It is no surprise that when it comes to shopping, the pink city offers the best of the best. Like the forts, the city's many street markets, some of which have existed since ages, unravel treasures you won't be able to resist taking back home. For avid shoppers, Jaipur is just the place to be. Although you may already have a long shopping list ready, we have noted down the top five things you absolutely must buy.
The city is known for its intricate designs and high-quality craftsmanship. You won't find a market dedicated to jewellery anywhere else other than in Jaipur. Johari Bazaar, the oldest and most popular market for finding intricate jewellery, is a shopper's paradise where you will be spoilt for choice, especially when it comes to silver jewellery. From rings to necklaces to earrings, you can get anything you want in any design you like. Other than silver jewellery, you can also consider buying kundan, meenakari and enamel work.
Where to buy: Johari Bazaar
Leheriya sarees are definitely the quintessential buy in Rajasthan, and not without a reason. When translated into English, leheriya means "waves", and the colourful chevron or diagonal patterns made by dying the knotted material look exactly like that. They also represent the wave-like patterns created on dunes by the strong winds blowing across Rajasthan's deserts. Unlike Bandhani, another traditional tie-dye technique, the Leheriya designs are not specks, but stripes. It is practised on both cotton and silk.
Where to buy: Bapu Bazaar
Jaipur is one of the few locations where you may find a sizable quantity of blue pottery of the highest quality. It is widely acknowledged as Jaipur's traditional craft as well. The name suggests the striking cobalt blue dye used to colour the creations. Although it was developed by Mongol artisans, who combined the Chinese glazing technique with Persian motifs, blue pottery reached Rajasthan during the Mughal rule. You can buy blue pottery in various forms, like ashtrays, pots, containers, jars, etc. Traditional patterns have been updated, and you can now find tea sets, cups and saucers, plates and glasses, jugs, ashtrays, and napkin rings, in addition to the traditional urns, jars, pots, and vases. Blue pottery items are generally decorated with images of birds, horses and camels.
Where to buy: Civil Lines, Chandpol Bazaar or Bapu Bazaar
Sanganer and Bagru block prints are renowned for their gorgeous patterns and are native to Rajasthan. The art of block printing has been passed down for generations within families and communities. You can buy many wonderful creations, from home furnishings to clothes, in Jaipur itself if you don't have the time to visit these small towns nearby. If you wish to try your hand at this traditional textile art, you can also pick up wooden blocks with intricate designs.
Where to buy: Bapu Bazaar or Anokhi
The tradition of creating bangles is unique to each region of India. Hyderabad has its own vibrant kind, while Ferozabad is known for glass bangles. Likewise, apart from the classic and simple lac bangles in Jaipur, you can also find ones studded with Kundan. Traditional ones are available in red and green, but you can also opt for others. The significance and beauty of these bangles lies in their ability to be customized. You can find many hues and sizes, ranging from light bangles to bulky kadas. Lac bangles can be reused once broken, they can be rejoined by mild heating and shaping. Also, they are soothing for the skin and do not cause infections or itchiness.
Where to buy: Johari Bazaar or Tripolia Bazaar