African handicrafts are diverse and, above all, very decorative. When I visited the Brikama handicraft market in The Gambia, the main focus was on the factory show. So I came not as a potential buyer, but as a reporter. And I really enjoyed this role.
The market manager took me by the hand and introduced me to the individual traders and craftsmen. The great thing about this market is that many of the products sold here are made right here. This is especially true for woodwork. One carver came directly from Senegal, another had dealt with the carving of Mali and Burkina Faso – and a third carved figures and reliefs from the bark of the tree.
Various carving and fine work is carried out on the market
Gambia is an exciting little country in West Africa – and the people here are incredibly friendly and nice. After my visit here (in September 2017) there will always be pictures of this breathtaking country. The nicest thing about my visit was meeting these incredibly gracious people.
The great thing about a trip with a good guide is that he keeps asking what you want to see. And when Mamou, who has now become my friend, kept asking me questions, I said very often: “Let’s go to your friends. I would love to be your people to get to know.“And he fulfilled this wish for me. So I sat there and people looked at me – and I looked at them.
Brikama Market carver
The children were naturally curious and stood up and looked at me. And then laughed. Some of the little ones were extremely cute and crouched down and held me. Or they wanted me to lift them up. Then at the latest the ice was broken … and that was particularly fine.
On the last day we drove to the Brikama market. I wanted to take a few more market photos. And then the head of the market came and introduced me to him … and each of these wonderful artists there proudly showed me their products. A tiny section of it can be seen here ……
Batiks and scarves
Baskets of all sizes
Master carver – he loves tree bark with structure
Two old men sitting
Finely worked face of an old man
Gambia is an ideal entry point for West Africa – it is harmless and very relaxed. The Gambians are very polite and courteous people. You are very relaxed. If you want to travel the Alnd from Europe, you can book a package with the travel agent FTI and either organize excursions on site or book a tour. It is an advantage to be with a local tour guide, as he not only explains, but also helps you get in touch with the locals.
It is worth taking a look at the current Africa catalog. The Gambia offers first class beaches and also very fine beach hotels. However, a trip to the Gambia would only be half the fun if you only come for a swim. For example, the Gambia is recommended for beginners’ tours .
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