Most of the people, whom I know, come to Mumbai for Shopping. Mumbai is a shopper’s paradise. The shops and bazaars offer a truly amazing diversity of goods, as well as being worth a visit in their own right.
Mumbai sells everything from expensive European antiques to local spices by way of electrical goods and silks. In particular, it is the centre of the Indian clothing trade and caters for all tastes and budgets.
Likewise, Mumbai is a major centre of the diamond trade and for those with strong nerves and long pockets, who know what they are doing, it is possible to pick great bargains.
Main shopping area is around Dadar T.T, and if you go there in the evening, the place is packed. Good cotton clothes, saris, children's clothes galore and a general atmosphere of fun shopping.
Bandra, the so-called "Queen of Suburbs" is the residential abode of film stars, industrialists and the likes, of Mumbai. Linking Road joins Bandra to Khar and is lined up on both sides with showrooms for the elite. But the striking contest here is the pavement selling, a world of contrast from a posh showroom. Hill Road has number of shops lining on both sides of the streets. Elco market and Globus have good range of clothes. Turner road has great number of jewellery stores. Shoppers’ stop and Crystal shopping mall at linking road sell wide variety of goods. Kenworth Mall at Linking road have wide range of shoes’ stores.
Lokhanwallah Complex, in Versova, Andheri, has one long street, that is lined with stores on both sides of the street and it sells wide variety of things that suits every budget.
More trendy and costly shopping is found at Breach Candy and Kemps Corner, down the hill from the Hanging Gardens.
‘Fashion Street’, on M Gandhi Road between Cross Maidan and Azad Maidan, is a row of market stalls where some very good bargains can be found. Fashion street sells export rejects, and export "over-runs" which are often excellent quality clothes at knock down prices. Bargain very hard, and with any luck one can reduce the sales man's opening offer down to a more realistic price. Shoppers should trust to luck and their eye, haggle fiercely and hope to be rewarded with an exceptional bargain.
Shopping For Handicrafts Very close to Gateway of India, there is the main government emporium, Cottage Industries, which is reasonably well stocked with a cross section of handicrafts and clothes, and prices are fixed. In the little streets immediately opposite to the government emporium, there are lots of handicraft and silver shops, and a couple of good, but pricey, antique shops.
For those who like to shop in comfort, The Oberoi and Taj Hotels both boast air-conditioned shopping malls with an interesting range of boutiques. The shopping arcades of almost all five-star hotels offer a good variety of up-market shops and you can shop for clothes, shoes, leatherwear, jewellery, and good quality handicrafts. Prices will be higher than outside, but the choice in these shopping arcades is excellent, and if one is a canny shopper, one can always window shop there, before heading off to the markets.
For the book lovers, "Crossword" has its branches spread all over Mumbai, and they sells books, magazines, records, CDs, greeting cards
One of Mumbai's most popular bookshops is the tiny "Strand Book Stall" which has helpful knowledgeable staff, a comprehensive range of books, and if they don't have something, they will order it within a day or so. It is quite an achievement to leave the shop without buying something!
There are several excellent bookshops, and street stalls galore, many of the latter concentrated around Flora Fountain where a persistent search may reveal interesting volumes among the pulp thrillers.
In Mumbai, there has been mushrooming of Shopping malls in recent times, and they are found almost everywhere and stock every thing that women, men and children could ask for. Some of them, worth the mention are:
InOrbit mall at Malad
Infinity Mall at Versova
City Mall at Versova
Nirmal Lifestyles at Mulund
RR Mall at Mulund
Eternia at Breach Candy
Big Bazaar at Pheonix Mills
Cross Roads at Tardeo
Atria at Worli.
Benzer at Breach Candy
Shopper's Stop has branches all over Mumbai
Central mall at Vashi
Alfa mall at Irla
No trip to Mumbai is complete, however, without a visit to the bazaars –
Chor Bazaar, Mutton Street, near Sir JJ Road, for bric-a-brac, furniture and junk, It is an antique-hunter's delight. Its name literally means "thieves market," as this was where stolen goods were once sold. Today, it is best known for antique furniture and quaint collectors’ items sold at throwaway prices
Zaveri Bazaar, off Abdul Rahman Street, for jewellery, Dhaboo Street Bazaar, is famous for its diamond, gold and silver jewelery.
Dhaboo Street, for leather goods
Masjit Bunder for spices
Crawford Market, Lokmanya Tilak Road and MRA Road (north of Victoria Terminus) for flowers, fruit and vegetables. This is where you'll find the best Alphonso mangoes in the city along with hundreds of varieties of fruits and vegetables. The flower market is a riot of red, yellow, pink, marigold and purple. Bargaining is expected, and you can take home most items at 50% of their quoted price.
Mangaldas Market, off Sheikh Memon Street in south Mumbai, and Gandhi Market at King’s Circle are massive indoor market selling every conceivable type of cloth. Look for the bolts of beautiful Indian silk and cotton. The key to success there is patience and astute haggling.
The name "Bombay" was derived from 'Bom Bahia' (The Good Bay),
.... a name given by Portuguese sailor Francis Almeida, in 1508 ....“Bounce back Mumbai” .....as it is called by the locals, it is a city that has been through a lot in the recent past – floods, bomb blasts, riots – and come out stronger each time.
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