Shopping in Timor Leste
Aromatic coffee beans and colourful hand-woven cloth called Tais are the two items that should be on your must-buy list when shopping in Timor-Leste. All convenience stores and even some roadside stalls sell excellent coffee. Just as Scottish families have specific colours for their tartans, families in Timor-Leste have Tais in specific patterns and colours.
Roasted coffee beans will be a great gift item for your friends back home. Carrying roasted coffee beans will not make trouble for you with the customs authorities in most countries.
Our Timor-Leste shopping guide below will provide you with information about shopping in Timor-Leste. Once you are done shopping, head straight for a good meal at one of the great restaurants in Timor-Leste.
Timor-Leste Shopping Guide
Timor-Leste coffee is grown organically and hence tastes fabulous. Coffee was introduced in Timor-Leste by the Portuguese. The local way of making coffee is to roast the coffee beans till they turn black and let out a great aroma. Low acidity levels ensure the excellent taste of Timorese coffee.
A few of the coffee varieties like robusta have very high levels of caffeine. A late night cuppa might keep you up for hours, which might put you in a fix, as Timor-Leste doesn't have any great nightlife options.
Tais come in different designs and colours, depending on the region they are from, and they represent a distinct family. In Dili you should visit the Tais market to buy Tais and local silver jewellery. Tais can also be bought from street vendors.
Turtle shell bracelets, available at the eastern tip of the island, will make great Timor souvenirs to carry back with you. The other items that will interest you are ethnic woodcarvings, batik cloth and embroidered fabrics sporting regional patterns. The ethnic woodcarvings available here are somewhat like the ones you might get in Africa.
A market can be found in every main town on the island. You may not find the huge array of shops in Timor-Leste that you are accustomed to. These markets, however, cater amply to local needs. The marketplaces give the locals a chance to meet and interact with others on a daily basis. A walk through a Timor-Leste market will help you learn about the local produce of the region. Tourists attract a lot of attention so be prepared to be stared at. Also expect to be overcharged as many tourists before you have paid exorbitant prices willingly.
Along the waterfront, you will find many fruit stalls. These stalls are mostly run by women and are stocked with delicious local fruits. The papayas, mangoes and bananas are really tempting; make it a point to try out any unfamiliar local variety.
Av dos Martires de Patria
Av dos Martires de Patria Comoro
Av Dos Direitos Humanos
Pateo Cash & Carry
Rua Jose Maria Marques
ua Belarmino Lobo