As the vast multicultural city of Vancouver makes its way into spring, you are sure to hear things about the famous Vaisakhi parade that will gather people of all backgrounds to Main Street between 48th Avenue and 52nd Avenue on April 13. Here, people meet annually to celebrate Sikh’s original Vaisakhi festival that marks both the New Year and the anniversary of one of Sikhism’s most important events, the establishment of Khalsa. This part of Vancouver is known as “Little India,” a culturally rich society and a hidden shopping gem!
In fact, this area south east of downtown Vancouver is a traditional and commercial focal point for Vancouver’s Indo-Canadian community. Little India, also known as “The Punjabi Market”, is packed with shops, groceries, restaurants, and boutiques of all sorts. This hidden Vancouver gem is the perfect place to shop for fabric, high-end saris, wedding garments, home decor, and all kinds of jewellery from cheap and bountiful bangles to 22-karat gold jewellery. As well hair and head pieces, lavish bags, sparkly clutches, shoes, religious mufti and gifts are all sold for a reasonable price. Not only is it a great
place to shop for amazing Indian fashion, it is also a great place to buy Indian cooking utensils and ingredients.
Little India is easy to get to by transit or by car, and there’s plenty of free street parking for drivers which is a rarity in Vancouver! Even if Indian attire is not something you are looking for, it is still truly worthwhile to ponder those authentic and magical shops filled with colours, styles and gems!
Sarah Tam, JCI Fashion Student