Take a peek into the Hippie Anjuna Flea Market.
Updated: Apr 22, 2019
Eight Finger Eddie! That's literally the reason he's known by that name as his right hand had 3 fingers. When he landed in Goa along his hippie trail, he realized that this is the place to be. Helping westerners who came from Europe by offering free accommodation and food without any charge. He was in fact the reason for the popularity of Goa in the late 60's and later.
Thanks to him we have a unique market popularly called the 'Anjuna Flea Market' to explore in Goa to this day. When it first started, whole purpose of this flea market was a means of sustenance for the hippies. Handmade crafts, artifacts, drugs, art and even some personal possessions for that matter were put down for sale. Just to extend their time in paradise for as long as possible. It was more of a necessity than business. People from different walks of life united by the love for Goa. Not the Goa that we see today. Picture the time where the beaches were pristine and unexploited. Barely any people, no shacks, no garbage, no water sports etc, it's hard to imagine what a lovely time it would have been. Although it isn't how it was back in the day, the market has evolved to be one of the most popular to this day.
It is the one stop you need to get your hands on some really interesting handicrafts from around India. The Indian Craftsmen identify this as a hub to sell their goods at premium prices to foreign nationals. The variety of jewelry is enough to make any woman go nuts. The sheer volume of jewelry in the form of trinkets, earrings, bracelets and necklaces would take you a good 3 hours to browse through. Precious stones are available in their raw form as well as polished and embedded. One little stall set up by this woman from Japan named Sumi, had handmade jewelry with a precious stone from the Dominican republic. It has a light blue color with a texture that looks like waves bashing on a white sand beach. It's called Lamarite or dolphin stone. Unbelievable that this stone occurs naturally on the Earth.
Several stalls have a number of flavors of tea neatly arranged and labelled. Being Indian, other than 2-3 types I did not even know the other flavors even existed. Quite fascinating how one tea plant can be flavored to suit multiple tastes. Speaking about taste, Indian food is well know around the world for the complex spices in the preparation. Most of the common spices are available, sold loose, based on your demand. Turmeric, chilly powder, pepper powder, cumin seed powder, coriander seed powder, garam Masala, cinnamon etc are the popular ones sufficient to give you the Indian flavor.
Wooden handicrafts and carved items are put up beautifully on display. One better than the other in terms of complexity, detail and quality. There was one stall put up by a Russian couple which had hand made wooden toys. Simple in design and sturdy as compared to the delicate cellphones we hand to our kids these days. If you are looking for a certain tool to assist you in getting some tetrahydrocannabinol into your lungs (Smoke pipe), then you are in for a treat. There are tonnes of fancy designs and sizes to choose from at a price you will not resist. Be sure to bargain though! Another element to add to the vibe are the percussion instruments such as the Djembe, hand pan and hand drum. These instruments hang around the seller as he casually beats them while making rounds through the market. The sound Sparks your attention and curiosity as it is unusual to hear a Djembe at other markets.
Things you need to know before you plan on visiting:
The market opens at around 11 AM and goes upto 5 PM in the evening during season time which is late September to mid April on every Wednesday
Stuff is expensive as compared to the same available around India. You get similar things at Mapusa Market in the city such as spices, tea, groceries etc.
In case you cannot make it during the day you could visit the Saturday night market at Arpora nearby which has about the same stuff.
Don't miss checking out the dresses, t-shirts and fancy outfits. The designs are rare and beautiful and gives you a look of a modern hippie.
Head over for shopping in the morning, lunch at a nearby shack and a stroll on the beach for the sunset.