Pune, often called the cultural capital of Maharashtra, is a city that exemplifies a lifestyle that is cosmopolitan, yet rooted in its years-old heritage. As a holiday destination, Pune offers a wide variety of things to do. Shopping is part of any travel experience, and Pune has a flourishing shopping scene, defined by the most luxurious shopping malls and elegant retail stores as well as budget street markets.
Shopping in Pune can be exciting, be it for some trendy clothes, fashion accessories, household items, antique jewellery, or just about anything for that matter. Moreover, regardless of your budget, you will not go home disappointed.
Here is a quick guide to the best shopping places in Pune that every tourist would love to explore:
Every city has a shopping area that defines its modern-lifestyle, and Fashion Street in Pune does just that. Retail therapy at Fashion Street is one of the best experiences in Pune; one that should not be missed out on when here. This street has over 450 stalls, selling the latest in fashion and accessories, all for a bargain.
It is a shopaholic’s paradise and the most favoured haunt for college students and young adults, who like to keep up with the latest fashion trends. Everything related to fashion, from clothes and accessories to footwear, you can find it here. It is also a great place for window shopping, with the entire street dedicated just to fashionwear.
Best Buys: Trendy clothes and footwear
Tulsi Baug is the Chandni Chowk of Pune. Being here is a whole different experience. It is noisy and throbbing with life, and this is what makes for a very special shopping experience here. Here, you can find a huge variety of things, from copper idols, household items and cosmetics to junk jewellery and gift articles; basically everything you can think of.
Apart from satisfying your shopaholic desires, Tulsi Baug is also a great place to enjoy street food, and amidst the chaos and the noise, the aroma of freshly prepared samosas, pakoras, vada-pav and many other snacks just hangs about in the air. Round off your street food with a desi ice cream before you head back to your home or hotel in Pune.
Best Buys: Gifts and household items
Juna Bazaar is a whole different world and a whole different experience. If you are visiting Pune for the first time and Juna Bazaar is on your list, then be prepared to be completely blown out of your mind. This flea market is held at Santaji Ghorpade Path near Maldhakka Chowk every Wednesday and Sunday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. It is not how cheap things are (such as a 32 GB pen drive for INR 200 and still negotiable!) at Juna Bazaar that astounds shoppers, but the kind of things that are on offer. From antique coins to old cameras and pocket watches to the weird betting game of Gudgudi…the sights and sounds at the market are as unique as strange.
Numismatists will have a field day at Juna Bazaar as a variety of antique coins are available here. Foreigners and Indian tourists frequent this bazaar for the old items that they get here at dirt cheap prices. One can safely say that Juna Bazaar is one of the most interesting shopping places in Pune when it comes to experience.
Best Buys: Antiques
Fergusson College Road
FC Road is one of the liveliest streets in Pune. Located in the heart of the city, this street market is filled with food joints, restaurants and shopping stalls, selling myriad things. This place is a favourite amongst the local youngsters and a must visit for every tourist in Pune. People flock here to buy fashionable clothing, accessories, bags, footwear, and so much more. FC Road is also famous for books that you can get at a really good price, albeit with proper bargaining.
If you enjoy bargaining and are good at it, then a day at the FC Road will be well worth it. There is no dearth of refreshments on this street as there is a whole row of renowned coffee shops, where you can enjoy a pick-me-up snack whenever you get tired and need to recharge your batteries to continue with the shopping spree!
Best Buys: Clothes and books
Hong Kong Lane
Hong Kong Lane is your go-to place if you are looking for accessories. This is a great place to shop for trinkets, costume jewellery for men and women, watches, beaded bracelets, belts, caps, shoes, boho dresses, bags, books and so much more. This is the one market where you will find men shopping and actually enjoying it. Hong Kong Lane also has an array of internationally made goods that you can get at attractive prices.
Best Buys: Accessories
Laxmi Road is your typical Indian market with narrow roads and traditional stores. It is the best place to shop for sarees, if you are in Pune. This place is also famous for jewellery and other traditional wear. You will be spoilt for choice by the variety of things available as you walk the by lanes of this old market. Laxmi Road is also a major haunt for puja accessories, so don’t be surprised to see it packed during festivals!
Best Buys: Traditional wear
A trip is incomplete without some retail therapy, and Pune provides many great options to explore and enjoy the shopping experience. From high-end malls selling chic and branded items to street side stores and stalls, you can find them all here. The city has enough options to make sure you do not return to your hotel without 2-3 stuffed shopping bags!