India may be know by budget travelers for the beaches and laidback lifestyle of Goa, but it’s a land with unique vacation possibilities for travelers who seek everything from Rajasthan camel treks and Himalayan adventure to shopping expeditions in bustling Bazaars, searching for the world’s finest spices, perfumes, silks and colorful sets of stacking bangle bracelets.
Laad Bazaar in Hyderabad
Whether looking for a unique vacation idea or traveling to India on a buying trip, the place to go, for the atmosphere and the best bangle bracelets, faux diamonds, Indian bridal accessories, cheap jewelry and saris, is the Laad Bazaar in Hyderabad (also known as the Choodi)— one of India’s oldest and most renowned markets dedicated primarily to enameled/lacquered bangles. This ancient Hyderabad bazaar is so closely linked to Indian bracelets that the name “Laad” actually means enamel or lacquer. Although it may seem odd that an entire market be devoted almost exclusively to one specific jewelry item, it must be noted that bangle bracelets are one of India’s important commodities. Scarcely an Indian woman can be found without some kind of bracelet, most of them accented with colorful lacquer motifs or enamel inlays. In India, bangles are as important as wedding rings to western women, perhaps more so, since they’re not only essential in marriage rituals, but worn by babies, little girls, and old women – on arms, wrists and ankles, the latter ones designed with tiny bells to tinkle with each step.
Getting to Hyderabad
If you’re planning an Indian adventure or a shopping trip, Hyderabad is a relatively easy place to get to considering most people have never heard of it. It’s the capital of Andhra Pradesh state (on the southeastern coast), considered to be the largest city in India with a total population of over 7 million. Although today the city’s most famous bazaar specializes in cheap jewelry, bangle bracelets and bridal accessories, Hyderabad was once the world’s top diamond and pearl trading center. It’s now an IT capital (as well as a hotspot for the Indian film industry), nevertheless the ancient Laad Bazaar retains it’s historic charm. Wholesalers and retailers unite from across India, Asia and the world, bartering for the best deals on enamel and inlaid bangle bracelets, fake diamond rings and cheap bridal jewelry. The bazaar remains one of the world’s most exotic and colorful markets, a place where travelers can witness the splendor of the past.
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