It’s the most wonderful time of the year! December brings with it many festivities, parties, fairs as well as reasons to loosen one’s pockets. Previously, I’ve written about the India International Trade Fair (read here), the Surajkund Crafts Mela (read here) and the World Book Fair (read here)- firmly established shopping haunts during Delhi’s winter season. Today I visited the Winter Mela at Dastkar’s Nature Bazaar and just had to share the knowledge with everyone!
DASTKAR NATURE BAZAAR:
Dastkar is an NGO that works to promote traditional craftspeople and their work, across the Indian diaspora. It was founded in 1981 and has become a household name since then.
The Nature Bazaar at Andheria Modh, Delhi is a collaboration between Dastkar and Delhi Government’s Tourism Department. Every month, this lovely space hosts various events with different themes, to best showcase India’s phenomenal craft heritage.
Alongside the constantly changing bazaars, a street called Gali-E-Khas is assigned to permanent stall holders, so people can return to purchase favoured items.
Cultural performances and craft workshops are added attractions. A food court with street food delicacies from across India is also a permanent fixture.
THE WINTER MELA:
The Winter Mela is a popular annual event at Dastkar’s Nature Bazaar. With a plethora of handwoven knits and gorgeous pure pashmina shawls at affordable prices, this place is a must-visit for all shopoholics.
Handicrafts from the length and breadth of the country, quirky jewellery, modern designs on sweaters and knits, organic skincare, children’s woolens, spices, juttis and other accessories, beautifully ornate carpets and kilims are all up for grabs.
WHY SHOULD YOU VISIT THIS MELA?
The removal of middlemen from the buying process ensures the prices are reasonable, and reach the artisans directly. The sheer variety of products on offer is astounding, much larger than the likes of Dilli Haat; making it an ideal place to buy gifts. With wedding season in full swing, and Christmas round the corner, this is the place to go! I loved my hand-knit earrings from Oony by Anab, my gorgeous pure pashmina stole from Ladakh, and picked up a lovely Yak wool shawl from Himachal Pradesh and a raw silk dupatta from Bihar, as presents. The stunning Afghani kilims and carpets from Nazari Arts are also worth a dekko.
The mela is wonderful for a family excursion, as young children can run around in a safe space, while the adults shop. The food court and a few pop-up cafes ensure a variety of foodie delights on offer. I enjoyed my Papdi Chaat from the Dilli Ka Zaika stall in the food court and loved the delicious kulhad ki chai with gud.
Parking is easily available as are toilet facilities. There’s also seating for when you need a break.
The only thing that irked me was the difficult procedure of billing, payment and collection. People have to book the item they want to purchase at the stall, collect a bill to be produced at the payment counter, and then traipse back to the stall (or multiple stalls) and pick up the item/s. This bureaucratic method is just time-consuming and annoying.
However, I highly recommend a visit. Do visit on a weekday if possible, or on a weekend morning to avoid excessive crowds and have a pleasant shopping experience.
INFORMATION TO KNOW:
Dates: 14 December to 26 December 2018
Timings: 11:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Address: Andheria Modh (on main road), Chattarpur
Tickets: Adults INR 30
INR 100 for unlimited entry
*All pictures are clicked on my iPhone. Copyright belongs to nooranandchawla.
**This is not a sponsored post. I visited the mela on my own.
This is a small vlog of my visit to the Winter Mela at Dastkar Nature Bazaar. Follow me on Instagram at theladylawyer for more real time content.