Shopping for Authentic Kashmiri Shawls: Top Markets and Tips

Kashmiri Shawls, an important part of Kashmiri fashion. But do you know how shawls from Kashmir got so much popular? How are these shawls, not just a fashion but a symbol of tradition and artistry? Whether you’re roaming around local markets or visiting iconic landmarks like Sanasar Lake in Jammu and Kashmir, you’ll surely observe that Kashmiri Shawls have become the regime of Kashmiris. If you’re planning a trip, consider looking into Kashmir Tourism Packages, which often include visits to the best spots to shop for these luxurious shawls, ensuring you take home a piece of Kashmir’s legacy.

Why Kashmiri Shawls are so Famous

Shawls have been an integral part of Kashmiri fashion and culture for centuries. One of its main reasons is climate.

Initially, shawls in Kashmir used to denote royalty and wealth, which is why it was only worn by royal and wealthy people.

Eventually, it became popular in the surrounding regions, and the tradition of shawl-making and trade of shawls started in Kashmir.

Now, we know that the Mughals are famous for their art and architecture, so during the Mughal Era, shawl-making in Kashmir flourished.

Mughals brought great artists to collaborate with Kashmiri artists to infuse their style in Kashmiri Shawls

It took years, and then they introduced some unique patterns and making techniques and elevated the beauty of Kashmiri fashion.

Kashmiri shawls were originally woven using local wool, but over time, artisans began experimenting with different materials like pashmina and shahtoosh. 

The unique climate of Kashmir provided the ideal conditions for producing fine-quality wool, which became popular. 

Since then Kashmiri Pashmina Shawls have been regarded as one of the best quality shawls in the world.

Popular types of Kashmiri Shawls

There are many varieties of Kashmiri Shawls, but let’s talk about the most popular ones.

1. Pashmina Shawls

Who doesn’t know Pashmina Shawls, it is a widely popular Kashmir shawl famous for their softness and warmth.

Pashmina shawls are made from the fine wool produced in Kashmir. These shawls are lightweight yet incredibly warm, making them ideal for cold climates.

2. Shahtoosh Shawls

The other name of this shawl is the “King of Shawls,” Shahtoosh shawls are made from the wool of the Tibetan antelope or Chiru. 

These shawls are incredibly rare and luxurious, known for their delicate texture. However, due to the endangered status of the Tibetan antelope, the trade of Shahtoosh shawls is banned in many countries.

3. Kani Shawls

One of the popular types of Kashmir Shawls is Kani shawls. These shawls are made using a traditional technique named Kani, often depicting scenes from nature and mythology. 

The painstaking process of weaving Kani shawls makes them highly valuable and unique from other shawls in Kashmir.

Top Places to Buy Authentic Kashmiri Shawls

1. Lal Chowk, Srinagar

Srinagar, the capital of Kashmir has various shops and local markets where you can buy authentic shawls.

One famous place is Lal Chowk,  known as the commercial hub of Srinagar, Lal Chowk is a market where you can find all types of Kashmiri shawls.

2. Government Arts Emporium, Srinagar

The Government Arts Emporium, also known as the Kashmir Government Arts Emporium, is a reliable place to buy genuine Kashmiri shawls. 

Located in Srinagar, this government-run store offers a wide variety of Kashmiri shawls, including Pashmina and Kani shawls, at reasonable prices. 

And because it is operated and run by the government, it ensures authenticity and quality, making it a trustworthy shopping destination for anyone

3. Polo View Market, Srinagar

Polo View Market is another popular place famous for its handicrafts, including Kashmiri shawls.

This market offers a range of options especially in terms of shawls, from affordable to luxurious shawls, ensuring there is something for everyone.

These are some of the authentic places to buy Kashmiri Shawls. There are other places also like Pashmina House, Kashmiri Loom, Khanqah-e-Moula Market, etc.

Authenticity Check and Tips or Buying

Now, the Kashmiri Shawls market has become popular globally, people started importing and exporting fake shawls. Here’s how you can check the authenticity of Kashmiri shawls.

See the authentic Kashmiri shawls are made from high-quality materials such as Pashmina wool. 

Genuine Pashmina is soft, light, and warm. You can perform the ring test by trying to pass the shawl through a ring,  a true Pashmina will glide through easily.

Authentic Kashmiri shawls have fine work, that is often done by hand. The designs and stitches should be detailed.

Authentic Kashmiri shawls are usually expensive due to the quality of the material. Always check the prices online or maybe from any experienced person you know.

Lastly, you can check for labels and certifications that guarantee authenticity. Reputed sellers often have certificates of authenticity given by the government to satisfy their customers that they are authentic sellers.


Doesn’t matter, whether you’re from India or an International Traveler, Kashmir Shawls is something that demands your attention. As visiting Kashmir is incomplete without taking one of Kashmir’s Legacy homes with you.

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