Even if multi-story shopping malls are springing up all over India like weeds, the old-world charm and thrill found in India’s bazaars and flea markets cannot be replaced by these lures of capitalism. After a hard day’s work, nothing beats the satisfaction of successfully negotiating with a shopkeeper and bringing home everything on your shopping list. And for a steal!
The allure of flea markets is unparalleled and irreplaceable. It continues to draw large crowds by the tens of thousands, even in modern times. These markets, which are found throughout the country, have always been popular and are still growing, maybe due to the relaxed atmosphere and genuine cost savings they provide. Over the years, India’s flea markets have also developed into a gathering spot for street food sellers and musical acts, making them a lively place to spend time with your loved ones in the country. Experience the thrill of retail therapy at one of the markets on this list and go shopping until your heart’s content.
Flea markets are a concept well familiar to the fans of cheap but quality goods. Flea markets are a sight to behold and an experience to behold, with merchants hawking anything from handcrafted souvenirs to freshly made jalebis to professional hagglers battling their best for the lowest price. A good haul from the most famous flea markets in the country is any day more satisfying than shopping at a hoity-toity branded store.
Don’t You Agree?!
So if you are also a fan of flea markets, yearly trips to Sarojini or Bandra market are on your bucket list. Here is a piece of good news for you!
You don’t have to wait for that one trip to Delhi or Mumbai for your desired Rendevous at the flea markets of Sarojini or Colaba.
Lucknow hosts several quality flea markets itself. Some might even argue that these are better and cheaper than the ever-so-famous markets of Delhi and Mumbai.
One such piece of old-world shopping charm in Lucknow is the Chor Bazar. This is not any ordinary flea market, but unlike many other famous flea markets in the country, this one actually has roots in the city’s colorful past and history.
The Chor Bazar, which is held every Sunday in the Nakkhas neighborhood of the city, is as interesting as its name suggests. But do not fret; it has no criminal associations. It is simply a fun place to hang out and shop to your heart’s content at throw-away prices.
There are two conflicting accounts on how this bazaar got its name. One account traces the origin of this market to the royal bazaar or the ‘shahi bazaar’ of Nawabs and their begums. However, this account stops short of explaining the nomenclature of this flea market.
Another account explains that during the times of Nawabs, Chor bazaar used to be a market for the poor and less privileged in the society. Hence the culture of selling every knick and knack at such cheap prices. This account justifies the odd name of this citywide famous flea market in Lucknow city.
The innumerable shopkeepers of the Chor Bazaar vehemently support this theory. They will defend the market by arguing that this is not a market for stolen merchandise. The market’s promoters are also at pains to point out that it was formerly known as the Shahi Bazar of Lucknow in the olden days.
Clothing, gadgets, household appliances, and other consumer goods are all available for purchase at this 200-year-old market in Lucknow, India. However, it is best known for its exquisite zardozi clothing, wooden handicrafts, and jewelry. You’ll also get food, groceries, pet animals, and birds as part of the package.
Over here, on Sundays, there is an enormous flea market selling second-hand products, wooden things, jewelry, clothing, and other such items. There are also food kiosks selling paan, biryanis, kebabs, and a variety of other cuisines.
Anyhow, we don’t care about the name. Do we? If you are constantly looking for cheap and quality products from a flea market, you shouldn’t. Chor Bazaar promises you a fun shopping spree with all the charm of old Lucknow Bazaars.
There is almost nothing you won’t be able to locate or buy here. While a majority of the merchandise available in this market is second-hand, there is also a large selection of brand new merchandise available for purchase in this iconic flea market of Lucknow.
Everything from garments, fabrics, shoes, belts, goggles, and slippers to electronics, second-hand mobile phone spare parts, chargers, batteries, and LED lights can be found here in this vintage flea market.
You can even get your hands on some vintage clothing. Bluetooth headphones, selfie sticks, and power banks are all available as well! However, don’t hold your breath for originals.
Home goods, fans, second-hand television sets, hardware stalls selling bathroom fixtures, shelves, iron & steel fittings, and second-hand furniture may all be found at the Chor Bazaar.
Tools, hammers, locks, chains, scales, nuts, bolts, nails, and screws — you name it- are probably accessible for you to get at very cheap rates.
Another distinguishing feature of this rustic flea market in Lucknow is that it is not a bargain-hunting environment! The Chor Bazaar is the perfect venue for those who are apprehensive when it comes to negotiating. Most of the time, the goods is so inexpensive that you won’t have to barter or bargain over the price. However, this does not rule out the possibility of having a good time at the Chor Bazaar if you prefer negotiating. So, as you can see, the Lucknow Chor Bazaar is a place for everyone: it has all kinds of items, all kinds of pricing, all kinds of delicious Lucknowi cuisine, and all sorts of emotions!
So after telling you all about the gorgeous lanes of Chor bazaar that will transport you to the fantastic era of Nawabs, we should probably detail how to reach this market and what are its operating hours.
Chor Bazaar is open from 4 a.m. to 10 a.m. from the outset of the day till the end of the night during the scorching summers of Lucknow. It is open from 5 a.m. to 10 a.m. on the wintery nights of Lucknow, and it is free of charge. Chor Bazaar is also known as the Nakhas market after the area it is organized in. Nakhas in the very popular locality of Lucknow- called Chowk. This part of old Lucknow is famous for its food like Malai Makhan, kababs, and on the fashion end, obviously the famous chikankari of Lucknow.
There are various attractions to see in Lucknow that serve as symbols of the city’s rich history and culture. These include extraordinary sandstone monuments, gorgeous mosques, intriguing remnants of British-era architecture, lip-smacking cuisine, and the famous bazaars of the Nawabi city. Lucknow, which has retained its old-world beauty, attracts visitors who want to discover a side of India that is relatively unknown. Explore the ancient site of the city by visiting these architectural icons the next time you are in Lucknow, the capital of the state of Uttar Pradesh. From grand monuments and beautiful gardens to British Raj-era structures that exhibit a wealth of cultural heritage to old flea markets-Lucknow should definitely be on your bucket list this year.
Lucknow, the City of Nawabs, has a lot of surprises in store for tourists and shoppers alike. The fact that Lucknow is more than just kebabs and biryani can be felt throughout the city’s vast markets. These markets have been around for generations and offer such a diverse selection of goods that you would never believe they were there. They are the ideal bazaars to visit if you want to negotiate and embark on a shopping expedition.
So if you are in Lucknow, make sure to visit Chor Bazaar on your weekends, and if you are planning to visit Lucknow, remember to buy souvenirs for your loved ones from this rustic market.