Being in Kuwait on a Friday, it seemed logical to visit the Friday suq. So, after exploring the northern part of the city, I took a taxi to the south; the Friday suq is quite far out of the downtown area. Driving on dusty roads, I wondered what to expect at the market, and I decided to just let myself be surprised. For a short while, I was afraid the taxi driver had not understood when we passed a shiny shopping mall, but he continued driving, and stopped on a sandy street, seemingly under permanent reconstruction, where flashy new 4WDs were parked, porters walked with enormous loads on their shoulders to the car of the new owner. I had arrived, paid, and went inside the suq.
The Friday Suq of Kuwait is housed under high concrete circular roofs, with streets in between. It does not have the chaos, the crowds, nor the sounds or smells, of most suqs in the Middle East. Moreover, you cannot find any fruits, vegetables, or any other produce at the market: it only offers household items - in all kinds. You can buy clothes, curtains, sofas, beds, kitchen furniture, enormous flat-screen televisions, computers, second-hand irons, plastic flowers, detergent, and much, much more. Without wanting to buy anything, I just walked around the enormous area of the Friday Suq, looking at the wares for sale, and watching the people as they negotiated a deal.
Without seeing another visitor, the people were very welcoming to me, and I talked to some nice guys. It was interesting to talk about the current developments in the Middle East, meet people who had escaped their country because of the bleak economic outlook, and see what they thought about the future. Overall, people were friendly and helpful, and I felt that as much as I was curious about them, they were curious about that strange visitor who clearly was not out there to buy anything. When I had seen all the sections, I concluded that this was actually more like a semi-open air shopping mall. Indeed, there were restaurants, too, and I had lunch in one of them; sitting outside, I continued people-watching until I had finished my lunch, ready to move on to another part of the city.
Personal travel impressions both in words and images from Kuwait Friday Suq (Kuwait). Clicking on the pictures enlarges them and enables you to send the picture as a free e-card or download it for personal use, for instance, on your weblog. Or click on the map above to visit more places close to Kuwait Friday Suq.
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