Mumbai’s Chor Bazaar, which literally means “Thieves market“, has a fascinating history that spans more than 150 years. Apparently, it was originally called Shor Bazaar, meaning “noisy market”, but “shor” became “chor” because of how the British mispronounced the word. Eventually stolen goods started finding their way into the market, resulting in it living up to its new name! These days it’s famous for antique and vintage items.
The market is closed on Fridays (which is Muslim prayer day). However, the area is still worth a visit on Friday when it comes alive with the Juma Market. This is the real thieves market. From sunrise on Friday morning, vendors cram the lanes selling all kinds of goods, many of them stolen. You’ll have to get there early to get the best stuff though.
The main avenue is Mutton Street, flanked by rows of little antique shops that look like musty attics and sell just about anything at bargain prices from old ship parts, grandfather clocks, gramophones, to crystal chandeliers and old English tea sets antiques at throwaway prices, including colonial-era lamps, Art Deco clocks and trinkets of every kind. A store called Mini Market also offers old Bollywood posters for sale. Others offer authentic Victorian furniture, wonderful for browsers, antiquarians and restorers.What’s more, you can forage for Ming vases and Muranos as well. Besides the above mentioned itmes, you can also trace antiques like hardware, tools, wooden carvings, brassware, statues, figures, silver coins, engines, old timepiece, jewelry, etc in the bustling area. In case you happen to be an antiquarian or restorer, then you are moving for just the right place.
Keep in mind that all times have to be bargained for or else you will end up spending more if you buy at the shopkeepers price. The shopkeepers too are prepared for bargaining. So don’t budge from your price.
There’s a saying about this area, if you lose anything in Mumbai you can buy it back from the “chor bazaar”
Where is Chor Bazaar located?
It’s located on Mutton Street, in the busy market area between S V Patel and Moulana Shaukat Ali Roads, near Mohammad Ali Road in south Mumbai. The closest local railway station is Grant Road (western line).
What are the timings of Chor Bazaar?
The shops in Chor Bazaar are open from 11 a.m. until 7.30 p.m., every day except Friday