Shopping in Kerala: Things to Buy in Kerala

Kerala is one of the frequently visited tourist destinations in India. The interesting place is full of adventure and fun, starting from chilling at the golden seashores of Kovalam to hiking at the Munnar. Or you can even go backpacking through the state and pick up the most beautiful and unheard aspects of the state.

While here you can always pack some last-minute trinkets to take back home. After all, shopping in Kerala can be an interesting experience. You can buy beautiful and aromatic coffee from the organic gardens of the Kozhikode, or buy the Kasavu sarees, and the list is endless.

Read more about Most Famous Markets in Kerala      9 Popular Kerala Handicrafts


Here is a detailed list of things to buy in Kerala, making things simple for you:

1.  Spices

Best place to buy:  Periyar, Thekkady, Munnar, Fort Kochi, and Kumily

Kerala is one of the oldest spice trading ports of India and has been welcoming traders from distant parts of Middle East or Europe since 3000 BCE. The aromatic spices markets is stacked with small and big bags of enchanting pepper, turmeric, cardamom, cinnamon, chilly, and so much more. If you want to take some part of Kerala with you, spices are a great start.

2.  Coffee and Tea

Best places to buy: The local coffee shops making their own brew or the State Coffee Board outlets

Coffee and Tea are for sure one of the most popular things to buy in Kerala. Each year Kerala produces more than 10 million tons of coffee for local and global consumption. The fresh cups of coffee can fill your heart with warmth. Some coffee estates can make your preferred roasted blends from mildly roast to French roast – according to your preference. But tea lovers fear not. The state has some of the most beautiful tea estates, producing magnificent teas. The Nilgiri Tea Estate is often recommended.

3.  Kasavu Mundu

Best places to buy: Local markets of Kochi or Kozhikode

The traditional Malayalee dress material - Kasavu Mundu, is often worn by the locals at home. Beautiful and soft fabric with a golden border enhances the beauty of the person wearing them. Most women team up the Kasavu saree with colorful blouse and beautiful garland on their hair.

4.  Cashew Nuts

Best places to buy: Kerala Cashew Corporation Board outlet

The tropical weather of Kerala is suitable for growing nuts especially cashew nuts. You can stock up your supply of the nuts and other goodies. Cashew shopping in Kerala can be an interesting prospect. You can go to the cashew farms and buy the most beautiful nuts.

5.  Handicraft

Best places to buy: Retail and government owned outlets

Coconut is one of the most readily available fruits in the state, and the Keralites have mastered the art of making handicrafts from anything coming from the coconut tree. The artists create coir handicrafts including wall hangings, mats, rugs, and everything. Another popular tourist’s favorite is the elaborate Kathakali mask, which are usually sold as fridge magnets, or door hangings. Model snake boats can also be picked during crazy shopping in Kerala.

6.  Aroma Oils

Best places to buy: Kochi, Munnar

Kerala has been the popular destination for Ayurveda and therapeutic massage. The entire state is filled with therapy centers which help in healing with the help of natural therapies. You can buy the aromatic oils procured directly from the local organic farms. Starting from floral toned oils to aromatic sandalwood oils – you can buy anything for your body or soul.

Popular Places for Shopping in Kerala

Here are some of the places where you should go shopping while you are at Kerala:

a.  Spice Market, Kochi

Address: Jew Town Rd, Jew Town, Kappalandimukku, Mattancherry, Kochi, Kerala 682002
Opening time: 8:00 am to 6:30 pm

One of the biggest markets for buying aromatic spices in Kerala, the Spice Market is the place to buy dry fruits and spices. You can expect a good discount if you bargain correctly. Also, at the end of the deal do smile – it’s free and will leave a lasting impression on the person you are dealing.

b.  Asparagus, Varkala

Address: Shop No. 319 A, Rose Garden Building, Papanasam, Beach Road, Trivandrum, Varkala, Kerala
Opening time: 9:00 am to 9:00 pm

It is the place to go shopping in Kerala, especially in the Varkala. You can buy exotic aromatic spices, stylish or traditional garments, like Mundu or Kasavu for taking back home. The friendly salesperson can help you in finding the right dress suiting your style and preference.

c.  Pulickatti Handicrafts, Alappuzha

Address: Boat Jetty Rd, Mullakkal, Alappuzha, Kerala 688013
Opening time: 9:00 am to 7:00 pm (Sunday)

A great place to buy beautiful and reasonably priced souvenirs to take back home. The place offers rosewood carving figures, handloom products, coir mats, and so more. Handicrafts are made by local craftsmen and artisans, so buying from them means you are financially helping the artists.