Flea Markets – Goa
The flea markets in Goa will have any shopping aficionado squealing with delight. A veritable world unto themselves, the sights, smells and sounds of the Goan markets will appeal to every sense.
The motto-anything and everything under the sun is just perfect for the shopping experience in Goa. You can obtain designer threads, intricately carved wooden furniture, fruits, fish, jewelry, spices and kitschy clothes and art; it’s all available literally off the roads. Most of the touristy beaches of North Goa, centered on the party capital Baga, have roads that double up as shopping thorough fares thanks to the shacks and stalls flanking the roads. If you can haggle well, anything that you fancy can be yours at an attractive price.
But the most exciting shopping prospects are at the flea markets held in Goa at different places on different days. This congregation of vendors and shoppers is on through the peak tourist season in Goa that is from December through to the end of April. Prices are a lot more competitive and the variety is mind boggling- and we are sure that shopping lovers will go berserk at the thought of the limitless shopping possibilities.
The Anjuna market is the grand daddy of the day markets. Held on Wednesdays from nine to six, this market was started by the hippies that used to flock to Goa looking for Indian spirituality and peace. They used to pawn off their belongings for a few extra bucks to stretch their holiday a bit longer. But now this market has handicrafts and products and vendors from the far corners of India, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Kashmir and even Nepal and Tibet. With detailed and embroidered clothes, bags and belts, beaded necklaces, trinkets, handmade paper diaries, t-shirts to wooden carved furniture and bric-a-brac, the list of what you can purchase here is endless. But remember to haggle or else you might end up buying stuff at an absurdly high price.
The Friday Mapusa is a bit more local- Goan experience. With food- freshly baked, fruit and fish sold alongside the touristy products, this market is still a little lesser known of than the other markets and hence less crowded and less touristy. It is a great place to buy all the wonderful Indian spices. However be warned of the smell that is typical of this market. It is a more authentic experience of an Indian bazaar. This market is also held from 9 in the morning to six in the evening.
For shopping without melting in the sweltering heat and the fierce sun that is the definition of Goan weather, opt for the Saturday night market at the delightful Arpora village along the Baga River. This market starts at 6 in the evening and is on till one o’ clock in the middle of the night. A feast for every sense, the lights and ambience are almost like a carnival. With handicrafts, clothes, spices and little trinkets and home decor items, there are food stalls and usually a live band for entertainment. The night market is a where shopping is an experience for every sense, a must-do while at Goa, just to witness the life and soul of all things Goa.
If we could bottle the vibe and smells and sounds of these markets, may be we could be able to conjure up a more authentic picture of these markets than mere words, images and pictures can. But until such a time, we suggest you head out yourself and lose your self in a world of heightened senses and experiences. Happy shopping!