Mumbai has some interesting and unique nooks & corners, one of them being our local Chor Bazaar. “Chor” in Hindi means “thieves” and “Bazaar” means a “market”, hence literally translated “Chor Bazaar” means “Thieves Market”. Per Wikipedia this market is one of the largest flea markets in India and has a fascinating history. Apparently this market was originally called Shor Bazaar, meaning “noisy market”, but with British mispronunciation “shor” became “chor” and the name stuck. Eventually stolen goods started finding their way here and hence this market started living upto its name. These days Chor Bazaar is famous for all kinds of antique / vintage products and other interesting things ranging from clocks, all kinds of instruments, furniture, glassware, brassware, lamps, ceramics, Bollywood posters, ceramics, coins, miniature cars, etc etc. Basically its possible to find anything here from cute to bizarre to the regular. 🙂
As part of my Mumbai Local series, I had wanted to visit this market for a while and eventually ended up going there with a photography group. And during this trail, realized that along with a shoppers treasure trove, this market is also a photographers delight. This is a small market at Mutton Street, near Mohammad Ali Road and is best explored on foot. We started our trip on an early Sunday morning and saw the early morning activity and the market actually come alive. Hence we managed to capture a lot of activity around the market too.
I loved walking all around this market and exploring the small alleys, shops and discovering hidden treasures of my own. At one point I even stumbled upon a small second-hand clothes market and an automobile junkyard :). But I most loved the people photography here and an old style telephone box. And sharing some of these sights below –
I have also been assured by numerous regulars that every visit here brings out a new sight, new items and after one visit I can totally understand what they mean by it.
So the next time you are in Mumbai, do take some time out and be sure to visit this hidden corner.
Tips for the Trip –
- The easiest landmark to this market is Shalimar Hotel on Mohammad Ali Road and you then ask anyone around for directions.
- If you are shopping here then bargaining is a must.
- This market is in a conservative part of Mumbai, hence I recommend dressing a bit conservatively. Not that anyone says anything, but this just helps avoid undue attention and stares.
- Things available here are by availability and chance hence you have to rummage around and may not get not something that you may have in mind on your first trip.