Aug 052013

A Walk in Night Bazaar for Ramazan Food Walk at Charminar & Laad Bazaar


While the politicians squabble over the future of Hyderabad, Hyderabadis fasting and shopping during Ramadan.  The area around Charminar has a special significance during Ramazan, as there is a special Night Bazaar for Ramazan that keeps open till 2-3 am to cater to the shopping frenzy of Hyderabadis in the night. I was to meet my friends from GHAC for Ramazan near the Purani Haveli and then walk all the way to Charminar enjoying the street food, Irani Chai ( a special Hyderabad style tea with origins in Persia or Iranand shopping, but the old city had other plans for me.

As there are a lot of traffic restrictions in the area we decided to hire a cab and go to the old city. I am unable to say what route the cabbie followed but we straight reached one end of the famous Laad Bazaar or the Bangle market on one of the arteries leading to Charminar. We got down from the cab once traffic was no longer allowed and started walking toward Charminar.

Ramazan Night Bazaar Charminar Hyderabad

Charminar as seen from Lad Bazaar

So the kids and their mom bought bangles from the world-famous Laad Bazaar and they bought enough to gift half of our relatives as Missus thought they were almost half the prize from anywhere else in the city. There were bangles in every color, size, design, and shape, ok not shape because all the bangles I saw were round 🙂

As for me I was just enjoying being lost in the sea of humanity that has been coming to Charminar during Ramazan for generations, for who coming to Night market during Ramazan comes naturally.

The shopkeepers were calling loudly in Deccani / Hyderabadi, which is such a distinct dialect that there are movies like ” The Angrez”, made in Hyderbadi dialect specally for the local audience, but have a global appeal. 

“ Madam/ Sir, have a look, no price for looking” knowing very well that once somebody looks at the glittering bangles or smelled the heavenly “Attar” ( perfume), it is impossible to keep money in the pocket. So quickly money exchanged hands and my backpack started becoming heavier with every shop we visited.

Bangle seller at lad bazar ramazan night market

Dekhne ka koi paisa nahin- Please have a look- No Price for seeing

bangle seller in lad bazaar night market charminar

Try These bangles Laad Bazaar Charminar

cap seller at ramazan night market charminar

I sell caps, but I also pose for tourists, oops I mean travelers jee 😛


What To Expect in Ramzan Food Walk  In Hyderabad Charminar

Now while Hyderabad is famous for Haleem during Ramazan, this did not stop this Dosa Stand doing brisk business. So don’t worry if you are a vegetarian like me, you will still have enough for choice to spoil your taste buds.

Dosa making at Ramazan Night market Charminar Ramzan Food Walk

Enough Choice for Veggies or in local lingo- Ghaas Phoos Khane walon ke liye

 Not only the Dosa wala, but also the Bhutta wala (Corn on the Cob Indian version heated on open flames of charcoal) was doing brisk business.

bhutta corn on the cob made on flames of charcoal

desi Style Corn on the cob or Bhutta/ Challee- take your pick

seviyan or vermicelli for sale ramadan night market charminar

Aayiye Jenab: Welcome Sir- Seviyan for dessert



Kopra Pak or coconut sweets at Ramadan night market Charminar

Kopra Pak or Kopra Mithai Minar made from Coconut or a Tower of Sweets

For sweets we had this guy with his “Tower of Sweets“, trying to compete with Charminar in height.

We have never experienced Old Hyderabad like this before, the Charminar, Laad Bazaar, Pather Gatti Road all the way to Mecca Masjid is blocked for vehicular traffic during Night Bazaar for Ramazan, but two-wheeler riders continue to roam freely creating a nuisance for pedestrians.

Attar or Perfume bottles

Attar Bottles for sale, along with gift boxes

We started walking towards Medina, but the charms of the Ramadan Night Market were so that we could barely cover half the distance as we were stopping at every shop, bandi ( kiosk) checking the goods on offer.  So we could cover only 1/10 of the distance when the kids got tired and we had to call it a night with Old Hyderabad just warming up.

kiosk selling bangles ramadan night market

Bulbs illuminating a bandi or kiosk at Night Bazaar Charminar

Bonalu crown glowing minaret Old Hyderbad charminar

Colors of Hyderabad – India

While coming back, I saw this huge crown to be offered for Bonalu, to Devi Maa (Mother Goddess), being carried on a mini truck, when it passed in front of a Masjid the colors of Bonalu and the glowing Minaret of Mosque merged.

For me that is the true essence of the fusion culture of Hyderabad, living and celebrating together the common heritage of hundreds of Years. I think this essence of Old Hyderabad is what makes the Attar sold in miniature bottles near Charminar so special. What could be more fragrant than the culture distilled over hundreds of years by generations of Hyderabadis?

No wonder I ♥ Hyderabad

Attar Bottles Ramadan Night Market

The essence of Hyderabad in Attar Bottles- These Attars of Perfumes are made locally using traditional methods


Tips for Visiting Ramazan Night Market at Charminar

The most important thing to remember is that Ramazan night market is frequented by devout Muslims who are fasting during the holy month. So you should respect this and dress accordingly do not take images of anybody especially kids, & women without prior permission.

As the market is very crowded it is better to park at a distance and walk, you will get parking near Salarjung Museum,  Purani Haveli and near Osmania Medical College Koti, then walk. I personally always hire a cab to visit Charminar even during normal days and during Ramazan the area is more than 1000 times more crowded. So best is if you can hire a cab/auto if you do not want to struggle for parking.

Points to Remember during Ramazan Night Market Visit

Do not drink alcohol and visit the Night Market during Ramazan time, remember it is the holy month and people are fasting. It is absolutely safe to visit the night market and most of the folks are smiling and welcoming you to try their stuff ranging from Bangles to Attar, Caps, Artificial Jewelry, street food, etc. Just be careful with your jewelry and pockets as there could be pickpockets around like any crowded market anywhere in the world.  Once again I want to highlight please do not click pictures without taking permission, more so of ladies and kids.

Dress Code: During Ramadan, it is suggested to dress conservatively respecting the local traditions, Kurta Pyjama for men and Salwar Suit for ladies is what is suggested. 

Ramadan or Ramazan: I have seen both spellings on the internet and this is what I have understood: In Arabic countries the spelling used is Ramadan, and in Indian Subcontinent Ramazan is more prevalent.  In this post,  you will find both as I was not sure which one to use. But in Hyderabad, most of my friends spell as well as say Ramazan.  

Also, read my new post about Ramadan Food Festival   Bazaar in Singapore.

Here is my post about – Ramazan  Food Walk to Jama Masjid Delhi

Breakfast Street Food Walk In Old Hyderabad

tangytuesday Blogadda

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  41 Responses to “Ramazan Night Market- Charminar Hyderabad”

Comments (41)
  1. Hi, I’d like to share your photos for my article about laad bazaar on a public platform with your due permission and credits to you. Let me know if you’re ok with it. Thanks and regards.

  2. Very delightful post. Tempting to buy bangles and Attars. And so nice to know about the available veg options. Thanks for the lively post. 🙂

  3. I am sure Ramadan would a festive time at night! I have been to some iftaar parties…and its a rocking world. Have you seen the Md Ali road in Mumbai during these days…its food galore!
    I was in Hyd last wek and bought so many bangles….its a riot of colours!

  4. hi..i am keen to explore the night baazar with my parents…is 2 hours sufficient..whats a good time to get there to experience the baazar in full glory…would one get to taste haleem from the popular restaurant therein..which ones are recommended for haleem…

    • Hey Pakhi: You should go there after 8 pm when the lights are on and Hyderabad is out there. Remember it will be crowded and you can only walk as vehicles are not allowed so plan accordingly. You will need 2-4 hours to walk, experience street foods etc. and do some shopping. As far as Haleem goes, some of the best ones in Hyderabad are : Pista House, Hyderabad House, Shah Gouse, Paradise, Sarvi and 555 for Iranian Haleem, you have to try on your own to find which one you like most. I don’t want to start a war here to name one as each one of them has huge fan following 🙂

  5. I lived in Hyderabad from almost 4 years but somehow never managed to visit the night market during ramzan. Your post took me there. Thanks for this lovely post.

    • I also visited in my 4th year….:), though I visited Charminar and nearby areas within the first week in Hyderabad, but Ramadan night market is truly a spectacle to watch…

  6. Very impressive and well done extracts of culture and time…it shows that this planet is very big even in its difference
    related to custom styles and habits..

    .I would lik to visit this night market planet…

    I smell a 1000 beautiful spice symphony
    lurking in an highly vibrant night atmosphere…
    Thanks for sharing this wonderful images

    (Other Planet)

  7. Wow, beautiful festive post evokes the colors of the festival in all its glory. Amazing shots! Felt like I wast there all along! 🙂

  8. this is by far one of the best Eid coverage post my dear friend 🙂 awesome !! I have been to Hydbd once during Eid and I could relate to the charm and buzz and Halim being the fav stuff for all the non vegies.. regardless of their faith and even I tasted a bit .. to accompany my friends … the charm of the Secundarabad area enhances … and you have captured time .. !!

  9. have heard a lot abt this place and the delicious haleem…someday i will visit 🙂 thanks for this beautiful post

  10. I visited this place once and remember eating those Masala Dosas. Oh, they are lovely 🙂 I want to go there once again just to eat some more of those delicious masala dosas 😛

  11. Such brilliant festive shots …

  12. Loved your photographs and description, Prasad.

    I had another virtual tour. I am living in hyderabad for the past 10 years. I can count the number of times i have visited here due to the uncertainity prevailing in the area and the distance.My last visit was when an MP of this area was shot , the whole area looked deserted. We took a risk and went to the area around 4 in the eve. We drove straight to chowmahalla palace and on our return around 6, we saw the area came to life. we had parked our car in the government hospital opp charminar and it was difficult to drive on the road. I missed clicking the reflection through the attar bottles. Been there done that but not during ramadan. I too bought beautiful bangles for 80rs and gifted them to relatives.

  13. Slurrp…Ogle…Sigh…Your post was a treat for all the senses!

  14. Vivid and beautifully captured .. those moments of bliss !

  15. Lovely captures! The same scenes can be witnessed here at ‘shivajinagar’, Bangalore! A true heaven for shoppers during Ramzan! 🙂

  16. colorful and glistening has the whole market turned into. Love the festive spirit within the peple and shop keepers.

  17. very nyc…….festivals full of happiness everywhere 🙂

  18. Thank you for the lovely walk! Beautiful pictures with interesting commentary!

  19. Nice to read your post, Thanks a lot for sharing 🙂
    Love all photographs 🙂

  20. I am from Hyderabad and love visiting Charminar during Ramadan. Especially love getting bangles from lad bazaar!

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