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Where to shop in Rajasthan – a guide to bazaars, bartering and areas

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<span>Rajasthan is known for its bazaars which provide an authentic Indian shopping experience. Locals and tourists alike shop in the street bazaars for everything from daily essentials to souvenirs. Look out for blue pottery, camel leather goods, spices, traditional sarees and brass curry serving dishes. Don’t forget to partake in the bartering game and haggle over prices. When you’ve had enough of bazaars, there are western malls to shop in too. </span>

Shinod Lukose

My Destination local expert on

Rajasthan

Jaipur

 

Jaipur is the place to shop to your heart’s content. Neatly organised bazaars make-up the city and run parallel to one another. Each bazaar is mainly dedicated to one thing, from kitchen ware to colorful sarees, intricate henna to all types of books. Lose yourself inside the walls and veer off the main streets into little alleys to find spice markets, street food and flower markets. It’s the best way to shop and to stumble upon delights or whatever it is you’re looking for. Don’t forget to look out for Jaipur’s classic blue pottery.

 

Jodhpur

 

As the second largest city in Rajasthan, referred to as the ‘blue city’ for its blue painted buildings, shopping is similar to Jaipur. Jodhpur is known for its textiles, spices, arts and block printing items. Factories away from the city have the cheapest items when it comes to block printing, but you will need a rickshaw driver to take you. Large emporium shops sell touristy gifts, but are often more expensive than the local street markets.

 

Kota

 

The City Mall in Kota is just a short distance from the Kota Fort. The area is best known for its Kota stone (a variety of limestone) the Kota-doria saris which are worn by woman all over India and the Kota-Bundi miniature paintings. The mall is an innovatively designed building and was built to help develop the future of the town. The mall doesn’t only sell colorful Indian textiles, but it also houses Western fast food chains and an excellent entertainment centre with cinemas to fun zones.

 

Jaisalmer

 

Jaisalmer is a good place to pick up leather goods – camel leather of course, not cow. Family run business’ open their doors to sell genuine leather goods perfect for tourists. Everything from leather belts to shoes and all types of bags imaginable are on sale hanging from the ceilings and doors. Most places will have factories too, so if you can’t find the exact piece you are looking for, it can be made for you in matter of a few days.

 

Udiapur

 

The RKay Mall in Udaipur is the opposite of the traditional market shopping India traditionally embraces and is known for. The large shiny modern mall is a tourists shopping haven. However, it still sells the same products as most of the markets, from clothes to jewelry and food. Besides the shopping, there is also a great play area and entertainment for children. This mall is also rather unique in the fact it is also eco-friendly.

 

Shopping tips: Avoid heading out at lunch time to start shopping; it is simply just too hot. Start in the morning and wear cool clothes. Remember bartering in markets and quite often in shops is acceptable and often the way to do things. Shops will have signs stating ‘fixed price’ if they do not barter, but there is no harm is asking. Often prices are more than double what they are worth anyway. Don’t let people encourage you into buying something you don’t want and make sure you are buying the real deal if you are paying a lot of money.