Shopping in Bengaluru (Bangalore)
Shopping in Bengaluru offers a wealth of choice, from handmade arts and crafts to beautiful silk saris.
For Karnataka specialities, there is an abundance of handicraft shops in and around Mahatma Gandhi Road and the Commercial Street area. Silk, Lambani tribal jewellery, and carvings of sandalwood and rosewood soapstone abound. Sculptures and brassware are sold at a lesser extent.
Commercial Street is renowned for its excellent tailors, serving both men and women, who can create a suit or copy one you already have in a matter of days. Opticians will also craft prescription glasses in a few days.
More general handicraft stores are Central Cottage Industries Emporium (144 MG Road) and The Cauvery (49 MG Road).
City Market (KR) mostly sells fresh products like fruit, vegetables and flowers. Russell Market is more centrally located, near Commercial Street. It is worth visiting these markets to get an authentic feel for the places where locals do their usual food shopping.
Bengaluru got its first indoor air-conditioned shopping mall with multi-storey parking - the Forum - in 2004. It is now one of several malls selling European and American branded goods, as well as many well-known Indian chains. Other malls have followed suit, including The Garuda Mall, Bangalore Central and more recently, the Total Mall chain.
Most shops, and particularly the handicraft shops, open late and close late with no absolute set times. However, 1000-1100 to 2000-2100 are typical opening hours throughout the week.
From quirky knick-knacks to delicious treats, Bengaluru offers a wide range of souvenirs to commemorate your trip. Bring back some Mysore pak, a popular sweet in South India that’s textured like fudge and often infused with cardamom. Mysore Sandal Soap is another regional favourite, as it’s the only soap in the world made from entirely pure sandalwood oil. The rich, milky smell is surely something you’ll want to take home.