Mumbai is a shopping haven for anyone looking for a good bargain. While the city will dazzle you with its glitzy malls, designer stores, and skyscrapers, it is also home to some of the biggest flea markets that will delight any shopaholic. From trendy clothes and jewelry, to electronics and antiques, there’s nothing that you won’t find in Mumbai’s fabulous flea markets.
Fashion Street is a treat for anyone looking for the hippest clothes at throwaway prices. It has long been the city’s most popular shopping destination, especially for teenagers looking to buy trendy outfits, without having to spend too much. Located at MG Road, in South Mumbai, this flea market runs along one side of the huge road and includes more than 150 stalls. You will find all kinds of clothing, including jeans, salwars, T-shirts, and lots more, as well as junk jewelry, handbags, and other accessories. Just make it a point to bargain if you want to get the best possible deal here.
Crawford Market is one of Mumbai’s most iconic shopping destinations, having been constructed back in 1869. Overflowing with shopkeepers, hawkers, and street vendors, this is one of the busiest flea markets in the city and it’s also regarded by many as the best. There is scarcely a thing that you won’t find here, as there are vendors selling fresh fruits, dry fruits, imported cosmetics, crockery, linen, antiques, and lots more. Make sure to set aside an entire day for shopping, as you can get lost in the labyrinth of stores in the market. To explore the market thoroughly, it may help to have someone familiar with the place to accompany you. Better still, sign up for a trip to the famous market, using Cleartrip’s mobile app, as they offer guided tours to the market.
Chor Bazaar is one of the largest flea markets in the country and despite its reputation as a thieves’ den, it's actually dominated by legitimate merchants, selling second-hand goods. The sprawling market that is spread out through numerous alleyways and by-lanes is quite literally packed with vintage items, including old gramophones, Victorian furniture, jars, cameras, and lots more. Although, most popular for antiques, today, you will even find electronics and automobile parts being sold here.
Linking Road is one of Mumbai’s most popular shopping destinations, located in Bandra. In the heart of the city, this flea market draws Mumbaiites from across the city, with townies and suburbanites rubbing shoulders, looking for the best bargain. A huge stretch of the road is lined with street shops and hawkers, selling the most fashionable clothes, footwear, handbags, and jewelry. While you are out shopping you can be sure that you won’t go hungry, as the market is interspersed with street-food sellers and restaurants.
Also located in Bandra, Hill Road is just as popular as Linking Road, but it somehow has a more laidback vibe to it. The flea market of Hill Road is always lively, with vendors jostling for a place to sell their wares and shoppers spilling out of every little shop. You will find all kinds of clothes, footwear, accessories, and other items at the flea market. The place truly comes to life during the months of November and December though, when you will even find vendors selling Santa hats, decorations, and those delectable Christmas sweets.
Colaba Causeway has long been a tourist hangout and it is one of the most popular destinations for city folks who want to do some shopping or unwind. The street is lined with hawkers selling everything from wooden handicrafts and carpets, to clothes and jewelry. This is one of the most vibrant of Mumbai’s markets, not just with its blend of ethnicity, but also with the variety of goods being sold here. You will find foreigners and Indians alike bargaining for antiques, authentic Indian souvenirs, blow-glass lamps, and books.
Mahim is perhaps most famous with tourists for its old Portuguese church, St. Michael’s, but it has also become popular for the flea market that has mushroomed just beyond it. On Wednesdays, the streets outside the church come alive, as hawkers line up to sell clothes, shoes, books, bags, and home-made East-Indian sweets! In recent years the market has also started to cater to Mumbai’s growing population of tech geeks and you will find plenty of bargains on electronics, from remotes and radios, to games and phones.
Lamington Road is probably every techno-freaks idea of heaven. It has long been the go-to shopping destination for shoppers looking to purchase every type of electronics appliance and components, as well as for hardware tools. The road is lined with shops and hawkers selling speakers, amplifiers, gaskets, tool-kits, laptops, computer accessories, and lots more. Despite the rise of ecommerce retailers, Lamington Road remains popular, with retailers here offering products at competitive prices. Most of the shops here also have the expertise to guide you with your purchase and the will even assemble computers for you, based on your specifications.
Dadar’s flower market is one of the biggest in the country and shoppers can make their purchases at wholesale prices here. The market, popularly known as ‘phool gully’, which literally translates as ‘flower street’, is a riot of colors each morning; vendors flood into the market with their flower baskets right from 4:30 am and the best time to visit is between 5 to 9 am. From marigolds and roses, to lilies and orchids, there is no type of flower that you will not find here.
Natraj Market is a busy flea market in Malad West, just outside the busy station. This is regarded as one of the best shopping destinations for bridal wear and you will find all kinds of traditional garments, including sarees, lehengas, and cholis here. The market is home to over a 100 shops and in addition to clothing you will also find footwear, jewelry, handbags, plastics, and kitchenware. With numerous entry and exit points, the market can be quite a maze to navigate through, but despite the jostling crowds it is well worth a visit.
So, whether you live in Mumbai or not, the next time you feel the urge to go shopping, visit her fabulous flea markets. This is where you will discover the soul of the city and some unbeatable bargains.