Delhi is unique in that
it has representative outlets for the handicrafts of each Indian state.
in it self presents a staggering array of goods, and at very affordable prices.
In the last decade there has been a dramatic change in Delhi's markets. Upwardly
mobile lifestyle has led to greater sophistication in display and upgrading
of various markets in terms of availability of items.
Delhi has long been the most important trading centre in Northern India. Many
of its localities, like Sheikh Sarai and Yusuf Sarai, derive their names from
medieval market towns which serviced the bygone, shifted capital cities of Delhi.
Today, all of these have become a part of the rapidly expanding metropolis.
Instead of market towns, there are specific whole sale markets or"mandi's"
scattered throughout the vast city, and their's is another story.
For visitors to Delhi, shopping is high on the list of "things to do".
Tourists find a wide choice of items- such as carpets, silks, jewellery, leather
and silver ware, handicrafts and handprinted cotton - that are synonymus with
India. Each item is available in a range of prices, depending on the quality
and the outlet.
Another interesting is that each market has its own, distinctive ambience and
adds its own flavour to the experience of shopping. Haus
Khas Village, Connaught Place and Chandni Chowk are worlds apart from one another,
yet each of them reflects an aspect of this many - faceted city.
In fact one of the fascinating ways of understanding a city is by wandering
through its market places for it is here that contemporary culture is most visible
to the outsider.
The exploration of Delhi's markets could be begin at Chandni Chowk. Despite
the pressures of traffic and population, its historic land marks servive to
tell the story of the last three centuries. Many of the shops here are more
than 100 years, old and the mesh of lanes and bylanes is full of superises.
Leading off Chandni Chowk are Dariba, the silver market, Khari Baoli, the spice
market and Kinari Bazar for trimmings
and tinsel. In some of these bazaars the item for sale are manufactured at site,
which lands a special charm to the shopping experience well integrated into
the culture of the old city, these bazaars offer the visitor a glimpse of life
in Old Delhi.
There are some antique stores behind Jama Masjid, and more lining the entrance
to the Red Fort, where the Meena Bazar once was. These offer items arranging
from jewellery to painting and furniture, and cater almost entirely to tourists.
Connaught Place, New Delhi's original shopping arcade was planned as part of
the Imperial capital in 1911. On Baba Kharak Singh Marg, are the numerous government
State Emporia. Which afford a glimpse of the handicrafts of each state. So does
the recently- inaugurated new Central Cottage Industries Emporium on Janpath.
Across the road from "Cottage" as it is popularly known, are the inviting
stalls along Janpath.