Friday, August 27, 2010

Janpath - Shopper's Delight

Janpath is a “must do” for all visitors coming to Delhi. Janpath is the backpacker, tourist, college goers paradise for clothes, slippers, accessories, odds and ends, bags and more…Janpath was known as Queensway and it is not uncommon for old timers to still refer to it buy its old name. Janpath extends from the heart of Connaught Place down the road till it meets South End Road at the Claridges circle near the Hungarian Cultural Centre. South End Road which houses the Diplomatic population leads to Lodhi Estate. It is the middle road of what Lutyens built. It cuts across Rajpath, India Gate covering a huge stretch of important buildings in its wake. Janpath though a road, for most it refers to a wonderful rows of shops which sell some of the most interesting of wears. Janpath market has a total 35 shops. The shops in three separate segments. The shops at the far end, opposite the famous Cottage Emporium is known as the Tibetan market and one can find some really exquisite pieces – be it Tibetan handicrafts, metal work, beautiful silver earrings, old door knobs, look alike antiques….

The side lane offers excellent Western fashion wear – no they are not rip offs but export rejects… The base of the Indian Oil Building has plenty of shops selling shoes, silver earrings…The old Cottage Emporium is also located here, this was “the” place to go before CCI moved to its new space at Jwahar Vyapar Bhawan. Old Cottage Emporium does hold furnishing exhibitions from time to time. It also has a range of furniture and other products at veritable discounts.

Location – In Connaught Place, Sundays are said to be closed but many shops are open.

Timings – About 10 am in the morning to 7:00 pm or so

Highlight – After the crossing starts the entire stretch of clothes, handicrafts, Gujarati antiques, bags, shoes….. The bookstore at the centre offers a good collection of modern, classical and old books. Some of the excellent shops include – Bonton, Tantra T-shirts, Silver World for beautiful silver jewellery, there is a shop selling indigenous perfumes – itar – got from where it is made Kannauj. It is an ideal place to browse through, hang out meet friends.

Insider Tip – Bargaining is the norm….from 1/3rd to 50%, if you are a foreigner, the prices are slightly more marked up. Most shopkeepers though welcome foreigners at the cost of domestic shoppers!! The only place to eat are the food joints on the ground floor of the Indian Oil Building. Dee Paul’s cold coffee, patties, milk shakes provide enough refreshment when on the go.Also read the post of Gujarati Textile Sellers of Janpath

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