Shopping In Nepal
Nepal offers typical ethnic items such as wooden masks and crafts, Statues, Prayer wheels and flags, Gorkha knives (Khukuri), hand-knitted carpets, garments and much, much more both for commercial or souvenir purposes. Fine articles such as silver and gold hand made jewelries; precious gems, Pendants, Pashmina shawls and cashmere pullovers are also available. Shopping in Nepal can be an experience in itself. Items in Nepal are usually cheaper than back at home,
Below are some of the most important products of Nepal.
Nepal is a good destination to buy quality Pashmina. "Pashmina" is the Persian word for pashm meaning finest wool fibre or the "soft gold" king of fibres. Pashmina is fine cashmere combed from the undercoat of the Himalayan mountain goat that roams in the Himalayas. Himalayan Mountain goat, Carpa Hircus, sheds its winter coat (Approximately 3-8 ounces fibre) every spring once a year. Since it can be collected only once a year in too small amount, it is rare as well. Therefore, Pashmina has been valued for centuries throughout Asia and the Middle East, and because of its wonderful qualities pashmina is now becoming popular day by day in west markets as well. Stylish women all over the world have been using Pashmina as icing on the cake of their designer wears.
These include shawls, woolen sweaters, socks, mittens, jackets, trousers, and hats which are very functional and colorful souvenir items. Nepalese tailors are adept at creating garments out of hand-loomed cotton, silk, wool, and leather. Exceptional embroidery also goes into the works.
Jewelry Gold & Silver Necklaces, bracelets, rings and traditional beads are some of the special products of Patan. Tibetan jewelry abounds in Kathmandu. There is even a colorful international glass bead market in Ranki Bazaar off Indrachowk.
Gems in Kathmandu has one of the widest selections of loose gems in South Asia. Ruby, aquamarine, black and green tourmaline, quartz, rare hamburgrite, panburite, felspar, epidate, and "healing stones" are mined in the high hills and mountains of Nepal, and therefore, are available in Kathmandu at competitive prices.
This curved metal knife is synonymous with the legendary Gurkha soldiers and their valor in many international wars. Its origin is humble, belonging to the hills of Nepal. Manufactured by iron smiths with surprisingly simple and rudimentary traditional implements, this is an ideal souvenir to take back home with.
In Nepal, decorative as well as everyday household utensils are made of copper, brass, and bronze. These are elaborately engraved. Karuwas (water jars), antis (liquor jars), and hanging oil lamps are some of the very popular and useful souvenirs.
Traditional Nepalese paper is actually made of Lokta (Daphne) bark found in the high hills of Nepal. Because of its cross-fibrous, and therefore, strong texture, it has been used for official documents. Commercially turned out as writing pads, calendars and lamp shades; lokta has also gained international fame as the material for the UNICEF greeting cards produced in Bhaktapur.
Paubhas or Thankas are traditional paintings, depicting deities and religious icons and symbols drawn from Buddhism. Painted on cotton scrolls or canvas, the best Paubhas (Thankas in Tibetan) use precious powdered stone pigments for vivid colors. Silver and gold dusts are other important ingredients.
The Kathmandu Valley potters are famous for their delicate art of shaping and sizing both terra-cotta and glazed utility and decorative earthenware. The potters' square in Bhaktapur is the place to buy these souvenirs as well as to see the potters in action.
The casting of bronze, brass and copper statuary in Nepal dates back to the 13th century. Nepal is famous for the ancient and painstaking "lost wax method" in which ornate figures are modeled and molded in bees-wax.
The Newars are expert in their artistry in wood. Their intricately-carved doors, windows, pillars and lattices are seen in and around Kathmandu. Tourism has greatly encouraged the manufacture of these ornate works in wood, mainly in the workshops of Patan and Bhaktapur.
These are hand-knotted pieces of art, using the traditional techniques of Tibet. The best of Himalayan sheep wool and New Zealand long staples are used in weaving the best-quality carpets. Vegetable dyes are used in authentic carpets though usage of imported cost- effective and enduring chemical colors is also seen these days.
The eastern districts of Nepal, Ilam grows and produces excellent varieties of Himalayan tea. Therefore, you will get a wide selection of the fine tea, packaged attractively suitable for gifts, and guaranteed as a great brew.