Lal Bazaar portrays the true vibrant color of Sikkim, it is the market where local farmers from around Gangtok congregate to sell their products. Specially on Sunday Gangtok’ s Lal Bazaar is a melody of colours where various ethnic groups from different villages gather to haggle, bargain, gossip or just sell their wares.
This buzzing market area is located below MG Marg and a few minutes walk. The market was first established in 1956 as an open area market full of shops and named after J. Lal who was a Dewan of the Chogyal (i.e. King) of Sikkim. However in 2005 the old market was demolished and a multi-storied shopping complex was built here which also accommodated a vegetable market. This was then renamed as Kachendzonga Shopping Complex.
There is something unique about Lal Bazaar in Gnagtok that is hard to experience anywhere else in Gangtok. It is a vibrant marketplace where you will find an amazing range of products and indigenous stuffs. Along with the variety of products, you will enjoy the experience of watching the villagers gathering and trying to woo the buyers with their offerings. If you love bargaining you can spend less for more at the market. The market offers a non-touristy side of Gangtok city and its hustle-bustle springs life into the neighbourhood. Don’t miss out on the view of the city from here!
A lot of goods sold here are shipped from Siliguri. The vegetable market is situated on first floor. This is quite unique loaded with colorful produces. You can find all varieties of vegetables here. You can shop for the finest Yak ghee. The mushrooms sold here are the best.
In Gangtok’s Lal Bazaar, you can buy things for personal use or collect gifts and souvenirs for close ones. From electronic gadgets to clothes, the range is impressive. However, the majority of sellers who come here are local farmers. You will be able to buy organic produce that has brought Sikkim much fame and limelight. A lot of local women come here to buy fresh vegetables and fruits. The tea harvested in Temi tea garden and organic vegetables are among the popular items sought by tourists. At Lal Bazaar you will also get various other items like pottery, prayer flags, Khukri (traditional curved Nepali knife), cut flowers etc. Look for Daalo – baskets made from bamboo and cane, a great item to buy here.
The colorful dresses and diverse languages spoken make Lal Bazaar a perfect testament for India’s ‘Unity in Diversity.’ Note that Lal Bazaar and the shops on Lal Bazaar Road (the street that connects the market with MG Marg) remain closed on Thursdays.