Saturday, November 14, 2009

Hyderabad - Laad Bazaar

On the second day of my stay in Hyderabad I asked Anil to go with me to Charminar and Laad Bazaar.

Laad Bazaar is a very old market (dating to 16th century) popular for bangles, semi-precious stones, saris and other Indian clothes. I bought a lot of clothes there (see the photo below) but, unfortunately, no bangles. I have to admit that buying at bazaars is a lot of. I like the process of negotiating the price and it is also much better to know that all the profit from the sale will go to the hands of people that made the product you are buying.

As we were at Laad Bazaar during the second half of Ramazan (Ramadan) that traditionally is the time when people shop a lot for clothes and gifts (*), there were even more shops and more people on the streets than normally. There were actually so many people that it was very difficult to move around and we had to stop all the time to let the people walking in the opposite direction pass. I was doing fine with the crowds and I do not even think that I was attracting too much attention, but Anil seemed to be a bit overwhelmed by the experience.

(*) The end of Ramadan is marked by the Eid ul-Fitr celebration (the Festival of Breaking the Fast) during which everyone puts on their best, usually new, clothes and feasts on the streets with relatives and friends. I missed Eid celebration even though I was then in Hyderabad as Anil's father was sick and none of us was in celebrative mood.

Trying to make our way to Charminar through the crowds:

From the top of Charminar you can fully appreciate how many shops and how many people there are on the streets surrounding it:

Bangles stand:

Deliciously-looking watermelons:


I was puzzled by the fact that the market was mostly filled with Muslim women wearing black traditional clothes. I could not understand why would they shop for colorful clothes until I saw this (let's call it a rim of truth):

Interestingly, almost all (or all?) sellers were men, even at this bra stand:

Within couple of hours at the market I managed to buy all those clothes: