Stunning with its wild, unspoiled, mysterious and majestic landscape at the foot of the Himalayas, Ladakh is a region in the Indian states of Jammu and Kashmir known as the Little Tibet of India. You may have heard of the world-famous breathtakingly beautiful attractions of Ladakh such as Pangong Lake, Nubra Valley, Tso-Moriri Lake, Hemis Monastery, Padum Valley and more, but you may not know that shopping in Ladakh is also an exciting experience.
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Though most people visiting Ladakh would not consider it a shopping destination, there are interesting places there to satisfy your shopping desire, and this post will help navigate your shopping trip when you are in Ladakh. So, what is famous in Ladakh for shopping, what is famous in Ladakh, what to buy in Ladakh as well as where to buy in Ladakh? Let’s check out our Ladakh shopping guide with the suggested of 9 + must and top things to buy in Ladakh and Ladakh souvenirs and 8 best places to buy them in Ladakh as follows!
You will find your shopping journey inspired by Tibetan culture because Ladakh is located quite close to Tibet, and most Ladakhi people are Buddhists. In Ladakh, tourists often shop for items such as Tibetan handicrafts, apricot jam, Pashmina shawls, silver jewellery, etc. These items are available at all the amazing shopping places mentioned in this post. Now, let’s go shopping in the Little Tibet of India!
Moti Market (# what to buy in ladakh)
Location: Leh, Jammu and Kashmir 194101
Moti Market is located in Leh City and known as one of the oldest markets in Ladakh.
In Moti Market, you will find almost anything and everything, from traditional Tibetan garments to woolen clothing and fabrics, from colorful and beautifully-designed Tibetan artifacts to Tibetan handicrafts made with utmost care by local talented artisans. All items are gorgeous and of high quality.
If you are looking to buy some jewellery, Moti Market is a heaven for you. As the name ‘Moti’ suggests, the market is known for pearls and semi-precious jewellery, and also authentic silvery and traditional Ladakhi Turquoise jewellery.
If you don’t want to spend a lot of money, you can buy a woolen shawl for your parents or some small trinkets for yourself and your friends. Try your bargaining skill to get a good price because the prices of the items are not fixed.
Women’s Alliance of Ladakh Shopping Hub (# things to buy in ladakh)
Location: Shankar Road, Chubi, Leh-Ladakh, Jammu and Kashmir 194101.
The Women’s Alliance of Ladakh Shopping Hub was founded in 1991 and is managed and operated by women, a special feature that only exists in Ladakh and a few other places in India. This market is far from a small shopping place, it is a declaration of women’s financial independence.
In this shopping hub, you will find all kinds of stuff – from stationery to woolen clothing, from silver jewellery to spices and vegetables – from the shops set up by hundreds of women from neighboring villages.
Even if you are not a fan of shopping, you should visit this market to learn something about the life of its women. Whenever you are fed up with this place, go and enjoy yourself in the surrounding magnificent mountainous beauty. Very convenient!
Zanskar Arts (# ladakh souvenirs)
Location: Main Bazaar, Near Sua Market, Leh, Jammu and Kashmir 194101
Zanskar Arts is an old shop located in the main bazaar of Leh. It is popular not only with the local people but also with tourists because of its high-quality, soft and smooth clothing made of pure Pashmina wool. The shop also sells Kashmiri bed-sheets, dress materials, shawls, and others that are extremely popular in India.
You can also find leather items of good quality, colorful and gorgeous souvenirs and statuettes here. Above all, famous Ladakhi silver jewellery in intricate designs is also available in this special Zanskar Arts. They will definitely catch your attention.
Main Bazaar (# ladakh shopping)
Location: Leh, Jammu and Kashmir 194101.
To experience the unique atmosphere of Ladakh, you should visit its Main Bazaar in Leh. This market is not only a popular stop for tourists but it is also where most local people shop for their daily items. Apart from its affordable items, this place also gives you a glimpse of what life may be like in Ladakh.
Most of the items available in the market are in a reasonable price but of high quality. You can buy artifacts created by the shopkeepers in a complicated process that will impress you. There are also shops selling the world-famous beautiful silver jewellery of Ladakh in a surprisingly cheap price.
Although all the items in the market are quite cheap, you can reduce the price even more by using your bargaining skills. If you’re looking for some budget-friendly shopping, the main bazaar in Leh is the place for you.
Himalaya Pashmina Shawl (# what is famous in ladakh for shopping)
Location: Balkang Chowk, Near Airtel Office, Main Bazaar road, Leh, Jammu and Kashmir 194101.
Himalaya Pashmina Shawl was established in 1975 and has won world renown for its high quality products since then. At Himalayan Pashmina Shawl, you will find almost all kinds of Kashmir handicrafts which are well-known not only in India but also worldwide.
Another special product for sale here is incredibly soft shawls made from pure Pashmina wool. As you know, pure Pashmina wool is rare and quite difficult to get, but this shop is very popular with Indian and international visitors for its garments made from Pashmina wool. Though the items are a bit pricey, it’s worth it.
Ladags Apricot Store (# best places to shop in ladakh)
Location: LBA Shopping Complex, Zangsti
Apricots are a special fruit of Ladakh. The freshness, the taste and the pleasant smell of Ladakh’s apricots are something that is hard to find somewhere else.
If you want something singular as a gift to take home for your family and friends, it is apricots and its products. Visit Ladags Apricot Store and you will find almost everything made from apricots: fresh dried, oil, jam, and more.
Tibetan Handicraft Emporium
Location: Main Bazaar Road, Leh, Ladakh
Another shopping venue worth your try is the Tibetan Handicraft Emporium run by Tibetan refugees. This handicraft place is busy with tourists all year round.
There are many things you can buy from here like Ladakhi jewellery in silver or stone, various household items, exquisite gifts, and more. Standing out from the other products in this shop are its brilliant and artful handicrafts and antiques at acceptable prices.
Though this store is probably more expensive than the ones along Main Bazar road, you may be overwhelmed by the variety of its products.
Dalai Lama Charity Trust Handicraft Emporium (# ladakh shopping guide)
Location: Leh City, Jammu and Kashmir 194101
Dalai Lama Charity Trust Handicraft Emporium is another heaven for shopping lovers in Ladakh where you can shop for artworks made by local artisans. Plenty of local artifacts and handicrafts are available at this emporium, ranging from shawls to paintings, from woolen clothing to arts and crafts.
One good thing about this place is that the earnings from the sale of its items are distributed among local artisans to encourage and help them promote their creativity. So if you want to support the local craftsmen, you should definitely visit this place!
Top 5 must-buy items in Ladakh
There are countless things in Ladakh you can spend your money on, from apricot products to local handicrafts, but certainly you don’t want to miss the following famous items when shopping in this wonderful destination.
Cycling in a leather jacket is the first thing that comes to mind when someone thinks of Ladakh. Therefore, it is no doubt that a leather jacket is definitely one of the famous things to buy in Ladakh. From wholesalers to retailers, you can find this item for sale everywhere in Ladakh.
Available in a number of different colors, these leather jackets can satisfy even the most difficult customers. So, forget to take your most important jacket? Don’t worry! Buy a new one in Ladakh!
Another thing that Ladakh is famous for is stone and silver jewellery. You can’t take your eyes off a Ladakhi woman wearing turquoise and silver jewellery – what a beauty!
The brilliant designs and quality of these accessories are what attracts tourists to Ladakh. From bracelets to anklets, from rings to earrings, there is a wide range of beautiful things that you can buy for your special loved ones back home.
Tibetan handicrafts and wares (# what is famous in ladakh for shopping)
It is obvious that Tibetans in Leh and Ladakh are famous for their handicrafts and artifacts. The best thing about these arts and crafts is how the Tibetans spread their love and culture.
You can always find an item associated with Tibetan culture as a souvenir such as eye-catching Thangka paintings, Buddha statues of all shapes and sizes, colorful masks or copper chhang pots.
Pashmina shawls and woolens
Ladakh is also very famed for its Pashmina shawls and soft woolens. There was a time in Ladakh where only wealthy merchants could afford Pashmina and it indicated the owner’s status.
The best thing about Pashmina is that though the fabric is extremely light in weight, it gives great warmth to the wearer. It is simply perfect for the bone-chilling temperatures in Ladakh.
These days, there are many stores in Ladakh offering Pashmina stuff like mittens, gloves, sweaters, blankets, caps, scarves and even socks to satisfy tourists’ tastes.
Rugs and Kashmiri Carpets
What could be better than a rug or carpet with a unique pattern to add splendor to your home?
Ladakh is a destination of a wide range of colorful and patterned rugs and carpets of unmatched quality. These items simply brighten up a room instantly. Not only for the floor are these thick and sturdy Ladakhi rugs perfect for, but also the walls of your home. Don’t miss these attractive items!
Prayer flags, singing bowl & prayer wheels
Is there anything in this land of Buddhism that can bring you both fun and calm? Yes, they are prayer wheels and flags.
Colorful rectangular prayer flags, often found strung along mountain trails and peaks in the Himalayas, are used to promote peace, compassion, strength, and wisdom. The Tibetans believe the prayers and mantras will be blown by the wind to spread the good will and compassion into all space.
Prayer wheels – a cylindrical wheel on a spindle made from metal, wood, stone, leather, or coarse cotton – are used by many Tibetans every day. Turning prayer wheels is believed to spread spiritual blessings and well-being.
These religious but interesting items are available in many different sizes and can be an unusual and great gift for your loved ones.
Shopping in Ladakh – Frequently Asked Questions (# what is famous in ladakh)
What are the main shopping places in Ladakh?
Moti market, Main Bazaar, Zanskar Arts, Himalayan Pashmina Shawl, Women’s Alliance of Ladakh Shopping Hub are some of the shopping places in Ladakh to shop for authentic Tibetan items.
What is some popular stuff to buy in Ladakh?
Leather jackets, Ladakhi jewellery, apricots jam, Tibetan handicrafts & wares, Pashmina shawls and woollens, prayer wheels & flags are some of the must-buy things on your Ladakh trip.
What fruit is Ladakh famous for? (# what to buy in ladakh)
Apricots and Ladakh berries (sea buckthorn) are the famous fruits of the Little Tipet of India.
What is the best time to visit Ladakh?
The ideal time to visit Ladakh is the summer months from April to June or monsoon months from July to September.
How long is enough to explore Ladakh?
You will need 8 to 10 days to explore the magnificent scenery of Ladakh.
Some best day tours, trips, activities and transfer services, tickets in, from and to Leh-Ladakh-Zanskar you can refer to
- 10D9N Discover Ladakh, India from Singapore [All-Inclusive]
- 7D6N Ladakh Private Tour
- 6D5N Ladakh Private Tour
- 9D8N Chadar Frozen River Trekking Experience
- 11D10N Stok Kangri Summit Trek from Leh