Uganda, frequently referred to as the “Pearl of Africa,” is renowned for its thriving economy, beautiful scenery, and deep-rooted culture. A retail revolution has resulted from this expansion, with malls springing up in cities all throughout the country. These malls aren’t simply places to buy; they’re also thriving social hubs where people meet to dine, enjoy entertainment, and discover the newest trends in fashion, electronics, and other areas.
In Uganda, shopping has taken on a new dimension in 2023, with a burgeoning retail landscape that boasts an array of modern shopping malls. These malls have become vibrant hubs for both locals and tourists, offering not only a diverse shopping experience but also a glimpse into the country’s evolving urban lifestyle.
The Top 10 shopping malls in Uganda 2023, What to buy in Ugandan malls, Shopping trends in Kampala 2023, Local artisans and crafts in Ugandan malls and whole lot more will be provided in this article.
Top 10 shopping malls in Uganda 2023
There are many shopping malls in Uganda that offer a variety of products and services. Some of the best shopping malls in Uganda are:
1. Acacia Mall:
A popular shopping destination in Kololo, boasting over 100 shops, restaurants, cinemas, and a gym.
2. Victoria Mall Entebbe:
Catering to Entebbe residents and visitors with a supermarket, cinema, food court, and shops.
3. Garden City Kampala:
An older mall that has undergone renovations, featuring a supermarket, cinema, casino, and more.
4. The Oasis Mall:
Adjacent to Garden City Kampala, offering a bookstore, coffee shop, salon, and fashion outlets.
5. Forest Mall Lugogo:
Located near Lugogo Cricket Oval, offering a supermarket, cinema, food court, and various shops.
6. Lugogo Mall:
Another mall near Lugogo Cricket Oval, featuring a hypermarket, sports shop, and other services.
7. Aponye City Mall:
In Kampala’s central business district, with a supermarket, bakery, pharmacy, and various shops.
8. Ham Shopping Mall:
Located near Nakivubo Stadium, it offers over 1,000 shops with affordable goods, popular for bargain hunting.
9. Tank Hill Park:
Situated on Tank Hill Road in Muyenga, this mall includes a supermarket, restaurant, bar, and shops for arts, crafts, jewelry, clothing, and souvenirs.
10. Kingdom Kampala:
A modern mall with retail space, a five-star hotel, offices, and more, offering stunning city views.
What to buy in Ugandan malls
In Ugandan malls, you can find a wide variety of products and goods to purchase. Here are some common items and categories you can expect to find:
- Clothing and Fashion: Ugandan malls offer a range of fashion outlets where you can buy clothing, shoes, accessories, and even traditional Ugandan attire.
- Electronics: You can find electronic stores selling smartphones, laptops, home appliances, and gadgets.
- Groceries: Many malls have supermarkets where you can buy groceries, fresh produce, and household items.
- Dining and Food: Enjoy diverse cuisine in mall restaurants, fast-food outlets, or grab snacks and treats from food courts.
- Entertainment: Look for stores selling books, music, movies, and video games. Some malls also have cinemas for moviegoers.
- Home and Decor: Find furniture stores, home decor shops, and stores for kitchenware and appliances.
- Beauty and Cosmetics: Purchase skincare products, makeup, perfumes, and haircare items in beauty stores.
- Jewelry and Accessories: Look for jewelry shops offering a variety of accessories, from traditional to contemporary.
- Toys and Games: If you have children, explore toy stores with a range of toys and games.
- Art and Crafts: Some malls may have shops selling local art, crafts, and souvenirs, which can make for unique gifts or mementos.
- Sporting Goods: Find sporting equipment, athletic wear, and gear for various sports and activities.
- Pharmacies: Purchase over-the-counter medicines, healthcare products, and personal hygiene items.
- Automotive: Some malls may have auto parts stores and car accessories shops.
- Specialty Stores: Depending on the mall, you might also discover specialty stores, such as those focused on African fabrics, traditional medicine, or unique local products.
The availability of these items can vary from mall to mall, so it’s a good idea to explore different malls in Uganda to find the specific products you’re looking for.
Shopping trends in Kampala 2023
Shopping trends in Kampala 2023 are influenced by various factors, such as the popularity of local fabrics, the growth of e-commerce, and the changing consumer preferences. Here are some of the main trends that you might want to know:
- Kampala Styles: Local designers are using tie and dye techniques to create fashionable, diverse fabric patterns for both casual and formal wear, reflecting Ugandan cultural creativity.
- Online Shopping: With increased smartphone and internet access, online shopping is on the rise, offering convenience, variety, and competitive prices. Leading online retailers include Jumia, Kilimall, OLX, and Kaymu
- Social Commerce: Shopping directly on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp is growing by 35% in 2023, allowing real-time interaction and recommendations.
Local artisans and crafts in Ugandan malls
If you are interested in local artisans and crafts in Ugandan malls, you might want to check out some of these places:
1. Kampala Fair:
This is a lovely shop where you can find adorable staff who will guide you among all those beautiful fabrics and colours and the clothes and other items are high quality. You can also visit their branch in Entebbe.
2. Maridadi Crafts:
This is a place where you can find unique and handmade crafts such as baskets, bags, jewelry, home decor, and more. They also offer workshops and classes for anyone who wants to learn how to make their own crafts.
3. Good Glass:
This is a shop that sells glass products made from recycled bottles. You can find items such as glasses, vases, bowls, lamps, and more. They also have a workshop where you can see how they make the glass products and even try it yourself.
4. Entebbe Crafts Village:
This is a good tourist shop that has a variety of crafts and art from Uganda and other African countries. You can find items such as masks, statues, paintings, pottery, jewelry, and more. The people are friendly and the prices are reasonable.
5. Uganda Crafts 2000 Limited:
This is a cooperative society that supports disadvantaged artisans such as women, people with disabilities, and people living with HIV/AIDS. They produce and sell high quality crafts such as baskets, mats, paper beads, jewelry, and more. They also have a fair trade certification and a social mission.
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Shopping and entertainment in Uganda
Shopping and entertainment in Uganda offer a vibrant and diverse experience, catering to a wide range of tastes and preferences. Here’s an overview of what you can expect when it comes to shopping and entertainment in Uganda:
Modern Malls: Uganda boasts modern shopping malls in major cities like Kampala and Entebbe. These malls house international and local brands, offering clothing, electronics, home goods, and more.
- Local Markets: Traditional markets and street vendors are prevalent, offering unique items like African crafts, clothing, jewelry, and fresh produce. Popular markets include Owino Market in Kampala and the Craft Markets in Entebbe.
- Boutiques: Upscale boutiques in urban areas provide high-quality fashion, accessories, and home decor items.
- Supermarkets: Large supermarket chains like Shoprite, Nakumatt, and Game offer a wide range of groceries and household items.
- Cinemas: Modern cinemas in malls screen the latest international and local films, providing a comfortable movie-watching experience.
- Nightlife: Major cities like Kampala have a vibrant nightlife scene with bars, clubs, and live music venues. Popular areas include Kabalagala, Kololo, and Bugolobi.
- Cultural Performances: Experience traditional Ugandan music, dance, and drama performances at cultural centers and events. Ndere Cultural Centre in Kampala is a notable venue for this.
- Restaurants and Dining: Enjoy a diverse culinary scene with a mix of local and international cuisines. Try local dishes like Rolex or visit upscale restaurants offering a variety of flavors.
- Wildlife Safaris: For nature and wildlife enthusiasts, Uganda offers safaris to national parks such as Bwindi Impenetrable Forest and Queen Elizabeth National Park, where you can see gorillas, lions, and other wildlife.
- Outdoor Activities: Explore Uganda’s natural beauty with activities like hiking, birdwatching, and water sports on Lake Victoria.
- Music and Festivals: Uganda hosts music festivals and events celebrating various music genres, including the Nyege Nyege Festival for electronic music enthusiasts.
- Art Galleries: Discover Ugandan and African art at galleries in major cities, showcasing both traditional and contemporary works.
- Sports: Catch local and international sports events, especially football (soccer), which is widely popular in Uganda.
- Golf: Golf enthusiasts can enjoy well-maintained golf courses, such as the Entebbe Golf Club and the Uganda Golf Club in Kampala.
There is something for everyone in Uganda’s shopping and entertainment scene, whether you want to find one-of-a-kind souvenirs, have a fun night out, or explore the country’s rich culture and natural beauty.
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