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Shopping in Himachal Pradesh

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Shopping in Himachal Pradesh

Shopping is always great fun and if you are the type who loves to shop on holidays then Himachal Pradesh is the perfect destination for you. The best thing about this state which is also known as the tourist capital of India is that it has some special goodies for people of all ages, sex, aesthetic preference and economic budget. There are a lot of things you can buy from Himachal no matter which district or city you plan to visit.

Shopping in Himachal


Here is a snapshot of what to fill up your empty shopping bags with.Himachal Pradesh is a paradise for shoppers. Be it the shawls in Manali or the Rumaals of Chamba or the Joothis of Kinnaur; it’s impossible to visit Himachal and still return with empty shopping bags. Art and craft items, apparel, music, books, condiments, jams and pickles; there is no dearth of tempting items in Himachal.

Apparel Shopping in Himachal Pradesh

Himachal Pradesh has a lot of variety to offer to the discerning tourist in terms of clothes. From jackets and funky stoles in Shimla Mall to traditional Kullu costumes in the Kullu Valley and colorful long skirts in Chambal to Tibetan costumes in Lahaul Spiti; you will have a lot to choose from. If you are fond of modern dresses then the malls in Shimla and Manali are perfect for you but if traditional Kashmiri Stitch or Pashmina or Kullu Embroidery items are what you desire then visit the tiny local shops dotting the bazaars of Himachal Pradesh.

Shawls of Himachal Pradesh

Shawls are something that you should definitely buy if you visit Himachal Pradesh. When you think of the Northern climbes of India then Kashmiri stitch shawls are the first thing that comes to your mind. The colors of such shawls are usually white or cream based and the whole body is filled with intricate brightly colored flowers. However if you look hard enough you can get brightly colored shawls too with imagery of Himachali birds and fruits embroidered on it.

Shopping in Kinnaur


Completely different from Kashmiri shawls are the geometrically patterned Kullu Shawls that are only found in the Kullu Valley in Himachal. The weaves are gorgeous and the bases are colored according to the colors of elements like green (earth), blue (water), yellow (earth), white (air) and red (fire). Most of the motifs have religious connotations and these shawls can make an iconic fashion statement.

Carpets of Himachal Pradesh

Since the time a chunk of Kashmiri artists migrated to Himachal seeking political stability the art of carpet making has prospered here. You will get the lovely floral embroidered Kashmiri carpet, the geometrically patterned Kullu rug or the miniature inspired Kangra carpets. The carpets are priced according to the artwork which they possess and the base material. If you are fond of fine living then lamb wool carpets would be an appropriate choice while carpets made from Yak wool will give a bohemian touch to your home. Either ways it’s a cardinal sin to leave Himachal Pradesh without buying one of the exquisitely beautiful carpets found in the State.

Jewelry in Himachal Pradesh

Sikkamala, Chandrahar, Kangnu, Mendukmala, Ghunghroomala, Bichwas, Guthi, Chalai and Nathni are all names of typical Himachal Pradesh jewelry items. These are pieces that are typical of the tribes of Himachal and hence can be classified as collector’s items.

Carpets in Himachal

Kullu and Chamba in Himachal Pradesh are hubs of chunky silver jewelry and you must remember to pick up a few pieces from there. If you are interested in head ornamentation then Boomani as well as Toora are great picks. On the other hand if you lust after Tibetan jewelry then the tiny shops in Lahaul Spiti or the Gadam area of Kullu Valley will present you with a treasure trove of amulets, wristlets, anklets, neckpieces and rings in the tribal Tibetan style. Bead inspired jewelry and semi precious stone studded jewelry is also very common in Himachal.

Artwork in Himachal Pradesh

Craft in Himachal Pradesh

The beautiful landscape of Himachal Pradesh inspires the birth of art in this beautiful land and it can be safely said that Himachal is the land of artists. Be it miniature painting or Thangka making or metal work or artistry in wood each region of Himachal has a distinct form of art associated with it. If you are visiting Chamba then do collect rumaals of Chamba that are woven over on both sides with mirror effect images. The head scarves of Chamba are famous all over India for their striking beauty.

If you are visiting Kinnaur then carry back the cute and colorful Kinnauri topis for everybody back home. The intricately designed dry grass slippers or Kinnauri Joothis are also famous.
When in Kangra, don’t leave without a couple of miniature paintings that are reminiscent of the dying art of miniature on paper. Romantic mythological tales and stories of valiant wars are etched on to these paintings which are colored only with organic paint.

Art of Himachal


Shimla, Kullu and Manali all have the tradition of woodwork using the extracts of mulberry, walnut, fig and glossy chestnut trees. Buy everything from personally inscribed messages on wooden boxes to beer mugs to jewelry cases to ladles to rosary beads in Himachal. Wooden toys and wooden bangles are available in profusion inside the bazaars of Himachal. In the areas of Lahaul Spiti you will bangles, slippers and woolen garments spun from Yak wool. These are collectible items that are not found anywhere else in India.

Everywhere in Himachal Pradesh you will find beautiful bamboo and dry grass baskets woven by the local weaver community. Designs of local flowers and imagery are etched on egg and flower baskets of Himachal that you can shop for.

Canned Food Products of Himachal Pradesh

Even if you are not a huge fashion fan or are not interested in interior decoration, you are bound to be tempted by the marvelously delicious canned food items found in Himachal. Possibly the best preserves, compotes, jams, marmalades and jellies in the world are made in Himachal Pradesh as the ingredients are all sourced from the nearby orchards. You will get amazingly unique flavours such as Gooseberry, peaches and nectarine, apple and cinnamon and blackberry rum as well as everyday ones such as strawberry, black currant and mandarin orange. Buy fruit preserve bottles which have tantalizing bits of fruit floating around in them or the tangy local pickles made with veggies such as Karonda and Lingad!

The other things you can pick up from Himachal Pradesh are Wall Hangings, Tibetan Thangkas, Books on Travel, Prayer Wheels as well as organically made creams and lotions.

Best Places to Shop in Himachal Pradesh

Here is a guide on what and where to buy things from.

Tibetan Handicraft Center

This is the best place in Dharamshala and Mcleod Ganj to go to if you want to buy Tibetan carpets at a reasonable price. Tibetan refugees sit here weaving exquisitely beautiful carpets and you will have a chance to see all the action first hand. Tibetan dresses, jewellery and bags are also on offer here and every item is 100% authentic.
Location:
Jogibara Road in Mcleod Ganj

Potala Handicraft Shops

Antique, curious and handmade gifts are sold at Potala Handicrafts Shops. If you are looking for souvenirs for friends and family then this is a good place to target. Tibetan print shirts, shawls, stoles, bags and umpteen varieties of prayer beads are also found here. Paper craft items of this shop are quite famous.
Location: Opposite State Bank of India in Mcleod Ganj

Norling Designs

This is where the fashion conscious young girls of Upper Dharamshala go to shop. If you want to own the latest dress or the most colorful sweater or the amazing designer looking stoles that Himachali girls sport then a trip to Norling designs is a must. Though the prices are on a little steeper side, the designs and material used is excellent.
Location: Temple Road in Mcleod Ganj

Green Shop

Green Shop (as indicated by its name) is all about environmentally friendly recycled goods. You will get recycled plastic gift items, paper products and eco friendly bags. The shop is amazingly well decorated and has its own jam and pickles section holding innovative items. Some must buys are the tangy Rhodendron Jam, Apple Pickle and the Strawberry Compost
Location:
Main Market Road in Dharamshala

Bhuttico

If you are in Manali then a shawl must be there on your agenda. Bhuttico is the best place to target for its reasonable rates and amazing variety in shawls. A lambs’ wool shawl will cost you around 300 INR while a Pashmina will cost you more than 3000 INR. Exquisitely embroidered scarves and stoles are also found in Bhuttico.
Location: Manu Market in Manali Mall

Also Read: Tokens Collected from Bhuttico

Himachal Pradesh Shopping Malls

Lama Underground

If Tibetan artifacts interest you then a visit to Lama Underground in Manali Mall is a must. Tibetan wall hangings, Thangkas, Prayer Flags, Buddhist Masks, statues and paintings of Buddha in different poses and all things Tibetan are found here. The Lama Underground is shaped like a Gompa and entering it is a fun and mystical experience. Woven rugs and Tibetan Prayer mats are also available here.
Location:
28/B, Lama Underground in Manali Mall

Bookworm

Book lovers in Manali will always recommend the beautifully decorated Bookworm in Manali for its cozy ambiance and eclectic collection of books and travel and adventure journals. You should sit outside on the balcony attached with the bookshop and leaf through well thumbed novels sipping on cream coffee/green tea. There are a selection of souvenirs like quirky magnets, reading lamps and book marks on offer here.
Location: NAC Market in Manali

Kashmir Gift House

The famous Kullu Shawls with geometrical pattern embroidery are best brought form the Kashmir Gift House. Paper Silk Saris which are a specialty of Kullu are also available here in abundance. Tribal silver jewelry studded with colorful stones or in jeweled hues are also available here. Another good buy here is the Kashmiri Stitch Salwar Kameezes. Items available in Kashmir Gift House are quite pocket friendly.
Location: Rambagh Market in Kullu

The Pickle House

At the base of Hadimba Hill in Kullu lies a nondescript little shop selling the most amazing pickles you have ever tasted. Pickles like Lingad Pickle (Himalayan Asparagus) is available here as well as green apple jelly, apricot jam, strawberry compost and pumpkin pickle. Make sure that you buy some exotic jars of pickles and jams for your folks back home.
Location:
Base of Hadimba Hill in Kullu

Street Shopping in Himachal Pradesh

Himalayan Herb Center

Kullu is famous for its unusual variety of Himalayan herbs and spices. Saffron, Kesar, Cinnamon of excellent quality is found in quaint collectible jars in this little shop. Shilajit (a medicinal mineral) is only found in the Trans Himalayan region as it oozes out of the red brown rocks. Buy this mineral potion for its potency and anti ageing, stress reducing and libido enhancing properties.
Location: Rambagh Market in Kullu

Himachal Emporium

Famous Chamba Rumaals are available here at the paltry sum of 300 INR. The Rumaals are embroidered on both sides with no loose threads showing. Chunky silver jewelry and batuas with mirror work are also available here. Apart from this green tea, fragrances and condiments are also available in Himachal Emporium.
Location: Bazaar Road in Chamba

Amichand Dheems

Most tourists know that Amichand Dheems in Chamba stocks some of the most beautiful miniature paintings found in this area. The paintings are found on paper, silk, jute and even metal. These make for beautiful showpieces and can be used as great collectibles too. The price ranges of these paintings are from INR 200 to INR 2000. Painted teapots, jugs and itr (natural fragrance extract) are also available here for very reasonable rates.
Location: Chaughan Market in Chamba

Handicrafts Center

Shawls of Kullu and scarves, caps and stoles are very famous. Woolen bands, woolen flower bedecked strings and woolen curtains are also available in Kullu for very decent prices. Metal statues and artifacts are also found in Chamba. Handicraft Center in Chamba stores all of the above mentioned items. Another item you shouldn’t miss is the fiery Chamba Chukh (mashed chilly pickle) which is a specialty of Chamba Valley.
Location:
Inside Rang Mahal Market in Chamba

Jewelery in Himachal Pradesh

Himachal Emporium

All the colors of beautiful Shimla seem to be compressed inside this beautiful emporium which is famous for its eclectic collection of colorful wooden toys, perfumes, antiques and exquisitely beautiful Kashmiri Stitch Items. This is a H.P government operated enterprise so the items are authentic and reasonably priced. Paper cutting products, frescoes and paintings by local artists are also found here.
Location: Shop number 3 in Shimla Mall

Dockers San Francisco

If you are somebody who is crazy about designer items then Dockers San Francisco in Shimla Mall is the place to visit. Branded jeans, cool sunglasses, designer dresses, imported shoes and leather jackets can be found here in abundance. This is where the fashion crazy youth of Shimla come for shopping.
Location: Shop number 19 in Shimla Mall

Minchys

This is one shop which you cannot afford to miss especially if you are a sweet lover. The natural abundance of fruits in Shimla has been converted into amazing jams, jellies, preserves, compote, wine and squash and sold here. Apricot, strawberry, mulberry, blackberry, apple, plum, black currant and all kinds of exotic flavors like Rhodendron and Cinnamon flavored items are also found here.
Location: NH 22, Shoghi in Shimla

Maria Brothers

Maria Brothers looks so charming and old fashioned that it could easily have been lifted from the pages of one of Rudyard Kipling’s books. This is possibly one of the most antique book stores in India. Rare books, out of print books, collector’s editions and old signature inscribed author copies are found here. A must visit place for you if you love books.
Location: 78 A, the Mall in Shimla

Himachal Handicrafts

Ram Bazaar

If you want to experience the look and feel of Tibet in Shimla then visit the Ram Bazaar. This is a collection of small pavement shops held and operated by Tibetan refugees. The main items sold here are Tibetan long sleeved shirt, Buddha statues, colorful scarves and headbands. Prices are dirt cheap here and you will get a chance to soak in the amazing atmosphere.
Location: Ram Bazaar near Mall in Shimla

Khadi Gram Udyog Bhavan

If you are not too sure about your bargaining skills then the Khadi Gram Udyog Bhavan in Kinnaur is your best choice for buying reasonably priced authentic locally made products. Locally made grass slippers, bamboo mats, grass shoot wall hangings and rugs available here will stun with their loveliness. Grapes of Kinnaur are very famous and they are converted into delicious Grape Jelly and sweet wine by local women working in the Khadi Gram Udyog Center
Location:
Main Market in Kalpa

Kinnaur Shawl Center

The Kinnaur Shawls are very famous for their light yet warm texture and they are available in a bright fusion of colors. The embroidery in these shawls are inspired by natural motifs like robins, cherry blossoms and flowers of Himachal and thus makes for an exotic look. Find a good selection of shawls and stoles in Kinnaur Shawl Center.
Location:
Near Bus Stand in Karcham

Shawls of Himachal

The Jam Factory

The Jam Factory has more than 50 different varieties of jams and jellies on offer inside its cozy little rooms. All local fruits like cherries, Olga, apple, Black current and strawberries are either converted into jams or compotes or jelly. Prices for these cutely packaged bottles are very cheap and so you can stock up on them to carry back as gifts for friends and family.
Location:
Zanshar Street in Reckong Peo, Kinnaur Valley

Sadar Bazaar

There are umpteen shops in Sadar Bazaar selling metal souvenirs and chunky Pahari Jewelry that is a specialty of Dalhousie. Other things to buy here are wooden items like knives and spoons. Since Dalhousie is near Pathankot there is a Punjabi influence in this place. You will get Phulkari work dupattas and stoles in this market. You will also find a variety of jams, pickles, compotes and wine made with natural locally grown fruit in this bazaar.
Location:
Near Central Bus Stand in Dalhousie

Himachal Handloom Industry Outlet


Himachal Industry Handloom Outlet

This outlet showcases all forms of handicraft practiced by locals staying in various areas of Himachal Pradesh. This is a one stop shop for shopaholics who want to carry the arts of Himachal back home. Stock up on Chamba Rumaals, Kinauri Topi and Joothi, Kullu Shawls, Manali Wooden Toys, Shimla Kashmir Stitch items and Tibetan Curious of Lahaul-Spiti. Most items are reasonably priced and this is an authentic no bargaining shop.
Location:
Thandi Sarak in Dalhousie

Himachal Pradesh is one of the most beautiful states of India offering an abundance of natural beauty. The apple cheeked people of Himachal spin wonderful shawls, exotic carpets and beautiful handicrafts that are inspired by the motifs around them.

Each area in Himachal has its specialty like Chamba has its knives and miniatures, Kinnaur has its Joothis and Topis, Lahaul Spiti has its tribal Jewelry and Masks and Manali has its wooden artifacts and Pashmina shawls.

As a tourist you will find each area in Himachal Pradesh has something new and exotic to offer you in terms of shopping. Let's now talk about the street bazaars!

Street Markets in Himachal Pradesh

Street markets of Himachal Pradesh offer ample opportunities for the tourists and the locals to look for all types of traditional items such as clothes, food items, jewelries and other accessories so that they could take back home some of the exclusive items of Himachal Pradesh. Let us see where you can shop till you drop!

Street Markets of Shimla

Manu Market Manali

When you are looking for a busy street market in Himachal Pradesh then there is no match for the Manu Market of Manali. It is an ideal street market to look for traditional items of Himachal Pradesh. This small market is located near the Bus Stand of Manali and one has to go through mazes of lanes and by-lanes to look for their favorite stuffs. This market has numerous shops selling all types of Himachali Items and you will also get Tibetan artifacts here. There is no such local item which you will not get here. Apart from gift items, dress materials and varieties of items for home décor, you could actually enjoy sumptuous traditional Chinese, Tibetan and local foods in different eateries of Manu Market.

Manu Market

Kids would love to have doughnuts that are homemade and quite cheap. You could also enjoy cheese croissants, momos, sausages, thupka, noodles and many more types of food that are homemade and reasonably priced. Hours can be spent wandering into different shops of Manu Market. Freshly prepared bakery items like cakes, breads, pastries, rolls etc. can also be bought from the bakery shops of Manu Market. 

The Mall Shimla

Shimla Mall Road market is considered as one of the best street markets of Himachal Pradesh. There is nothing that you will not get in the shops located here. While visitors are walking down the Mall Road they get numerous shops and restaurants which are always flocked with people including the local ones and the tourists. Handlooms items, handicrafts, Tibetan Artifacts, Bakery items, fresh fruits and fresh fruits items are the main attraction of various shops located on the Mall Road of Shimla.

Kotwali Bazaar in McLeod Ganj

Another popular street market of Himachal Pradesh is the Kotwaali Bazaar of McLeod Ganj. You will get mesmerized with the varieties of collections these road side kiosks have in this market area. Numerous showpieces including different types of statues of Buddha can be seen here. Sleeping Buddha, Health Buddha, and Peace Buddha made with different types of metals along with semi-precious stones can be the best buys for any tourist. Huge collection of singing bowls used for music, meditation or relaxation is also available in this market. McLeod Ganj is also having numerous shops where traditional clothes and other accessories can be bought.

Kotwali Bazar

This market has numerous eating outlets where you can try out authentic Tibetan dishes. There are tea shops and cafes where you can relax while sipping a cup of hot coffee or tea. Hand woven Tibetan Carpets depicting the mythological stories are the most preferred items for the tourists visiting this market. Woolen items like scarves, socks, gloves, sweaters, Kangra Caps, mufflers etc. are also very popular items of this market.

Lower Bazaar Shimla

Lower Bazaar is a street market of Shimla located on the west part of the Mall. The location of shop starts near the bus stand. These shops have huge collection of handicraft items. Visitors could also enjoy varieties of traditional food items of Tibet and China.

Gandhi Chowk in Dalhousie

Dalhousie is also nicknamed as “Switzerland of India” and is a famous tourist attraction of Himachal Pradesh. Anyone who is visiting Dalhousie would find the visit incomplete without various street shops that are mainly clustered in the Gandhi Chowk Area of Dalhousie. There is a Tibetan Market that is mainly run by the Tibetan Refugees and buyers get ample stock of handicrafts, bags, shoes, jewelries, dolls, carpets, rugs and many other Tibetan artifacts here in this market.

Gandhi Chowk in Dalhousie
Source: Shunya

Shops are there from where buyers get beautiful Thangkas, statues and showpieces for home décor. Beautifully carved wooden items are also there which are exclusive ones and showcase marvelous craftsmanship of the local artists.

Lakkar Bazaar Shimla

Lakkar Bazaar, as the name indicates has wide array of choices for wood items. Small jewelry boxes, lamp shades, pen stands, tables, cabinets, and many other crafted wood items can be bought from the numerous shops of Lakkar Bazaar.

Bazaars in Himachal Pradesh


Having location very close to the famous place of Shimla, the Ridge, this street market gets numerous tourists as the buyers of innovatively designed wood items. Spicy Chole Bhature and mouth licking Aloo Tikki from the famous eatery of Lakkar Bazaar, Sita Ram, are the added attractions for the visitors.

Shopping from the Street Markets of Himachal Pradesh would definitely be an experience to share and rejoice!

Also Read: Markets in Shimla | Street Food of Shimla
| Shopping in Shimla | Shopping in Kullu | Shopping in Manali | Shopping in Dharamsala | Shopping in Hamirpur | Shopping in Paonta Sahib
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