Summer in India stands for a lot of things - juicy mangoes, hot winds, vacations to hill stations and the opportunity to travel and look your best once you have stored your winter coats away and said goodbye to the cold. After two years of lockdown summers due to COVID-19, this is the first time in two years that people across the country can finally enjoy the sunshine.
It’s important to shed those pajamas you have been wearing daily and go out on the town looking your best. A summer wardrobe needs to be fresh, airy and comfortable - and there are places across the country known for providing the ideal clothes for the season and for most occasions - whether it be a balmy summer wedding or a day out with friends.
Here’s a guide for anyone who’s looking to travel and shop for their looks this season - effectively killing two birds with one stone!
If you love flowy Indian prints but shopping at Good Earth and Anokhi is a touch above your price range, then Jaipur is definitely the city for you to visit. Enjoy the vibrant charm of the “pink city” and visit the bustling bazaars that Jaipur is famous for, to find unique and comfortable ethnic wear for your summer wardrobe.
Johari Bazaar is in the heart of the city, and is famous for jewellery and clothes shopping. From silver jhumka’s to chandbalis and stunning kurta-anarkali sets and Rajasthani patterned slip dresses, you can find it all here! Enjoy some roadside kachori and lassi to ensure you make the most out of your trip.
While Delhi is known for many things, from amazing food to cultural and heritage sites, street shopping and fashion is also on the list. Delhi has become home to some of the country’s biggest fashion influencers like Deeksha Rawat, Mannat Sandhu and Komal Pandey, who all take inspiration from the iconic Delhi markets and stores.
Sarojini Nagar is the epitome of street style in Delhi, with hundreds of stalls selling clothes - from Indian wear to jeans, dresses and tops. Sarojini Nagar is also the place to find styles from high end western brands at reasonable prices and the ideal place to visit in Delhi where you can buy a totally new wardrobe for a fraction of the price it would cost you at a mall.
However, if you’re not into street shopping but prefer more upscale boutiques and stores then a visit to Malcha Marg or the Qutub area is perfect for you. You can even stop by the “Grammar Room” for a quick pick me up snack. Shopping is an exhausting endeavor after all!
While most people do all their summer shopping prior to a Goa trip, it’s not a bad idea to arrive with a half empty suitcase and shop for the clothes you want in Goa itself! If you’re visiting some of the popular beaches like Anjuna then you can check out the flea market nearby and buy your bikinis and swimsuits right before diving into the water. This is also a great place for fun accessories like hats, sunglasses and tote bags - an absolute must for a hot, sunny day in Goa.
Panaji market and Calangute Market are also great options for summer dresses and funky souvenirs. Don’t forget to stop by Curly’s or Tito’s in your fun new clothes for some chilled beer and lemon butter garlic prawns - the perfect recipe for a summer vacation.
Chennai is a bustling metropolitan city with a lot to offer, especially when it comes to fabric and clothes. Known for the famous stiff silk kanjeevaram sarees in brilliant jewel tones, this is the place to find statement clothes for all your special occasions. The Kancheepuram area is known as Silk City and one can find silk weavers hard at work producing finely spun silk sarees at all times.
Kanakavalli is another famous store in the Adyar region to buy stunning sarees and material for your clothes. In true avant garde fashion, silk sarees are now also being repurposed into western wear such as dresses, crop tops and skirts - so even if you don’t need to buy a sari, you can still use the beautiful fabric to wow the crowd!
While Lucknow is also a food haven, it is also known for the amazing fabric and chikankari work done by local artisans and craftsmen and so is a popular shopping destination for people who value authentic craftsmanship when it comes to ethnic wear.
Stop by Aminabad market for some fabulous silver and gold jewellery and chikankari suits in a variety of shades and colours - perfect for every occasion! This market is in Hazratganj - a section of the old city - so it’s also ideal for sightseeing, delicious kebabs and to fully embrace the vibe of Lucknow. You can also buy chikan fabric to take back home to your tailor and make sari’s lehengas and suits for the summer and monsoon wedding season!
So the next time you’re planning a trip - keep in mind your dwindling wardrobe and pick your destination according to where you can get the best clothes!