There are an abundance of supermarkets in Kathmandu and Pokhara. The majority of the items are imported from India, China and Thailand. Goodies from the USA and Britain are widely available on the supermarket shelves, such as Hershey Bars and Walkers Shortbread. But things periodically run out and may go missing for weeks or even months. So when you see it, grab it!
Baby food and nappies are not so readily available nor are tampons (but other feminine hygiene products can be widely obtained). Toiletries and make-up is imported from India and quite a few familiar brands are there. On the whole, for personal items the only thing to do is accept that if you can’t get it here you will have to bring it back on your next visit home.
Where to buy: Bhat Bhateni Supermarkets, Sales ways Supermarkets, Big Mart Supermarkets
Kitchenware is available at the supermarkets and in local shops. Furniture and furnishings can be bought or made in a wide variety of places at a wide variety of prices.
Where to buy: Bhat Bhateni Supermarkets, Sales ways Supermarkets, local shops in Ason, local shops in your area. Furniture and furnishings can be bought around Kupondol (more expensive) or in local shops in your area (ask around!).
Children’s clothing veers towards the princess for young girls so you might want to bring those from home also. Adult clothing is available, provided you are not too tall or too ‘fat’! There is an abundance of tailor shops that can make things to order. Ask your friends and colleagues to recommend somewhere. Shoes for adults are more difficult to find unless you have small, slim feet and appreciate ‘not so well made but highly glittery’ sandals. Handmade shoes are available, but we don’t know anyone who has had a positive experience.
Where to buy: Bhat Bhateni Supermarkets, Sales ways Supermarkets, local shops in New Road, Durbar Marg (more expensive)
Electronic equipment (computers, tablets etc.) are on the whole more expensive than in your hometown and you might not get exactly what you want.
Where to buy: New Road, Putali Sadak, Durbar Marg
In recent years there has been a couple of organic markets opened up – Le Sherpa and 1905 (Saturdays) in the north of the city, and Yellow House (Sundays) in the south. These provide a wide range of organic fruit and vegetables and home-made/ restaurant-made things such as hummus, olive spread, couscous salad, different bakery products, non-dairy milk such as almond, etc. Le Sherpa is the largest (and has parking space on a first-come-first-served basis) and is open from 8am to 12pm every Saturday. These markets are also great places to meet new people and have a healthy breakfast.
Locations: Yellow House at Sanepa on Sunday mornings
- 1905 at Naxal on Saturday mornings
- Le Sherpa at Pani Pokhari on Saturday mornings (pass the Japanese Embassy and the Petrol station – on left – about 100m on there is a very small shrine on the left-hand side of the road, follow a small sealed road behind the shrine)
Ad hoc markets, bazaars, and pop-up markets occur every few weeks, often at BAC (Kupondole), Moksh (Jamsikhel), and other locations. Details of these can be found on the KTMKTM Google Group and Facebook.