Our Photo Diary of Markets in India
India is a very interesting place. The markets in India are no different. Visiting markets in other countries (Spain for example) is one of our favorite things to do while traveling. You can learn so much about people and culture by what they buy and sell on a daily basis. India is a Beautiful Mess and the markets in India really highlight this concept. Every market we went to was buzzing, full of character, promise (of making a buck) and diversity. Take a peak of what we discovered….
The first market we went to was in the town of Mapusa, which is situated in north Goa. Mapusa was our first market experience in India, so we had no idea what to expect.
After entering, we found stall after stall of both unique items and also the usual things you might expect to see at any outdoor market. People were selling everything from underwear, to clay pots and to the usual fruits and vegetables.
Our favorite thing about this market was the rows, upon rows of the Indian spices. Pictured below is massive bags of the infamous Goa red chili.
The second market we went to was also in north Goa at Anjuna Beach. This market was a gigantic outdoor market right next to the ocean selling everything from clothing, sarongs, tapestries, jewelry, religious statues, decorated elephants, and even drums.
The Anjuna market was definitely more touristy and more competitive. You’ll quickly find out in India that everyone is always trying to make a buck. In fact, so much so that one lady pulled my arm so I would be forced to look at her scarves.
She got so close to me that I just had to snap a picture. Besides being a little aggressive she was still dressed so brilliantly! This is India! Such a Beautiful Mess!
At the Anjuna market, you really got the feel for what the life of selling goods is all about. It’s a way of life. It’s their lively hood and a family affair.
Our third market experience in India was the most interesting. It started out very unexpected. As we were walking down the street heading towards the Mysore Palace, a young guy started talking to us. In India, this is not an unusual experience. But he seemed nice so we walked and talked.
He offered to walk us to a local market where his sister rolls incense and a place that “only locals know about.” He told us that this market was only open on Saturdays. Simultaneously Karl and I looked at our watches, and it was Saturday. So we agreed to follow him.
On the way he showed us pictures of his children, and even bought us some chai tea. It was quite a walk and we stopped at various interesting small, warehouse/concrete type buildings where locals were making artisan furniture, paintings made out of rosewood and people rolling cigarettes. We thought this is pretty amazing but we haven’t seen any type of market yet.
After leaving the “cigarette rolling factory,” we finally made it to “A” market. This was definitely not the market he described with his sister rolling incense but it looked interesting never the less. Our impromptu guide called this market the “Muslim Market.”
It was tucked away in this dark alley, away from the busy street. We had zig-zagged through so many small alleys and streets, we really had no clue where we were. Our spontaneous guide was truthful about one thing; only locals would know about this market. Since a majority of the people in India are Hindu, they do not eat meat. But since this market was Muslim, there were people selling fish and meat.
At one point our impromptu guide asked, “Are you scared to see a dead animals?” Karl and looked at each other and stated “No.” Then he took us to the very back of this market where there were rows and rows of hanging chickens and sheep carcasses. There was also multiple tables of burnt sheep heads lying everywhere.
This was definitely a weird and wild experience and one I don’t think we will ever forget.
Later that afternoon, we went to another market in Mysore, the Devaraja Market. The Devaraja Market was a lot more diverse and a bit more touristy than the Muslim market. Luckily we were there during Dewali because there were loads of people selling flowers of all colors.
Dewali is like the Indian version of Christmas and everyone decorates their doorways and cars with flower garlands.
I loved spotting these boys sitting under a deck making the garlands. They were so happy to pose for a picture and offer me a flower.
Not only do the Dewali flowers make for beautiful scenery at the market, but the bright and perfectly organized fruits and vegetable stalls were excellent!
However, my favorite thing at the Devaraja Market was the worship and spiritual items, that are so indicative of the Indian culture. The picture below shows the amazing colored powders used in the Holi festival.
Overall, traveling to India was an amazing experience. If you get the chance to travel to India, make sure you make a trip to the colorful and interesting markets! If you’re curious to hear more about our trip to India, check out our latest post HERE.
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