Shopping is an activity common to the world. People might hate it or love it, but it is a part of our daily lives. The therapeutic appeal of shopping has not died down by any means. You need stuff, you shop. India is a wonderland for people who love shopping. Whenever we travel, we always shop and want to take something back as a souvenir. So, shop till you drop on your next trip at these Top 10 Indian markets.
1. Devaraja Market, Mysore
This local market gives you ample exposure to the local culture and is a pretty diverse market. At the entrance of the market, you will be greeted by a colorful clock tower which can be called a symbol of what the market is. As you enter, the rows are lined with fruits and vegetable arranged in careful manners. As you progress through, you’ll find heaps of colors arranged in conical shapes. The vibrant colors hit you out of the blue. And definitely not miss the flower section where shopkeepers make garlands for rituals in the temples. This market is perfect if you want some eye-catching Instagram pictures as it is heaven for photography lovers.
2. Jew Town Market, Cochin
The Market consists of antique furniture, shawls and spices. The market is located in a historic part of Cochin. The Jewish Synagogue is worth a visit and on the streets leading to it are all the stalls. The antiques here remind you of the British era and can give your home a colonial feel. After you are done shopping, there are many coffee shops and eateries to satisfy your appetite. A famous tourist place, it is quite and secluded but gets noisier as you get to the market.
3. Floating Vegetable Market, Srinagar
This market is more of an experience for a tourist. The only one in India, the floating vegetable market is a must visit for any explorer. Situated within Dal Lake, this market is the primary source of food for people living in the area. It is a wonderful experience as you see people shopping for vegetables in a Shikara. For incredible photos, visit either early morning or in the evening about an hour before sunset. The golden light illuminates the waters of Dal Lake and the house boats and the shikaras make for a perfect snapshot. Talk with the local shopkeepers and you are in for some great stories.
4. Sarojini Market, Delhi
All roads for shopping lead to Delhi, and one of the most popular one is the Sarojini Nagar Market. Considered a paradise for women shoppers, bargains are to be had everywhere if you know where to go. The golden rule here is to haggle a lot and if you don’t get the price you want, keep browsing as shops are aplenty here. Inventory ranges from cheap t shirts to main brand export surpluses and many more. Do carry your own bag as it is guaranteed you won’t be coming back empty handed and the carry bags that the shopkeepers give you won’t hold out for much long.
5. Colaba Causeway, Mumbai
Mumbai is famous for tourist and locals alike. Situated in the vicinity of Gateway of India and the iconic Taj Mahal Palace Hotel,
This shopping street is filled with antiques, trendy clothes, quirky t-shirts and many small stalls selling replica watches, Zippo lighters, and football jerseys. At one end, you’ll also find cafe Mondegar, a popular eating joint where you can quench your thirst with a cold beer or have some amazing French fries. Another popular eating joint called Bade Miya’s is also situated close by along with cafe Leopold and Starbucks. The street also houses many big brand retail outlets. Whatever souvenir you were looking for, you will definitely find one here.
6. New Market, Kolkata
If you don’t find it here, you probably won’t find it anywhere else in Kolkata. The term ‘new market’ refers to the whole area that surrounds the shopping complex. Ranging from grocery items to clothing items like the Taant saree, you will find various stalls and shops in every nook and cranny of this area. Watch out while shopping here as the area is very crowded. There are many restaurants around here too that can satisfy your hunger. The Kathi rolls at Nizam’s are highly recommended. The area is very convenient for tourists as there are many hotels in the nearby vicinity. New Market is the perfect embodiment of chaos on which the city of Kolkata thrives.
The hustle and bustle of this market is a character on its own. Highly rated by the locals and tourists, Hazratganj is situated at the heart of the city. The more you explore the area, the denser the market becomes with narrowing streets and increasing crowd. Hazratganj is the perfect blend of the old and the new, modern Lucknow as the streets are filled with old buildings, street shops and food stalls as well as boutique stores, big brand outlets and coffee shops. The perfect vibe for a shopaholic, the place is always filled with people. The famous artisanal craft of Chikankari is also found in Lucknow and many shops are situated in Hazratganj. There are shops for every budget and design. The food here does justice to the culinary heritage of the city.
8. Arpora flea Market, Goa
The party capital of the country also has great shops and flea markets all around town. Also, known as the Saturday Night Market, this place is a wholesome shopping experience. It is a weekly market that opens up on Saturday evenings and goes on until the wee hours of Sunday mornings. You browse around the numerous stalls located all over the market as pleasant music is being played and the moon shines brightly in the night sky. There are also live performances from time to time to entertain the public. The sheer range of items for sale along with food and dining options is just incredible and so is the fusion of cultures from around the world. As it is a flea market, bring your best haggling game with you. It is also a great place to just hang out, window shop and enjoy the lively, party vibe.
9. Laad Bazaar, Hyderabad
Located near the iconic Charminar, Laad bazaar or Choodi bazaar is a well-known market for jewelry, especially locally made bangles. You can also find great works of pearl jewelry amongst other things such as perfumes and clothing. Situated just footsteps away from Laad Bazaar are various restaurants where you can try the local cuisine. The marketplace is always very lively with a lot of people coming through the area at all times. Shopping here can be hectic and exciting, but you can refresh yourself from the tea shop which sells various varieties of teas and sweets. The vibe of the place is incredible as you will see people all around you shopping, bargaining with the shopkeepers, shopkeepers trying their daily hustle, aroma of the food being prepared in the restaurants. It is a great place to be for both the shopaholic and the explorer inside you.
10. Chor Bazaar, Mumbai
Probably the most notorious flea market in the country, Chor Bazaar is quite different from other markets on the list, but you should experience it at least once. Basically, a second-hand goods market, it has been called Chor bazaar or the ‘thief market’ due to various stolen goods found on sale here. There is a very ghetto, dangerous but incredible vibe to this market.
The huge range of goods that are sold here is mind-boggling. From antiques to electronics, fitness equipment, auto parts etc., you name it, this market has got it. Be careful of your valuables here while shopping and don’t flash your swanky camera around. There are some great deals to be had here to those who are willing as bartering here is considered mandatory. This place has an amazing history which has culminated into a great experience with just the right hint of the wrong side.
Shopping is also considered an art form by many. And no place else you will find that truer other than India’s marketplaces. So, bring your A game, do your research, don’t count on your impulses and most of all, enjoy yourself.
Have you been to India and/or any of these places mentioned? Perhaps you have other suggestions, do let us know in the comments below.
Author Bio: Rohit the author writes for Trans India Travels to share his passion of exploring the globe with others.