Barabazar also called as lewduh Market is a prominent market located in East Khasi hills of Shillong. The name Lewduh market literally means the market of the common people. And it surely stands for its name, as the market offers almost everything for all by all. It is at a distance of 3. 7 km from Shillong and takes about 10 minutes to reach there.
Barabazar is one of the oldest and largest trade centres in Northeast India. It is fascinating to see women running most of the shops here. Religious ceremonies take place every year in the market area. The rituals performed signifies to invoke the blessings of 'U Blei Shyllong', the God of Shillong and also the market deity 'Ka Iew- Lei Hat-Lei Khyrdop'. The ritual includes installing huge monoliths called as 'mawbynnas'. The market has many small and narrow lanes cutting across each other. It looks like a maze and your chances of coming back to the same place again are nearly impossible, which some find to be fun and interesting.
Barabazar is a street photographer's paradise as the market is crowded all the time. Visitors can get hands on some uncommon souvenir, like hand-woven shawls, other handicrafts, and hats, mats made out of bamboo at very low prices. One can also find seasonal fruits and vegetables that are native to this region. The exceptional goods found in the market are Shyrmit (turmeric powder), Sohmirit (Khasi pepper), Ryndiah (muga silk shawls). Not just the material things, but the visitors also get to witness the authentic culture of Shillong through the small lanes of the market. The market comes to life and thives in the months after April after the rituals and other religious ceremonies are performed. This would be the best time to visit Barabazar. It is advised to avoid this place during the monsoon as the rains make the overly crowded market muddy. Visitors spend around an hour in the market.
Barabazar being one of the largest holds as much history as it holds the local economy. May it be the cane furniture, meat, grocery, fish, clothes, or even a kitchen sink, the market has everything and anything in it. When in Shillong, one should not miss this market. It will be a preferred option to go in the morning hours, as it gets crowded later on. The Barabazar is closed on Sundays. Visitors can visit Barabazar during timings 8:00 AM TO 5:00 PM.