Shopping in Kiribati

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Let's be honest! Studying abroad comes in handy with a good shopping culture! Everyone wants to get time to explore markets and pick a few goodies to add to the cart list! Shopaholics welcome to Kiribati, the land of beauty and charming crafts!

This is where your shopping impulse is put to the test. With numerous shopping malls, stalls, shops, and supermarkets Kiribati will certainly take thy breath away!

Shopping is typically limited to handicrafts in South Tarawa and London, while essentials can be bought at fruit and vegetable markets. The natives churn out a range of art such as basketry and necklaces, while shark swords make excellent Kiribati souvenirs.

You can bargain, but keep in mind that they do not earn much. Most shops are open daily. There’s a supermarket on Bairiki islet in South Tarawa where most people buy all their regular groceries.

It has both fresh and frozen foods as well as dairy and fruit and is open each day. Fern is another common shop in Tarawa, which is good for pies and wine.

There are numerous handicraft shops on South Tarawa where everything from basic baskets and fans made from pandanus leaves are sold, to coconut shells, seashell necklaces, model canoes, and traditional huts.

The country shark-tooth sword which has sharks teeth embedded in decorated coconut wood—is the prize item, though most are copies. Try the RAK Handicraft Centre or the Itoiningaina Handicraft Center for more authentic varieties.

Most sales in Kiribati are made at local bazaars. These large markets exist in every city and have been a part of the culture for many years. Indeed, Kiribati lay on the ancient Silk Road trading route and so once held much dominance as a trade hub, as sellers brought their wares to this geographical area where the east collided with the west.

These bazaars are open each day, usually from 8:00 a.m. until eight in the evening. Some of the large markets on the outskirts of big cities only open three mornings per week due to the influx of items. 


"I enjoy shopping and I found it affordable but some of the clothes are definitely not of the highest quality." - Hassan from Turkey

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