Sunday, January 31, 2010

Shopping and Dining in Calcutta

Shopping at New Market for scarves and Indian attire.  It was a challenging experience.  We were harassed and bombarded by every shop keeper.  There are hundreds of shops to choose from Vendors are selling everything from teas to jewelry.  A warning to anyone going to Calcutta...keep away from New Market. The prices are high, even if you spend time bargaining.  Tourists think they get a good deal just because they bargained for a lower price.  Not true.  The best place to shop is the Government Markets or the street vendors. The Government markets have set prices and no pushy shop keepers hounding you.
There are street vendors of every kind selling a variety of foods and goods.  The street foods were not safe for us to eat, but we could by some of the fruits and vegetables.  We had to buy a papaya from this street vendor in order for me to get this picture taken.  The locals are particular about tourists taking their pictures.  You must ask their permission before snapping your camera.

Eating out in restaurants is very inexpensive.  Even in the fine dining places we found it to be very clean and quality food.  

Lunch at Pizza Hut was a good change and a good value.  A medium size vegetarian pizza was only 390 rupees - less than $8 US.

We had a geat dinner at Marco Polo.  Restaurants are very inexpensive even the nicer upscale restaurants.  We were able to have Filet Mignon for around $6 USD.

McDonald's Calcutta.  They do not serve any burgers or beef due to the Hindu religion of not eating cows.  The only meat on the menu is chicken, fish or vegetarian sandwiches.

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