Puri Beach Vendors

Balloon Vendor

Balloon Vendor

A dense line of tourists along Sea Beach on Marine Drive in Puri huddle together on this crowded beach but they are domestic tourists, mostly from the state of West Bengal. Very few Western tourists visit Puri and those that do, seldom frequent this beach. Puri has miles of white sand beach but for the most part there is a dangerous under-tow. This small stretch of beach is relatively safe and delights its guests but few venture very far from the shore. The women here hardly ever put on a bathing suit, preferring to enjoy the breeze and the pleasures of a day at the shore on land. If they go in the water at all, it is usually in their sari or salwar-kameez. Consequently, the beach is one huge market-place, attracting a huge array of vendors. Some of these vendors have permanent spots with elaborate set-ups and others are itinerant. There are many vendors selling the same item and the competition is fierce.

"Buy My Balloons"

“Buy My Balloons”

Some of the vendors are mere children, helping out their families and others are adults.

Snack Pushcart

Snack Pushcart

This pushcart even provides his customers with chairs.

He Sells Sea Shells...

He Sells Sea Shells…

This vendor sets up an intricate display every day. It was fun to watch people picking up the shells and listening to that marvelous sound that comes from deep inside the shell.

Pink Treat

Pink Treat

Cotton candy appeals to both the kids and grown-ups.

Swimmers with Cotton Candy Vendor

Swimmers with Cotton Candy Vendor

Inspecting Pearl Strands

Inspecting Pearl Strands

The vendor isn’t shown in the above photograph but the buyer contemplates a bunch of pearls. Pearls are a popular item in Puri. The vendors swear that they are authentic but they aren’t. One of their proofs is to burn the pearl. I read that you should rub the pearl on your tooth. I have bought Puri pearl jewelry and if the price is right, ie. cheap enough and I like it, I don’t care if it isn’t real.

As you can see, business on the beach is brisk and it clearly is a buyer’s market!

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About ninagrandiose

I am based in NYC but travel regularly to India and Mexico. Both of these countries feel like home. In India I scour the country in search of fabulous textiles to incorporate into my clothing designs. I sit back and let the ambiance and wonder of India seep into my consciousness so I can be inspired to write about what India is for me. I bring a limited number of people to India on exclusive and intimate tours of my favorite hangouts. In Mexico I take in the natural beauty that surrounds me and dance the night away. I constantly give thanks for all this and am pleased to share it all with you.
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7 Responses to Puri Beach Vendors

  1. A fascinating series of photograph. The incentive is the same all over the world, selling whatever can be sold where people gather, but the Puri Beach vendors reflect on the Indian culture. Puri looks like a lovely beach.

    • ninagrandiose says:

      Yes, this part of India is enchanting and a terrific opportunity for any photographer. Thanks for the comment.

  2. nice write up.. You have captured the scene so well!

    • ninagrandiose says:

      Thanks, Vidya Murugan. It was a lot of fun walking the length of the beach on the look-out for potential victims!

  3. looneybitch says:

    Reblogged this on Just an Everyday Housewife… and commented:
    wonderful stunning and vibrant colours of the photographs, but the local history is fascinating. I want to go….

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