I am really happy to write this and I must tell why. My cousin was visiting us and I asked her to carry her DSLR along (my instinct told me that she would want to shop in some street market and that would let me live my dream of covering a street market with a DSLR). So, yes, here you go with one of the most popular markets of Delhi, the Janpath market. I know that the quality is not awesome as per DSLR standards because it is difficult to understand these cameras in a day but the quality is good enough. 😉
Even if you ask a non-Delhi person, they would surely know about this market as it is extremely famous among the street markets. However, it is identified mostly as an export surplus market. No, it is NOT just that. In fact, among all the things that it offers, that is the least important one (depends on perspective, but you get my point? 🙂 )
Yes, it has many things to offer and, while photos take the limelight, I would like to take you on a literary tour of Janpath. I am listing all the things that this place offers in the order they appear if you start coming towards the market from Connaught Place or any of the exits of Rajiv Chowk Metro Station (if coming from LIC office building, point 2 will appear before point 1):
- Tourist attraction shops: There are different shops in a line catering to any or all of Indian handicrafts, Indian wear, jewelry, Indian footwear, scarves, handbags and t-shirts. Honestly, these have grown to become one of my favorite things in Janpath despite knowing that the stuff in these shops is overpriced. See, these shops are meant to attract tourists but everything is so nicely arranged and beautifully displayed that they are a treat for us too. Although overpriced, the Indian stuff here has good finishing and you really feel like buying everything. My personal favorite here is the chappal (footwear) shop just in the beginning of the line. A store called ‘Punjab 1461’ is really popular among these shops.
- Export Surplus Market: Done with the tourist-y shops, you turn towards your right and see the export surplus market. What is really amazing about this part is that it begins with some shops of vintage products and jewelry before it moves on to the clothing. The vintage products including Victorian clocks, lanterns, hookahs and lamps are A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. I can’t even describe how beautiful I find those. Now I have never asked the price but I am sure they won’t be exorbitant, if not cheap. And the jewelry. Sigh. I can’t even. It is very, very beautiful but bargain a lot before you settle for anything. The second part of this market, i.e. the clothes is what has made this market extremely popular. Now honestly, that part is losing its charm for me. Yes, the clothes are a steal and yes, here I don’t have to be paranoid about the stuff being second-hand (there are so many pieces for everything, it can’t be second-hand), but I don’t know, they don’t feel quite finished and I don’t exactly feel like buying. Maybe, I’ll be back to being greedy about the clothes here soon. However, I really recommend this and if you like exploring street markets, you will love the sheer variety of clothes that you can buy here for amazing prices. I bought two belts for a total of 150INR and you have to look at them to believe how finished and gorgeous they are. Bargain a lot, again. 🙂
- Miscellaneous shops and food joints: If you go through the entire clothes market and come back to where you started (it shouldn’t be difficult since the clothes part is in a straight line), you will see a host of shops on walking further. These have stuff ranging from footwear, jewelry, sweets, mouth fresheners and what not. There are also some food joints among which stands the famous Depaul’s. It is famous for its coffee and I am yet to try it. 🙂
- Gujarat Market: If you keep walking further, you will see the Gujarat market beginning which has basically Gujarati women selling their stuff on street side stalls. Another of my favorites, this place has amazingly beautiful mirror work bags, clothes, bed sheets and shoes. I’ll cover this market as a separate post someday. 🙂
So, that’s about it. I know it is really long but this is one of my favorite posts and I have worked really hard on this one. 🙂 Hope you enjoy it as much as I did. 🙂