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Shopping in Nepal
Nepal is a colourful country and its colours can be seen during shopping as well. There are a plenty of markets and shopping areas in the country that offer tourists an opportunity to source the authentic Nepali souvenirs. Here, the travellers can source the finest variety of world class outdoor gear, books from some of the best Asian bookshops, warm Pashmina shawls, Buddhist thangkas, prayer flags, wooden carvings, etc.
Shopping in Nepal is a real delight where a lot of handicrafts, spices, paintings and artifacts are vying with each other for tourist attention.
Also, there are some specialties of Nepal that can be purchased during a shopping tour in its markets. Gurkha Knives, also known as Khukuri is the world’s most popular knife famous for its unique slashing sharp edge. It was also used as a prominent weapon by Nepali Gurkhas during war. Seen as a Nepali icon by the tourists, hand crafted Khukuri is an excellent souvenir for collectors. These knives can be purchased from Thamel shopping area and Bhojpur.
Mandalas and Thangkas or Paubhas are also a great buys in Nepal owing to the rich Buddhist influence in the country. Colourfully elaborate and unique in every right, these Buddhist paintings and sacred mandalas have deep rooted meaning. Tourists can even carry the artistic and ethnic brilliance of Thangkas back home after shopping from Kathmandu, Ekantakuna, Lalitpur and near Boudhanath Stupa.
Mithila Paintings are other colourful artworks that can be taken as souvenirs. Mithila was the legendary kingdom of Sita, the ideal woman and perfect wife of Lord Rama from the epic of Ramayana. The paintings from Mithila depict the scenes from rituals and religious offerings to ward off evil. Made by Maithili women, these highly creative paintings can be purchased in Janakpur and Dhanushpur region of Terai.
Handmade Carpets and Pashmina Shawls are other attractive items that can be bought in Nepal. Woven by Tibetan and Kashmiri artisans living in Nepal, these handmade items possess beauty and creativity and are one of the prized souvenirs to be purchased here. Made of fine cashmere wool, these woven rugs, carpets and shawls depict the richness of artistry thriving here.
The high altitudes and extreme climate also provide the perfect grounds for Local Nepali Tea to flourish. The tea cultivated here is fresh and tastes better. Also, it has many health benefits which make it again an easy to pack souvenir from Nepal to be enjoyed with every brew. A perfect tea pack can be bought from the tourist destinations of Kathmandu and Pokhara, etc.
Wooden Carvings and Masks are a part of Nepal’s heritage. Newars of Kathmandu are endowed in the skill of wood carving which comprises intricately carved windows, photo frames, doors, jewellery boxes, household items, etc. An excellent piece of art, the wooden artifacts here are made of teak, sal, rosewood. The range of wooden items on offer here include statues of religious deities, temples, stupa replicas, tables, lamp-stands, photo frames, etc. Tourists can take back home their share of carved wooden heritage in the form of exquisite table tops, sculptures, etc from Kathmandu and masks from Pokhara, Thamel Market and the heritage market of Durbar Square.
All this is just a glimpse of rich Nepali shopping experience. You can enjoy your rich Shopping trip during any of your itinerary to the colourful Nepal. More on the itineraries and special tour packages can be reviewed here.
NOTE – All handicraft items above 100 years are termed as antique and taking them out of Nepal is illegal and a serious offense. Rest of the handicraft items made of stone, metal and wood or paintings or any handicraft resembling historical artifacts need an approval and clearance from the Department of Archaeology, (Kathmandu near Supreme Court) to obtain clearance certificate before being taken abroad. Please take and protect proper purchase receipt for clearance certificate.