I love to look around the markets and bazaars when I am on holiday. It gives me a real sense of the country I am visiting. When you have your Indian E-visa, why not plan ahead and think about the kind of things you could buy whilst you are there? Take an empty carry-on bag with you so that you can take your bargains home. Here are some of the great things you can buy in India.
Indian women love their jewellery and it is a big part of their traditional and culture. The majority of Indian women wear gold jewellery and it is often ornate with big jewels and intricate filigree. Gold is relatively cheap in India but cheaper still is costume jewellery. Why not buy something completely traditional such as a Paizeb which you wear around your ankles, or a Hathpool which adorns the hands.
Smells and Spices
Top up your spice collection at home by buying the real thing. Spices are so cheap in India that it would be foolish not to. And India is the home of incense so stock up on some handcrafted incense sticks and pieces of sandalwood.
Why would you visit India and not buy tea? Darjeeling, Assam, Nilgiri. Rumour has it that India only exports the poor quality teas, keeping the best for themselves. Time to find out!
India has such beautiful clothes from a simple daytime Shalwar Kameez to an ornate, embroidered sari. You will also get a lesson on fixing a sari into the bargain.
You will be spoilt for choice. Also look out for cheap leather sandals.
Bookshops are plentiful and whilst the quality of the books may not always be to our standards, they are very cheap. English books are available and consider buying an Indian cookbook or two so you can recreate some of the meals you have had. And you won’t find a Vindaloo or a Tikka Marsala anywhere!
India is the home of Ayurvedic medicine. Ayurvedic doctors are available for consultation and your hotel should be able to recommend a good one. These products can be expensive in the UK as they are not widely used, but in India, they are part of day to day life and the prices reflect that.
Yes, that’s right. For a fraction of the cost in the UK, you can get good quality glasses. Take your prescription or get an eye test, because they are cheap too.
Textile making is a huge industry in India, and as such, their textiles are inexpensive, and some are plain cheap. By buying textiles you are supporting the local economy. From simple Khadi to ornate wall hangings with beading and embroidery, it will be difficult deciding what to buy!
Buy some traditional Indian music or some banging Bollywood beats to remind you of your holiday when you are back in dull, grey UK.
There are plenty of other items that will tempt you on your holiday, but remember, if you are tempted by a carpet, make sure you are able to get it sent back home. And don’t forget to haggle!