Kashmir, most famously referred to as "Paradise on Earth", no doubt offers exceptional places to visit. It is an ideal place for vacation as it offers a plethora of sites that are almost close to paradise.
In Kashmir, one can find a lot of things worth buying to keep as a memento or use as gifts and souvenirs. A lot of visitors and tourists come here looking for a tourist destination but shopping in Kashmir is almost never part of the plan. However, no trip would be complete without souvenir shopping.
With a lot of valuable specialties that Kashmir has to offer, listed below are some of the most loved things to buy in Kashmir.
Dried Fruits and Nuts
Things to Buy in Kashmir
With every trip or visit, the most common mistake a tourist makes is not thinking enough about what to buy and going on a shopping spree with things that instantly catch their eye. Kashmir in general has a lot to offer but there are specific things that you get here which serve as exciting keepsakes to remember the experience.
1. Pashmina Shawls
Known all over the world for its superior quality and appeal, the Kashmiri Pashmina is rightfully the most loved shawl product. These shawls are traditionally handcrafted and hand woven on traditional looms whose wools are made of Changthangi goats. Earlier, they were even adorned by kings and queens which is why they are considered a status symbol.
These shawls are always what catch the eye whenever you walk around the markets of Kashmir and it is almost impossible to walk away without purchasing at least one of these. The Shawls are available in a variety of styles and in vibrant colors.
Pashmina cashmere shawls are widely known for their warmth and soft texture, their durability for which it is said to even pass down from one generation to another. Given its superlative quality, the shawls may come off as a little expensive but in due time, you will definitely come to understand the superior competency that makes them so desirable and loved.
2. Kashmiri Carpets
Kashmiri Carpets, renowned throughout the world for being one of the best quality oriental carpets, are truly a work of art. Kashmiri carpets are famous for being handcrafted. The carpets are hand-knotted which gives them their durable quality.
The design and patterns on the carpets made here are considered to be very intricate and detailed. Chemical dyes are used in the process of its coloring.
The most expensive carpets are made with pure wool or silk and it is not mixed with other materials which renders the carpet its unique quality. But the affordable quality which isn’t as expensive is made of a blend of wool, silk, and rayon which are also equally exquisite and decorative.
3. Kashmiri Saffron
Considered to be one of the most expensive spices in the world, Saffron is indeed valuable since it is a labor-induced spice. . Saffron is obtained from the stigma of the flowering crocus.
Kashmiri Saffron is said to be one of the world’s finest saffron.
Called the ‘golden crop’, Kashmiri Saffron gives a beautiful golden color and aromatic flavor to food. The Morga Cream is the finest Indian Saffron found in Kashmir. It is dark red in color and is great in both taste and quality.
The natives of Kashmir use this spice in all the cuisines that are considered good and pure. The quality of the Kashmiri Saffron in terms of its color, aroma, and pungency is what makes it so desirable and makes it a valuable thing to buy in Kashmir.
4. Dried Fruits and Nuts
The dried fruits and nuts of Kashmir are renowned for being extremely palatable and are very popular among locals and tourists alike. Dry fruits are used extensively on many occasions and in many cuisines.
The variety of Kashmiri dried fruits and nuts like walnuts, apricots, almonds, cashews, figs, and blackberries are among the favorites. One may find that the shopping markets in Kashmir are flooded with authentic and high-quality dried fruits to choose from in order to take home.
5. Walnut Wood-Carved Objects
The objects carved from the wood Walnut are among the most impressive items to buy in Kashmir. The crafts of carved walnut woodwork are significantly detailed and intricate. The designs and patterns on these wood-carved objects are so close to the culture of Kashmir and hence prove very popular among many tourists.
Highly skilled craftsmen of Kashmir renders their creativity and craftsmanship as they carve wood into items like furniture, table, trays, photo frames, pen stands, toys, and key holders. These objects serve as great tools to gift as souvenirs or as home décor.
6. Traditional Kashmiri Jewelry
The pieces of jewelry adorned by the beautiful women of Kashmir are handcrafted to display the alluring and lavish traditional aspect. Pieces of jewelry like earrings, bangles, anklets, necklaces, and many other accessories line the markets of Kashmir.
They are famous for their designs which are crafted with precision and offer a palatial look when worn. It is usually a favorite among tourists who buy it to wear and also gift it to family and friends.
7. Kashmiri Apple
One of the finest quality apples in the world, the Kashmir Apple, is loved across the globe for its smell, flavor, and texture. The factors like soil, climate, and environmental conditions of Kashmir contribute greatly to the favorable growth of apples.
The Apple Orchards in Kashmir are well cared for and maintained and the amount of hard work that goes into the harvest is what makes the fruit the best in terms of its quality.
So, make sure that whenever you visit Kashmir, buy some of those Kashmiri apples and take them back home to enjoy them with your loved ones.
8. Kashmiri Chilies
If you are someone with a palate that enjoys spicy food and flavor, Kashmiri Chili might just be the thing you’re looking for. It is famous in India and is a staple in almost every Indian household.
They are known for their vibrant and intense red color and for their mild heat. The Kashmiri red chili is available all year round and can be easily spotted at any food market all around Kashmir.
9. Willow Baskets
The craft of making baskets has been practiced in Kashmir for as long as can be remembered. It was present everywhere in the nation and is unquestionably the most widespread and well-liked craft there is.
Most of the baskets you'll find in Kashmir are circular, spherical, or cylindrical in appearance. Abundant willow reeds that grow in marshes and lakes are utilized to create beautifully rustic items like shopping baskets, lampshades, tables, and chairs that are all quite affordable.
Unvarnished items should be regularly spritzed with water to keep them from becoming stiff. This will help extend their longevity, especially in hot, dry areas. Wintertime usage mostly involves the hand-made heating basket known as the "Kangri."
1. In Kashmir, what should one wear?
The valley receives a lot of snow, and the winters are chilly. Make sure to bring thick, woolen clothing if you plan to visit the Kashmir Valley during these months.
2. Which fruit is Kashmir's most renowned?
Apples also known as Sebh or Tsoonth locally, are the primary fruit grown in the Kashmir valley.
3. What time of year is ideal for visiting Kashmir?
The months of March through August are the best seasons to travel to Kashmir. In order to experience this "paradise on earth" and all that it has to offer, tourists often choose these months to travel to Kashmir valley.
Up to you!
From food to handcrafted items to clothes, Kashmir has so much to offer to anyone willing to visit the valley. The markets of Maharaja Bazaar and Kokar Bazaar are among the most notable markets where almost all the things mentioned above are found.
These markets are a world on their own and it is here that you can get to enjoy a whole lot of Kashmiri culture, tradition, and cuisines. Shopping in Kashmir is great fun and it offers a glimpse into the vibrant nature of Kashmir and its people.
So, next time, when you visit Kashmir, remember to go visit the markets and buy things from the locals to help build their businesses and promote the works of Kashmiris.
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