India’s Local Market Guide
From clothes to spices to jewelry, Indian markets indeed offer some wonderful items at the best prices. Many markets of various eras still continue to exist. These places have been selling the best of clothes, accessories, handicrafts, jewelry, and many more.
There are hundreds of markets you can visit across India such as Johari Bazaar and Kannauj Market. Each market specializes in selling certain types of products. Some markets offer a mixed range of products including clothes, food, jewelry, and antiques. Here are some of the best markets worthy of a visit to India.
- The Chor Bazaar is one of the largest and popular flea markets in the country.
- The Dadar Flower Market is one of Mumbai’s oldest and biggest flower markets.
- Kannauj Market is known to sell over 600 kinds of perfumes.
- Laad Bazaar is especially popular for selling bangles.
- The shops in Ima market are only run by married women..
Popular markets to visit in India
There are just so many local markets in India. They are scattered all across the country and offers a wide variety of products.Below is a list of must-visit-markets in India.
|Market||Location||Things to see or buy|
|Johari Bazaar||Jaipur||Jewelry, textiles|
|Dadar Flower Market||Mumbai||Lotuses, roses, marigolds, gerbera, chrysanthemums, lilies|
|Kannauj Market||Uttar Pradesh||Perfumes, tobacco and rose water|
|Ima market||Imphal||Groceries, local produce, and authentic food items, eg. dried fish, local herbs, clothes, handicrafts, bamboo products, woolens, traditional costumes|
|Chor Bazaar||Mumbai||Second-hand items, such as handicrafts, bronze statues of gods and goddesses, vintage gramophones, bronze bells, Bollywood posters, colonial-era lamps, antique Smiths clocks, vintage cameras, power tools, and authentic Victorian furniture|
|Floating Vegetable Market||Srinagar||Fresh produce, fruits, vegetables, high-quality saffron|
|Laad Bazaar||Hyderabad||Pearl jewelry, semi-precious stones, silverware, saris, hand-woven materials, naturally scented perfumes, and wedding-related items|
|New Market||Kolkata||Clothing and accessories to electronics, food, spices, exotic flowers, utensils, brassware, leather bags|
|Flea Markets||Goa||Clothes, accessories, handicrafts, souvenirs, spices, books, and pottery|
|Chandni Chowk||Delhi||Food, jewelry, electronics, spices, art and antiques, souvenirs, and knick-knacks|
|Lakkar Bazaar||Shimla||Locally made wooden products like toys, jewelry, souvenirs, and utility items|
|Jew Town||Kochi||Antiques, antique pieces of crockery, carved wooden furniture, bronze and brass sculptures, remnants of traditional houses, and jewelry|
Johari Bazaar, Jaipur
Jaipur’s historic marketplace, the Johari Bazaar is a must-visit in any Jaipur travel guide. This market is catching the attention of visitors due to their specific stones and fabrics.
The name Johari Bazaar literally means "Jeweler’s Market". You can find all kinds of traditional jewelry, like Polki jewelry, Kundan jewelry, and Jaipur's style of jewelry made of enamel, Meenakari.
The Johari Bazaar not only sells jewelry, but there are also textile shops. From Bandhej and Leheria sarees, suits to block printed bed sheets and Jaipuri Rajais, you can find them all.
There are some food stalls and restaurants near the bazaars that make for useful pit-stops when you need to restore your energy before getting back to shopping. One of the most famous is Laxmi Misthan Bhandar’s delicious lassi.
- Address: Hawa Mahal Rd, Badi Choupad, Pink City, Jaipur, Rajasthan 302002, India
- Opening Hours: Every day, 10 am to 11 pm.
Dadar Flower Market, Mumbai
The Dadar Flower Market is one of the city’s oldest and biggest flower markets. It is also known as a Phool Gully or Flower Road.
The market sells wholesale, although one can still find small vendors coming to make their daily purchases. It is filled with row after row of stalls and wooden planks set up to sell flowers, both common and rare. You can find lotuses, roses, marigolds, gerbera, chrysanthemums, lilies, and many more.
The place is an indoor market and attracts both tourists and photographers. The market opens as early as 5:30 am. and retailers buy out most of the flowers by 10 am.
- Address: 302, Tulsi Pipe Rd, Dadar West, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400028, India
- Opening Hours: Every day, 6 am to 8 pm.
Kannauj Market, Uttar Pradesh
Also known as the perfume capital of India, Kannauj Market is situated in the Kannauj district of Uttar Pradesh, on the banks of the River Ganga.
These markets are renowned for their various kinds of perfumes, along with tobacco and rose water. There are more than 650 varieties of fragrant oils being sold in the market and they are all-natural without any alcohol content.
These perfumes are prepared using a traditional method of extraction called ‘Degs & Bhapka system’, which is a hydro distillation process.
In addition to the regular collection of oils, some sellers have produced analogies for famous brands such as Givenchy X series oil and Nina Ricci.
- Address: GT Rd, Kannauj, Uttar Pradesh 209727, India
- Opening Hours: Monday to Saturday, 10 am to 5 pm.
Ima Market, Imphal
Ima Market or Ima Keithel, as it is locally known, is the only market in the world where you will find over 3,500 women shopkeepers running their business and signifying the economic participation of Manipuri women. It is also known as Mother’s Market.
Although you can find other markets of this type around Manipur State, Imphal has the biggest one. The market is more than 100 years old and has been a platform to provide jobs and entrepreneur opportunities for women.
Only married women are allowed to run the stalls in the Ima Market, and this tradition is passed on from one generation to another. Men cannot seek employment or entrepreneurship, but they are welcomed to come as customers.
Here, you can find a variety of goods, ranging from groceries, local produce and authentic food items like dried fish to clothes, handicrafts, bamboo products, utensils, local herbs, woolens, traditional costumes, and many more.
- Address: Bir Tikendrajit Rd, Thangal Bazar, Imphal, Manipur, India
- Opening Hours: Every day, 3 am to 7 pm.
Chor Bazaar, Mumbai
The Chor Bazaar is one of the largest and popular flea markets in the country. The name translates to ‘Market of Thieves’.
The market got its name due to mispronunciation of the original name ‘Shor Bazaar’ which translates to ‘Noisy Market’ or ‘Chor Bazaar’ by British colonists.
This market is crammed with stalls that sell second-hand goods, handicrafts, antique, and vintage items such as old handicrafts, bronze statues of god and goddesses, vintage gramophones, bronze bells, Bollywood posters, colonial-era lamps, antique Smiths clocks, vintage cameras, power tools, and authentic Victorian furniture.
- Address: Mutton Street, Near Bhendi Bazaar, South Mumbai
- Opening Hours: Every day except Friday, 11 am to 7.30 pm.
Floating Vegetable Market, Srinagar
The Floating Vegetable Market which is perched on the picturesque Dal Lake is a major tourist attraction with the serene lake with lotus plants.
From 5 to7 am every day, the vegetable vendors on their traditional Kashmiri boats, known as Shikara, gather on the lake to sell fresh produce, fruits, vegetables, wood carvings, high-quality saffron, and other local items that appeal to tourists.
The vendors themselves are the farmers who grow the vegetables and fruits in their farms and bring them to the floating market to sell.
Hordes of tourists will come to this market to enjoy the scenic setting, experience the hustle and bustle of the market, and take photos.
- Address: Dal Lake, Karapura, Srinagar, Jammu, and Kashmir
- Opening Hours: Every day, 5 to 7 am.
Laad Bazaar, Hyderabad
Laad Bazaar, also known as Choodi Bazaar, is one of the popular traditional markets in Hyderabad which is located near the historic Charminar.
Laad Bazaar is heaven for jewelry shoppers. The whole market is bustling with more than 100 shops selling all kinds of bangles.
You can also find pearls, semi-precious stones, silverware, saris, hand-woven materials, naturally scented perfumes, and wedding-related items.
The bazaar is set in a narrow alley where no rickshaws or cars are allowed. It does get crowded, so don’t expect to have a relaxing walk with open space.
Make sure you sharpen up your bargaining skills before entering the area, as a good bargain would get you the best of products at the best prices.
- Address: Char Kaman, Ghansi Bazaar, Hyderabad, Telangana 500002, India
- Opening Hours: Every day, 11 am to 11 pm.
New Market, Kolkata
Located in Lindsay Street, the New Market is a sprawling market that has been in existence since the British Raj. The place is a reminiscence of British architecture in the city.
The market is divided into various sections where one section you may see delicious fruits, and cake shops while on the other hand, a majority of shops sell sarees, many of them being the traditional ones.
You can find over 2,000 stalls and stores lining the streets, selling everything from clothing to accessories, electronics, food items, spices, exotic flowers, utensils, brassware, leather bags, and much more.
- Address: Bertram Street, Lenin Sarani, Dharmatala, Taltala, Kolkata, West Bengal 700017, India
- Opening Hours: Every day except Sunday, 10 am to 10 pm.
Flea Markets, Goa
Goa is famous for its beaches, nightlife and flea markets. The city is also home to numerous flea markets that date back to the 1980s. You can find both locals and foreigners selling clothes, accessories, handicrafts, souvenirs, spices, books, and pottery.
One of them is the Anjuna Flea Market. This market is very popular among the tourists who visit Goa and sells everything under the sun, ranging from exotic junk jewelry to even second-hand bikes.
- Address: Monteiro Vaddo, Anjuna, Goa 403509, India
- Opening Hours: Every day 8 am to 6 pm.
Chandni Chowk, Delhi
The Chandni Chowk is one of the busiest and oldest markets in India that dates back to the 17th Century. It is the largest wholesale market where you can find endless shops and stalls of food, jewelry, electronics, spices, art, antiques, souvenirs, and many knick-knacks.
A famous spot is the Khari Baoli. It is the largest wholesale spice market in Asia which was built during 1650. This market beams with vibrant colors and aromas of local spices, herbs, and dried fruits.
- Address: Near Red Fort, New Delhi 110006, India
- Opening Hours: Every day except Sunday, 9.30 am to 8 pm.
Lakkar Bazaar, Shimla
Lakkar Bazaar is located near the ridge in Shimla, which captures the very essence of the abundance of different types of wood found in the state. The marketplace offers all kinds of locally made wooden products like toys, souvenirs, utility items, and wooden jewelry.
The variety of items offered by the bazaar is not limited to wooden items only. The market also has a majority of shops which sell woolens and handicrafts. The Kullu shawls are especially famous.
- Address: Lakkar Bazar, Shimla, Himachal Pradesh 171001
- Opening Hours: Every day, 9 am to 7 pm.
Jew Town, Kochi
Jew Town in Mattancherry is one of Kochi’s most fascinating spots, with its colonial-era buildings, Portuguese-style houses, narrow streets, and neatly lined-up shops. Everything on offer in the market is sold by the last surviving Jewish families.
The shops here sell antiques, crockery, carved wooden furniture, bronze and brass sculptures, remnants of traditional houses, and jewelry. Aside from that, it is well known for its spices.
- Address: Anavathil, Kappalandimukku, Mattancherry, Kochi, Kerala 682002, India
- Opening Hours: Every day 5 am to 9 pm.
Tips for visiting a local market
Visiting a local market in India can be a very fun activity. But, it can also be a bit overwhelming for first-timers. Here are some tips that can ease you in your trip to a local market:
- Watch your belongings at all times as the market streets are narrow and are usually very crowded.
- Never accept the first price offered at a store. Try to haggle to get a better price.
- Before buying a product, scout around the market to find the store that offers the best price.
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