The shopping experience in Pakistan is not as vibrant as that of neighboring countries such as China, India, Nepal etc. However, it has many shopping destinations that are very popular among locals and also offers a decent experience to people who visit from foreign countries. The shopping culture of this nation is varied.
There are craft centers in all the major towns of Pakistan, where one can find handicrafts from various areas being sold. Hand-embroidered shawls, carpets and rugs, camel-skin lamps, pottery, woodwork, carved wooden tables, onyx ware, trays, brassware, cashmere shawls, silk shawls etc are some of the most popular handicrafts being sold here.
It is possible to find many jewelry items in almost every big city or town of this country, including gold ornaments, silver trinkets and glass bangles. Keep in mind that there are quite a few restrictions about the items that foreigners can get out of the country. People who intend to fly out with an antique item should better consult a museum curator. Those flying with valuable furniture items of any description will be asked to furnish receipts at the airport. Jewelry items should have to be worth lower than 500 USD if purchased in Pakistan. However, receipts have to be kept. At the airport, most foreigners have to undergo baggage inspection during departure.
The Meena Bazaar in Karachi and Peshawar are the ladies only markets in Pakistan, and consists of a maze of shops that sell primarily women’s wear. Customers have to bargain for goods. Peshawar is the Old City in Pakistan, and has some of the biggest markets in the nation. It specializes in the sales of chadors or light woolen blankets, leather chappals or leather slippers / shoes, topis or woolen hats, rugs and more. One can also find slippers having upturned toes.
Shoppers who like to gorge on mouthwatering delicacies in the midst of shopping activities can try the Anarkali Bazar, which is there in Lahore. It is supposed to the most ancient marketplace in South Asia. There are air-conditioned shopping malls in Lahore as well as in Karachi, such as Dolmen Mall, Park Towers and The Forum, where there are food courts existing side by side with shops. These are great places where locals and tourists like to beat the high temperatures, and enjoy a wide variety of international dishes. The Gawalmandi Food Street in Lahore is where food-lovers flock to, to explore the opportunity of gorging on mouthwatering local food.