollution, traffic, and crowds are all terrible. You'll find shopping at Ya Ya Center to be much more pleasant.

Destination Expert
for Malindi, Ukunda, Kenya
Level Contributor
4,642 posts
9 reviews
3. Re: Maasai Market: Yaya Center vs Downtown CBD?

The so-called Maasai markets happen all over the city, in malls and car parks, several times a week - pretty much daily. There are occasional variations, but on most days you'll find one operating somewhere. My understanding is that many of the stallholders (who are certainly not all Maasai, though plenty of Maasai jewellery is always on offer) move around with the location. Prices aren't fixed.

Richard Trillo

Level Contributor
14,249 posts
4. Re: Maasai Market: Yaya Center vs Downtown CBD?

Markets as such are similar many countries, whether in France, Italy, Turkey. Even the street fairs in NYC... often same vendors, just different neighborhood. You pick the one closest to where you live and get ready to bargain. Good luck!

Nairobi, Kenya
Destination Expert
for Nairobi, Kenya
Level Contributor
3,511 posts
25 reviews
5. Re: Maasai Market: Yaya Center vs Downtown CBD?

Town has a wider choice + more vendors.

Auckland Region...
14 posts
6. Re: Maasai Market: Yaya Center vs Downtown CBD?

We went to the city market on a Sunday in August. What an experience! We said afterwards, that if we were to go back we would offer the first guy that comes up to us US$10 or something to keep all the others away. From the time we arrived to climbing in the van at the end, we had people - men - approaching us, following us around, offering us 'gifts', talking, asking questions, saying how they loved New Zealand. Not a peaceful stroll around looking at goodies. Anyway, grand experience to talk about afterwards. Oh, also we were told when you buy, you should buy from the person who is actually sitting on the ground next to the crafts. Have fun.

Nairobi, Kenya
Level Contributor
193 posts
1 review
7. Re: Maasai Market: Yaya Center vs Downtown CBD?

If you are looking for more options and a much bigger experience which is cost effective, the Masai market is the one for you. Also, negotiating is fun and getting to interact more with the locals.

Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
7 posts
35 reviews
8. Re: Maasai Market: Yaya Center vs Downtown CBD?

Just been to the Ya Ya one and it is small and the vendosr are clearly used to ripping off tourists with stupid prices. I am also not sure about how authentic some of the goods are! would NOT recommend it all. Just been in Addis Ababa and although they were bartering and starting high - this place is just clearly used to ripping people off.

Savannah, Georgia
Level Contributor
207 posts
29 reviews
9. Re: Maasai Market: Yaya Center vs Downtown CBD?

Which is better: purchase Maasai goods in Nairobi, or wait until the Mara?

Nyeri, Kenya
Level Contributor
1,681 posts
17 reviews
10. Re: Maasai Market: Yaya Center vs Downtown CBD?

TrishO1970; the expectation of these markets is that you bargain down the rip off prices.............it is expected. If the trader thinks that you are ready to walk away, you will get the bargain that you were looking for.

As for the items for sale being authenic, i am not sure what you mean. The items for sale are certainly almost all made locally. You may get some cultural influences from other african countries creeping in.

i prefer the Masai Market at the Village Market Mall, whic is held on Fridays.