Why You Need to Go to Delhi’s Silver Heaven, Dariba Kalan
When a place translates in English to ‘street of the incomparable pearl’ you know you’ve found a gem. A 17th century market that came up when Shahjahan built his new city, Dariba Kalan is nestled in the labyrinth lanes of Chandni Chowk. Silver, gold, precious stones, meenakari, this market is a one-stop shop for all your jewellery needs and more. Whether you’re getting married or you’re just a silver addict like us, Dariba Kalan is an absolute must-visit. Here’s what you need to know.
Well, of course, this is the lowdown you need first. Jhumkas, rings, small earrings, nose pins, statement neckpieces, bangles; you may not want to leave, once you set foot here. Traditional heavy pieces or more tribal chic and modern, the variety is dizzying! Silver at Dariba Kalan is 25% cheaper than what you’ll find anywhere in the city. Head to Jain Silver Arts for a range that is more ‘now’. At Dau Dayal & Co. you’ll find some beautiful, traditional baju and kamar bandhs and hath phools as well. Head to Chackresh Jewellers for enamel-work pieces and Victorian styled jewels. Anil K Seth & Sons has just about everything. While most of their pieces are completely silver, they also have pieces in semi-precious stones and other exotic materials.
If you’re up for a little more exploring, get into the lanes of Katra Masroo to see how your jewels are made. You’ll find little workshops where precious metals take shape, stones are polished, and dyes are made.
More Than Just Jewellery
While Dariba Kalan is a jewellery enthusiasts dream, trade of silver in many forms is what goes on here. Serveware, ornate boxes, décor pieces, trophies, and hookahs are just some of the things you’ll find here. Check out stores like Beliram Jain Silverware Manufacturing Co, Dau Dayal again, and Multan Jewellers which is a wholesale shop for utensils and other puja related products.
[Image: Just Dial]
Scent Your Senses
Dariba Kalan is also home to the city’s ‘oldest perfumery, Gulab Singh Johri Mal. Established in 1816, getting an itar from here, should be on your bucket list. Made of fresh flowers and sandalwood oils, you’ll find these alcohol-free perfumes in Belgian-cut glass decanters. You can find a fragrance here for as low as Rs.1000 and as expensive as Rs.18,000 approximately, the most exotic and expensive being the Ruh-e-Gulab, a pure-rose oil.
So, take out time on a Saturday (the market is shut on Sundays), because Dariba Kalan in Delhi is an experience no one should miss!
[Image: Arkaprava Ghosh/ Barcroft TV]